How to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking
It can be extremely frustrating to have a dog that always barks. Luckily, our tips here will teach you how to get your dog to stop barking.
Whether it's the high-pitched yip of a four-pound Chihuahua or the low rumble of a hundred-pound Rottweiler, there's no denying that even the most well-trained dogs are born to bark.
Most times, it's a cute greeting or a welcoming alert to immediate danger nearby. However, excessive barking at people and neighbors can quickly lead to complaints.
As a dog owner, your companion quickly turns into your best friend. But sometimes, their needless barking is enough to drive the most loving person insane.
Luckily, if you've wondered how to get your dog to stop barking, there are a few efficient methods to get it under control. But the first step is to understand why they're barking at all.
Why Do Dogs Bark?
Barking is one of the essential communication methods for dogs. It's completely natural, and knowing the why can help you gain control of the situation.
When you consider that dogs were the first animals domesticated by humans, it makes sense that barking became the most effective way to communicate.
In a way, society's evolution dissolved the understanding between humans and dogs. Without a half-ton predator waiting outside the cave, humans clearly focused elsewhere.
While a nosy neighbor might rightfully seem like a threat, it's not realistic for them or any dog owner to expect barking to be entirely eliminated.
The goal is to decrease the amount rather than to eliminate barking altogether. Additionally, owners of noisy dog breeds may require more patience during training.
These breeds are typically Terriers, Beagles, Poodles and Chihuahuas, to name a few.
Reasons for Barking
From being emotionally induced, social or health-related, your dog's bark can communicate various meanings.
Alarm and Territorial Barking
These are fairly interchangeable, with minor differences. No matter if your dog's soundly sleeping or playing with their favorite toy, if they bark at every noise, they're likely alarm barking. Generally, their bodies turn stiff and move forward with each bark.
On the other hand, territorial barking is in response to other people or animals approaching their territory. Dogs typically consider their territory to be any location they have a strong association with, including their walking route.
Attention-Seeking, Greeting and Social Barking
Like some humans, some dogs love getting all the attention and the rewards that come with it. They'll keep barking until you play with them, give them food or their favorite toy.
Then some dogs excessively bark when they see others. This is different from territorial or alert barking.
Greeting barks display a relaxed and excited body language and a wagging tail. Depending on the dog, some may whine and accidentally relieve themselves.
If you live in a dog-friendly neighborhood, you've likely experienced the domino effect of social barking. The times when it's late at night, and one dog goes off on a tangent and riles up all the other dogs in the neighborhood for what seems like hours on end.
These can also be considered excitement barks. The way they indicate their happiness with tapping feet, a wagging tail and high-pitch whines should be all you need to see to feel their love.
If you've ever been bored, you know that's the quickest way to cause trouble. Dogs can't go online or read a book.
They need their owners to provide quality mental and physical stimulation with quality time, walks and toys to prevent boredom and negative behavior.
Boredom barks come with playful body language and gruffer barks. It's similar to kicking your sheets in the air because there's nothing else to do.
Anxiety and Injury Barking
A common reason for excessive barking is separation anxiety. This typically occurs when the owner leaves and the dog starts showing signs of depression, pacing and destruction.
Dogs have an incredibly high pain tolerance. Many times you'll find that they push through medical issues that would have Chuck Norris doubled over in pain.
If you're dog's barking from injury or illness, it's best to have your veterinarian take a look before any training.
Excessive Barking Tips
The process to reduce your dog's excessive barking can be time-consuming and frustrating. However, like any bad habit, the longer they've been practicing this behavior, the longer it will take to break.
In addition to understanding why your dog barks, the best trainers all implement the following dog training tips:
Refrain from yelling
Maintain a positive environment
Regardless of the type of training, consistency is key. If everyone in the household applies varying methods, your dog will be confused, and the training will go nowhere.
Understandably, it's easy to start yelling when your dog is barking so loud that you can't hear your own thoughts. However, that doesn't contribute to their training, and if anything, it reaffirms their bad behavior.
If you ever felt that your dog could pick up on your emotions, you're not wrong. They're empathetic creatures that pick up on the chemical reactions produced by their owner's emotional response.
That's why important to maintain a happy, upbeat environment and refrain from yelling so that your dog enjoys the training process and associates it with a positive experience.
How to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking
While there are many methods on how to get your dog to stop barking, the key is to understand why and make the appropriate adjustments.
The only way to make your home truly bark-free is not to have a dog. It's simply not realistic to expect a dog to suppress its natural instincts.
However, with a little bit of training and a whole lot of patience, you can turn a frustrating experience into one entirely in your control.
Book an appointment with an experienced Dallas dog trainer to help you regain control of your home.
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