Although it can be argued that barking is a natural part of canine communication, nuisance barking can nevertheless be a behavioural issue with serious consequences for both dogs and humans. Often with dogs being surrendered to rescue centres, and owners being served hefty court penalties as a result of what is a very curable problem.
WHY DOGS BARK
You may find it strange to learn that it is actually us humans who are responsible for the nuisance barking we complain about. When living in the wild, dogs almost never bark, except for a brief period at the puppy / juvenile stage of their development. Barking is therefore a learned response, and anything that can be learned can be successfully unlearned and cured using the right pro-active psychological approach. Dogs are social animals so they can become stressed when the family leaves without them and this can be the precursor to your dog forming the habit of barking.
It’s important to understand that when a dog is barking, it is doing so as a result of confusion, stress, separation anxiety or as a means of attention seeking. In essence the dog is trying to express it’s fears. It is our job as good dog owners to teach our dogs that their fears are unfounded. This can be achieved by re-defining the role that the dog sees itself playing in the pack, so that it gains a sense of safety and security. Whatever the reason your dog is barking, it is safe to say, that both dogs, humans and neighbourly relations are far better off when alleviated from the stresses of a barking dog. Barking is an unhealthy occupation for dogs, and is equally unhealthy for us humans. The list below contains the four most common reasons for dogs to bark:
Boredom barking – usually indicated by barking, chewing and digging when left alone
Fear of abandonment barking – identified as barking that commences as or soon after you depart the home
Apprehension barking – the dog has a fear of the unknown or distrust in it’s home environment
Territorial Barking, where the dog postures as the protector, pacing boundaries and sentry points to keep perceived threats at bay
Whatever the reason, a complete cure can always be achieved with great success under our tuition. We will work with you on a one to one basis from the comfort of your own home to re-condition you dog and re-balancing it’s fundamental needs by carefully identifying and eliminating the underlying root cause to the dog’s barking. Yes nuisance barking can be100% resolved using Angel Dog Training’s unique, kind and professional approach with a little bit of commitment and consistency on the part of you as the owner.
A GOOD WATCHDOG
A good watchdog is like a good car alarm. For most of the time, it remains passive and silent and only goes off when there is a real threat to its territory. A good watchdog will only bark when someone is actually attempting to enter your property or when there is real imminent danger such as a house fire or flood etc. Good barking habits can be easily trained into your dog at any age, providing you are clear about what exactly you want your dog to bark at. A good watch dog will raise attention to real danger and then stop immediately on command. If you do want your dog to perform the role of a watch-dog as well as being a companion pet, then with our professional Angel Dog Training system this can be achieved.
A BAD WATCHDOG / NUISANCE BARKER
A nuisance barker on the other hand is a bit like a faulty car alarm, sounding off randomly at the drop of a leaf, or from a change in the breeze. Nuisance barkers will bark incessantly at random non-urgent stimulus and continue barking despite attempts from the humans to ask the dog to stop. Angel Dog Training will work with you to resolve nuisance barking and to teach your dog either not to bark at all, or if required then in what situations it may bark, and most importantly a command structure of when to stop.
5 MAIN TYPES OF BARKING
Calling The Pack / Alarm Barking.This tends to follow a pattern of Rapid strings of 2 to 4 barks with pauses in between. This is the most common form of barking and means the dog has sensed something going on that should be looked into. Pet companion dogs can be taught not to engage in the unnecessary repetitious behaviour of calling the pack as this is stressful for the dog, and indicates confusion as to who is really in charge. This type of barking will invariably escalate into unnecessary nuisance barking which is the scourge of neighbourly relations. Angel Dog Training has the professional expertise to teach you and your dog to immediately cease barking on a single command, and not to bark at all except where there is real present danger
Imminent Danger Alarm Barking tends to follow a pattern of a continuous string of barks in a slow and lower pitch. The dog is sensing an imminent problem such as an intruder being close by. Dog is thinking “Standby to defend this may be an unfriendly visitor!”
Greeting Barking tends to follow a pattern of One or two short sharp barks of high or midrange pitch. This is the most typical greeting sound, and usually replaces the alarm barks when the visitor is recognized as friendly. Many people are greeted in this way when they walk in the door. It really means “Hello there!” and is usually followed with the dog’s typical greeting ritual. A well trained Angel Dog is educated in such a way that it doesn’t need to raise a greeting bark. It will wait patiently for it’s turn to greet the visitor which is far more peaceful and less stressful for everyone concerned.
Separation Anxiety or Loneliness barking follows a pattern of a long string of solitary barks or howls with deliberate pauses between each one. This can indicate loneliness in that the dog is asking for companionship, but more often than not the dog is suffering separation anxiety. Angel Dog Training have an outstanding track record in helping many hundreds of clients to permanently cure their dogs of separation anxiety by identifying the root causes and putting behavioural therapies in place to rebalance the dog and un-learn the dogs habits.
Play Barking & Attention Seeking -A stutter bark, which sounds something like “Harr-ruff”. is usually given together with a play-bow with front legs flat on the ground and rear held high. This can simply mean “Let’s play!” which in the right situation is fine, but in many cases the dogs demands for play can develop into a far more dysfunctional condition called attention seeking barking which indicates a leadership issue. Angel Dog Training will work with you to redefine the relationship between owner and dog to a functional level where attention seeking barking is resolved permanently, except when normal playtime is permitted on the terms of the owner.
CURING NUISANCE BARKING
In order to stop a dog from nuisance barking we first need to visit you and your dog in your home. This allows us to investigate when and why your dog is barking. Once this has been established, in consultation with you, we will then diagnose all of the contributing factors motivating your dogs barking response. Then through a combination of using our unique clear natural communication system, as well as optimising your dogs home environment, we will work with you to create a new understanding between owner and dog.
Your dog will quickly learn that the barking remit is now redundant and no longer required. Your dog will then feel completely safe in the knowledge that it no longer has that stressful job of being on high alert. Simple, clear canine communication is key to our success in facilitating a complete transformation from barking dog to a calm happy dog. With simple consistency, a permanently sustainable result will ensue for the years that follow.