Dogs are great, but that incessant barking is enough to drive anyone crazy. Or, maybe you’ve had a neighbor complain a time or two, and you want to keep the peace. It’s time for some peace and quiet. It’s time to quiet the barker with these amazing tips that help stop your dog from barking.
Never punish your dog for barking. Sometimes they are barking as an effort to alert you of danger. Most dogs will bark because there is an underlying emotional issue. If you punish them for that, it may increase the barking and defeat the entire purpose. They may even express their needs through other more destructive behavior.
It helps to fully understand that dogs do not have words like humans do to express their feelings or to cry for help. To stop the barking once and for all, you will first need to get to the root of what is causing your dog to bark. It could be for any number of reasons, and here are the most common reasons why your dog is barking:
Some dogs require more interaction and stimulation than others. When a dog is under stimulated either mentally or physically or both, they may begin barking over and over to break their boredom. Make sure you provide your dog with enough activity and options to stay entertained or engaged in exercise. Whenever possible, spend time with your dog including making sure they are getting plenty of walks to burn off some pent-up energy.
Sometimes a dog becomes frightened or just plain fearful or stressed. When this happens, the dog will probably bark to express their need to be reassured everything is safe and not scary.
Alert of Danger
Some dogs will alert you of potential danger by barking. Some dogs misunderstand a mailman or other innocent person walking by to be a threat. The best way to squelch this kind of bark is to teach your dog an alternate behavior to communicate danger. Reward the dog when they stop barking and come to you instead.
Some dogs use barking as a way to get attention. Even if your reaction is to yell at the dog, they will interpret it as the attention they were seeking. Sometimes ignoring the attention-grabbing bark completely is a good method. Other times, training them to modify their behavior to, for instance, sit instead of bark, is a good win-win.
Many dogs lose all control when they become excited. They get so enthused at the sight of their owner or something that makes them happy that they let out a bark, or several barks that don’t seem to stop. When this happens, it’s important to work with them on self control and to instead sit or stay. Sometimes teaching them to do a trick instead of bark will work wonders. The main idea is to divert the bark into other behavior.
Another thing to remember is that some breeds have a tendency to bark more than other breeds do. Terriers, hounds, or shepherds are a few example of barkers. Before you decide on bringing a dog home as a pet, take time to research various breeds to make sure it is a good match for your family.