Are you worried about your dog barking himself to death? Then stay right here! This article will teach you highly practical and effective ways of curbing your pooch’s strange barking habits. These methods have proven to be extremely successful when used correctly, but you still need to be patient and give your dog time to adapt. In essence, it takes time to see desired outcomes, but you will see them. The amount of time you will need to see results depends on how long your dog’s barking behavior has gone awry.
You also need to identify what triggers your dog’s barking behavior before you can use these techniques. The following tips will help you determine why your dog can’t get himself to stop barking when there seems to be no trouble around him. Whenever you are training your dog, always try to stick with these tips:
- Make sure your training sessions are conducted in a positive and cheerful atmosphere.
- Don’t yell at your dog when it’s barking: Rather than stop, you encourage the dog to continue barking because it will think both of you are barking.
- Stick with one training method at a time to avoid confusing your dog. Tell your family members also to use the same training method each time they want to correct the dog’s behavior. You won’t get the best results if you allow him to bark uncontrollably at some times and stop him at others.
So, let’s move on to the techniques.
Sap his motivation
While you may not realize it, one reason why your dog barks incessantly is because he enjoys the activity. Your job is to find out what triggers that inappropriate behavior and curtail his access to it. Even if your dog finds the act rewarding, it would be irresponsible for you as a pet owner to encourage him to continue.
If your dog’s barking behavior is triggered by seeing passersby, then you need to prevent him from seeing passersby. You can curb this by placing him in a room where he can’t see people passing by your property or closing the curtains. If his barking starts when he sees people outside, take him inside. Make sure to never leave your dog unattended at any point in time.
Teach your dog the “quiet” command
With this method, you can control when you want your dog to bark. For this to work, you must be able to make him bark and stop barking. Tell him to “speak”, and allow it to give about two to three barks, then present a treat before his nose. When he quiets to sniff the treat, let him have it. Repeat this process until the dog learns to bark at the sound of “speak”. When your dog has learnt to bark when you say “speak”, start teaching him the “quiet” command. A quiet, distraction-free environment is ideal for this training. Command him to “speak” and when he begins to bark, tell him to be “quiet”, dangling a treat before his nose. When he keeps quiet, reward him with the treat and praises.
Desensitize him to the stimulus
You can also stop this behavior by making the dog insensitive to the stimulus that triggers his behavior. You can achieve this by exposing him to whatever makes him bark at a distance close enough to be in his line of sight, but not close enough to make him start barking. Let him have treats. Then start moving the stimulus close to the dog gradually, sometimes a few inches forward and sometimes a foot closer, and continue to reward him with treats. Don’t give him any treat when the dog can’t see the stimulus. The goal of this technique is to make the dog draw a connection between the presence of the stimulus and the treats.
Wear him out
One simple way of making your dog behave correctly is to give it adequate physical and mental exercise. When a dog is exhausted, it tends to behave appropriately. Make sure your dog has enough physical activity appropriate for its breed, health condition and age. Long walks through the park, games, playing with toys are healthy ways of keeping your dog quiet. An exhausted dog is a submissive dog. But this shouldn’t be the main thrust of your workouts with your dog. The main aim is to keep him fit, wearing him out is only to control his behavior.