How to Stop a Dog From Barking

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Barking is one of the many modes of communication for dogs. Besides, even people are frequently pleased when their dogs bark since it warns them of the presence of visitors or indicates that the dog needs something.

However, excessive barking is not a good thing. Aggression, panic, fear, possessiveness, anxiety, territoriality, and health concerns such as heart disease can all result from excessive dog barking. This could lead to future violent conflicts.

Dogs love attention. And they quickly discover that barking is a great way to get it. It’s even more fun if they can get you to shout back at them. Barking doesn’t use up much energy, either, so some dogs will keep on barking. And on. And on.

Alerting you to a burglar is one thing, but if your dog keeps barking at everyday things it can be very stressful for you and your neighbors. Fortunately, you can train your dog not to bark at certain sounds or events. And strangely, the first step is to train your dog to bark on command.

Why dogs bark?

Here are a few explanations for why dogs bark:

  • Protective

    When the dog is barking excessively, it can imply that the dog has noticed or sensed a visitor, or an animal entering its territory. The barking usually gets louder as the threat approaches. During this style of barking, your dog will appear vigilant and perhaps hostile.

  • Fear

    Sometimes you may notice your dog barking at a noise or thing that startles them. This may happen everywhere, and not just in the territory they live in. When they are scared, their ears will move back, and their tails will be tucked.

  • Loneliness

    Dogs are adorable, social creatures. When dogs are left alone for long stretches of time, loneliness can cause them to bark constantly whether inside or outside the house. Other symptoms of your dog barking due to loneliness can result in it running in circles in repetitive motions. This sort of behavior is associated with depression.

  • Playful

    Dogs frequently bark when greeting or welcoming people or other animals. It's usually considered a joyous bark, with tail wags and small hopping thrown in for good measure.

  • Separation anxiety

    Why do dogs bark is a question often asked by pet owners when they’re left alone? The simple reason that causes them to bark is separation anxiety. Pacing, despair, destructiveness, and improper elimination are some of the other signs they commonly exhibit. Compulsive barkers seem to bark merely to hear their own voices.

  • Attention

    Dogs often love to seek attention and are one of the main reasons why your dog may be barking. The reason they bark at some people is to attract attention or receive incentives such as toys, food, or play.

  • Illness or injury

    Often you will wonder why the dog is barking all of a sudden. Actually, it’s in response to discomfort or an unpleasant situation. It is recommended to have your dog inspected by a vet to rule out medical issues before attempting to solve your dog's barking problem.

How to prevent your dog's excessive barking

When your dog barks, they are rewarded in some way. You need to determine what they gain from barking and work to eliminate it. First, you need to analyse why the dog is barking. It could be due to one of the above-stated reasons which must be removed.

Remove your dog's motivation to bark

  • If your dog is barking because it needs to go outside, then train it to jingle a bell at your door. To do that, you can begin by introducing your dog to the bell and rewarding it for touching the bell. Allow it to gradually ring the bell before leaving the room to use the restroom.
  • Make your dog exercise consistently. Select concentration-based workouts. This way, due to some activity, your dog will secrete adrenaline instead of barking.

Behaviour training

  • To learn how to stop your dog from barking, you have to first teach your dog some basic instructions. This is an integral part of behaviour training. This means you must teach your dog to keep quiet with keyword commands like ‘quiet’.
  • Give the instruction ‘quiet’, then place a tasty treat near the dog's nose. For instance, PEDIGREE® Dog Treats in beef, chicken or lamb flavour can be offered to your dog while training him.

Benefits of PEDIGREE® Treats

  • They offer a responsible method of bonding with your dog
  • They serve as excellent rewards for your dogs while training them
  • They also contain high-quality, essential nutrition to improve your dog’s health.

Training your dog to bark on command

Do whatever it is that usually sets your dog off – like making the phone ring or pressing the doorbell. When they bark, praise them while repeating the word ‘speak’. Once your dog associates the word with barking, you’ll be able to get them to bark on command.

Great, but how on earth do you make him stop again?

Once your dog has learnt about ‘speak’ and ‘quiet’, you should be able to say ‘quiet’ at any time and they’ll stay silent. Just remember to praise like mad when they get it right to keep your dog motivated.

Now repeat, reward and reinforce – and you’ll have a quieter dog.

Training your dog not to bark when you go out

The final step is training your dog not to bark when you leave them at home on their own. To do this, you’ll need to be prepared to pretend to go out and return, over and over again.

Just before you pretend to go out, take your dog through their ‘speak’ and ‘quiet’ routine and give them plenty of praise. Once you’ve left the house, come straight inside again and praise them for being quiet. Next time, stay out a little longer. And so on and so on.

Your neighbors might think you’re mad if they catch you practicing this, but they’ll thank you for it in the end!

Additional Situations For Dog Barking

1- What to do when your dog is confined?

Before your dog is confined, give puzzle toys to help reduce or stop your dog from barking. Pause until they've stopped barking and then reward it with a treat or a new puzzle toy. Slowly, increase the amount of duration before being rewarded as it will learn that being quiet earns it a reward. Vary the length of time every time you offer treats. Sometimes after 3 seconds, 5 seconds, 12 seconds, 20 seconds, and so on.

2- What to do when your dog barks at other dogs?

Allow a dog-owning friend to stand out of eyesight or far away so that your dog does not bark at the other dog. Begin feeding your dog treats as soon as your friend and their dog approach closer. But when your friend and their dog are no longer visible, stop feeding your dog any treats. Repeat the procedure as needed. It's important not to rush things; it could take days or weeks for your dog to focus on you and the rewards without barking at the other dog.

3- What to do when your dog barks at a visitor?

Toss them a treat and tell your dog to "go to your bed." Raise the stakes by opening the door for a visitor when they're on their bed to earn a treat. Close the door as soon as your dog starts barking or stands up. Repeat until they are still in bed when the door opens. Then, while your dog is sound asleep, have someone ring the doorbell. Encourage them to stay put.

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Frequently Asked Questions on Dog Barking

If your dog is a persistent barker, it can be distressing and exhausting. But thankfully there are a few simple techniques that will help you learn how to stop a dog from barking in inappropriate situations. All you need to do is take out a little time and have a bit of patience and devotion to stop your dog from barking.

Dogs usually do not get tired after barking. In fact, they will frequently continue to do so until they receive a response. Although a dog's barking may reduce when they become physically weary, the desire to bark generally persists.

You can leave a dog barking for at least 15 – 30 minutes. Of course, the goal is to be able to leave the dog alone for longer and longer periods of time without having to punish it for barking. The time away should be slowly built in small intervals.

Although most dogs cannot bark themselves to death, a few are more prone to suffocation if their throats swell. These include those who have respiratory issues as a result of their flattened features.