How to Stop a Dog from Barking
I’ve been asked several times about how to stop a dog from barking.
I recently received such a request from one of my Healthy Happy Dogs newsletter readers, and thought I’d reprint it here together with my response, in case it helps others with this particular problem of stopping a dog from barking:
” Aloha Brigitte,
As I’ve said previously, I enjoy your Healthy Happy Dogs insights and updates. Keep them coming.
But today, I need your help. In December, 2006, I obtained a 2 and a half year old female poodle from a breeder. She provided him with a single litter of one and he decided to sell her. I saw the ad, the price was right, the dog was house trained, and I went to see. She was very shy, unlike the male toy poodle who knew he ruled the roost.
Lady is a miniature and has adjusted very well. BUT she barks not constantly, and at anyone who enters our house, comes near the door, even coming up to the car, and now even when driving if someone who looks into the car.
Her tail is wagging – she will get off the chair at home and charge the door-sliding across the tiles back peddle to control her slide. No biting. She will bark even if it is a family member – my brother who does not live with us but visits – she will bark even when he comes into the living room while in the house. At first I thought it was pretty much men, as I believe the breeder was very firm with her, and she will always bark at men.
Anyway, one of the reasons I got her was for her to let us know when people approach the house, because at one point it was just my elderly mother and I living in the house. Now its my niece, her 5 yr. old, her boyfriend, and another person.
So I no longer need the “security” of having a dog barking to let us know when someone is approaching.
But how can I control the barking? I’d like her to stop when I say either “stop” or “enough”.
Thank you for your help. Colleen ” My Response to Colleen’s Query on
How to Stop a Dog from Barking: Hi Colleen,
Thanks for your kind words on the Healthy Happy Dogs newsletter.
There are a number of very good dog training ebooks – that you can download and read on your computer or print out, etc. My personal favorite is here – www.DogObedience.BrigitteRecommends.com
Of course, it covers all aspects of how to train your dog – not just problem barking.
One tip you could try is the water spray method – you have to be ready with the spray bottle filled with water, and immediately Lady makes the first sound of a bark, give her a short sharp spray into her face (not too close, though with a small dog – the object is to give her a little scare – definitely not to distress her).
This method works well, but you have to spray when the barking starts, so you need to be close to her so you can do this each time she barks, until she associates barking with the unpleasant squirt. Because you want your dog to respond to a command such as “stop” or “enough”, you’ll need to say that command every time you squirt – and at the same time you squirt. Eventually, if Lady does bark occasionally, just saying the command should stop her in her tracks.
Alternatively there are “stop barking” products that emit a noise that dogs don’t like – see here – How to Stop a Dog from Barking – or see the options below. Hope this helps.
For more dog health care tips, dog training courses, what is the best dog food and unbiased dog food reviews visit http://healthierdogs.com