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Dog barking - Proven strategies to stop your dog barking

Nothing is more annoying and stressful than to deal with constant dog barking. It is a frustrating and futile experience to control this unwanted behavior without a basic understanding of why they bark.  Why do dogs bark? Barking is a natural doggy behavior to convey their moods to you, to get your attention and to show their excitement. It is more than mere noise and linking the vocalization to their postures, tail movements and the facial aspects gives a true picture of what they are trying to talk to you.

Some instances are- Low pitched growl and loud bark with ears perked and tail up shows sign of his dominance. Short and sharp bark along with swift tail wags shows he is excited. Low growl escalating to a howling bark with bristled tail when he perceives intruders in the territory. High pitched constant bark when he is in distress or alone and so on.

Once you identify the causes of barking then finding a solution to stop barking is easier. Key reasons for barking are underlying behavioral issue and situations and surroundings aiding to the barking. Natural instinct barks are very normal and should not be suppressed.

Let's see how to stop your dog's relentless barking which sometimes has no apparent cause:

* First and foremost in dog behavior training is to teach what is acceptable behavior and what is not. When your dog barks incessantly to get your attention and force you to yield to his requests, it is not healthy. Just to shut him up, if you give him a treat, play or do whatever he wants you to do, it sends him a wrong signal that he can get the job done through barking. Just turn deaf ears on him and ignore him. He may be confused and tend to bark harder at the beginning, but the more times you've reinforced this with consistency the better control it would be.

* When he barks, divert his attention by saying, "quiet" or "hush" in a strong yet calm tone. Use the same command every time for consistency and not to confuse him. When he obeys and stop barking praise him immediately. He will pair the command with the praise and learn to be quiet.

* Barking as a means to display dominant behavior: If the dog refuses to obey and continues to bark back to you with aggression, then he believes that he is the leader of the pack. It's very important that your dog recognizes that you outrank him as the leader an Alpha dog and he is below you. They are well behaved under a leadership and form a strong bond with you based on trust and respect.

* Constant barking due to boredom or lack of socialization: They become anxious or stressed without social interaction and resort to meaningless barking to let out their stress. Spend time and engage your dog with playful activities, which are interactive like fetching the ball or taking for a long walk.

* Loneliness and Separation anxiety can trigger incessant barking: The anxiety that builds up with time when your dog is alone can cause him to bark constantly in an attempt to get out of that situation. Exercise him enough to tire him out so that he sleeps when you are away and provide enough chewy items and toys to engage him till you return.

Use of shock or citronella collars to control your dog barking is not recommended and can be used only as last resort for a stubborn dog. Understanding and retraining by reward is the most humane approach to dog barking problem.

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Thursday, 06 May 2021

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