Barking is a natural behavior for dogs. But when the barking becomes incessant, this typically signals that something is wrong and needs to be corrected, either in the dog’s development of a bad habit, or in the environment that is contributing to the barking.
But you don’t want to stop dog barking altogether, as this can be an important way for them to alert you to danger or discomfort. More important is teaching them to stop when they are told to stop. As with all dog training, good communication, consistency, and rewarding the desired behavior, while reprimanding the bad, is key.
Similar to other problem behaviors in dogs, excessive barking can be the result of boredom, stress, loneliness, and a need for attention. Do you take your dog for regular walks? Is he alone all day? The lack of regular exercise and socialization can lead to excessive barking. It is therefore necessary to take your dog for at least two walks a day, and give him mental stimulation, as well: puzzle games, daily training, and toys.
If you have examined the causes of behavior but still need assistance on how to stop a dog barking, there are a number of products available that specifically stop dog barking. You might consider a citronella collar, which releases a bitter scent that dogs dislike and forces them to be quiet. Similarly, you can get a sound collar that emits a loud noise whenever the dog barks.
Finally, learn the QUIET command, as taught below:
1. First, get your dog to start barking (usually not a problem!). Your door bell is a good initiator. So, standing in the doorway, ring the doorbell and allow your dog to bark a few times.
2. Hold a treat over the dog’s nose while saying “QUIET,” “HUSH,” or the like. It doesn’t matter what word you use, but it DOES matter that, whatever word you use, you only use that one.
3. When your dog stops barking to sniff, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat, each time requiring the dog to be silent for longer periods before he receives the treat.