A dog that will not stop barking, no matter how cute and adorable it may be, can quickly become a nuisance. Not only will it drive you crazy but it can be a problem for the entire neighborhood. Dogs that bark constantly are just doing what their instincts tell them. They do not realize that it may be a problem. To dogs, they are just letting everyone know that there is something going on that you need to be aware of.
So how do you stop a dog from barking? Short of giving it a bone, there are some methods you can try to get your four-legged best friend to keep his yap shut.
Why Do Dogs Bark
Dogs bark because that is they way that they communicate. They can bark for several reasons. They may bark because there is something new in their environment and they are letting you know about it. They may bark as a warning that someone is in their territory. The dog may also simply be bored and have nothing else better to do.
Most dogs that bark a lot have gotten into the bad habit because no one (as in, the owner) has taught them any obedience. Dogs just do what they do and if they bark all the time, it is because the owner has not done their job of teaching the dog how to behave.
Why Barking Is Good
You don’t want to teach your dog not to bark at all. There are instances when your dog should bark. For example, if anyone should trespass through your yard, it would be a good idea if your dog would bark and let you know that someone is there. Barking is also a way for a dog to express themselves. You would not like it if someone told you top be quiet all the time. Your dog is no different. What you need to do is to teach him to not to bark constantly.
How To Get Them To Stop
There are many methods and products that you can try to get your dog to stop barking. One such method is training. As long as you have the time to do it, it is a simple procedure and even the most thick-headed dogs will eventually catch on (I have a thick-headed lab. It took awhile but even he eventually got it). What you do is to get some treats. Choose a command word such as ‘hush’ or ‘quiet’. Stick with only one word so that your dog can remember it. When your dog starts barking, get the treats and use the command word on the dog. When they stop barking, praise them and give them a treat. Try this every time the dog barks and he will eventually stop when you tell him to.
Another good method that will help is to find out what it is that is bothering your dog and remove it from the environment. If you can’t remove it, such as the mailman who delivers mail every day, then you need to work on desensitizing your dog to the item or ‘trigger’. Put your dog on a leash and get him to sit right when the mailman comes by. Have some treats in your hand. If the dog tries to bark, give your command “Hush” or “Quiet” when the dog stops barking, give him a treat. You will probably have to work on this quite a bit around things that trigger the excessive barking.
There are some products on the market that have had some success in getting dogs to stop barking. The first is a citronella collar. This is a special collar that emits that bitter citronella odor every time the dog barks. Dogs do not like the scent and they learn not to bark or they will have to smell it.
Another collar that you can buy is a noise collar. This product has a sound emitter attached to the collar. Every time the dog barks, the emitter goes off with a loud screeching noise. Since dogs have sensitive hearing, they don’t like the loud noise and soon learn not to bark.
A good way to eliminate barking is to give your dog attention. Dogs get bored easily and need positive stimulation. Take your dog for walks and let them burn off some of that excessive energy. Interact with your dog by playing with them and giving them treats. The more attention you give your dog, the more confident and relaxed they are. If they are relaxed, they won’t feel the need to bark all the time.