Dogs engage in a variety of vocal interactions, including barking. Owners appreciate that their dogs bark since it informs them to approaching humans or indicates that something is required or desired by the dog.
However, a dog’s barking might be excessive at times.
Because barking serves a variety of purposes, you must first identify the reason of the barking and your dog’s motive for barking before you can cure the problem.
Each type of bark has a specific role for a dog, and if he is constantly rewarded for his barking—in other words, if it gets him what he wants—he can figure out how to use it to his advantage.
Barking Sights and Sounds
He might also react to the sights and noises of people and dogs going by your home.
When they’re in the car and see people or pets pass by, some dogs become very agitated. You must be able to determine whether your pet is barking to express himself based on his body position and activities “”Welcome in!” or “Get out of here!” You are not permitted to enter!”
To stop territorial barking, your dog’s motivation must be lessened, as well as his responsibility to protect his territory. You’ll need to limit his exposure to humans and animals in order to treat his behavioural tendencies.
Detachable plastic film or spray-based glass coverings can help to hide your dog’s view of areas within your home that he observes and guards.
Install safe, secure, opaque fencing around any outside locations where your animal could get into. Allowing your pet dog to welcome visitors at the front door, front yard gate, or yard entrance is not a good idea.
Rather, teach him to go to another location, such as a dog kennel or a mat, and remain calm until he is invited to see visitors.
Alarm barking is similar to territorial barking in that it is elicited by sounds or visuals. Pet dogs that alarm bark, on the other hand, may do so as a result of things that startle or disturb them while they’re not on familiar territory.
For example, a dog who barks territorially in response to the sight of strangers coming will usually only do so in his own home, yard, or car.
A dog who barks alarm frequently, on the other hand, may also bark when he sees or hears unidentified humans approaching elsewhere.
Training in a “quiet” environment
If your dog continues to bark alarm or territorially despite your best attempts to keep him away from sights and sounds that can trigger his barking, try the following techniques:
When someone comes to the door or passes by your property, teach your pet dog that he is allowed to bark until you say “Quiet.” Allow your dog to bark three times. Then say, “Silence.”
Avoid screaming. Simply state the command in a clear and easy-to-understand manner. Then approach to your family pet and gently close his snout with your hand, repeating “Quiet.”
Step back and call your pet dog away from the door or window after releasing his muzzle. Then invite him to take a seat and give him a treat.
If he sits near you and is calm, continue to give him regular treats for a further number of minutes, or until whatever caused his barking has vanished.
If your pet starts barking again right away, repeat the previous steps. If he barks at passers-by while in the yard, do the same thing outside.
Muzzle Holding Alternatives
If you don’t like holding your dog’s muzzle, or if you find that doing so scares or agitates him, you might try a different technique.
Say “Quiet” calmly when your dog barks, then reward his silence with a liberal supply of pea-sized treats. Your pet will begin to recognise what “Quiet” means after enough practise of this sequence over a period of days or more of training.
If he consistently stops barking when you say “Quiet,” you’ll know he’s getting the message. You can gradually increase the time between the command “Quiet” and your dog’s reward at this point. Gradually increase the time throughout a series of repetitions.
If the “Quiet” strategy fails after 10 to 20 shots, let your dog bark a few times, then calmly pronounce “Quiet,” and then make an attention-getting sound, such as shaking a set of keys or shaking an empty Coke can full with coins.
The dog will stop barking once the noise has stunned him.
Call him away from the door or window as soon as he does, ask him to sit, and give him a tasty treat. Carry on and give him regular rewards for the next several minutes, until whatever caused his barking has passed and he remains calm and close to you.
If he keeps barking, go through the routine again.
If this method does not work after 10 to 20 tries, seek professional assistance.
If your dog barks at people or other dogs while out for a walk, distract him with special treats like chicken, cheese, or roast beef before he barks.
Show your dog the dog treats by placing them in front of his nose and encouraging him to eat them while walking by the person or dog that started the barking.
Some dogs respond best when asked to sit while people or other dogs pass by. When your dog does not bark, make sure to commend him and reward him with yummy food.
If your pet growls territorially while in the car, teach him to ride in a cage. Your pet’s perspective will be restricted and his motivation to bark will be reduced if he rides in a cage.
If crate training your dog isn’t an option, have your dog wear a head halter inside the vehicle.
Teaching Your Dog to Reduce His Barking
To reduce your dog’s excessive barking, teach him a set of behaviours to complete when visitors come into your home so that he has fewer opportunities to alarm bark.
Additionally, as your dog practises his new behaviours and earns goodies, he will learn that visitors to your home are a good thing.
Before you can teach your dog to go to a specific location and stay there when a door opens, you must first teach him how to “sit” or “lay down,” and then how to “stay.”
After your dog has mastered these tasks, you can begin training him to “find.” Look for a specific location in your home where you’d like your pet to go when people arrive.
If at all feasible, choose a location that is at least eight feet away from the front entrance but still within sight. It could be a space at the top of a flight of stairs, inside another room’s entry, your pet’s cage, or a rug at the far corner of an entrance.
Command and Control Training
State “Go to your spot,” tell him what he’ll get, and then toss the reward onto the spot where you want him to stay and go. Repeat this ten to twenty times.
Pretend-throw the reward after the tenth time to get your beloved dog to move towards the area on his own. Toss him the goodie as soon as he’s settled in his spot.
As he gets the hang of it, you can stop making the bogus tossing motion with your arm and simply tell him, “Go to your spot.” Then wait till he does and give him a reward.
Change your position when sending your pet dog to his spot after he is consistently going there. Practice directing him to his spot from various angles and distances.
For example, when you’re just a few steps left of your area, say “Go to your area.” Move a few steps to the right of the site after a few repetitions and say, “Go to your area” from there.
Then move to an other portion of the space, and then another, and so on. Finally, just like when guests arrive, try standing by the front entrance and telling him to go to his area.
Command “Go To Your Area”
Begin training your pet dog to sit or down when he arrives at his designated place once he has mastered going there. Reward your pet dog with another (perhaps different) tasty reward as soon as his rear end hits the floor on the place.
Then “give him another hint” (you can say “Yes” or “All right”) and allow him to leave the area. Perform these steps at least 10 times during each training session.
You might now incorporate staying into your workout. Place yourself near to your pet’s inclosure. Request that he sit or lie down, then say “Stay” and wait a moment. Praise him with a hint word and a prise when he completes your command.
Say “OK” to release your pet dog from the stay and encourage him to leave the location once you’ve given him the treat.
Every training session, repeat this routine at least 10 times.
Gradually increase from a second to 10 seconds, but vary the length so that the exercise is simple at times (a lot shorter stay) and difficult at other times (a longer stay).
If your dog gets up before you say your affirmative hint word, say “No” (or whatever cue word you want to indicate “no”) and ask him to sit or lie down on his spot again.
Then, the next couple of times, make the workout easy by asking your dog to keep the stay for a much shorter period of time. Avoid pressuring your dog to speed up his development or putting him to the test to see how long he can hold the stay before getting up.
This method merely sets your dog up for failure.
Additional Family Members’ Training
The next phase in “Go to Your Spot” training is to enlist the help of family and friends to make practise visits. Make arrangements for a family member to answer the door. You’ll work with your pet to help him remain independent.
Prepare yourself! It will most likely take him some time to memorise the drill. One of two things can happen when you open the door.
A case in point:
As if your visitor is a carrier or delivery person, you sometimes leave your pet dog in his allocated area while you converse with the family member at the door.
The dog is never given the opportunity to say hi. (However, you, the individual, or both of you should periodically throw treats to your dog to encourage him to stay.)
Example No. 2:
Welcome the visitor in at other times. Wait until the person has a seat before allowing your dog to join you and your visitor.
To break up the routine, enlist the help of family members.
If you have a family member help you with a pretend visit, make sure you commit to repeating it at least 10 to 20 times.
Practice makes perfect, as they say.
It will get simpler for him to perform what you want as the repetitions increase, because he will be less enthused by the entire routine— especially when it’s the same person at the door over and over.
Continue to enlist the assistance of others to assist you in practising “Go to Your Spot” activities until your dog reliably goes to his spot and remains there until you launch him with your cue word.
Your dog should be able to complete his new “Go to Your Spot” ability perfectly 90% of the time during training sessions at this point.
When your dog hasn’t had the opportunity to conduct a few warm-up repetitions, the most difficult aspect for him is to go to his area and stay there in real-life settings.
Ask friends who are familiar with your dog to drop by randomly while you’re at home to prepare your dog for times when genuine visitors arrive.
The Secret Sauce Is Repetition
Then, to change up the routine, invite different people who aren’t familiar with your pet to come over as well. Your pet will be able to go to his location and stay there after a lot of practise, even if neither of you knows who is on the other side of the door.
When legitimate visitors arrive at your home, you can eventually ask your pet to go to his designated place as soon as they ring the doorbell or knock.
After welcoming your guests, ask them to have a seat.
Allow a minute before releasing your dog from his spot to greet them. If you suspect the dog will jump on your visitors or act aggressively, you can put him on a leash.
Allow your dog to greet people for a minute or two before asking him to lie down at your feet and stay. Give him a chew toy to occupy his time.
If you do this on a regular basis, your dog’s instincts will lead him to settle down gently when people come to your house.