Dogs bark for many different reasons. It is most important to understand the reasons behind their barking before trying to calm them down. A dog can bark to solicit play, to get your attention, to complain or to raise the alarm. They also yelp when they’re bored, stressed or lonely. It’s usually easy to differentiate the cause of the barking from the other.
The following are some of the steps to help calm down a barking dog:
Block Your Dog’s vision
One of the best ways to calm a dog’s territorial barking is to prevent him from seeing whatever is inciting the barking, from the outside. You can install a temporary privacy window that can obscure the view, place a film on the window a few inches above the dog’s sight line then gradually lower it with time. The dog will get less interested in staring out of the window, with time.
Keep Your Dog Busy With Toys
Buy toys for your dogs to keep them busy and free from distress. Hard rubber toys that will dispense treats and keep them busy and occupied your dog when they are distressed. This method is the best for dogs that bark to seek attention.
White noise machine
This machine is the best for dog sensitive to noises outside as it will cover incidental noise from the outside, for instance, people passing by or trucks that are doing deliveries.
Give Your Dog Pheromone-based treatment
This is an affordable way that helps calm down dogs who bark for fear or distress. The plug-in diffusers act as the calming chemicals and are given off by female dogs. They can help to soothe dogs that bark due to stress.
Teach Your Dog the Hush Command
When your dog barks at something, put a treat in your hand, put your hand in front of his nose, as you walk with him. When he smells the treat, he stops barking to sniff your hand. When he keeps quiet up and sniffing, say “hush” and throw the treat a few steps away from him. Repeat the procedure till you can say “hush”’ without needing necessarily using hand promptly. Just saying “hush” will make your dog abandon the barking and run to you for his prize for being quiet.
Ignore the barking
When a dog is not raising any vital alarm, but just barking to seek attention, ignore him, and with time, he will understand that nobody pays attention and abandon the strategy. He will eventually stop that even when distressed. A dog barks like a child having a tantrum, when upset or seeking attention.
Give Your Dog Some Exercise
All dogs benefit from both mental and physical exercise. A worked out dog will never pester you for attention. Always take the time to wear out your dog with games of fetch or tugs, activate his brain by introducing mind teasers like hide-and-seek and find the toy. Don’t forget; a tired dog is the best dog!
Reward Your Dog When He Doesn’t Bark
Make a big deal of the situation when your dog does not bark. Give your dog a treat, praise and give him a pat on the back when he looks at you instead of barking, even when his toy rolls away and he wants you to get it for him. He will soon stop barking to get the reward
We all love it when our dogs’ bark, but at times we need to stop it after a few minutes. It could take some time to calm down a barking dog and to train him when to bark and when not to, but consistency and patience will pay. When you follow the above tips carefully, you are going to get excellent results after some time.