BACKGROUND:
  • How to stop dogs from barking

    If you've decided it's time to stop barking dogs in your home, you will likely already know that there are only so many things you can do about the problem. After all, dogs are born to bark. Regardless of breeding and refinement over the last several millennia, they still have that urgent desire to vocalize their feelings and needs. In fact, there is only one breed of dog - the Basenji - that does not bark at all.

    So, before you can stop barking dogs, you need to understand why they bark and what forms of barking you can control.

    The Causes of Dog Barking

    Dogs bark for any number of reasons. They bark when they are angry. They bark when they are excited. They even bark when they are scared. Here is a rundown of when you might expect your dog to start barking:

    Territorial Barking
    Alarm Barking
    Attention Seeking Barking
    Greeting Barking
    Frustration Barking
    Compulsive Barking
    Injury or Illness Related Barking

    As you can see, barking is a major part of who your dog is. It's impossible to stop barking dogs completely. They're going to want to express themselves at times, regardless of what you do to inhibit their behaviours.

    How to Stop Barking Dogs

    When your dog refuses to stop barking, first determine if the behaviour is warranted. Nine times out of ten, it's excessive and can be controlled. If you decide that your dog's barking can and should be controlled, ask yourself these questions.

    When your dog refuses to stop barking, first determine if the behaviour is warranted. Nine times out of ten, it's excessive and can be controlled. If you decide that your dog's barking can and should be controlled, ask yourself these questions.

    When does the dog bark?
    What is the dog barking at?
    Does the dog have a specific trigger?

    If you determine that your dog is barking because it wants to protect its territory or is simply alarmed by something, you cannot simply yell at your dog to stop. In fact, negative reinforcement for territorial barking can often lead to biting or aggression in other forms. Your dog doesn't understand what you're trying to tell them. They stop the barking, but the territorial issues are still there.

    Instead, you need to create a situation in which your dog will not feel that territorial urge to defend itself. This starts by taking control of your household. Be the alpha leader of the pack and show the dog that you are the one in charge of protecting that space. Secondly, you can simply reduce the dog's ability to see those incursive threats to its territory. Draw your blinds so he cannot see the mailman, get an opaque fence so they cannot see outside the yard, and make sure they don't have open access to the windows at any time.

    Stop Barking Dogs with Anxiety

    If your dog has anxiety issues, the barking is likely a symptom of something much greater. They want to reach you and will continuously bark until you return. Most of the time, this is because you have rewarded them for this behaviour in the past. When you return home and they are excited, you immediately give them attention. Rather than rewarding them in this instance, you should ignore your dog for as long as 10-15 minutes so they stop associating your return with attention.

    Finally, to stop barking dogs, you should teach your dog how to speak and be quiet. By creating a command that allows you to control the behaviour, your dog will learn to control the barking when it is not necessary. A benefit of this is that, if there is an intruder or something you want your dog to bark at, they will still alert you.

    Dog barking does not have to be the bane of your community that it has become. Learn to control it early and you'll never need to worry about the neighbours banging down your door every day when you get home.

  • Dog Separation Anxiety

    One of the most common problems that the average pet owner has is dog separation anxiety. At the low end, anxiety can be annoying, causing your dog to bark when you leave the house. However, if it is allowed to advance, your dog might start destroying your home, making messes, or barking incessantly for hours when you leave.

    One of the most common problems that the average pet owner has is dog separation anxiety. At the low end, anxiety can be annoying, causing your dog to bark when you leave the house. However, if it is allowed to advance, your dog might start destroying your home, making messes, or barking incessantly for hours when you leave.

    The Sources of Dog Separation Anxiety

    Dogs are pack animals. They feel a direct attachment to their masters and when you leave the house, they will grow agitated. However, most of the anxiety they feel is due to the attachment of specific actions you take to your absence. While a dog does not like when you leave, there is no direct reason they should grow so agitated.

    It happens because you give them attention before and after you leave or you go through the same routine every morning. Their behaviours are reinforced on a daily basis and the result is a dog that cannot control his anxious feelings when you leave the house.

    Reducing Dog Separation Anxiety

    There are many ways to reduce the anxiety your dog feels when you leave the house. Here are a few of the easiest methods.

    Change Your Routine - Start by changing your morning routine. If your dog starts acting strange the second your alarm clock goes off, they have tagged that sound to the process of you leaving the house. Get up at different times, get dressed earlier, take your keys down before you leave and wait for a while. Little variations will reduce pre-leaving anxiety.

    Don't Reinforce It - When you pet your dog before you leave or lavish them with attention when you get home, you're only reinforcing the behaviour. The easiest way to reduce dog separation anxiety is to remove the association between you're comings and goings and their attention. Ignore your dog for 10-15 minutes when you get home, don't pet them when you leave and stop giving in when they make sad noises. This can be practiced with crate training or putting them in a separate room in your house then leaving and coming back in intervals.

    Building Up to Longer Times - If your dog grows anxious the second you walk out the door, start working on leaving the house for shorter periods of time. Leave for a few seconds and then come back. Dog separation anxiety can be treated by changing the dog's expectations for how long you'll be gone and when you'll return. If they see you are coming back each time, you can stretch out how long you are able to leave each time.

    You're Not Being Mean

    Many people feel that the solutions to anxiety are cruel to the dog. In reality, you are helping your dog to relax and know that you are not only coming home but that you are in charge of the domain and there is no reason for them to feel that anxiety. Reduced dog separation anxiety is good for their health - both physical and mental.

    If your dog has prolonged, severe anxiety problems, it is important to address it right away. Even if your dog merely gets upset and doesn't destroy anything when you leave, you can greatly reduce their feelings of abandonment if you teach them not to associate your comings and goings with the pack order and their survival.

  • Stop Dog Chasing

    Tired of your dog bolting after anything that moves? It's important to stop dog chasing for a number of reasons, starting with the very real danger to the dog. A moving car, a squirrel, or a cat can all lead a dog to situations that can be very dangerous to their health. Not only that, but if you don't stop your dog from chasing things, it can be very hard to have a nice, calm walk. So, rather than simply keeping them tied up all the time, you should learn to stop dog chasing before it becomes a major issue.

    The Basic Retraining Methods

    If your dog has severe chasing issues, the first thing you should do is some basic retraining. In many cases, if the fixation is not too extreme, the retraining will help to reduce the negative behaviours. The leash should be your best friend in these instances, providing a controlled, easy method to keep your dog safe while you train them.

    Focusing on You - To start with, make sure your dog learns to keep its attention focused on you. This is a big one that many people avoid. You'll need to have established a strong alpha leadership control of the dog to stop dog chasing in this method. Then, when you are walking, make sure your dog is always looking at you before you start moving. Don't allow the dog to walk unless its attention is directly focused on you.

    Leash Training - If your dog likes to pull on the leash and will not focus on you, it may take a bit more time to teach them the right path. To start with, make them sit and wait for you whenever you start moving. If they pull at all, stop and make them sit beside you. Soon, they will associate the sensation of pulling against the leash with stopping.

    Distraction - To stop dog chasing off a leash, you can use a toy to distract the dog. Many times, if your dog is about to get fixated and go after something, you can shift their attention to a toy or other object that they are equally excited about. Throw it out and they will chase after it instead.

    Aversion - You can also have a friend help you out. Have them ride by on a bicycle or jog by -whatever stimulates the dog's desire to chase. To stop dog chasing here, have the friend stop, firmly say "no" and spray them with a water bottle. For many dogs this will teach them that catching the thing they are chasing is NOT a good thing. A note - this does not work for all dogs. Some will just grow angry at the water bottle.

    Avoiding Extreme Measures

    Many people will turn to extreme measures to stop dog chasing - using electric fences, shock collars, or other measures to keep a dog in line. These are not good for a number of reasons. They're inhumane to start with, and they're not always effective. If your dog truly will not stop their chasing behaviour, consider bringing in an expert to help out.

    Remember, if your dog chases animals, cars, or other people, it may just be annoying now, but if they get off their leash, it can be incredibly dangerous for them. Fix the behaviour now and you'll protect them when it happens.

  • Stop Dog Scratching

    There are millions of dog owners out there as we speak eager to learn how to stop dog scratching. Whether from fleas, a food allergy, or a fixation on their skin, a dog that keeps scratching can cause hot spots, infections, and other skin problems that can progress to severe long term problems if you're not careful.

    The Causes of Dog Scratching

    There are multiple reasons a dog might scratch incessantly. Before you can stop dog scratching, you must first identify the root cause.

    Infection - Infections can be caused by bacteria, yeast, or fungi. Look for greasy sores, hairless patches, or red swelling for any of the three.

    Neurogenic - This is a nervous issue that can be caused by excessive licking and chewing. Often, this is caused by a lack of exercise or mental stimulation. It can also be caused by separation anxiety.

    Allergenic - Food allergies, flea allergies, plant and dust allergies, and other allergies can all cause skin problems that lead to severe itching.

    Nutritional - A dog that doesn't get the right nutrients in their diet can get dry skin, developing eczema, sores, or simply bad hair that leads to dryness.

    Environmental - Too much water from swimming, digging, or playing outside can cause scratching as well.

    Parasites - All parasites can cause itching, including ticks, fleas, flies, gnats, and mites. Most medications can stop parasites.

    As you can see, before you can stop dog scratching, you must first identify why the scratching started in the first place.

  • Stop Puppy Chewing

    If you're trying to stop puppy chewing, you should first recognize that chewing is a very natural and expected behaviour in a puppy. They are going to chew on things, either because they are bored or because they are teething. It's not a matter of actually stopping that chewing, but redirecting it. You need to generate enough things for your dog to do that they will not want to chew up your carpet, slippers, or couch cushions.

    Why to Stop Puppy Chewing

    When a puppy is young, many people assume that they can let the dog continue chewing on whatever they want. It's natural, right? Or they do the opposite and yell at their puppy, confusing it and causing other behaviour problems. In reality, your response should be somewhere in the middle, showing the dog that chewing on your things is not okay, but that there are plenty of alternatives.

    How to Stop Puppy Chewing

    When it comes time to stop your puppy's chewing behaviours, there are a few things you can do. To start with, do not scold your dog openly or hit them for any reason. No matter how angry you get, make sure you don't direct it at a puppy. Not only does it confuse them, they likely will never figure out what they did wrong. Instead, consider the following actions.

    Behaviour Adjustment - Instead of simply trying to stop your puppy from chewing on your things, teach it to chew on the right things. When you catch your puppy chewing on a slipper, get the puppy's toy, replace it and then praise the dog when it starts chewing on the new toy. This will teach your puppy that the new item is good and the old one is not.

    Keep Your Puppy Busy - To stop puppy chewing, you need to keep them from getting too bored. Even when not teething, a puppy will chew to keep active. It's like reading a book for them. Avoid this by getting them plenty of exercise and playing when you're home. When you're not home make sure there are stimulating toys that will keep them active.

    Crate Training - If your puppy gets into your things when you're not home, crate train them so they have limited access to the home. You can even keep your puppy in a single room while you're away to limit their access, but the goal here should be the same.

    Aversion Sprays - To stop puppy chewing of things like carpet or couch cushions, which they can actively destroy, use a safe, humane spray like Bitter Apple or Cayenne Pepper that does not taste good to them. They will quickly associate those items with a bad taste that will keep them from chewing there.

    Chewing behaviors in a puppy are completely normal, but it should never be directed to your possessions or your fingers. If it is, you'll need to start shifting it to something different.

    Being Consistent

    If you really want to stop puppy chewing, make sure you are consistent in all of your actions. Don't let your dog chew on a slipper or a sock if you want them to leave your clothing around. Don't let them have a stuffed animal as a toy and then expect them to know which stuffed animals are not okay. As the owner, lay down strict rules and follow them. Your dog will learn quickly enough and the chewing will be far less of a problem.

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    Loem estibulum vel pede at sapien sodales mattis. Quisque pretium, lacus nec iaculis vehicula arcu libero consect etuer massa auctor aliquet mauris ligula id ipsumestibulu pede. Maecenas sit ame

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    Loem estibulum vel pede at sapien sodales mattis. Quisque pretium, lacus nec iaculis vehicula arcu libero consect etuer massa auctor aliquet mauris ligula id ipsumestibulu pede. Maecenas sit ame

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