How to Train Your Corgi Dog to Stop Barking

Hard
1-6 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

It's a running joke with your family that the house will never be robbed. This is because your Corgi dog is a pocket rocket when it comes to barking when people approach the door. For a while, when the dog was a puppy, you found it amusing that a fluff-ball would throw himself at the door and sound so fierce. A small part of you was even proud that such a little dog could make such a big noise. 

However, times change and now the novelty has worn off. Rather than being a good house-dog he's become something of a nuisance in the noise department. From kids playing in the street to the mailman, it doesn't take much for the dog to erupt into the canine version of World War 3 on the Richter scale of barking. To make matters worse, the neighbors have started to grumble about the noise and you've no idea how to quiet the dog down... especially as shouting at him only seems to make matters worse.  

Defining Tasks

At first sight, teaching a dog 'not' to do something, such as to stop barking, is tricky. After all, how do you give him the idea that the absence of a behavior is what's desired. However, this isn't quite as difficult as it sounds, because for a barking dog, silence is actually quite an active thing... he has to make a conscious decision not to make a noise, which is where you step in and teach him that this absence of barking is called "Quiet".

Getting Started

Many owners accidentally teach their dog to bark by giving them attention and telling the dog to be quiet. Ideally, avoid an ingrained barking habit from becoming established by ignoring any experimental woofs that the puppy attempts when visitors call. Also, it can be helpful to merely acknowledge the dog's alert, by saying "Thanks, I have this now." Since barking is a way of alerting the pack to possible danger, acknowledging that alert can be sufficient to settle the puppy down. 

For the seasoned adult barker, you need persistence, patience, and consistency in order to re-educate your Corgi. You'll also need some or all of the following:

  • Treats
  • A treat pouch so you always have rewards handy
  • A mat for the dog to lie on
  • Etched glass effect plastic to restrict the view from a window
  • A collar, leash, and balls for energetic walks

The Bark on Command Method

ribbon-method-1
Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Understand the idea
When a behavior or action is put on command, this enables you to take control. For example, having the dog bark when told to can reduce his natural inclination to bark at other times when he's not commanded to do so. But for the hardened barker who is addicted to the sound of his own voice, having the bark cue can enable you to teach the 'quiet' command, which allows you to silence a noisy Corgi.
Step
2
Find a way to make the dog bark
The first step is to work out a way of making the dog bark when you want him to. Most people find that standing with their back to a door, and knocking on the door with a fist behind their back does the trick.
Step
3
Praise the dog for barking
Encourage the corgi to bark by knocking (unseen) on the door. When he barks, praise him, saying "Good dog" and give him a treat. Repeat this, so that the dog readily barks when you knock on the door.
Step
4
Label the action as "bark"
Now knock on the door and say "bark". When the dog responds, praise him and give a treat. Practice this. Now try saying "bark" but without tapping the door. If the dog obliges with a "Woof" then praise and treat him.
Step
5
Practice
Now practice having the dog bark under different circumstances and in different places, until you have the behavior on cue. You may find that when the dog barks of his own accord, you can now say "Bark" and he'll woof, and then come looking for a treat, hence bringing a premature end to a volley of barking.
Recommend training method?

The Teach 'Quiet' Method

ribbon-method-2
Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Understand the idea
If you can teach the dog to bark then you can teach him the opposite command, which is 'quiet'. This is done by teaching the dog that silence (such as when he's barked and is eating a treat) is called "quiet" and it can also earn him a reward.
Step
2
Have the dog bark
Have the dog bark, as in the 'Bark on Command' method. Give the dog a reward for barking, and while he is eating the treat, say "Quiet".
Step
3
Reinforce 'quiet'
You are now going to alternate the dog barking on cue, with periods of quiet (when he eats a treat). To strengthen the idea that quiet is an absence of barking, gently hold his muzzle shut after he's finished the treat and say "Quiet" again, in a firm voice. Then give another treat to reward this.
Step
4
Alternate 'bark' and 'quiet'
Practice having the dog bark on cue, and then be quiet. Start to stretch out the time between holding his muzzle and giving him the reward, during which time he is expected to make no noise. When he is quiet for a period of time, make a big fuss of him.
Step
5
Use the "quiet" cue to interrupt barking
Once the dog has learned the difference between 'bark' and 'quiet', you can try interrupting his bark in a full-blown 'bark at the mailman' scenario. It may be helpful to acknowledge the dog is alerting you to a visitor's presence, by saying "Thank you, Bonzo, good catch. I have this now." Then command him "quiet" in a firm voice and reward him when he does good.
Recommend training method?

The Do's and Don'ts Method

ribbon-method-3
Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Do: Avoid boredom
Corgis are active dogs that were bred to herd cattle and nip at their heels. This need for plenty of exercise and mental stimulation continues into the modern day breed. Be sure to give your dog plenty of exercise and a chance to work off excess energy that might otherwise be diverted into barking.
Step
2
Don't: Shout at the dog
When your Corgi barks he is alerting you to a situation, such as a visitor at the door. Shouting at him to be quiet is counterproductive as he's likely to think you are also trying to bark but making a poor job of it. Shouting is likely to escalate the whole situation and unlikely to achieve anything helpful.
Step
3
Do: Look for barking triggers
Does your dog bark at people in the street as they walk by the window? Corgis are naturally territorial dogs and if they perceive a threat to their patch they will bark to defend it. The answer may be as simple as placing etched-glass effect plastic film on the lower half of the window, in order to obscure the dog's view.
Step
4
Don't: Leave the dog unattended in the yard
Don't leave the Corgi out in the yard as a means of exercising him. As mentioned above, Corgis are highly territorial and likely to patrol the boundaries of the yard on high alert for opportunities to bark and ward off intruders.
Step
5
Do: Consider alternative strategies
There are many ways to teach a dog not to bark. Another good strategy is to keep the dog busy at times when he is likely to bark. Teaching the dog to go to a mat or rug when the doorbell rings is a useful way of channeling his desire to react, in a quieter and more appropriate way.
Recommend training method?
author-img

Written by Pippa Elliott

Published: 12/28/2017, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Whiskey
Corgi mix
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Whiskey
Corgi mix
2 Years

We had a new roommate move in recently. Every time he walks through the house whiskey barks at him.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
1105 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brittany, Has Whiskey ever shown any aggression toward the roommate? If pup just seems fearful, surprised, or suspicious of the person but hasn't indicated they want to bite or harm the person, then check out the video I have linked below. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LXCELHDT2fs Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Whiskey's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Cooper
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
9 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Cooper
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
9 Months

I take Cooper to the dog park everyday and he does not stop barking at some strangers (usually people with hoods or hats on, anything with wheels like skateboards or bikes, construction workers). I tell him “no” and he doesn’t listen but I also try to get him (because i think he might be scared) but he runs away from me when i go near him. He is also very bad with kids. He thinks that kids are dogs/similar animals because he always barks when he sees a kid or stops and lays down (the position he makes when he wants to play with dogs)

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
1105 Dog owners recommended

Hello Poop, Check out video series I have linked below, and especially the videos on desensitizing and counter conditioning pup to strangers and scary objects. "Barking at Strangers", "Barking at scary objects". https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAA4pob0Wl0W2agO7frSjia1hG85IyA6a Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Cooper's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Libby
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
7 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Libby
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
7 Months

My Libby tends to bark at me when I try to teach her the "Leave It" command. She'll even throw herself on the ground, roll around, and bark. Even though she's leaving the treats alone, I don't know if I should reward her for throwing tantrums. What should I do?

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

Hello there! I have witnessed dogs being really dramatic while practicing the leave it command. The best thing you can do is to wait until she is calm to give her the treat. Even if it's for a second! As she becomes more mature, this behavior will fade away. But in the mean time, try your best to reward her while she is being calm.

Add a comment to Libby's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Kung Pao
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
2 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Kung Pao
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
2 Months

Pao barks non-stop whether he is played with or not. We try to ignore him to show him barking is not rewarded, but once he is ignored he barks louder, up to the point where he howls. He likes to bite when playing, and he nips at my cat Zuko as well. My partner and I reward him with treats when he follows the command "sit" but loses interest easily. We are going to try the "quiet" method and hope for the best.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
1105 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I do recommend teaching Quiet. I also recommend crate training pup and either using a crate or exercise pen with a dog food stuffed chew toy when pup seems especially wound up - pup may actually be overtired at this age and need some rest time when they get super excitable. Check out the article linked below for details on using chew toys for that, as well as additional instructions for teaching Quiet. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark I would also watch for times when pup is calm - like when they go lie down, when they don't bark at something they normally would, and when they do something nice to get your attention - like quietly sit to be petted or eat, instead of barking - and reward those things by very calmly placing a treat between pup's paws and praising pup in a soft quiet voice - praise and give the treat that way so that pup stays calm. Finally, check out this youtube barking series if you continue to have issues and need more ideas. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAA4pob0Wl0W2agO7frSjia1hG85IyA6a Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Kung Pao's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Bard
Corgi
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bard
Corgi
4 Months

Our puppy Corgi always barks when we start to eat dinner together, we have tried to sit at the table, sit at the couch table, computer table, he will always bark when we eat.

Anyways to adress this?
It is extremely frustrating to deal with

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
1105 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jakob, First, teach pup the Quiet command. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When pup barks, tell them Quiet. If he stops barking AND remains quiet and lays down for the rest of the meal, you can giv3 one dog treat at the end of the meal in his bowl. If he continues barking or starts again, use a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of unscented, pressurized air. Calmly tell pup "Ah Ah" as he is barking and spray a small puff of the air at his side (NOT face and only use unscented air - NO citronella), then go sit back down to eat. It sounds like pup is being demanding, so with the above training you are clearly teaching him what he should be doing during meals - Quiet, and then when he disobeys something he understands you are giving a gentle but clear consequence that will interrupt his barking. All of this should be done calmly. Only use unscented air. Citronella lingers too long and is too harsh. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Bard's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd