Call/Text (973) 442-1111

Training Tips by Rich: Excessive Barking

   Posted on July 1  |   by Rich

Barking Problems? No Problem!

We offer a wide range of bark reduction or elimination options. Most communities have barking or nuisance ordinances that require you to keep your pet’s behavior within reasonable limits…for your neighbors peace and quiet.

Woof. Woof, WOOF! Woof woof woof. Howl!!!!

As a neighbor walks past the house, Fido barks to let them know to KEEP on walking. You ask Fido to stop, but then raise your voice insisting that Fido knock it off…but Fido keeps barking.

And when the innocent passerby is gone, Fido feels successful, maybe even proud.

What was Fido thinking!?
More importantly, how do we stop it?

At Hidden Fence Company, we’d prefer to review basic remedies to barking before using an electronic bark collar. Bark collars can be a quick solution to your barking problem, but they use an unpleasant sensation (a mild shock) to deter the behavior. Before immediately opting for the shock, let’s determine if you actually need a bark collar first.

Identify the Cause of the Barking

It’s important to start with the cause, which is, unfortunately, not always evident. If you can remove the cause of the barking, a bark collar can be avoided.

Watch Fido when the barking occurs for clues as to the cause. Is a neighbor teasing Fido through a fence? Or just getting in the car? Is a blowing leaf too much for Fido? If, within reason, you can alter Fido’s surroundings to avoid contact with the cause(s) the barking, you may easily resolve your issue.

Not that easy?

Maybe the barking is more likely to occur when you are not home. If so, try leaving Fido with great toys. Whatever toys you have, put them away. Try real cow bones, or Kong® toys stuffed with some cheese whiz. Both of these items are probably more interesting than…well…your current toys. Quality, no quantity, counts! Also, always leaving the radio on when you aren’t home can help.

If Fido is barking at or warning people…

This is the kind of behavior that should be reviewed by an experienced trainer or behaviorist. Using a bark collar to “correct” your dog for “defensive” or fear based barking can easily escalate the problem in the long run, reducing confidence and trust in a sensitive dog. Barking at people is usually stress oriented, and bark collars are not the right response to strong stress oriented barking.

One last thing to try, which should be mentioned first.

Try to simply ignore Fido’s barking. If you respond in any way that Fido might like, the behavior will increase. Just like children, sometimes dogs prefer negative attention to no attention.

Assuming you’ve tried and exhausted the best options, we tend to recommend these brands for Bark collars: TriTronics, DogTra. There is a big difference in quality and consistency in these products, and going back many years, these two brands have performed better in our experience.

We do not usually stock or sell these products, because we believe that they should not be a first line of defense against barking.