Get a dog to bark less? - The Horse Forum
  • 2 Post By themacpack
  • 1 Post By la volpe
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
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Get a dog to bark less?

I have a 10 year old maltese. That barks A LOT. He barks at anything and everything he can. We have tried so many things to get him to stop. we tried a device that emitts a very high pitched sound, that worked for awhile. Then he stopped responding to it. We are currently trying a spray bottle, because he is scared of water. But we always get into the front room too late to spray him. My dad told me if I dont get him to stop barking and soon, that he will get rid of him. I love my dog dearly, how can i get him to bark less?
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 04:06 PM
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Try a citronella spray collar - it goes round his neck and sprays a burst of citronella when he barks. I have tried :-

- the high pitched noise box
-electric shock collars
- training (!)
- spray collar

with my persistent barkers

And the spray collar is by far the best and most effective.

Obviously... I assume you are also exercising and training and socialising the dog

Get up, get going, seize the day. Enjoy the sunshine, the rain, cloudy days, snowstorms, and thunder. Getting on your horse is always worth the effort.
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 06:12 PM
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I see a lot of talk of gadgets and no mention of specific TRAINING approaches you have taken to address the issue. Small breeds can be very prone to reactive barking.
The device that was working and has since stopped - to ask the obvious question, is it a battery operated device (most are)? Is the tone high enough pitched that you are unable to hear it? If so, you may actually have a device that is no longer operable, rather than a dog who is no longer receptive/responsive.
One approach that can seem completely counter-productive is to teach the dog TO BARK - stay with me here - teaching the dog to "speak" on command enables you to also then train for the "quiet", "stop", "whatever-word-you-want-to-use" command. This can be very helpful because when the dog is *in the moment* of a barking frenzy they are not in the right state of mind to be truly open to your attempts to train them for the quieting of that barking. Using a controlled training session allows you to have the dog in the learning mode so that you can prompt the start and stop of the barking. Then you can start to generalize the command to apply in more and more situations with greater distraction/stimulation.
Do you clicker train? This can be a great way to give that instant, POSITIVE, feedback that creates faster and further progress in training. What are your dog's highest value rewards? Is he play oriented, food oriented, praise oriented??
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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The box is still working we have changed the batteries several times just to make sure, but he still doesnt respond. My parents cannot hear the box, but if I am close enough to it I can, and ironically I run away from it. So it works better on me than my dog. I may have to attempt the spray collar, that seems like the best option.

I have tried to train him to bark, and was successful, but if i sit down to do other tricks with him, he will be patient for about a minute then resort to barking at me thinking he'll get the treat. I've tried to get him a command o quiet down, but it never works.

Back a couple years ago, I attempted to clicker train him. It worked well for awhile, I used it more as a come here command for things (he is unresponsive when we tell him to "come here" too) so he pretty much acts like he is deaf, but if we ask him if he wants to go for a walk, or go in the car, or eat he's right ontop of us.

We do exercize him on walks every night. But he doesnt get much socialization because every time he is around another dog he freaks out and tries to attack them and barks at them, unless they are smaller than him. Then he's okay. And with people he gets all up in their faces and most people that come over hate that.

So as you can see we are just complettely lost with him. But he's such a sweet boy to my family.
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post #5 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 07:07 PM Thread Starter
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This is my barking--but sweet--doggie.
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post #6 of 9 Old 06-23-2012, 08:44 PM
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It's never too late to socialize him. Socialization is VERY important and should be done right away. I started socializing my puppy when she was 9 weeks old. She is now 4 months and very easy going with other dogs. I don't have to worry about her possibly attacking or acting aggressively towards another dog. I will continue to socialize her, even as she grows older.

I fully agree with everything themacpack has said. The thing with training is that you have to be consistent. You can't just attempt something once or twice and then give up because it doesn't appear to be working.

If the "quiet" command isn't working, then try something else. If someone comes to the door and he starts barking, get him to focus on you. Ask for a sit, lay down, whatever, and then reward [praise or treat] for quiet behavior. You can eventually put the "quiet" command in there as well. Make sure you aren't rewarding him for barking though. Give him a command, and then reward once he performs the command.

How often is he getting exercise? I think you need to change things up a bit with him. Go for longer walks in different areas. Take him to a dog park [once he is a bit more socialized and is able to act politely around other pups]. Toss a ball, practice tricks, etc. Don't be so routine because eventually he may get bored. Dogs need to be stimulated. A majority of bad behaviors are because the dog isn't getting the mental exercise that it needs.

Here is a good website that explains what themacpack was originally saying when it comes to the barking. Barking: How to Get Your Dog to Quiet Down : The Humane Society of the United States
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post #7 of 9 Old 06-25-2012, 11:32 AM
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When I was given a female Chi she was yappy. As so often happens with little dogs the owner picks them up and soothes them which is seen as a reward. Tiny or not she's still a dog. I'd stamp my foot to get her attention and show my displeasure by scowling at her and telling her No firmly. Now the only time she makes any noise is if someone I'm not expecting comes to the door and she'll quit when I say shh.
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post #8 of 9 Old 10-22-2015, 04:47 AM
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Sorry to revive an old thread like that, but I've gone through so much with Ben back when I adopted him around 7 months ago when it came to excessive barking, and wanted to share a few tips I learned along the way.

Most importantly, I want to share what you should NEVER do if you want your dog to stop barking the proper way.

1 - NEVER start screaming at your dog or show your dog that youíre heated and angry thinking youíre going to get them to stop barking that way. Youíre not. Youíll just make it worse because they might sense that youíre joining them in barking (letís face it, human screaming is the equivalent to dog barking) or worse off, they will sense that youíre frustrated and might try to imitate you, and thatís a whole other dangerous story because thatís when them attacking you becomes a real possibility. If youíre going to make your dog stop barking the right way, you have to learn how to keep your cool. Speak and act in a calm yet firm way.

2 - Donít be too sweet and wishy-washy with your dog when you want them to stop barking. You must be firm and assertive (but refer to #1 and donít yell!) so they donít mistake your affection with your approval of their barking.

3 - Not being consistent. I see this happen a lot of times so I had to include it here. When youíre training your dog when to bark and when not to bark, the last thing you want to do is confuse them. All your household members and everyone who interacts with your dog must follow the same methods you follow when your dog barks inappropriately. If you let your dog get away with inappropriate barking one time and punish them for it the other, youíre sending them mixed signals.

4 - Never EVER try to make your dog quiet by giving them a treat to make their mouth full and stop them from barking. This way, youíll teach them that when they bark, they get a treat from you.

Source: Here
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post #9 of 9 Old 10-22-2015, 06:14 PM
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The chi starting really yapping when the neighbor's lad came to help with a few things. No way was she going to stop barking so I put her on a leash, actually a boot lace that encircled her neck. No choke action. Every time she barked she got a small jerk. She finally figured out that barking resulted in the unpleasant jerk. I've also bumped her with my food to get her attention on me.
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