NUISANCE BARKING

© Alanchen | Stock Free Images &Dreamstime Stock Photos

The issue of a nuisance barking dog can be a real test of 'neighbourly' relations, as the last thing you want is a letter of complaint from the council claiming that your dog barking has become the scourge of the neighbourhood.  In principle 'Happy Dogs Don't Bark' unless they've been encouraged to from an early age, so with this in mind it's important to find out what's causing your dog to be unhappy.

 

 

 

 

 

 REASONS WHY DOGS BARK

• To call the pack (family) back

• If they feel unsafe

• Out of excitement or frustration 

• To warn intruders or passers-by to go away

• If they're hungry

• If they've been encouraged to

 Because a lot of people today buy a dog for protection as well as a companionship, it is important that we understand the distinct differences between a good watchdog and a nuisance barker. Allowing your dog to bark at anything it likes is not the correct way to teach it to be a “good watch dog”.

© Korgathegreep | Stock Free Images &Dreamstime Stock PhotosWHAT IS A NUISANCE BARKER?

A dog that barks at birds, noises, neighbours, passing pedestrians or other dogs is not actually a good watchdog. A dog like this is similar to a car alarm that keeps going off for no reason. People will eventually take no notice when it goes off for a legitimate reason and it will also be annoying to your neighbours.

WHAT IS A GOOD WATCH DOG?

A good watchdog is a dog that only barks when someone attempts to enter your property or there is imminent danger (intruder, house fire etc...). Good barking habits can be trained into your dog easily, providing you are clear about exactly what you want your dog to bark at. By doing this, it will teach you to respond to your dog’s bark because it will be a warning sign and not any everyday noise.

 IF YOU WANT YOUR DOG TO BE A GOOD WATCH DOG AND NOT A NUISANCE BARKER TAKE THE FOLLOWING ACTIONS

 BARKING PREVENTION AT THE PUPPY STAGE

A young pup that barks at people or noises is a good indication that you have a budding nuisance barker developing. This could be a sign of a nervous pup that worries about everything. A well-adjusted pup will not usually start barking unnecessarily unless encouraged to do so.  Don’t allow your puppy to bark at your cheekily, this shows lack of respect.  Don’t encourage any form of barking by saying, “What’s that?”, “Who’s here?” etc..., when there is a noise outside or when someone comes into the home.

It is important that you let your puppy know when it is doing something wrong.  Puppies and dogs respond to vocal tones so introduce one word to indicate that your puppy has done something wrong, such as “bad” said in a low growly voice.  Always follow up soft toned praise when your puppy responds correctly.

If you have a pup that is starting to bark at everything that moves, correct him with a low growly “BAD” at the precise moment he starts. Praise him as soon as he responds. If he doesn’t respond initially try clapping your hands at the same time and lowering your voice tone even more whilst using your correction word.  This should help stop any premature barking.  DO NOT RAISE YOUR VOICE AND YELL AT YOUR PUPPY.  Do not use aggressive body language such as pointing your finger or raising your hand.  Do not physically correct at any point including tapping your puppy/dog's nose, holding it down or grabbing its collar.

A puppy that persists even after your correction could need some socialising. FOR HELP ON SOCIALISING YOUR PUPPY CLICK HERE or seek professional help from Bark Busters.

TIPS ON CURING AN OLDER DOGS NUISANCE BARKING

It is important that you let your dog know when it is doing something wrong.  Puppies and dogs respond to vocal tones so introduce one word to indicate that your dog has done something wrong, such as “bad” said in a low growly voice.  Always follow up soft toned praise when your dog responds correctly.

If you are home and your dog is outside barking, firstly go out and correct him with a low growly “BAD”. Using this short word consistently will teach your dog that the correction is directed to him and not at whatever he is barking at. You may have to raise your voice over the barking in order for your dog to hear you. You should not have to continually shout at your dog. DO NOT RAISE YOUR VOICE AND YELL AT YOUR DOG.  Do not use aggressive body language such as pointing your finger or raising your hand.  Do not physically correct at any point including tapping your puppy/dog's nose, holding it down or grabbing its collar.  All of these are punishments that will stress your dog and make them even more likely to bark.  If you use the “BAD” word every time your dog does something wrong he/she will soon catch on. Be sure to praise your dog as soon as he stops nuisance barking. Monitor the barking and only correct him for those things that do not constitute a good watch dog, i.e. birds, noises, the neighbours, passing pedestrians and other dogs, etc.  

 If you are at home and your dog is inside barking, firstly go and correct him with a low growly “BAD”.  Praise your dog as soon as he stops barking.  If he is barking out of the window call him away from the window and praise him once he obeys you.  Going forward, stop your dogs access to the window.  Move chairs/sofas away and if necessary block his eye line with curtains/blinds or stop his access to the room entirely.    

You must be consistent in correcting ALL your dog’s nuisance barking.  Even if you are not in the room at the time, still correct from wherever you are in the house, followed by praise for the correct behaviour.  Your dog must not be allowed to bark when it feels like it.  DO NOT BE TEMPTED TO USE A SHOCK OR SPRAY COLLAR on your dog.  This is a potentially cruel and unnecessary punishment for your dog and does not teach your dog the right behaviour.  It is currently illegal in Wales to use a shock collar on a dog.  For further details on this ruling I suggest you research the ban on shock collars in Wales via your search engine.    

WHAT DO YOU DO IF YOU CANNOT STOP YOUR DOGS NUISANCE BARKING?

When I meet a dog with a barking issue, I look at treating the source of the problem holistically and to identify the reasons WHY your dog is barking. With a thorough investigation of the dog and its surroundings I am able modify the behaviour and completely cure the barking using our unique Bark Busters behaviour modification system.

For expert professional help and advice on resolving nuisance barking problems with your dog

Call Freephone 0808 100 4071

 

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