U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Dogs
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 07-31-2013, 05:11 AM
 
Location: under the beautiful Carolina blue
16,810 posts, read 25,919,433 times
Reputation: 12753

Advertisements

Our almost 6 month old black lab mix puppy has suddenly found his voice and won't stop barking at everything.

Is this something I can nip in the bud/train out of him? It's really been ridiculous this week. I am trying to figure out if some of this is related to the fact that my DH was away since Friday ... he will be back today so I guess I can test that theory. But that's when it started. Almost like he feels like he's guarding us since DH isn't here.

Any tips or insight would be appreciated. He's been extremely quiet till now. Overall he's a pretty good puppy.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 07-31-2013, 05:32 AM
 
Location: Closer than you think !
445 posts, read 1,391,116 times
Reputation: 340
My neighbors dog has done the same thing... She will bark when I come out my back door making almost no sound at all. She will bark thru the bushes at the neighbors behind us and she can not even see them.. She has a VERY loud bark, I could hear it several houses away one morning when I took my dog for "bike ride".. My neighbor allowed her dog to bark a little as early as 5am .. It only takes a few of those barks to wake me up... I spoke to her and she has done much better in the morning...

My dog only barks when I am slow to finish the ice cream, do not give her "biskee" or someone knocks on the door.. I disconnected the door bell.. she will growl if she hears a cat in the yard. I think the sign of a good dog is that they bark to let you know something is not right..

I have not had to use the bark collar - you may want to look into that, but I would find a way to train her or you will have to listen to that barking every time she even thinks she hears something... Good luck
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 07:27 AM
 
621 posts, read 1,048,685 times
Reputation: 1246
Most puppies go through a fear period around 6 mos old where everything seems to startle them. A big rock that they have walked past a hundred times becomes a dog eating rock and they may shy and bark at it. People they know become scary, noises, new places etc.

What has worked for me and my gang during these times is to be diligent and not allow them to carry on with it. If they shy from a person and bark at them, I will gently force them to go up to that person and have them offer a cookie. They don't have to like them, but they must endure being near them without freaking out. Same with rocks, bikes, noises on and on and on. They must deal with it without going nuts. Calm..be calm and use a calm voice.

Don't feed into it, don't encourage it, don't freak out on them. But do insist he stop the barking and show him it's all good and there is nothing to be goofy about. This fear period can last a couple of weeks, and then just goes away... if you treat it accordingly.

This is a good time to teach him what Quiet, or No Bark means. When he gets barky, have him focus on you, make him do something (Sit, lie down, give a paw) and then give him a little treat. Divert his attention and break his concentration. He will (or should) grow out of it quickly.

Have fun.... be patient, calming thoughts!!!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 07:44 AM
 
10,604 posts, read 14,223,064 times
Reputation: 17203
I would start with exercise to help him get out energy. Long walks twice a day. Ask your vet how long a walk is suitable for his age since I'm not sure about that. My instinct is about a half hour not in killer heat if you live in a warm climate. Maybe more frequently if they are shorter walks due to weather.

He's going to make up things to do and fake "issues" if he's bored and has nothing better to do. Labs are notorious energy machines and don't outgrow "it" till about age four so getting into good healthy enrichment habits now will serve him for his lifetime.

Remember he's a working breed in in another home could be spending the entire day hunting or something and not get tired quickly (in different degrees depending on age - he's still young) !

As was mentioned CALM energy. Just stand in front of him whatever he's barking at and say "shht" in a NORMAL voice to INTERRUPT him and distract him into doing something else. Even if that's giving him a Nyla/Gumabone to chew. My dogs used to chew out their energy on their bones when I walked into the house instead of jumping up all crazy (for example).

When he's doing anything you don't want with excitement, you want to disrupt it but also WAIT for his brain to calm back down. That means just yelling "shut up" and him shutting up for the moment is worse and doesn't do a thing. The brain needs a different CALM point of view and that comes from the pack leader. YOU. Of course we have to be FAIR about it and not always expecting a dog to be "calm" when they aren't given a fair shot at getting good walks and work out their energy. Living in a house is still a big cage and so is a back yard.

The DH? EXACTLY, If it escalated with your DH gone, it's because he sees him as the pack leader and knows that without the pack leader, the pack is not in balance. So you want to work on being a pack leader so he feels secure and not responsible to step up in his absence.

This means YOU dong things like walking, feeding, directing his actions with a calm and reliable energy even when your husband is around. NOT a SOFT energy like always hugging, using sing song voices, treats all the time for no reason, sharing YOUR food, letting HIM boss YOU around like: You moving off your spot on the sofa when he jumps up there. ALL these things matter to a dog's psychological view of his surroundings. By being his "equal" and play partner only (for example) there is no pack leader in his eyes when the REAL leader is gone. Both of you have to be the leader energy. He needs that. Until he can drive or write checks LOL.

The new "fad" in dog people is to claim that a pack mentality is not real and dismiss this dog social "norm" and nothing could be further from the truth. The PACK is EVERYTHING. Whether it be two, three or 23 members. Another reason why it's a disgrace for people to leave one poor dog tied up or sent out into a yard alone all the time. Obviously this doesn't mean normal sunbathing etc where the dog WANTS to do it.

All of this spills over into his entire life. Not being afraid or nervous when the pack is broken up and you guys go out, not being afraid of storms, not being hyper seeing a bird fly overhead and barking (if he's had appropriate exercise), not over reacting when guests come in. This is why people CAN NOT "comfort" their dogs when they think they're "scared" of something. His brain says "OMG I need to be afraid" when they feel that energy. Dogs are about energy not words. If a dog is given the right amount of exercise and enrichment, you'll get BACK what you put out like a mirror.

Exercise first, self discipline second THEN affection in that order make for a happy, secure, confident, well balanced dog.

Last edited by runswithscissors; 07-31-2013 at 08:06 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 08:32 AM
 
3,339 posts, read 7,599,887 times
Reputation: 4251
The no-bark collar works, but it is the easier way out. I would try methods like Dualie suggested first. I have trained our dogs to bark only at appropriate times by using a clicker and a calming "Ssshhh, it's okay, it's okay". Once they are quiet for say, five seconds, they get a little treat and a "Good dog, shhh!" from me. Your calming assurance teaches them more than you might think. We have a 6-month old and a 16-month old, and when we are on our porch and they bark at the neighbors in their own yard next door, I give the "Ssshh" command.

If that doesn't work, a very short timeout in the house works. For the most part, though, they now sit quietly and watch the neighbors -- even the little guy. They want that treat, and they do not want that timeout in the house.

Puppies also bark to communicate, so don't always try to quiet them. Eventually, you will learn the nuances of your dog's voice so you know when the barking is just nuisance and when it really means something.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 10:51 AM
 
Location: Alaska
5,356 posts, read 16,359,934 times
Reputation: 4024
I've used bark collars, but in this instance, I think other methods should be tried first. You may be correct that he is in protective mode. In addition to what has already been mentioned you can try to distract him with a pop can filled with rocks or pennies. Shake it to distract him when he barks. Next on the list would be a spray bottle with water. As mentioned give a quiet command once he stops.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 12:58 PM
 
10,604 posts, read 14,223,064 times
Reputation: 17203
Quote:
Originally Posted by TinaMcG View Post
The no-bark collar works, but it is the easier way out. I would try methods like Dualie suggested first. I have trained our dogs to bark only at appropriate times by using a clicker and a calming "Ssshhh, it's okay, it's okay". Once they are quiet for say, five seconds, they get a little treat and a "Good dog, shhh!" from me. Your calming assurance teaches them more than you might think. We have a 6-month old and a 16-month old, and when we are on our porch and they bark at the neighbors in their own yard next door, I give the "Ssshh" command.

If that doesn't work, a very short timeout in the house works. For the most part, though, they now sit quietly and watch the neighbors -- even the little guy. They want that treat, and they do not want that timeout in the house.

Puppies also bark to communicate, so don't always try to quiet them. Eventually, you will learn the nuances of your dog's voice so you know when the barking is just nuisance and when it really means something.
Sorry I have to disagree. I don't believe in giving food simply for doing the right thing and not barking. And I don't believe a dog understands the difference between the words:

"Ssshhh, it's okay, it's okay".
OR
"Good dog, shhh!"

If he's being a good dog, why say SHHH again??

The right behavior/reaction can be accomplished with exercise, balance, and simple body language with calm assertive energy, IMO. Words are meaningless unless you're trick training and by trick I include "sit, stay, wait" whatever. They can be handy but don't do a thing to balance the brain of instability. Dogs coexist very nicely not using words when left to their own methods and not having humans interfere.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 01:16 PM
 
621 posts, read 1,048,685 times
Reputation: 1246
NO bark collar please on a 6 month old puppy!!!! He needs to learn first... they have their place but not on a baby. Use the methods we have suggested, one or many of them will work. Takes some time, but you will be Oh So Glad down the road if you take the time now.

The exercise suggestion is important!!!!! Wear his little butt out.....tired puppies sleep.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 01:33 PM
 
1,257 posts, read 4,065,773 times
Reputation: 1018
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualie View Post
NO bark collar please on a 6 month old puppy!!!! He needs to learn first... they have their place but not on a baby. Use the methods we have suggested, one or many of them will work. Takes some time, but you will be Oh So Glad down the road if you take the time now.

The exercise suggestion is important!!!!! Wear his little butt out.....tired puppies sleep.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-31-2013, 02:19 PM
 
161 posts, read 135,991 times
Reputation: 322
You can train your pup to bark or "speak" and "quiet" on cue. If you do a search you can find articles and video to show you. Using food in training is a powerful motivator, most dogs love food!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Dogs
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:53 AM.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top