It’s fair to say the most loved member of the family might well be your Cocker Spaniel. True to their nature, he’s faithful, affectionate and playful. He loves messing around with the kids and he’s always interested in new people. However, he does seem to have an issue with one individual, the mailman. The mailman isn’t quite sure what he’s done to deserve his wrath, but he’s always met with a bark. It was entertaining to start with, but now you’re worried he’s starting to bark at other people too. You want him to remain the friendly dog he always was, so stamping out this behavior is important.
If you train him not to bark at the mailman you’ll be able to collect your post hassle-free. You also won’t have to worry that he becomes more aggressive, which could result in biting. Unfortunately, dogs that bite often have to be put down.
The good news is Cocker Spaniels are fast learners. They have developed a reputation for being straightforward to train, which is great news for you. You’ll have to use a number of deterrence measures to stop him from barking. You can teach him to bark on command, so you can also teach him to fall silent. The success of training will hinge on the incentive you use. Cocker Spaniels have a strong sense of smell, so some stinky food will do the job.
If he’s a puppy he should be eager to please. This could lead to results in just a week. If he’s older and he’s been barking at the mailman for many years then breaking the habit will be more challenging. You may need three weeks. Succeed with this training and not only will the mailman thank you, but you’ll also be able to stop him barking in a range of other situations too.
Before you can start training you’ll need to collect a few bits. For one of the methods, you will need a deterrence collar and a water spray bottle. You will also require a decent supply of treats. Alternatively, you can break his favorite food into small pieces.
Set aside 10 minutes for training. You can do this anywhere in the house, but try and find a time where there won’t be noisy kids charging around. A food puzzle will also be needed for one of the methods.
Once you have all that, just bring patience and a proactive attitude, then work can begin!