How to Curb Excessive Barking
Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff


Don't let excessive or chronic barking disturb the peace in your home. There are many ways to help control undesirable or excessive barking.

Dogs bark for many reasons. It is a natural behavior and primary method of communication. They bark to warn others or defend a territory, to seek attention or play, to identify themselves to another dog, or as a response to boredom, excitement, being startled, loneliness, anxiety, or teasing. Four proven methods to help you stop unwanted barking behaviors include:

  1. First, avoid the temptation to reinforce your dog's bark. Do not give verbal reassurance, a treat, or physical attention to a barking dog.

  2. Minimize your dog's barking with proper and consistent training. In addition, try using a calming pheromone spray in your pet's environment.

  3. Train your pet to respond to a one-word command, such as "Enough." During training, divert his attention from the barking and sternly say "Enough." If he stops barking, reward him with a great treat. Only give the treat if your dog stops barking.

  4. Along with these other behavior modification techniques, you may try a bark collar, a training tool designed specifically to address habitual chronic barking. It gives your pet a warning tingle or mild static correction when he barks, which quickly trains your pet to avoid the behavior that initiates the correction.

Bark control is important in developing a dog that is obedient and able to relax. Your success in this area will create a more harmonious home.

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