How To Stop A Dog From Barking?

How To Stop A Dog From Barking?

Author WDF Staff


Unfortunately, dogs cannot speak, although some owners might disagree with us on that. Barking is their way to communicate, and we shouldn’t expect our dog never to bark. Excessive barking can become problematic and quite annoying; for you and your neighbors and family members.

Curbing such behavior can be challenging but also successful. Teaching your dog to stop barking is a process just like anything else. If you follow this guide, you can easily teach your dog not to bark excessively.

Why do dogs bark?

Barking is an effective way for dogs to communicate with owners, family members, and other dogs. There are many reasons a dog barks, and that reasons depend on the situation a dog is in. The most common reasons dogs bark are;

  • Seeking attention - when dogs want something, they might bark (going for a walk, treat, food, playing, etc.)
  • Protection - if something gets in on your dog’s territory, your dog can start barking.
  • Boredom - dogs are social, and if they get bored, they can bark excessively.
  • Playing - dogs can also bark when they get excited or happy.
  • Alarming - unfamiliar object startles your dog, and your dog starts to bark.
  • Separation anxiety - barking can be a sign of stress and anxiety.

small dog barking

How to get a dog to stop barking?

Excessive barking can be “treated,” and you can teach your dog to stop barking, but prepare to invest time and patience. Here are some tips and tricks on how to get your dog to stop barking;

Ignore the barking

This advice is best for dog barkers that are seeking your attention. It is essential that you do not acknowledge their behavior and completely ignore and deny any interaction. This process can be long and will require a lot of patience on your side. Eventually, the dog will have to stop barking, and then you can reward your dog with a treat. Yelling at them to stop barking will only make it worse, and your dog will think you are barking with them.

Remove the trigger

Barking can be triggered by different “triggers.” If your dog is barking at cyclists, joggers, or anybody passing in front of your house, block them from seeing those triggers. If your dog often looks through windows or dors, shut the blinds and prevent them from seeing anything outside the house. If your dog is in the yard and barks, take them in the house to stop barking.

Opposing command

If your dog starts barking when someone is at the door, command them to do something that they do not associate with barking. Tell your dog to lay down or sit; tell them to go to their bed. That action is usually not connected to barking, so your dog will start associating a specific trigger with an activity that does not require them to bark. If someone is at your door, try throwing your dog a treat on their bed and saying the command, “Go to your bed.” Over time, start creating scenarios and reward your dog if they stay in their bed while you open or close doors, let people in, etc.

Specific trigger training

If your dog starts barking because of a specific trigger (for example, cyclists), start training them to get used to that trigger. That way, your dog will get desensitized to that specific trigger. Ask someone for help and introduce your dog to that trigger from a distance. If they don’t bark, reward them with loads of treats. Gradually start bringing that trigger closer and closer. Reward good behavior, and correct bad behavior. This process will take time so make sure not to force your dog if they start being stressed or anxious.

Confinement barking

Some dogs can voice their displeasure when being confined in a crate or a specific room. You must ignore their barking and wait until they get quiet. After your dog stops barking, reward them with loads of treats, so they start associating not-barking with rewards. When they start doing that, you can gradually start prolonging the required quiet time for a treat.

These are the most common reasons dogs bark, and if you try any of these techniques, we are sure you will successfully train your dog to stop barking. If your dog happens to be excessively barking because of separation anxiety, check out this article.

Dogs that have a healthy schedule, trained dogs, properly socialized, and adequately exercised are less likely to start barking for no apparent reason. A tired and fulfilled dog will not get bored and start barking, so if you have an active breed, make sure you provide them plenty of exercises before dealing with the barking problem.

World Dog Finder team