Dogs bark. There’s no denying the fact that dog barking is a natural doggy behavior. But sometimes we ask ourselves how to stop barking as it can really become a real nuisance—to both you and your neighbors.
Oftentimes, owners try to stop barking in ways that are harsh, and ultimately ineffective, such as yelling or hitting. But there are kinder, more effective ways to put a stop to those late-night (or early morning) howls.
When looking for a permanent solution, it’s important to get to the root of the problem. Why is your dog barking? Identifying the trigger will help you find the best way to stop barking.
If your dog is barking because of boredom or fear, for example, you’ll need to address those issues specifically. If separation anxiety is the issue, you’ll need to work on building up your dog’s confidence and teaching them that being alone isn’t so bad.
Most of the time a simple solution is the answer, but for dogs who have a deep seated fear or anxiety, you may need to seek the help of a professional trainer or behaviorist to stop barking.
7 Training Tips to Stop your Dog Barking
- Visual Barriers to stop barking.
- Ignore the Barking.
- Keep up the exercise.
- Socialization to stop barking.
- The Quiet Que.
- Manage Surroundings.
- Training to stop barking.
Why do Dogs Bark?
Before taking steps to stop your dog from barking, its important to understand why they’re doing it in the first place. Dogs bark for a variety of reasons, including…
More than likely, you see your dog in one of the scenarios above. After figuring out why your pup is barking, you can start using methods to stop barking from happening as frequently.
To learn more about excessive or nonstop barking and what it could symbolize for your dog, take a look at our comprehensive guide.
7 Training Tips to Stop your Dog Barking
1. Visual Barriers
Territorial and alarm barking happens when your dog sees or hears something that triggers their defense response. To stop this type of dog barks, you’ll need to block your dog’s view or remove the stimulus that is causing them to bark.
This can be done in several ways, such as…Closing the curtains or blinds in your home so your dog cant see outside, filling in any holes in your fence that allow your dog to see through, keeping your dog indoors when people or animals are walking by your home.
In your yard you can also plant a hedge or fence to block your dog’s view or put up a privacy screen to stop barking.
2. Ignore the Barking
Many dogs will bark to get your attention, especially if they’re bored or want something like food or a toy. If your dog is barking for attention, the best thing you can do is to ignore them.
Turn your back, walk away, and don’t give them the attention they are craving. Once they realize that barking doesn’t get them what they want, they’ll eventually stop doing it.
Once your dog is quiet, then and only then, reward them with what they want.
If your dogs barking is far more consistent and ignoring them isn’t doing the trick, then there could be something else that is causing the barking that could require you to investigate.
3. Keep up the Exercise
A tired dog is a good dog. If your pup isn’t getting enough exercise, they may bark out of boredom or frustration. Dogs need at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, but depending on the breed, they may need closer to two hours.
Before you leave in the morning, make sure your dog gets enough physical and mental activity. A weary dog is more inclined to relax while you aren’t at home and stop barking.
If that’s not an option, consider hiring a dog walker to take care of your pet one- two hours each day. Indoor dog treadmills are also a good idea during the cold months.
A dog barks at people or other dogs because they’re not used to them. If your dog isn’t properly socialized, they may be fearful of people and other animals, which can lead to barking.
Some ways to socialize your dog include…
If you have a new dog, it’s important to socialize them early on so they’re comfortable around people and other animals.
Desensitize them to triggers. Dogs can bark when they’re excited, scared, or anxious. If you know what’s causing your dog to bark, you can desensitize them to the trigger.
5. The Quiet Que
One of the easiest ways to tackle consistent barking is to teach them the “Quiet” cue or “Shh”. This is a cue that tells your dog to be silent.
Start by teaching your dog this cue when there arent any distractions. Once theyve learned it in a quiet environment, you can begin to practice in places with more people or noise.
Here’s how to do it…
- With your dog on a leash, say “Quiet” in a calm voice.
- As soon as your dog starts barking, give them a treat.
- Repeat this process until your dog is quiet when you say “Quiet.”
- Once your dog is responding consistently, you can begin to phase out the treats.
6. Manage Surroundings
A common suggestion by trainers for dogs that bark excessively is management. This means changing the environment to make it easier for your dog.
You can leave your dog with some familiar sounds, such as the television or radio, to help keep them calm and relaxed.
Consider using a crate or dog-proofing a room in your home
For example, if your dog is barking at people walking by the house, you can…
- close the curtains
- put them in another room
- move their bed away from the window
The goal is to make it so your dog isn’t in a situation where they are likely to bark.
7. Dog Training
When you brought this dog into your life, you made a commitment to provide the care he needs. Prevent dog barking, and other dog behavior problems by calling in a canine professional to help him cope with a behavior issue.
Fearful and Reactive Barking
Many dogs will bark when they encounter something that worries or scares them. This is called fearful or reactive barking.
Some dogs may bark at anything that moves, including leaves blowing in the wind or cars driving by. Others may only bark at certain types of people, such as men with beards or people in hats.
Reactive barking, or excessive barking is often the result of poor socialization. This can happen if a dog hasnt been exposed to different people, animals, and situations early on in life.
If your dog is reactive, the best thing you can do is to desensitize them to the trigger and help them learn to be calm and relaxed in new situations.
You can do this by…
- exposing them to the trigger at a distance where they are not barking
- using treats or toys to help keep them calm and distracted
- teaching them the “Quiet” cue so your dog stops barking.
Barking Due to Separation Anxiety
A dog’s barking, whining, and howling when left alone is the most common symptoms of canine separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is a condition where a dog becomes distressed when separated from a particular person or people and can range from mild to severe. In more severe cases, a dog might even injure themselves trying to escape and find their owner. Most dogs with separation anxiety cannot help themselves and are not “acting out” on purpose.
If your dog is experiencing separation anxiety and barking excessively, it can be difficult to manage – especially if you live in close proximity to neighbors. It’s also upsetting for owners to see their furry friend so distressed. However, never fear! Separation anxiety treatments are available and effective.How to Tell if Your Dog is Barking Due to Separation Anxiety
There are a number of reasons why dogs bark, but the good news is that there are also a number of ways to stop it. By using the tips and tricks in this article, you can help your dog learn to be quiet when you want them to be and eliminate the unwanted barking.
Never punish if your dog barks excessively, as this will only make the problem worse. Instead, focus on positive reinforcement and management techniques to help reduce your dog’s anxiety and stress. With time and patience, you can help your dog overcome their barking habit.
When you have a barking dog, you should only address them in a calm and firm voice. You next must select a word to instruct them to cease barking. When training your dog to stop barking, we recommend using the term “quiet.” Say “quiet” in a strong and calm tone when your dog begins barking from there.
Puppies barking is a normal part of their communication and cant be eliminated fully, but the proper training while young will stop barking.
Do dogs get tired from barking? No, dogs do not get tired from barking. Barking is a dog’s form of communication and they will continue to bark until they are successful in getting their message across.