Hey, we all know dogs are going to bark. It's their natural and only way to communicate with each other and the rest of the world. While most dogs will bark for a good reason, there are some that seem to bark for little or no reason, such as when the neighbors come out in their yard. Some breeds are more prone to excessive barking than others. Often, it is not the need to train your dog not to bark at all (this isn't likely to happen), it is the need to train your pup not to bark at specific times. Your neighbors are sure to appreciate the fact that they will finally be able to go out in their yard without your pup going ballistic.
Essentially, the concept is to stop your dog from barking at
your neighbors. In order to do that, you first need to understand why your dog
is barking in the first place. There are four basic reasons why your dog keeps
barking at the neighbors.
No matter the cause, your job is to teach your dog not to bark at the neighbors or, for that matter, anyone else who happens to walk by your house. Bear in mind, you should never yell at your dog to stop barking, this will only exacerbate the situation. Make training sessions fun and positive or your dog will not want to learn.
The simple fact is that you can teach a dog to stop barking in most situations. No, you will not be able to stop his barking completely (short of surgically removing his voice box, which is not recommended), but at least you can train him when it is okay to bark and when it's not. You can use a variety of commands such as "No bark!" or "Stop barking!" You will need plenty of your pup's favorite treats and, if you use one, a training clicker. The most important thing to remember is that you need to be consistent with your pup, anything less will only lead to confusion that will make the barking worse, not better. One last thing, a muzzle is no substitute for proper training and should never be used to keep your dog from barking.
My dog has been excessively barking at our neighbors when they walk by. Our front door is sliding glass on one side so you can see and hear our neighbors when they walk by. She has been aggressively barking anytime they walk by. When we are home it isn’t as bad and we can control it, but when we are gone she does it uncontrollably. Any advice would be much appreciated! Thank you.
Hello Alexandria, First, pup needs to be confined where they don't have access to that door while you are gone right now. Pup being allowed to practice the barking when you aren't there to interrupt and train will undo other training efforts I am about to go over. Barking itself can be a self-rewarding behavior due to the chemicals released in pup's brain when they practice it. This can become habitual and pup overly sensitive to triggers when pup is triggered to bark uninterrupted frequently. Have pup stay somewhere like a certain room while away until things improve, or get a curtain or blinds pup can't push away to cover that door when you choose. Second, I would work on desensitizing pup to the neighbors walking by, starting by doing this while you are home. I would also interrupt pup's barking whenever they to begin. Check out the article I have linked below and the Quiet and Desensitize methods. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Check out the video series I have linked below and the video Barking at Dogs Behind Fences, and Barking at the Door, to also learn more about desensitizing in general. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAA4pob0Wl0W2agO7frSjia1hG85IyA6a I would recruit friends of your to pretend to be neighbors. Have them dress up to where pup won't recognize them if pup doesn't bark at them when they walk outside. Recruit different friends for this, working with just one person or couple at a time. Have that person walk by outside at a further distance, practice Quiet with pup each time the person passes from a distance pup is less concerned about. When pup is doing well, slowly have the person decrease the distance between them and pup at the door. Practice this over a series of training sessions, 30 or so minutes long each, with at least one hour breaks between (the next day or two is fine too); do this until the people can walk by at the distance pup barks at the neighbors at and pup will remain calm and not start barking at all. At this point, reward pup for staying quiet when the person passes, not just barking then stopping after. When pup is good with the first friend(s), then recruit the next, different, friend to do the same exercise. Ideally this would be repeated with a dozen different people (Pay a few people a few bucks each to come do this if needed). Once pup is doing well, start stepping further and further away from pup, tossing a treat over to pup for staying quiet, until you have worked yourself away from pup and pup is watching out the window and still quiet. When you see your actual neighbors walk by, take the opportunity to practice this in real life. If you don't want to keep pup confined away from the window long term, you may need something like an automatic treat dispensing device that will reward pup for staying quiet while you are away, and/or a bark collar stimulation, vibration, or unscented air (not citronella - the scent lingers too long to train effectively and be fair to pup), to enforce the training while away once pup has learned they are supposed to do. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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We have new neighbours that are building next door, they are not the nicest people and are not willing to cooperate with us. Hudson does not bark at any other neighbours or previous neighbours and he is responsive in most situation except when the new neighbours are home. He barks excessively and will hardly listen. Since cooperating with the neighbours is out of the question, we are unsure of what to do and we usually keep him inside or outside on a lead. Thank you for taking your time to read my message.
Hello Connor, I would start by teaching pup the Quiet command. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, I would go outside with pup and act silly and get pup excited to trigger pup to bark, when pup barks, say quiet and freeze. When pup stops barking, reward, so pup is starting to associate Quiet with the yard too. You can also try playing videos of things pup may bark at outside too, like howling dogs videos, high pitched music, or sirens. Practice Quiet outside until pup's response is good. When your neighbors come outside and pup barks, command Quiet with pup on a long leash, using the long leash to reel pup toward you and away from the fence line if pup ignores you. As soon as pup gets quiet for even a second, reward with praise and a treat. Practice this often, limiting pup's time in the fence when you can't be outside with pup - you might want to take pup potty in the front yard on leash for a little bit to prevent barking when you can't train. When pup will immediately become quiet when commanded to when the neighbors are out there, then you might need to add in some remote collar training for when you can't be outside with pup. So the collar corrects the barking and you reward quietness, giving pup both yes and no feedback. This collar can either be a standard bark collar if pup will be outside when you aren't home in the future, or a remote training collar, which allows you to control the intensity and frequency of corrections, and also teach a vibration Quiet command, so you can remind pup to stop barking before having to correct. I prefer the remote training option because it's less harsh, but that's only helpful if pup is only outside when you are away. Only use a high quality collar, like Garmin, E-collar technologies, or Dogtra. Don't use citronella - the scent lingers in a dog's sensitive nose, meaning the correction doesn't stop even when pup gets quiet. You only want something that's instantaneous then stops as soon as pup gets quiet, without a lingering effect. I would also recruit friends and family pup doesn't know - or who are disguised for pup not to recognize right away to periodically practice approaching your fence where they won't bother your neighbors, practice Quiet with pup when they approach, and then have those people toss treats over the fence and leave again, so pup is less territorial of the fence line in general. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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My dog kept barking at the neighbor and their kids. We are not really close friends at the neighbor so I can’t invite them over or introduce my dog as they are afraid of him, they said my dog is aggressive which I don’t think so as he is friendly at everyone even people at the grooming. He tends to jump on people when he gets excited. What should I do to teach him not to bark?
Hello Rubi, If the neighbor was walking past your fence and pup was barking, pup was probably being territorial, as long as pup is still friendly once you invite people onto the property or into your home. This alert barking is common, but I would always err on the side of caution and make sure pup is securely inside the fence, especially around anyone who is fearful of him. A territorial dog may still bite if they think someone who isn't supposed to be there is entering your property. With that said, I would start by practicing the Quiet method from the article I have linked below. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once pup knows Quiet, then recruit people pup doesn't know well and will bark at, like friends and family to walk past your property. As soon as pup sees them, before or after pup has barked, command Quiet, then wait until pup takes a break in the barking for at least a second, and quickly praise and reward while pup is still quiet. Have the "stranger" pass by and practice pup being quiet until pup no longer barks at all when the person passes by, in anticipation of being told Quiet and earning a reward. Practice rewarding pup's quietness, without the initial barking, while the person passes by several times at this point as well. When pup no longer barks when the first person comes by, recruit a new friend or family member to practice with. You will need to end the training session for that day once pup is consistently quiet, but the same person can probably come another day and pup will bark again and you can practice Quiet more...you can practice with that same person if they are willing until pup doesn't bark at all when the person comes for training sessions. Practice this type of training often with various people until pup no longer barks when a person comes by and you are outside with pup. At this point, pup will probably decide they can bark when you are not there still, and will bark then. If pup is outside at times when you are not there and you need pup to be quiet at those times too, then I would introduce a remote training collar at this point. I would choose one with a beep and stimulation settings, so you can beep the collar while you are there when you say "Quiet" so pup will learn that the beep means Quiet, then correct pup on their working level - which is the lowest level pup indicates they can feel the collar on, determined ahead of time in a calm environment, if pup doesn't obey the Quiet command and beep. If pup obeys and gets quiet, reward. Eventually with practice, when you are inside and you hear pup barking, you can beep the collar to remind pup to be quiet, then correct on the stimulation mode when pup doesn't obey and is still barking. Once pup is quiet and calm about people passing your home, you can also have the friends and family you know, that pup thinks are strangers, toss a couple treats over the fence to pup while pup is staying quiet and calm, to help pup associate the "strangers" themselves with good things. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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He won’t stop barking
He doesn’t listen
Hello. Barking and excitability can be a challenging behavior to turn around. Because it is so complex, I am sending you an article full of great information that can help you. https://www.petplace.com/article/dogs/pet-behavior-training/excessive-barking-in-dogs/
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barking at the neighbors when they come out in their yard
and jumping on/barking at anyone who comes to the front door.
Hello Karen, Is pup at all aggressive toward people, or simply overly excited and alert to them? If aggressive, I recommend working with a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues like aggression and has a staff or works with a team of trainers so that various trainers can help pup learn to adjust to new people. If pup is simply overly excited, check out the articles and methods I have included below. Jumping - Leash method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump Barking at guests - Quiet method and Desensitize method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Desensitizing to guests video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpzvqN9JNUA Place command - to give pup a calm spot to go to until calm when guests are around. This will have to be worked up to gradually. Starting with short amounts of time and you close by, gradually adding in distractions like you walking away, dropping a toy, other family members coming home, then finally recruiting some friends to be "guests" to practice pup staying on Place around. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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