Barking is natural behaviour for any dog, a bark can be an indication that your dog wants to get your attention, or it can also be a way for your dog to show distress. Excessive barking can however be challenging for owners, in this article we look at ways to stop your dog from barking all the time.
Ignore the Barking
Like a toddler, a dog can bark excessively simply because it is looking for attention. If as an owner, you react every time your dog barks, your dog will learn that barking will lead to the attention that they are seeking. It is important to ignore your dogs barking if you feel it is only an attention seeking bark. By doing so you will teach the dog that this behaviour is not desirable, and they will look for new ways to get what they want.
Remove any Stimulus
It might be that your dogs barking is caused by a particular stimulus such as passing cars or other dogs they see through the window or while out on a walk. In order to stop your dog being affected by this stimulus the most effective action is to begin to distract your dog when these stimuli become present. Try redirecting your dog’s attention by offering them a treat or interacting with the dog when you see the stimuli approach. This way the dog will learn that they can allow the car or dog to pass without having to react to it.
Teach Your Dog a “Quiet” Command
If you can teach your dog to bark on command, this will help you to develop a behaviour pattern that shows when barking is and isn’t appropriate. Barking on command is a behaviour that can be learn using a reward system. Ask your dog to bark and offer a treat when the dog successfully follows this command. When the dog barks without being told to withhold the treat and turn your back to the dog. Over time the dog will learn that barking is only appropriate when commanded to do so by their owner.
Ensure Your Dog Does Not Build Up Excess Energy
Make sure that your dog has had sufficient exercise every day, this will stop your dog from barking out of frustration. A tired dog is less likely to be barking, agitated by stimuli or trying to get attention.
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