Dog barking is such a big problem for a lot of people.
The problem is that the average person actually rewards barking.
Either they think they want a “guard dog”, or they think barking (albeit in the beginning) is funny or entertaining.
The puppy barks at the door bell, or a noise on TV, and everyone thinks it is adorable.
The problem is that it creates a habit.
The dog gets used to barking at everything, and not only is it fun and instinctual, his people seem to like it!
It is best to never reward barking that is not on command.
Learning to “Control Your Dog’s Mouth” is Best To Help Stop Barking
Teaching your dog to bark and be quiet on command is the best way to get control of a barking problem!
This teaches him both behaviors.
Plus, it teaches him that he can control his urges to bark.
Other Helpful Tips To Stop Your Dog’s Barking
Dogs don’t like when you come into their space and make them move, especially when they are knee deep in a bad behavior.
If your dog is barking at the window or door, walk up to him and begin to invade his space.
Don’t take his collar.
Just move in front of him and move him along one direction or another away from the distraction.
If he looks up at you and is quiet, if even for a moment, reward him with a scrumptious snack.
If he has a tendency to want to scoot around you and go back to where he was without really caring about the snack, let him drag a leash around the house while you are training him to learn some control of his voice.
He Needs to Lose a Privilege
I have a rule at my house: you get 2 barks to tell me something horrifying is going on in our world.
After 2 barks, should you continue, I am going to hunt you down.
Like “taking space”, I am going to make you stop barking, but I am going to take you by the collar and drag you away or inside if I have to do so.
(Obviously don’t do this if your dog has a tendency toward aggression, it is not worth getting bit).
I find that most dogs that bark outside, want to be “outside”, and they are just voicing their concern or entertaining themselves.
The last thing they want is to have to leave the distraction and come inside.
So, I do what they don’t want; I take them inside.
It is simple: if you want to hang out, outside, you must be quiet.
Again, you can warn me by giving a bark or two, but if you want to stay out, don’t continue to bark beyond that!
Deciphering Your Dog’s Bark
My dogs have very specific barks.
I suppose, it is a lot like being a mom to a new born baby… you learn very quickly what the sound means.
I know when my dog is barking because he is bored.
I know when my dog is barking because he is mad.
I know when my dog is barking because he is scared.
And, I know when he is being protective because someone or thing is too close to the house.
And, although I find it important to learn what a dog is feeling when he barks, it doesn’t make much difference what is going on; you can’t continue to bark.
I mean, even if he is warning me someone is coming in the yard… I want to be coming out immediately to deal with an intruder or situation.
Consistency is the most important aspect of stopping your dog’s barking.
You can’t be consistent all day long and then allow your dog to bark at 2 a.m., or 5 a.m., because you don’t want to get up and deal with him and his behavior.
You must be consistent to see and make a change.
It doesn’t matter if it is raining, snowing, in the middle of the night or during the middle of the day; you must be consistent with how you are dealing with your dog’s behavior.
If you are not consistent, your dog will not learn, because he doesn’t understand!