Learn How to Stop Dog Barking Once and for all

If you want to know how to stop dog barking it can be helpful to understand the different reasons why dogs bark. Controlling dog barking is easier if you understand your dog’s motive.

There’s barking and then there’s BARKING. If your dog barks when he sees a stranger or another animal he views as a threat, that’s pretty normal behavior. But if your dog barks incessantly inside and outside the house for no apparent reason, that’s not normal behavior. This is when your dog is just looking for attention and you have to step in and take action. 

Before you learn how to stop dog barking, it's important to understand why your dog is barking.

Dogs bark for many reasons including:

  • Warning barking: when your dog barks at someone at the door or someone passing by his house.
  • Attention seeking barking: when your dog has been left alone too long and desperately seeks any attention from you. Dogs who are bored and need stimulation, toys, exercise, or your attention fall into this category.
  • Playful barking: when your dog barks when he’s excited during play. It’s best not to encourage any play that stimulates your dog to bark.
  • Anxious or lonely barking: This can be due to separation anxiety or other fear related issues.

Because the Coton de Tulear is instinctively a guard dog, he is just naturally doing his job when he barks to let you know someone or something is "out of the ordinary". This is actually a good thing. I like that Luc barks when someone's at the door or when a strange car pulls in the driveway. These days I can give him a command "quiet" and he will stop barking (mostly). 

In the beginning before he was trained, he would continue to bark excessively to the point where he and I and the visitor would be so anxious. I couldn't even hold a conversation with my visitors over the barking and nothing seemed to calm him.

Unfortunately at first, in trying to calm and soothe Luc, I did the wrong thing altogether. When I talked soothingly and pet him he thought he was being rewarded for his protection and barking. So I had to switch tactics. I had to show Luc that I was in charge and that I didn't need his protection. And I had to stop reacting in any way when he barked for attention. This was so hard, but I tried not to comfort, yell, say NO, or anything that would give him the attention he was looking for.

So, how else did I change Luc's ways? How did I learn how to stop dog barking? See the tips below:

How to Stop Dog Barking:

  1. Teach the “quiet” command. Let him bark once or twice and then use this command to let him know to stop barking. Reward him when he stops barking.

  2. Some dogs bark if they are left on their own too long and get bored. Spend lots of time and attention on your new puppy. Provide plenty of toys, walks, and quality time spent with you and your family. A bored dog will bark much more than a dog who is active and happy. And puppies need so much more mental and physical stimulation than you think. 

  3. Socialize your dog at an early age to ensure he gets used to a wide variety of situations as he gets older. Take him to places where he’ll be exposed to kids, adults, cars, all kinds of noises, and other animals.

  4. If barking is a problem when you aren't home (and you want to keep your neighbors happy) keep him in his crate with some white noise like a ceiling fan, fountain, or radio to drown out the noises that might set him off. Also leave him with toys that will keep him stimulated while you're away.

  5. If nothing you try seems to work, hire a dog trainer. The extra time and money can save you years of frustration.

  6. If your dog has a severe case of barking and none of these solutions are working, you should see your veterinarian and make sure there are no physiological issues. The vet may also want to prescribe some anti-anxiety meds.

  7. Don't forget to reward your dog for good behavior - treats, hugs, praise, toys all let your Coton know they're making good choices.

You can learn how to stop dog barking with just a little time and patience. Barking is a very common problem with many dogs, including the Coton. Learn tips on how to stop barking that our visitors recommend.

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