How to Train Your Dog to Not Bark When Playing

Medium
1-6 Months
Behavior

Introduction

Playing with your dog is one of the most fun moments of his day. He gets to release some of his energy, spend time with his favorite person, and play games that he loves. Sometimes your dog might get over-excited and start barking. While this is most likely because he's having fun, it can be annoying or even considered a nuisance by neighbors. While this barking behavior may be more likely displayed by certain dog breeds like Border Collies or Australian shepherds, it can happen with any dog that gets a little too excited about ball throwing or playing.

It is possible to teach your dog not to bark when playing, but it may take a few steps to make sure he understands that loud noises are not part of playing the game with you. With some patience and good training skills, you can help him learn that barking won't get him what he wants. This is a useful skill that will work just as well in a crowded park as it will in your home. 

Defining Tasks

Barking is a natural behavior and your dog won't understand that it's undesirable for you at first. However, being able to signal your dog to stop barking is important to keeping neighbors, landlords, and other folks at the dog park happy and excited about your dog. Repeated loud barking is a sure way to get on someone's bad side, and it makes playing less fun for you. Some dogs will pick up on this skill faster than others. Herding dogs may have an especially difficult time learning not to bark because they have been bred to use their "voice" to communicate. With extra patience and consistency, they can pick up on the commands and learn to stop barking when you play. With this skill, you can make staying quite a fun part of playtime or even a signal that the game is over.

Getting Started

You won't need very much to get started, and you can begin anywhere you usually play with your dog. Changing a behavior that comes naturally will be difficult at first, so a large dose of patience will be most important. Consistency throughout your training is key. Here are a few props to have on hand when you begin the training. 

  • His favorite throw toy, ball or a stick.
  • Dog treats you can reward him with.
  • A pouch to keep treats available and your hands-free.

Teaching your dog not to bark while playing will be well worth the time it takes to get him to stop. Each dog is different, so read through the three methods below to find the best option for your dog. Pretty soon play time will go back to being fun and engaging for both of you. 

The Quiet Method

Most Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Teach your dog to bark
This may sound counter-intuitive, but teaching your dog to bark on command will help teach him to stop on command.
Step
2
Mark the bark
To begin, try to get your dog to bark. When he does, say "yes" and give him a treat.
Step
3
Introduce the "bark" command
When he begins to understand what you want, say "bark" after he barks and give him a treat.
Step
4
Test the command
Soon he should be able to bark when you say the word. Test him by asking him to bark and decreasing the number of times you treat him.
Step
5
Wait it out
Don't treat your dog when he barks before you give him the command. If he barks when you aren't asking him, ignore the bark. When he's quiet, say "bark" and give him a treat after he barks. This way he learns that he only gets treats when you ask for the bark.
Step
6
Introduce the 'quiet' command
Once he can bark on command, introduce him to 'quiet.' Ask him to bark and when he does, hold out a treat in your closed fist. As soon as he stops barking to smell, say "quiet" and then open your fist and give him the treat.
Step
7
Practice
Practice asking him to 'bark' and then to be 'quiet' until he starts to understand that when he stops barking he gets the treat. Practice this in different parts of the house, in the park, and in many other situations.
Step
8
Introduce during play
Once he's comfortable, introduce 'quiet' during playtime. When he starts to bark, stop playing and say "quiet." Give him a treat when he does. Soon he should stop barking when you give the command, even when he's excited about playing with you.
Recommend training method?

The Stop Play Method

Effective
1 Vote
Step
1
Begin playing with your dog
Start off your training session like any normal play and wait for him to start barking.
Step
2
Stop playing when he barks
As soon as he starts to bark, stop playing.
Step
3
Turn your back on him
Turn your back to face away from him to make sure his barks are not rewarded.
Step
4
Wait three seconds
When he stops barking, wait three seconds and then turn around.
Step
5
Start playing again
Pick up right where you left off until he barks again.
Step
6
Repeat
Repeat this process each time he barks when you play, no matter what. With consistency, he will learn that barking is no fun and he should stop.
Recommend training method?

The Last One Method

Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Begin play as normal
This works for dogs who demand you continue playing by barking at you. Begin playing with your dog like normal.
Step
2
Tell him "last one"
When you are ready to be done, say "last one" right as you throw the ball or stick for the last time.
Step
3
Stop playing
Stop playing with your dog and pack up.
Step
4
Ignore any barking
When he starts to bark to get you to play again, ignore him. You can turn your back or begin walking away.
Step
5
Be consistent
When you've said "last one" to your dog, do not throw the ball or stick again when he barks.
Step
6
Make it a habit
When you make this command part of your routine, your dog will eventually learn that "last one" means playtime is over, and he will stop barking. It could take a week or a few months depending on the dog, but once it's a habit for both of you, barking should not be an issue.
Recommend training method?
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Written by Katie Smith

Published: 01/19/2018, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Sam (female)
Labradoodle
3 Years
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Question
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Sam (female)
Labradoodle
3 Years

She barks like crazy during play (usually a tennis ball, but it's with all toys and play) with our other Labradoodle. It's hard to enjoy playing - that'show bad it has become. I need some tips, tricks and tools to train her not to do this.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jeff, Work on teaching her the "Quiet" command and the "Out" command. Also, work on getting her really excited and then suddenly giving her a command. When you give her the command, stop all play and wait until she obeys. When she obeys, then reward her, and after a minute tell her "Okay" and start playing again. Do this to help her learn self-control and how to calm herself down. Check out the article below and follow the "Quiet" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark To teach her "Out", toss a large treat several feet away from you, while with the same hand, you point to where you want her to go with your pointer finger. When she runs over to get the food, praise her. As soon as she finishes eating the treat, tell her "Okay" to indicate that she can come back toward you, and encourage her back. Repeat this often until you can point and say "Out" and she will go to where you are pointing before you toss the treat. When she does that, then toss the treat to her when she is in the correct spot, away from you, where you pointed. Next, transition to using it in real life. Whenever she disobeys the "Out" command, then get in front of her and calmly and firmly walk toward her until she backs out of the area you told her to get out of. Continue to block her and stand firm until she gives up trying to go back to where you told her to leave. If she tries to return to the area you told her to leave once you walk back there or away from there, then repeat walking toward her. Expect to repeat it a lot at first. The more consistent you are about enforcing her staying out of somewhere you have told her to leave, the more likely she is to respect your command. Practice in the kitchen, around things she wants to bother like plants, and finally, around other dogs. Start with calmer dogs first and work up to her favorite play buddies. Keep her out of the area you tell her to leave, until she is told "Okay", so that she will learn to learn and stay out of an area through your consistency. This takes repetition. Once she knows "Quiet", "Out", and how to calm herself, then when she is playing give her instructions. Tell her "Quiet" when she barks, and if she continues to bark, tell her "Out" and get between her and the other dog and walk toward her until she leaves the other dog alone, then give her time to calm back down. When she is calm, release her with "Okay" to let her play again. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luna
Golden Retriever
1 Year
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Luna
Golden Retriever
1 Year

I rescued my golden Luna when she was 10 months old, and she already had habits like barking. She doesn't always bark at us but more when she wants to initiate play with my other 2 dogs. She won't stop barking until they play with her which gets very irritating!! I try like saying no but she doesn't care half the time. Please help

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Karly, Work on teaching her the "Quiet" command and the "Out" command. Also, work on getting her really excited and then suddenly giving her a command. When you give her the command, stop all play and wait until she obeys. When she obeys, then reward her, and after a minute tell her "Okay" and start playing again. Do this to help her learn self-control and how to calm herself down. Check out the article below and follow the "Quiet" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark To teach her "Out", toss a large treat several feet away from you, while with the same hand, pointing to where you want her to go with your pointer finger. When she runs over to get the food, praise her. As soon as she finishes eating the treat, tell her "Okay" to indicate that she can come back toward you, and encourage her back. Repeat this often until you can point and say "Out" and she will go to where you are pointing before you toss the treat. When she does that, then toss the treat to her when she is in the correct spot, away from you, where you pointed. Next, transition to using it in real life. Whenever she disobeys the "Out" command, then get in front of her and calmly and firmly walk toward her until she backs out of the area you told her to get out of. Continue to block her and stand firm until she gives up trying to go back to where you told her to leave. If she tries to return to the area you told her to leave once you walk back there or away from there, then repeat walking toward her. Expect to repeat it a lot at first. The more consistent you are about enforcing her staying out of somewhere you have told her to leave, the more likely she is to respect your command. Practice in the kitchen, around things she wants to bother like plants, and finally, around other dogs. Keep her out of the area you tell her to leave, until she is told "Okay", so that she will learn to learn and stay out of an area through your consistency. This takes repetition. Once she knows "Quiet", "Out", and how to calm herself, then when she is playing give her instructions. Tell her "Quiet" when she barks, and if she continues to bark, tell her "Out" and get between her and the other dog and walk toward her until she leaves the other dog alone, then give her time to calm back down. When she is calm, if the other dog wants to play or she can be calm around the other dog now, then release her with "Okay" to let her play again. Be very consistent with this. Expect it to several repetitions of making her leave the area before she gives up. If the barking continues, even after she leaves the area, then purchase a small canister of Pressurized air, called a Pet Convincer. Tell her "Quiet" one more time. If she disobeys, then tell her "Ah Ah" while spraying a bit of air at her side, by her rib cage. Do not spray her in the face. The air is simply to snap her out of the barking, since barking is a self-perpetuating behavior, meaning that it is it's own reward. When she is calm and leaving the other dog alone or playing quietly with him, then reward her with calm praise and treats. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bella
pitbull
4 Months
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Question
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Bella
pitbull
4 Months

Hello!

I have a 7 yo Husky and I just got a Pitiful puppy and they love each other! However, the puppy barks a lot while playing with the Husky and now the Husky is starting to bark as well. Last night I was trying to make her stop and she bit my face - still playing you know. How can I make her understand that it's ok to play with each other but the loud and continuous barking is not allowed? I don't want her to think that playing is not nice. Thanks!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Leticia, First, I suggest teaching the "Quiet" command using the "Quiet" method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, I suggest teaching an "Out" command - which means leave the area, to use when she needs a time out to calm back down, or if disobeys your Quiet command. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Once she knows the Out command, to avoid being bitten during the wrestling, I suggest keeping a drag leash on her that doesn't have a handle, so that you can simply step on the leash if she ignored your command, pick it up and lead her away from your husky to enforce obedience. Check out VirChewLy leashes from the link below for something durable that is less likely to get caught on furniture (only use the leash on her when you are supervising). VirChewLy leashes: https://www.amazon.com/VirChewLy-Indestructible-Leash-Medium-Black/dp/B001W8457I?psc=1&SubscriptionId=0ENGV10E9K9QDNSJ5C82&tag=lidotr-20&linkCode=xm2&camp=2025&creative=165953&creativeASIN=B001W8457I Work on obedience with your Husky as well so that she will respond to commands and leave the area or become quiet as needed also. Be careful anytime you are trying to get between two dogs - use the right tools and precautions to avoid teeth, such as drag leashes. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Panda
Flat Coated Retriever
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
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Panda
Flat Coated Retriever
3 Years

She is obsessed with sticks and balls. This situation has suddenly got much worse and she now barks continuously until somebody throws something for her. She will do it to anyone, if we are having lunch in the garden she literally does not stop, she will even go up to a stranger and do it. We've tried ignoring the barking, but there is no end to it!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emmy, I suggest teaching her a command such as Quiet or Out - which means leave the area. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Work on those two command and also following the "how to use out to deal with pushy behavior" section of the Out article. If the barking continues as disobedience once you tell her Quiet or Out, then it's time to use a punisher carefully to interrupt her obsessiveness and calm her down enough to redirect her focus onto something more appropriate. You can use a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of pressurized air sprayed briefly at her side to surprise her. Only use the unscented air and NOT citronella - which lingers to long .Teach her Out and Quiet first though, so that the discipline is for disobeying your command when she continues to bark, which helps her understand why she is being disciplined and how to avoid it in the future. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Molly
Bearded Collie
7 Years
0 found helpful
Question
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Molly
Bearded Collie
7 Years

Molly loves playing ball, especially in the house but she barks incessantly, when you can't find the ball, when you're too slow in picking it up, she's just demanding. She understands 'last one' and I've tried turning my back and even walking out of the room when she barks at me but no success, we don't seem to be able to play without accompanying barks. We live in a terraced house so not great for neighbours and as our daughter is expecting a baby I'm worried the barking will upset him. Can you help?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Moyra, I suggest teaching the "Quiet" command from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once she has learned what Quiet means, use that command when she barks and hide the ball until she stops barking. When she stops barking for even a second, throw the ball for her as a reward for barking. Once you have practiced that so that she understands that she is supposed to be quiet when told quiet and will be given the ball if she obeys, if she still continues to bark regularly after a couple of weeks, then I suggest looking into a high quality bark collar (NOT citronella). Do your research into brands and quality. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lottie
Labradoodle
9 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Lottie
Labradoodle
9 Months

She barks when she plays with other dogs? I was reading the quiet command but I do not know how I am going to get her to bark when it is just her and I?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Destiny, Check out the Quiet method from the article I have linked below. That method details how to use door knocking to trigger barking at home. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tucker
Goldendoodle
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Tucker
Goldendoodle
10 Weeks

Do you have any tips on how to help occupy a teething puppy who wants to chew on everything in sight (including my fingers during play)?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alexandra, First, be sure to give pup something to hold in their mouth while they play. Since pup it little it shouldn't be too heavy, and long usually works better for play to avoid puppy teeth. Second, feed pup their food via dog food stuffed hollow chew toys, like kongs, or other durable treat dispensing devices (make sure it can with stand chewing), such as puzzle toys and a long wobble. When playing fetch, play with two balls, so that you can command pup to drop the first one and have a second one hidden behind your back you can throw - minimizing needing to tug the first ball away from pup or pup having an empty mouth to bite you for long. Play games like find it - where you hide treats around and let pup search for them, or come games like round Robin and hide and seek - having pup sit and receive a treat when they get to the person, to teach good manners at the same time. Practice handling exercises - where you use pups meal kibble. Touch an area like their should while feeding a treat. Touch an ear, touch a paw, touch their collar, touch their back, touch their tail, gently open their mouth, touch their belly, ect...each time you gently touch give a treat with your other hand. Do this every day if you can. This prepares pup for kids, the vets, grooming, and social interactions in general, but can also help pup bite less when touched. Do this daily for at least six months, then at least a couple times a week for the next couple of years to ensure pup stays tolerant through adulthood. Again, when playing with pup, give them something to hold in their mouth during play - retrievers can be especially strong mothers because they were bred to use their mouths. It's normal, so give them another outlet for it, like holding a toy. When puppy bites you, check out the article linked below on puppy mouthing. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Also, know that when the biting gets really out of hand, pup might actually be over tired and need some quiet time to chew a toy and rest in the crate or exercise pen where its quiet. Puppies tend to get really wound up when over tired or if they aren't given mental or physical exercise. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luna
red queensland heeler border collie mi
1 Year
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Luna
red queensland heeler border collie mi
1 Year

Luna keeps barking none stop and we don't really have a problem with it, but she has a high pitch bark and it is super annoying. We tell her stop or no bark, and she ignores us. How do we stop her from barking?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Rylee, For the barking I suggest combining a few things in your case. First, you need a way to communicate with her so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - such as a Pet Convincer or vibration collar. A Pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). In situations where you know pup will bark or is already barking (catch them before they bark if you can), command "Quiet". If they obey, reward with a treat and very calm praise. If they bark anyway, or stop then immediately start, or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward then. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Don't correct while she is in the middle of playing with another dog because she might think the sensation was actually caused by the other dog. Practice this between you and her. Also, pause your play whenever she barks as well. When she is quiet again, tell her "Play!" Or whatever word or phrase you choose, to let her know you will resume playing with her now that she is calmer. You want her to learn that the quickest way to return to the game is to calm herself down, not bark at you more to demand play. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Duke
Australian Shepherd
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
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Duke
Australian Shepherd
4 Months

We have been struggling with our puppy Duke. We started taking him to the dog park..he does really well playing one on one but when it comes to other dogs playing with each other he runs with them and just barks non stop at them. Owners of other dogs have been getting irritated with his barking. I’ve never had this problem with my dogs so we’re kind of stumped on what to do with him. He even does it when a dog is done playing with him and he will get in there face and just bark and bark. Any advance and training methods are greatly appreciated. He loves the dog park but people don’t love his barking. I understand he’s a herding dog but we just want to see if we can train him away from that. thanks in advance.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello. I have seen this many times. This is a behavior that is a bit tricky to correct, because in his brain, he is doing what he is suppose to do, and he's also just expressing himself! He's also getting all of his pent up energy out which is probably nice for you. But yes, other people don't seem to enjoy this from other dogs very much. There are a few options. Rarely do I give advice regarding correction collars, but this may be a route to think about. They make bark collars in a variety of forms. The typical shock collar that we are familiar with. A citronella collar, which I am not going to suggest in this setting because it could get on other dogs. And a collar that emits a high pitched sound when your dog barks. That is my suggestion. Those don't cause harm in any form, and are affordable. Another option is working on conditioning him out of his habit. This is a very long process, but can actually be used with the collar in hopes of speeding things up. Go to the park prepared and armed with treats. You may actually have to stand outside the gate, or in an area where other dogs won't go crazy over your treats. Once he starts barking, you get his attention. Give him a command such as "quiet". Call him over to you, make him sit. Give him a treat when he calms down. Then let him go. You will likely have to repeat this process a number of times over the course of a few months to turn it around. That is a typical timeframe for this type of behavior modification. I hope I was able to give you some insight into this problem you are having. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thank you for writing in!

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Bentley
Australian Shepherd
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
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Bentley
Australian Shepherd
8 Weeks

We just brought Bentley home to our other 8 month old dog Dexter. When Bentley wants to play he gets excited and will start to bark, growl and nip/bite Dexter. It makes dexter not want to play and feels like it won’t go near him with out being worried. How can we stop this behavior so they can play together better.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jess, I suggest teaching pup the Leave It and Out commands and refereeing the dogs when pup is getting overly excited. You will also find that practicing regular obedience that's a bit hard for pup - like Place, Down, Leave It, ect... can help pup calm down too. Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the area. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Meg
GSD
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
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Meg
GSD
1 Year

Pulling on leash and barking

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Meg is at the perfect age to start obedience training. This will help to socialize her with other dogs and people, provide her with exercise, and tire her out somewhat so that she is calmer. You will also learn the skills you need to handle her on walks. Start the obedience training at home before starting classes: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-dog-basic-obedience. As well, Meg will benefit from being taught to heel while on walks. She'll be focussed on you and not pull or bark. This guide has excellent methods to try: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel. Start with training a few minutes each walk, working up to always heeling when on walks unless it's sniff and pee or poop time. Good luck and enjoy the training - she's a clever breed and will learn quickly!

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Larry
kelpie cross Hunterway
6 Months
0 found helpful
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Larry
kelpie cross Hunterway
6 Months

hi so when I am playing basketball my dog barks and jumps all over me and i have tried making him sit but nothing seems to work. he is not aggressive but he just gets extremely excited and wont stop barking. do you have any tricks i can try to stop this behavior

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Eliza, I recommend teaching "Jazz Up Settle Down"...It's a bit like red light green light for dogs. First, away from the ball, start playing with pup until they are just a little excited, then suddenly freeze and give a command like Sit. Wait until pup calms down and obeys, even if that takes pup several minutes. After it's been five minutes, if pup hasn't obeyed, give the command again in case they forgot by then. Only use a command pup knows well. Once pup finally obeys, offer a treat that was hidden in your pocket, then tell pup after they eat "Let's Play!" or something similar to re-initiate the game again. Practice this after several days regularly until pup can immediately obey in the middle of play. When pup can obey at that excitement level, then gradually increase the excitement level pup gets to before you give the command overtime. Only increase the excitement level again when pup has gotten to the point where they can immediately obey at the current excitement level. Once pup can handle being really excited and still being able to calm back down, then start introducing the ball into your training, starting with the ball not bouncing, and gradually adding the movement of the ball more and more as pup gets better at this game. Once pup can obey your command quickly, use other commands like Out, Leave It, Down, and Place to direct pup while you play, and reward pup for obeying those commands and holding them - like staying on Place, for gradually longer and longer periods of time during your ball game. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Frost
Border Collie
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Frost
Border Collie
1 Year

How do I get my dog to stop barking while playing and also drop his toy without him picking it back up right away?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Frost is a vocal breed who loves to show excitement with his voice. He's young and will most likely grow out of the habit. In the meantime, you can teach him the quiet command. Practice it every day, not just when barking in excitement is an issue. Take a look here: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark. Use the Quiet Method, and once Frost knows it, you can use it in many situations. It will soon be second nature for Frost to quiet down when he hears the command. Then, you can apply it to playtime and you should not even have to raise your voice. In fact, keeping it at a normal tone will prevent Frost from getting rowdier. As for dropping the toy, try having Frost deliver the toy to your hand. Get him used to that way of playing and you may be able to revert him to dropping it without picking it up: https://wagwalking.com/training/deliver-to-your-hand. Good luck and happy training!

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Harlow
Belgian Malinois
10 Weeks
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Harlow
Belgian Malinois
10 Weeks

She barks all the time (mostly because she's playing or she wants something). When playing, at people, in her crate, at her water bowl, at toys, at leaves, etc. Her other problem is that she'll growl at me if I take a toy away, if I get up and she's sleeping on my lap, and at people she doesn't know. She's a little puppy and I've only had her for two days but she'll grow to be 60lbs or more. I defiantly don't want a dog that will growl or have her possible get more aggressive? Is it aggressive behavior? I met her parents and they were super sweet but untrained. I've been trying to take her out and see new things and trying to correct the barking & growling. She also nips but I feel that's normal puppy behavior, but she will get bigger and I would hate for her to play nip and seriously hurt someone.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alexis, The growling with toys and when you get up are a form of aggression - but thankfully its early so you can begin addressing it now. Growling at people is likely due to fear, I highly recommend socializing pup as much as possible - since her breed can be more suspicious and sensitive about new people in general. Work on teaching Out, Off, and Drop It - rewarding pup for obedience with protest with a treat, and using a drag leash on pup to calmly enforce the command and move pup away while you are home to supervise, and make sure the leash doesn't get caught. Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Off- section on The Off command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-train-dog-stay-off-couch/ Drop It section - practice Drop It often - trading pup a treat or another toy for obedience to build pup's trust with you, so they feel less defensive when you take things in real life. When you need to take something for real, give pup one of their toys instead. Don't mess with pup's food or them while they are eating unless you are rewarding pup with better treats for tolerance - that can cause resource guarding when done wrong. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-to-fetch/ Free PDF e-book, AFTER You Get Your Puppy, with great socialization information, that can be downloaded at the link below: www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads The nipping is probably normal puppy mouthing. A puppy class is something I would recommend for the socialization and biting - look for one that has time for off-leash play with other puppies to help with socialization and learning to control her mouth through play. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Leave It and Bite Inhibition methods for the biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Check out the article linked below for some general ways to build respect gently over the next year. Practicing training and commands with rewards is also a great way to build trust and respect, and stimulate pup physically and mentally - which are all super important for sensitive, driven, intelligent breeds like Malinois. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you If you haven't done so already, I would spend a lot of time researching training specific to malinois and connecting with other malinois owners, such as facebook groups, dog forums, training clubs ect... Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mona
Mixed
10 Weeks
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Mona
Mixed
10 Weeks

My dog is ten weeks old now and she is full of energy and is in her teething period. Sometimes she gets too excited and will bite me playfully.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello. Here is information on puppy nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Jonah
german shepard
10 Weeks
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Jonah
german shepard
10 Weeks

Good Morning,

I recently adopted a shelter puppy, Jonah, and I was told that I was getting a lab. Within the last week, his ears have perked up, and I think that I have a German Shepard puppy.

He was so easy to house train, and he really wants to please! Even though he is young, he has never messed in his crate (I have had him for two weeks now), and he has learned basic sit and stay commands. He does great with my friends' dogs and dogs on our daily walks/hikes, but I am having issues with him playing with humans. He is really mouthy right now, and loves gnawing on people hands. I pull away and stop playing when he mouths on my hands, but then he barks. I live in an apartment, and I need to discourage barking as much as possible.

Things that haven't worked:
1: Smacking his side (he thinks it's a game).
2: Saying "no" loudly (He gets louder).

So, I am having issues with two things:
1. Being mouthy when playing with humans.
2. Barking/being sassy when he doesn't get what he wants.

Any advice?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello. Here is information on puppy nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Doby
toy poodle
6 Months
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Doby
toy poodle
6 Months

He always wine and bark when in his crate and it’s not that he is in the crate it’s that he doesn’t like to be left alone.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Peini, Check out the Surprise method from the article I have linked below. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Skyy
Chocolate labrador
3 Years
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Skyy
Chocolate labrador
3 Years

Whenever my husband goes mountain biking, Skyy gets very excited and barks non-stop, to the point of it being dangerous as it causes distraction to my husband on the trails. Any help is appreciated. Thank you, Sarka

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sarka, I am assuming by the sound of it that pup is barking while following your husband's bike down the trail. If that's the case, I recommend desensitizing pup to the movement of the bike gradually, rewarding quietness while the bike is moving. Check out the Quiet and Desensitize methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once pup knows those commands, practice getting the bike out, rewarding whenever pup is quiet while you do so, stopping the bike movement and rewards if pup barks. Remining pup to be Quiet with the Quiet command if needed, then rewarding when pup stops barking and stays quiet for at least a few seconds. As pup improves, transition from practicing just getting the bike out, to getting on the bike, to peddling very slowly - you may need to hold onto another person to go slow enough for pup to stay quiet at first, to riding normal, to riding slowly on the trail, to riding faster, faster, faster, until you are back up to a normal ride with all of it's excitement. This will be a very gradual process, probably over the course of a couple months with practice around the bike for at least a few minutes several times a week, rewarding the quietness each session to create a habit of being quiet - that quiet habit needs to become very ingrained and strong for pup to maintain it in the presence of the very exciting, fast paced ride on the trail. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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JT
Jack Russell Terrier
1 Year
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JT
Jack Russell Terrier
1 Year

He’s very vocal when playing but to the point to where it’s like him screaming, he also gets upset when other dogs play and he continues to bark to stop them

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Your best bet is to reward him greatly for being quiet. Make being quiet when other dogs ignore him far more valuable than the attention he gets from barking at them. In the same vein, do you have a "focus" or a "look" command? If not, it's a good time to start working on one. That way, you ask him to focus on you, or look at you, then he'll be quiet and you reward that. Eventually he'll be looking at you all the time, just checking in on his own, asking you for guidance.

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Snúlli
Border Collie/Icelandic sheepdog
4 Years
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Snúlli
Border Collie/Icelandic sheepdog
4 Years

How do I stop my dog from barking at people and dogs while walking?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kathleen, For the barking, check out the Quiet method and the Desensitize method I have linked and the video series on barking below. Quiet method and Desensitize method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Barking videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAA4pob0Wl0W2agO7frSjia1hG85IyA6a Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Casper
Labrador Retriever
4 Months
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Casper
Labrador Retriever
4 Months

When meeting a new dog, first Casper is scared and tries to run away on leash. Then he starts to approach and take the play stance and prance around but he starts to bark constantly. I can't tell whether he is scared or not because he is wagging his tail but still barking really loud and constantly. I haven't let him fully approach any other dogs and because of this behaviour and I am scared they might bite him or he might bite them cause I can't really understand his behaviour.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
842 Dog owners recommended

Hello Gayathri, I recommend seeing if there is a puppy class that has time for moderated off-leash play, with puppies of similar age. It sounds like pup wants to play but because they haven't been around many dogs recently they aren't sure how to do so in a socially acceptable way and feel a little insecure about the interactions due to a lack of exposure. Puppies tend to learn proper social cues, confidence, and how to interact from playing with other puppies. Other puppies are also a safer way for pup to learn, with you and the class instructor moderating the interactions to make sure no puppy feels overwhelmed or bullied while playing. Check out the article I have linked below. You can also look for a puppy play group or get together with friends and their puppies. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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