Solutions to keep your dog from barking

Barking puppy

Almost all dogs bark, whine, or howl at times. While sometimes this can be with good reason, such as for communication or expressing a certain need, the behavior can become excessive and annoying. In order to control barking, you need to teach your dog when it is acceptable to bark and when he should remain quiet.

There are several dog barking control solutions to choose from, the best of which will differ according to your dog’s breed and personality and your preferred training method.

Remove the motivation to bark

A dog does not bark for no reason, but rather feels rewarded in one way or the other for this behavior. This means that if you can remove the motivation, the barking will stop soon. The effectiveness of this method will depend on cause of the barking. For instance, if she is barking at people outside in the street, you can take her away from the window or close the curtains. If she is barking while you are on a walk or at noises she can hear in the distance, you will probably need to try a different method.

Utilize a shock collar for dog barking control?

Shock collars specifically for dog barking control either pick up vibrations from the vocal chords or are activated by the sound of barking. The latter can be problematic as the collar may be set off by unrelated noises and punish the dog unnecessarily. Collars deliver the command to stop barking in the form of an electric shock, spray, or unpleasant sound. One of the main problems with the shock collar is that, like debarking, it is another option that does not deal with the underlying reason for the behavior and is a harmful, sometimes even traumatizing training technique which we do not endorse and strongly discourage!

Some electronic dog barking collars however have an optional vibration or tone feature that warns the dog that an electronic impulse will follow if she does not correct her behavior. The vibration can also be used for dogs with hearing difficulties. In such cases, it is not always necessary to use the shock feature of the collar at all, which makes it a harmless and effective training tool.

Ignore the barking

A primary reason for barking is want of attention. While your dog is barking, do not speak to him, look at him, touch him, or give him any other form of attention. As soon as he stops, even if only for a moment, reward him verbally and give him a treat. As you continue with the training, extend the time before you reward him.

Teach your dog the “Speak” and “Quiet” commands

Begin by teaching the “speak” command. After asking your dog to speak, wait until she barks and then show her the treat. Give her the treat only when she has stopped barking. Continue with this training until she speaks on command before you teach “quiet.” Now, begin presenting the treat while saying, “Quiet.” After practicing this a few times, you will be able to use the “quiet” command when your dog is barking without being told to do so. This will not only eliminate the unwanted behavior, it is also a great way to improve interaction between you and your dog.

Reducing excessive energy

Barking may be caused by excitement if your dog is not receiving enough mental or physical stimulation. Make sure your dog does not become bored or frustrated by providing him with daily walks, playing chase, and using interactive toys.

De-barking surgery

Also known as cordectomy, de-barking is a surgical procedure where the vocal cords are partially removed as a form of dog barking control. The surgery does not completely eliminate the ability for the dog to bark, it just makes the sound quieter. The rasping noise that the dog is able to produce is considered annoying by some people. Due to the risks involved in the surgery and anesthesia, and because of the harmful and irreversible damage done to your dog, most dog owners agree that this cruel procedure should be avoided at all cost!