So you’ve got the family and friends over, the drinks are flowing and unfortunately for you, the conversation has turned to party tricks. John can do a perfect impression of Donald Trump and Susan can whistle the Game of Thrones theme tune perfectly. You, on the other hand, aren’t so musical, but there is one thing you do have, your dog!
Teaching your dog to bark on cue is a neat little party trick that is guaranteed to get a giggle. Everyone can get their dog to lie down and roll over, but getting them to speak is far more entertaining. There are also times when it could come in useful, if you’re walking late at night and you want to feel safe and secure, a barking dog is guaranteed to keep potential threats at bay.
Training your dog to speak is actually surprisingly straightforward. It will consist mainly of teaching him obedience commands with a rigorous reward program. The most challenging part is setting aside the time each day to train. If your dog is just a puppy though, he will be eager to learn and may be barking on cue in just a week or two. If your dog is older and thinks his schooling days are over, then you may need more like three weeks before you find success.
Getting this training right will be a fun little trick to show friends and may even come in useful from time to time. The other advantage it brings, is that the more obedience training you do with your dog, the easier it will be to train him other commands too.
Before your house becomes noisy, you will need to get together a few bits. The most important component will be food or treats. You will use these to incentivise and reward him. You will also need a relatively quiet space, free from distractions and in a spot where you won’t send the neighbors crazy over the next few weeks.
The only other thing you need is 15 minutes a day, a good degree of patience, and a positive attitude. Once you’ve got all of the above you’re ready to bring your dog’s voice box to life.
Hello I am trying to get my German Shepherd to bark at intruders. Most of the time if someone knocks on the door or tries to open it, he’ll go up to the door but never bark. He also doesn’t bark at other dogs at all. What’s funny is one time people came to try to open the door one night (mistakenly cuz it wasn’t their townhouse) and he big boy barked like crazy. So how can I get him to do it on command or more often.
Hello Blaire, First, you will have to find what does trigger his bark. Check out the article linked below and the "video method". If you can get pup to bark using that method, use that to teach speak, then have someone knock on the door and command speak each time, then reward. Practice this until pup will do it when someone knocks and you don't say speak - then reward with several treats when he does it on his own. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-to-speak If pup won't speak using that method, use the Capture method found in the same article. That method can also be used to teach the initial Speak command, then the door training is the same after that. This method will take longer because it requires to catching pup speaking. Also, some dogs will bark at small animals, horns, fire sirens, or people acting weird outside your window (waving arms, dressed odd with a hat, trench coat and glasses type outfit, and banging on things). Try a few different triggers to see if you can find one he regularly barks at, then teach the Speak command similar to the "Door Knocking method" from the article I linked above, that also contains the capture or video methods - saying speak, triggering the barking, then rewarding, practicing until pup will bark without the trigger when you just say Speak in order to receive a reward. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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