Problem Barking-What to Do When Your Dogs Barking is The Neighborhood Nuisance
Puppies and dogs, as mentioned, are social creatures. Whenthey don't get the attention they need, then a bark is theirmethod of telling you something. It's your job to figure outthe reasons behind the barking and then ease the tension ofwhatever is causing your puppy or dog to do so. At thesame time, you are also teaching him that barking (in certainsituations) isn't acceptable behavior. If you do not take suchtraining seriously, you may not get thrown out of theneighborhood, but you may receive a visit from the policeregarding animal ordinances!
There are a lot of reasons why your dog might be barking.First, he might be lonely or bored. There are distinctive barksfor these feelings. If he barks at random and whines shortlyafter, this might be the case. Be sure that you give your dogplenty of attention each day. Groom, pet, hug and playgames with him too. If there are certain days where youmight be too busy, try hiring a dog walker, neighbor or evena doggy daycare clinic to help attend to the needs of youranimal.
Your dog could be frustrated. Is there a squirrel that tauntsthe dog while he's outside or a cat that climbs around theshrubs? If it's something like this, he is simply operatingfrom instinct. When your dog barks, repeat, "NO BARK"and give him a chew toy instead to occupy him until you cantake care of the matter.
Is your dog hungry or thirsty? Be sure your dog's basicneeds are met. Even humans get grumpy and out of whackwhen they're hungry and tired. Should you expect any lessfrom your canine? Is your dog requesting you for someother reason?
Your dog could be scared of something. Is there a loudsound in the distance? Your neighbor could be using achainsaw or other yard machinery that intermittingly causesyour dog frustration.
If you cannot get rid of the cause of the bark, you may wantto try a couple of other methods for controlling your dog'sbarking behavior. First, try the squirt bottle method. Whenyour dog barks, immediately squirt him in the face withclean water. It's unpleasant and he'll quickly associatebarking with water in the face. Be sure to use the correcttiming. If he barks and you squirt him in the face fiveminutes later, there will be no association and the barkingwill only continue.
Another method widely use is specialized collar that emitsan odor (usually citronella) when the dog barks. This iseffective if you're not home during parts of the day or night.Be sure to never use shock collars and never use surgicalmeans (that are available) to 'debark' your dog.Other than that, give your dog toys and keep him indoorswhen you're not at home. Play games outdoors such as fetchand Frisbee. Be sure to teach him the "QUIET" command.
Try attending obedience classes with your dog. He'll learn tosocialize more once the tension from the new environmentaround other dogs subsides. And, don't forget to neuter (orspay) your pet. This will decrease his territorial desires.
If the barking is still uncontrollable, you might considertalking to your vet. There could be something wrong orirritating your dog, such as the food you're using. Barking isquite natural, but it's your job to teach him when and whereis an appropriate time. He is, after all, just trying tocommunicate something to you, his loveable owner!
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