Are you having issues with excessive barking from your dog? Well in this video I cover some of the different strategies I use to help people over come this annoying problem.
Here is a transcript of what I actually said:
Hey everyone! It’s Al with Longoriahaus Dog Training, just coming back at you with the next “Ask the Expert” question, and today we are taking a question from Suzanne. Suzanne’s question was on barking. Here is what her question was: ” How do you reduce excessive barking?”. Well, excessive barking is one of those things that can really be annoying. I know a lot of times I come into homes and notice the dogs are in the crates and they’re just going absolutely nuts and I tell people that obviously it’s very natural for your dog to be barking, but obviously Suzanne wants to know, how to get rid of it. Well, the process we use is not as simple as maybe I’d like it to be but I find it’s been pretty effective for us in reducing the rate of barking. The first thing I want to do is actually to begin to teach the dog the opposite of barking, which for me, I like to teach the dog what it’s like to be quiet. Many of the times that I see barking in the dogs it’s because the situation that they’re in doesn’t have a solution and then they just bark, to see if somehow, some way, all this noise that they’re creating is going to have a way of getting them out of their problems. So, the first thing I like to do is begin to present a problem. So, if your dog is barking inside of the crate a lot, this is where I begin to teach the dog, that when I approach and if I open the door and you bolt out or trying to bolt out, then I’m going to quickly close the door in front of you. What this begins to do and many of the solutions that we have for the dog are not about necessarily one particular exercise but actually beginning to turn the dog’s brain on to solve some problems. I feel that once we get the dog thinking, they tend to shut up very quickly and then I can begin to reward them for that actual act. So, in phase 1 of your training, what you want to do, is begin to identify some situations, where you have some control. Either your dog’s in the crate, either you have a leash on your dog or you’re withholding the reward some way from your dog and when your dog is quiet and giving you this kind of quiet behavior plus maybe a sit, maybe eye to eye contact, begin to click and begin to reward the dog for being quiet. Okay? So, I actually do this for a while and the three main things that we try to teach the dog where they ‘re actually quiet is how to stay down on their bed, how to sit by their side, sit by my left hand side and also how to come all the way back to me. Generally when I am working on those exercises, especially when I’m asking them to lay in their place, the dogs tend to be quiet, because of the way we’ve taught them. The way we’re teaching the dog basically is “this is right” and “this is wrong”. When the dog is on the bed and being quiet, they’re getting rewarded for this particular behavior early on in the process. When they’re coming off, there’s absolutely no reward and then I’m putting them back onto their bed with varying degrees of pressure down the leash, back onto the bed. As the dog begins to see the contrast to being on the bed and getting very rewarded and coming off the bed and not being rewarded at all and then being physically put back, they also tend to become quiet very quickly. If you’re really having a lot problems with your barking behavior though, one particular thing that a lot of people do, but it’s not generally where I would start with the dog, is a bark collar. So, the theory behind the bark collar is this: that when the dog barks, the technology of the bark collar will actually sense the dog barking and then emit stimulation to the dog that is unpleasant and then that unpleasant association , if it works properly, is associated to barking and then the dog ends up ceasing to bark. The reason I don’t particularly like using these devices in the beginning with the dog is, I like to reward them for being quiet before I tell them “Don’t bark”. In some situations though, we’ve been in some where we’ve to tell the dog immediately “quit barking right away” generally because it led to some kind of aggression.But I would have a dog, if it’s just barking annoyingly, I would begin to engage the dog’s mind into some games. So, here’s something else you can do with the dog. If you end up using a tool like the remote collar or even your leash, every time your dog barks, if the remote collar or leash will turn on, not necessarily to high level, but enough for the dog to be aware that you’re touching it, when the dog goes quiet, remove the pressure from the leash or remove the pressure from the remote collar. Once the dog is quiet for several seconds, click and now begin to reward the dog abundantly. What you want to try to do is show the dog the big difference between being very quiet and also, you know, being loud. So if they’re being loud, there is no reward, there’s pressure from the leash. If they are quiet, then there is a bunch of reward. Well, Suzanne, I hope this helped you in some way and if you’re watching this for the first time, I hope this is helping you. Again, my name is Al with Longoriahaus Dog Training. If you’d like to submit your questions, please go to our website. We have “Ask the trainer” there, submit your questions and I’ll shoot these videos to help you guys out. Well, again, thanks a lot for watching and we’ll see you guys, soon.
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