How to Train Your Boston Terrier Dog to Not Bark

Medium
1-6 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

Nothing beats those first few weeks of having a new dog in your home. If they’re a puppy you just want to cuddle them all day long. Boston Terriers, in particular, are small, sharp and lively. They make the ideal addition to a home. However, despite him being less than a couple of feet from the ground he may well have a surprisingly loud bark. To start with, it was entertaining but now it’s driving you up the wall. It’s also putting a strain on your relationship with the neighbors. A dog that barks makes bringing new people to the house uncomfortable too.

Training him not to bark will solve a world of problems. You’ll be able to relax and get an undisturbed nights sleep and you won’t need to worry when you introduce him to new pets and friends. 

Defining Tasks

Training a dog not to bark can be challenging, especially if you’re unsure what the cause is. Boston Terriers are usually very friendly, so putting your finger on the problem can be even more confusing. Once you have identified the problem you can set to work remedying it. You’ll need to use a number of deterrence measures. You can also train him to be ‘quiet’ on command. This can be a very effective way to silence the habit. To do that, you’ll need the right incentive. Most Boston Terriers will do pretty much anything for food, so that will be essential.

If he’s a puppy he should be a fast learner and you could see results in just a week. If he’s old and stubborn be prepared to invest several weeks into training. Get this right and you’ll have your peaceful and relaxing evenings back.

Getting Started

Before you can start work you’ll need to collect a few bits. A water spray bottle and a deterrence collar will be needed for one of the methods. You’ll also need a stockpile of treats or his favorite food broken into small chunks. The more he loves the food the quicker you may see results.

Then you’ll need to set aside 10 minutes each day for training. Try and find a time where you won’t be distracted by noisy kids charging around.

Once you have all of that, you just need to bring patience and perhaps some earplugs, then you’re all set!

The ‘Quiet’ Method

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Step
1
Monitor
Spend a couple of days watching him to see what it is that causes him to bark. Most Boston Terriers bark at the same things. So, while you’re preparing his meals or when you’re getting ready to take him out for a walk are likely occasions.
Step
2
‘Quiet’
Now put him in one of those situations and wait for him to stop barking. As soon as he stops barking, issue a ‘quiet’ command. Really try and give the command as quickly as you can when he falls silent. Over time he’ll learn to associate the command with being quiet. You can use any word or phrase you like for the instruction.
Step
3
Reward
Once you’ve given the command and he’s stopped barking, you can hand over a tasty treat. The better the treat, the more likely he’ll be to respond to your instruction next time. You can shower him in verbal praise too.
Step
4
Bring the command forward
Practice this for a few days. Now the word will mean something to him so you can start giving it to him when he’s still barking. He will know the command and falling silent brings food, and that will be motivation enough.
Step
5
Consistency
Issue the ‘quiet’ command whenever he barks over the next few weeks. You must be as consistent as possible and react every time. If you always silence him he will be break his own habit over time. Your work will be done and you can finally remove those ear plugs.
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The Deterrence Method

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‘NO’
When he barks, swiftly issue a ‘NO’ response loudly and firmly. You don’t want to terrify him, but you do want to hold his gaze and let him know you mean business. Remember, Boston Terriers have more sensitive ears than humans, so don’t deafen the poor dog.
Step
2
Water spray bottle
If the ‘NO’ response doesn’t do the trick then upgrade to the water bottle. Give him a quick spray near the face and he’ll soon start thinking twice about barking.
Step
3
Deterrence collar
They can be bought from a range of online stores and will be automatically triggered when he barks. The collar will emit an unpleasant spray of citronella near his face. He will soon start associating these negative consequences with barking and the habit will start to break.
Step
4
Time out
If none of the above works, then you can remove him from the room for a period of time. Start with just 30 seconds. Then if he starts barking when you bring him back in, give him another 30 seconds. Continue doing this until he gets the message.
Step
5
Play time
Make sure he gets enough attention from you each day. Some Boston Terriers bark for attention, so make sure you set aside 5 minutes a couple of times a day for playing with him. You can play tug of war, or you can just sit and stroke him.
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The Environment Method

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Exercise
He may be barking because he’s full of energy. Take him for a longer walk each day, or throw a ball for him while you walk. The short sprints will quickly tire him out. If he’s blown off all his steam he will spend the evenings napping rather than making a racket.
Step
2
Toilet
Make sure he gets to go out for the toilet regularly. Some dogs bark because they are trying to draw your attention to a problem. So, take him out first thing and before bed. Also, make sure he goes out promptly after meals.
Step
3
Water & food
Make sure his water bowl is full and he’s getting the correct amount of food. You can also check he hasn’t got any visible signs of illness. The barking could be a cry for help because he’s in pain. If you do find something, swiftly take him to the vet.
Step
4
Cold shoulder
If he keeps barking and all his needs are met then you shouldn’t pander to his barking. If you respond to him then you’re telling him barking is the way to get what he wants. Instead, turn around and don’t say a word to him.
Step
5
Reward
When he stops barking you can turn back around and give him a treat. You’re now giving him an incentive to stop barking. Over time this will help him kick his own habit without him even realizing what he’s doing.
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Success Stories and Training Questions

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