That is the question!
Barking is a natural thing for a dog to do. So when we get a client who says “I got a dog who barks”, we say ‘well naturally you got a dog that barks’! Of course it’s a bit of a funny because obviously that’s not what they mean.
Dogs that bark incessantly in the home or who window bark or fence bark or leash bark do not need to find their voice, they need to learn to relax and find something else to do. If you have a dog who does this ask yourself these questions:
- what does my dog get out of this behavior, what is the pay off for them?
- how do I respond or react to this behavior?
- what behavior would I like to see instead?
Once you’ve answered these questions, how do you change it? It’s not simple, but it can be done. Making sure your dog isn’t bored is one thing. Incorporating training into your daily life is another. But putting the barking on cue and the shush on cue is essential. This is how it’s done.
- ask you dog to speak (use a friend to ring the doorbell or have a fake doorbell app, or do whatever you can to have your dog bark)
- when the dog starts to bark, say in a quiet voice ‘good dog’ ‘very good speak’
- then hold a treat or piece of kibble to the dogs nose for the dog to sniff and say ‘now quiet or shush’ ‘very good shush’
- wait 3-5 seconds while allowing the dog to sniff the treat, then give it to them
- repeat exercise 5-9 times in one training session
- add as many of these training sessions in a day as you like, the more you do it, the less they bark.
If you are still having problems, maybe it’s something else that needs to be looked at. Check out our programs or workshops for ways we can support you on your training journey!
We hope to see you All Around!