How do I train my dog not to bark at people? He barks at everyone walking by the window or when we are outside on a walk. Even though he is a little dog, his bark is very aggressive. Thank you!
Lately, I have been using the sound I make to mean I don't know what he is doing - eh! I also tug his leash/harness.
I have a dog currently that I got from the pound that did this when we first got him, so I understand you are being driven crazy. Mine even barked at the TV.
Here is what worked for us. We left his leash on in the house attached to a chain collar. Each time our dog barked inappropriately we gave a quick tug correction to distract him, said "no bark" and had him sit. After a few corrections right in a row, he would not bark once. When he didn't bark I'd give him a treat. By the end of a couple of weeks, he had reduced his barking significantly. We did go through a lot of treats.We used paper thin hot dog slices because they are stinky, tasty and you can get about 50 paper thin slices from just one hot dog so you are not filling your dog up.
We did this over the course of a month all together, giving treats for non barking and eventually phasing out the treats and using praise instead with a treat only once in a while. Now he rarely ever barks.
As crazy as this sounds you may wish to teach your dog the speak command and then the quiet command. It seems easier to teach the quiet command after the dog has learned the speak command. The following site explains teaching speak and quiet commands.
You also have the option of getting a bark collar such as citronella spray collar, shock bark collars (I personally am against shock collars) and even shaking a can of coins that will stop excessive barking. I know you have been tugging his leash and making a sound, but you need to use "NO". Dogs know what that means. In addition, set him up to bark so you can correct him using the methods I described. If you are doing it on a walk, you may also be tensing up in anticipation of your dog barking which in turn reinforces your dogs desire to bark since he would think you were tensing because you are worried about the person. So try to be calm and unworried. Him barking at someone may be embarrassing but it is not dangerous and you are trying to correct it.
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Since there have been recalls on certain foods, please check the following site to be sure the food your animals eat is not affected. If it is affected, contact your vet as soon as possible. Have your dog seen if they have any symptoms.
Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 16+ years
Hi Jessica,I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?Jane Lefler