Just as humans talk, dogs bark. Barking is a dog’s method of communication. Your dog barking is often not the problem; the problem is that your dog is barking excessively. Each bark carries a function. You must find out why your dog is barking in order to treat the problem effectively. If you listen to your dog, you are likely to hear differences in her bark. For example, the bark she uses to warn against intruders is much different than the one she uses to get your attention.
Territorial Dog Barking
Your dog may be barking as a response to an intruder entering his territory. This may not always be your home but could also be your car or someone else’s house dependent upon where he spends significant amounts of time. This is often not the type people attempt to treat; however, if you need to treat territorial dog barking, you should attempt to reduce the visibility to the “intruder.”
Your dog may simply be attempting to gain your attention. The dog barking is a way for the dog to let us, the pet parent, know that he is wanting something from you whether it is love, a toy or food. This is often not a problem but can become a problem if your dog begins barking all day long for everything. In this case, it is best to ignore the behavior. This is a difficult behavior to treat because as the pet owner you want to give the pet something to satisfy him; however, this is giving in and will not help cure the situation.
Compulsive Barking in Dogs
When dog barking becomes compulsive barking, this is often the breaking point for the pet parent. Dogs who are compulsively barking are non-stop barking continuously. If your dog is barking for no reason, you can increase his exercise routine and/or increase his mental stimulation. Mental stimulation can be increased using mental stimulating toys or interact with other people or dogs.
As a last resort, the pet parent can obtain an anti-bark collar. Again, only as a last resort; and preferably with the assistance of a canine behavior specialist. Anti-bark collars often produce a loud alert noise, a spray or an electric shock. Those which produce the noise are often not very effective. The other two; the spray and electric shock are generally effective. It is important to understand not to use these if there are loud noises in the home. Any loud noise or other dogs bark can activate the collar and punish the dog with the collar.
Now you know how to make a dog stop barking, read more about clicker training dogs here.
Amber Johnson, Animal Behaviorist
Miss Amber Johnson has many years of experience with pets and is a licensed cat and dog nutrition and behavior specialist. She currently collaborates with PetPremium where she counsels clients in pet behavior and nutrition. The statements made in this article are the personal opinions of Miss Amber Johnson and based on independent experiences and could be different from the opinions of PetPremium Pet health Insurance or any other pet health insurance provider.