How to Stop Dogs Barking - Tips & Advice
Guest post: Author Bio
John Braise is a professional blogger who has years of experience writing and giving advice to those who are in trouble with taking care of their pets. With a very special love for pets in general and puppies in particular, he yearns for providing information and guidance for those who have the same desire for looking after their puppies in the best ways. Also, he fancies penning helpful and valuable puppy care tips to make owners feel at ease with their four-legged buddies on http://gohappydogs.com/
Barking is one of the most common behaviors in dogs. It is exceedingly rare when you meet a dog that never barks. Your dog barks when you're coming home, when going out for a walk and when there's a sound at the front door.
Barking can be quite enjoyable, as the dog expresses happiness and enthusiasm, however, it can also drive crazy, as well as serve as a signal that your dog is in distress. Just imagine that you are lying in your warm, comfortable bed to get yourself ready for a sweet dream, and all of a sudden, your dog barks like crazy outside your bedroom. You think that someone is paying a visit, so you climb out of bed and take the heavy steps towards the living room to check it out, but nothing is ever there. You look down at your pups with warning eyes and go back to bed. A few minutes later, the barking repeats. If you are stuck in that situation, this article is for you.
1. Why does my dog bark?
One of the most important things you need to do before applying these methods is to identify what causes your dog to bark, as the method of approach depends on the reason behind the bark.
a. To get attention:
We all know that dogs cannot speak human language, so vocalizations of any sorts such as moaning or barking are their means of communication. If he wants to go out, you will see him rush towards the front door and bark while running around your feet. If he wants you to play with him, he will bark to keep your eyes on him. When your he barks, just be calm as he may just want to gain your attention.
b. To show that he is on the offensive
Some dogs typically bark when sensing a stranger passing by your yard or approaching your house, or when the neighbours cat passes by. Barking can simply be a defense mechanism.
c. To release boredom or stress
According to many vets, dogs tend to bark out of boredom or loneliness. Dogs with separation anxiety or stress also bark to release their tension, just like humans want to shout out loud when they are under pressure.
Depending on the reason for barking, there are measures to be taken. The key to stopping your dogs from troublesome barking in these cases is to eliminate the stimulation.
a. Ignore the bark
It is the first thing you should do when hearing the noise from your dogs, especially in the case of making a fuss for attention. He yells because he thinks the act shall give him a reward – your attention so when he sees that the thing does not work, he may stop. Do not touch him, do not say anything or even look at him when he is reticent. Do not yell back even if you are annoyed because it only gets your dogs to bark more. When he finally stops, give him the treat to praise him. Dogs often correlate the treat with what has happened during the last 5 minutes, so your dogs will understand that the treat is for him being silent. After many times of practice this, you will be able to refrain your dogs from barking.
b. Get your dogs accustomed to the stimulation
The method is effective in the case of offensive barking. When your dogs sense some strangers passing by or something tries to threaten his territory, he will bark to show the aggression. If he gets familiar with those things, he will act as usual. For example, if he barks at the neighboring dogs, you can create a chance for them to make friends. Ask your neighbors and their dogs to come closer to your dogs while you feed your pups a lot of yummy food. If your dogs start to bark, stop treating and continues again as he stays silent. Be aware that it may take weeks or months before your dogs can stabilize upon seeing the stimulation. Do not rush!
c. Provide a comfortable environment
If there are some simulations you cannot familiarize your dogs with, eliminate them. For example, if your dogs bark when a stranger passes by, close the door or pull the curtains so that he can see no more. You can also think about adding distractions with a radio or some games. As long as you can keep him off the stimulations, the barking will stop.
d. The “quite” command
There are times that you will need immediate silence to stay on your job so all the long-term practices above cannot be used. That is when the "quiet" command becomes useful. The process of training this command is the same as other commands. You start in your yard and ask one of your friends to pretend as a stranger. Tell your dogs to sit and look at you. When your friends walk through and your dog's bark, call his name and say "Quiet." Repeat it several times until your dogs make no sound at all and treat him with toys or delicious treats. The "quiet" command will need time to carve into the canine mind so be patient. Also, during the training time, be delightful and cheering so that your dogs can take up the lesson faster. Punishments are no good!
e. More exercise
If your dogs are so fed up with anything, and he barks just to release himself, keep him occupied with more physical training. Once his energy is running low, what he focuses on will be the water bowl and foods or dog houses, not barking. An adequate addition of exercise also allows your dogs to have fun and at the same time, contributes to his well-beings. However, each dog has a limit to the amount of training so be sure that what you give him is not too much.
f. Call the vet
In case of separation anxiety, you should contact your vet right away. The bark, in this circumstance, is just the tip of an iceberg and even if you can stop the barking, your dogs get no better. You shall need the advice from professional caretakers to treat your pooch.