*This is a collaborative post.
That a dog barks is normal, expecting otherwise is as good as looking forward to seeing a child that never talks. However, this does not excuse some that do it excessively. Do you have a problem with an excessively barking pet? If that is the situation, you will need to discover what may be making your canine behave in such a way. Your ability to know the cause is the first step in knowing what sort of remedies to apply to bring a stop to it. You can read further on this here.
Some Reasons for the Woof
Dogs use a number of vocal communications, and barking happens to be one of such. A dog’s barking can actually mean a number of things, and this is dependent on various situations. Some reasons why dogs bark can be found among these:
Be In Charge
Bringing your dog to curtail his barking is not an easy job. This will demand from you work, practice, consistency and time. It does not happen in a jiffy, but you will make progress using the right techniques with time.
Some things to note in your effort to stop your canine from excess noise:
Train Your Pet
Be firm in telling your pet to be quiet, and be calm about it. Say nothing more until he stops, even if he stopped just to catch some air. At this, give him some treat while praising him. Never give a treat while he is still on his noisy displays. With time, he will get to realize that responding to the command “Quiet!’ results in a treat. The more delicious the treat is, the more he realizes that making noise is not worth losing the treat.
You can also use another method where you teach him when to bark with a specific signal and when to stop with another signal. To stop him, you could say “Quiet!” while placing a finger on your lips. Canines, being known to catch body signals quicker than voice signals, he is likely to be responding soon. When you practice this at his calm moments, he will soon learn to be calm by your command even at times he feels like barking over something.
Other Effective Methods to Bringing Your Pet Under Control
If your pet is on a noise spree, it simply shows he is not tired. A tired dog does not have the strength for noise. One way to keep your pet calm before you leave him alone is to get him tired. Long walks or runs, vigorous ball plays, are some examples of how you can get your canine friend tired out.
Another method that pet owners have employed is the use of bark collars; the market boasts of many types of such collars. Some use ultrasonic or audible signals to get your pet to behave. It should be noted though that these do not get all dogs to respond appropriately. Other collars use the Citronella spray. The downside is that when the sprays are exhausted, the dog may notice and resume its noisy misbehaviour.
You equally have collars that deliver painful shocks at barking. Some, including myself, think that these could be harmful, but as ever, it is left up to you to try a dog bark collar to find out if it is right for your pet.
Consult Your Vet
Another reason why a dog may make too much noise might be medically related. In order to respond to stings that may come from bees or other stingers, your dog may bark. Ongoing pain or even brain disease may cause your dog responding with unnecessary noise. Seniors have been known to suffer from some senile conditions that lead them to vocalizing every response in annoying ways. It helps to let your vet check out your pet to be sure that excess vocalizations is not due to medical conditions. It is only when you know why your dog backs excessively that you can apply the right remedy.
You should never allow a problem to linger. The more you allow the bad behaviour of your pet, the more it becomes ingrained. A dog can get an adrenaline rush from its barking, and would, therefore, find doing so very pleasant. Again, allowing your dog’s noisy aggression at certain occasions can lead the dog into more aggressive behaviour. For instance, allowing it to bark at the mailman may see him eventually attacking the mailman. Deal with unwanted behaviour as soon as possible.
Finally, do not forget that you should not scold. Canines will consider that as attention. The point is to ignore your dog’s noisy attention-seeking and continue to ignore any other thing it is seeking until the barking stops.