Barking is a completely natural canine behavior, and is one of the primary ways in which dogs communicate. Your dog barks for a variety of reasons - normally good ones. But sometimes dogs bark simply because they are bored or lonely. This type of barking tends to reward itself, and can easily become a habit.
Habitual or chronic barking presents many challenges for dog owners. Most communities have no-barking ordinances that can result in violations and fines. Additionally, a barking dog can quickly create tension and hostility between neighbors.
What can you do if you find your dog's barking has become a serious problem and you need to stop this behavior immediately?
You may wish to consider using a Bark Control Aid to help you eliminate excessive barking and keep the peace in your neighborhood. Bark control aids are training tools designed specifically to address habitual chronic barking. There are several different kinds of bark control aids available to dog owners today.
Electronic Bark Control Collars: These battery-operated collars, such as the Train-Well® No-Bark Collar, use vibration probes to sense when your dog barks. When vibration is detected, the collar probes deliver a harmless electrical correction to your dog's neck. The PetSafe Deluxe Bark Control Collar uses both sound and vibration to determine when the dog is barking. These collars vary by the number of adjustable levels of correction intensity, battery type, and ease of use. These collars are effective because your dog associates his own behavior (barking) with the unpleasant correction, and will stop the behavior to avoid the correction.
Spray Collars: The Petsafe Elite Spray Bark Control Collar is a type of battery-operated collar. Rather than using electrical stimulation, this collar delivers a spritz of citronella spray as the unpleasant correction in response to your dog's bark. It also features Perfect Bark® sound and vibration sensors to discriminate each bark from other external noises, to ensure that only your dog's bark causes a correction. Like the electronic bark control collars, these collars are effective because your dog associates his behavior with the unpleasant correction, and will stop his barking in order to avoid the correction.
Other Bark Control Aids: Sound-correction units use loud, high-pitched pulsating tones to distract and startle your dog when he barks. The sound is sensitive to a dog's ears. Automatic units such as the PetSafe® Mini Indoor Bark Control Unit emits an ultrasonic tone when the dog barks that only your dog can hear. For added versatility, the First Alert™ Bark Genie is an Indoor/Outdoor Bark Deterrent that can be placed most anywhere. It emits a safe ultrasonic sound that only dogs can hear and it works on any dog up to 50 ft away from the unit.
Any of these bark control aids can help you control your dog's problematic behavior. But be aware that they are meant as tools to augment an on-going training program based on consistency, praise, and other rewards. There are no substitutes for adequate exercise, plenty of playtime, proper socialization, and lots of love and patience.
To help you decide which bark control aids are right for your dog and your lifestyle, refer to the comparison chart to view the features of each, and identify the tools that contain the features you need to remedy your particular situation.