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  • Barking, Continued: Determining the Cause

    Friday, November 17th, 2017, 1:53 am

    In our last blog, we discussed some common causes of barking. While there are numerous reasons why it can happen, there are just as many ways to mitigate the potential cause or address the issues affecting your pooch -- all of which hopefully lead to a better life for your family as well as Fido.

    Perhaps the number one rule for any dog training or behavior correction regimen is to not expect results overnight.

    There are a few things to keep in mind when trying to train your pup to stop being disobedient and causing a commotion when there’s no need for one and begin obeying your commands. It would be best to address this behavior in a way that helps eliminate it or at least minimize the need for further annoyance.

    Remember, dogs are not humans...sometimes people forget this very plain fact. They don’t learn or comprehend things the way we do, and like some humans, they definitely need to be trained -- positive reinforcement, along with tender loving care and cuddles goes a long way for most canines.

    Check out these tips below for some ways on halting the hoopla during a barkfest.

    Stay calm and speak softly

    When your pup is amped up, yelling back at your pet isn’t going to solve anything. In fact, it can escalate the behavior. You know the drill, when one kid gets hyper and starts running around, others usually follow suit. So when your dog is all agitated and barking, chiming in with loud noises isn’t going to help.

    Positive reinforcement

    When your pup doesn’t react to things that would normally send him into a barking tizzy for minutes on end, you have to praise him! This doesn’t mean he’s not allowed to react at all, it just has to be in a more calm fashion than his usual crazies. Say good boy or yes in a calm and quiet voice and go ahead and give him a treat.

    Gradual desensitization

    Expose your dog gradually to whatever it is that makes him bark. Don’t throw him outside in a thunderstorm if he’s scared and barks at the sky or put him in a room with another dog if he gets nervous with other pups and barks. Always start with having the stimulus a good and safe distance away from your dog. Feed him treats. Get a little closer, and continue dispensing the treats. Essentially, the goal is to show your dog that when the stimulus that makes him bark appears it only leads to good things.

    How has your training worked so far? Still hitting some snags? Contact the San Fernando Valley dog training team, The Connected Canine.

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