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Puppy Obedience Training - Why Puppies Bark And How To Stop It If It Gets Out Of Hand

Feb 9, 2008
In this article, I will talk about how to stop dog's from barking if it get out of hand.

A number of reasons exist in regards to why puppies bark. Your dog barking can warn you if a stranger approaches or there is an intruder trying to break into your home. He may also bark if he is scared of something or in pain. Some of the bad reasons (at least as far as you are probably concerned) include a means to appear intimidating to you or others and sometimes it is a simple matter of garnering attention from you. Whatever your puppy's motives are, barking can be a real pain in the rear. In fact, some owners are reported to the police for disturbing the peace because their dogs are incessant barkers. Luckily for you, there are a few things you can try to train them not to do this unless there is just cause.

The primo way to control all that barking is to teach your dog when to recognize the appropriate times to bark. You have a few options regarding this; however, the tried and true reward/reprimand method works best because it is effective and humane. Some people try and circumvent the training option all together with an electronic collar, known as a bark collar. This collar is worn by your puppy and is activated whenever your puppy starts to bark. It emits a small electrical shock which startles your dog. Eventually, your dog links his barking with pain and the barking halts.

The electronic collar has a few drawbacks though. Some puppies simply don't link the pain caused from the electrical shock with the barking so they continue to do it and just build a tolerance to the shocks he receives from the collar. And dogs with a thick coat may not even feel the shock! There are metal prongs on the back of the collar which must be in contact with the skin in order for the shock to be felt. Furry dogs can't feel them if the prongs cannot reach their skin. Besides, there have been few cases where the electronic collar alone cures the barking problem. It has always been reinforced with some obedience training for optimal results.

The personal opinion of some owners is that the electronic dog collar to control barking is mean and cruel. While it does not really hurt the puppy, some feel that the collar could be demoralizing to them. Therefore, some of them resort to another type of collar which works on the same theory as the electronic version. The citronella collar emits a mist whenever your dog barks. Dogs hate this smell (at least most of them do). Whenever they bark, they will smell this citronella scent. Eventually, they will link the two together and therefore will try and avoid having to smell that odor by not barking. The rate of success is about the same as the electronic collars.

Most vets and dog trainers feel that while these collars are great tools, they are no substitute for a good solid foundation in obedience training. Besides, the training will do more than curb the barking problem, it will also carry over into other aspects of life as well.

The most drastic option to curtail the barking is surgery. Animal surgeons remove a small piece of tissue from the dog's larynx. This method essentially takes away the dog's ability to bark. However, for some dogs, their barking ability does return anyway, rendering the surgery a waste of time and money. Besides, many vets are opposed to this method and many consider it a cruel act.

The bottom line is that obedience training will provide you with the necessary tools you need to curb your dog's barking. With the collars, if your dog learns not to bark, what happens in those situations when it is actually warranted like an intruder coming to your home? You will get no warning. Obedience training will help your pooch protect his family while curbing that barking.
About the Author
Carol Sommers is a professional puppy trainer that has been training puppy's for over 7 years now. She has an award winning course that focuses on puppy house training and puppy obedience training Visit http://www.TotalPuppyTraining.com for more information.
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