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Old 06-19-2009, 10:14 AM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,460 times
Reputation: 186

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A little background: We have a 1.5 yr old male intact GSD, Arya. We have kept him as an inside dog all the time, and he does extremely well inside. DH & I were thinking of giving him access to our backyard during the day when we're gone (we both have 9-5 jobs) and so we got a doggy door which Arya uses quite comfortably. So now he has access to a portion of the house (walkout basement) and the backyard when we're gone during the day.
We ran a few tests before we started leaving him for 8 hrs- we've done shorter grocery trips, half days, etc and he has performed well (no barking save for the occasional at the mailman or trash pickup guys and no destroying of property). Fast forward to one week later. Our neighbors have complained that he has been barking for no reason during the day. We have not seen this behavior but I have no reason to doubt the neighbors.

Now, ideally, DH & I would still like to leave him everyday with access to the backyard. Arya loves to sit in the sun and it just seems unfair that he'll have to spend the day inside. We're looking into getting a citronella bark collar to try on him. Does anyone have any experience using this? How do we get started? Obviously, I would like to use a combination of this collar with positive reinforcement so I will only start using it when we're at home and we can correct his behavior. What are the exact steps to take? Appreciate any advice.
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Old 06-19-2009, 10:43 AM
 
133 posts, read 477,842 times
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We have an intact GSD that we adore. Arent they wonderful?
Anyway, I wanted to tell you that the only thing that will work is the Tritronics bark Limiter. The citronella collar is a joke. Most of the bark collars sold in stores are returned. Look it up on Leerburg.
Good Luck. I know how you feel leaving him and going to work, you want him to enjoy himself ! I am sure with the correct collar you'll be able to leave him with the run of the indoors and outdoors.
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Old 06-19-2009, 10:48 AM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,714 posts, read 10,175,719 times
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I used the citronella bark collar on Jazz and we used it on my parents dog Henry when they were both young dogs. For both of them it only took a couple of times of setting it off to learn not to bark. Eventually they quit wearing it and when they were together at my parents and saw something out front that made them bark all you would have to say was " do you want the collar" and they would get this subdued look on their faces and stop barking

Jazz is a smart girl and she did figure out what vocalizations she could make with the collar on such as quieter barks and wooos and I would find her trying these out then pleased as all punch that she could make them and not have the collar go off.
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Old 06-19-2009, 10:53 AM
 
Location: Texas
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My friend's cairn terrier learned to bark and then turn her head to the side to avoid being sprayed. With the shock collar, she learned how many barks would trigger it.
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,460 times
Reputation: 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by southern by choice View Post
Anyway, I wanted to tell you that the only thing that will work is the Tritronics bark Limiter. The citronella collar is a joke. Most of the bark collars sold in stores are returned. Look it up on Leerburg.
I'd like to give the non-shock options a try first. If the citronella works I will be very happy! If it doesn't I'll seriously have to research my options then.
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,460 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southern by choice View Post
We have an intact GSD that we adore. Arent they wonderful?
Anyway, I wanted to tell you that the only thing that will work is the Tritronics bark Limiter. The citronella collar is a joke. Most of the bark collars sold in stores are returned. Look it up on Leerburg.
Good Luck. I know how you feel leaving him and going to work, you want him to enjoy himself ! I am sure with the correct collar you'll be able to leave him with the run of the indoors and outdoors.
Thank you for your kind words! I would love to leave him with some access to the backyard- he usually just sits there, lazily watching the bees, butterflies and birds. I'm beginning to feel that I'm taking something away from his life by keeping him indoors
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,460 times
Reputation: 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dashdog View Post
I used the citronella bark collar on Jazz and we used it on my parents dog Henry when they were both young dogs. For both of them it only took a couple of times of setting it off to learn not to bark. Eventually they quit wearing it and when they were together at my parents and saw something out front that made them bark all you would have to say was " do you want the collar" and they would get this subdued look on their faces and stop barking
So I'm guessing you were around all the time Jazz was barking to start with? When Arya is with us, he only barks at the doorbell. Did you reward Jazz when she stopped barking? How did you do it- right away after the spray?
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:22 AM
 
133 posts, read 477,842 times
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Believe me, I understand. But it isnt "mean" or as bad as it sounds. It will usually take having it set on the smallest setting, to correct the dog. The reason I dont think the citronella will work on your particular dog is the breed. GSD's figure things out very quickly. He will master that in no time flat and learn how to get around the spray. I know some dogs who would move their necks around to avoid the shock on some models of collars, also....because it only delivered a shock if it was placed JUST SO, and the smart dogs figured it out ......anyway, good luck...alot of us have sturggled with your problem....
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,714 posts, read 10,175,719 times
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No I was not always around Jazz when she had it on as I got it because I work 3 12 hr night shifts and she was barking when I was at home at any little noise she heard so I got the collar and put it on before I left for work . I live in a Condo so I told all my neighbors when I got the new pup and asked them to please let me know if she was barking. No one said a thing and a few months later a neighbor was leaving for work just as I got home and she said " Oh good I want to talk to you about your dog" I of course thought " Oh Oh here it comes" Instead she said" do you take her to work with you or drop her at someone elses house as we never hear her barking" Whew!!!!!!!

The collar worked so well for her that when she started developing aggesssion towards some dogs and decided if she did not want to come she just would not look at me when I called ( if she looked at me she came) I needed to get that recall to 100% so Dr. Melese a Behavioralist told me to try a remote citronella collar and the minute she refused to come let her have a blast...worked like a charm and only took a couple times. Also used it to stop her from barking and being hysterical as she raced around my parents pool trying to pull my young nephews out of it. It took two times and she stopped that behavior and would lay by the pool and keep an eye on the boys. I used it for other issues too and it always worked. Do keep in mind that all dogs are different and Jazz a border collieX cattle dog is a very soft dog and not at all hard headed or stubborn like many herding dogs are. She lives to please me and the words" bad dog" just cause her to melt. If your dog is stubborn it may not work as he may just put up with the spray.
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Old 06-19-2009, 12:11 PM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,460 times
Reputation: 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by southern by choice View Post
Believe me, I understand. But it isnt "mean" or as bad as it sounds. It will usually take having it set on the smallest setting, to correct the dog. The reason I dont think the citronella will work on your particular dog is the breed. GSD's figure things out very quickly. He will master that in no time flat and learn how to get around the spray. I know some dogs who would move their necks around to avoid the shock on some models of collars, also....because it only delivered a shock if it was placed JUST SO, and the smart dogs figured it out ......anyway, good luck...alot of us have sturggled with your problem....
I have heard the same- that the dog could figure out how to avoid the spray. I think I might be able to train him with a combination of positive reinforcement and the spray collar first, just to see if that will fix the problem. He has responded well to treats before
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