One thing that gets DixieLee in trouble a lot is that she likes to bark.
She isn’t a very big dog but her bark is loud and fierce.
Dogs can’t talk so we communicate in different ways. One of those ways is by barking and we bark for many different reasons.
1. Excitement. When we are playing DixieLee gets really excited. She is a very playful and energetic dog so when we are play fighting she really gets into it. She likes to pretend she is a big brave hunter so she barks her fiercest bark. Mom used to get scared cuz she though DixieLee was hurting me until we ‘splained to her that it was only for fun.
When it gets too much for Mom she starts another game like fetch to distract us which usually stops the barking.
2. Alerts. I’m with DixieLee on this one. It is our job to keep our house and our humans safe. We learned that it is okay for the neighbor’s chickens or the squirrels to come on our yard but we still don’t trust the mail person or the man in the big brown truck. They may bring us stuff now but what if they decide to take some of our stuff away.
Mom explained to us that we don’t need to bark. She taught us that silently watching was just as good as barking. It’s working so far.
3. Attention/Boredom. It may seem like we just eat and sleep all the time but dogs need to be active both mentally and physically. Barking is one way some dogs break up the boredom. It’s like when a human talks to themselves.
Barking is also the way we get your attention. We like it when humans pay attention to us so barking is a way to let you know we are here. Even when you are yelling at us to “shut up!” at least you are paying attention to us.
Mom pays attention when we bark to go outside to pee but she ignores us when we are being brats.
4. Fear. Barking is a good way to make scary things go away. It’s up to our humans to help us understand that they will protect us from all the scary things and we don’t have to bark them away.
5. Breed. Some breeds bark more than others. I almost never bark but DixieLee is part hound and hounds bark. It’s part of who they are.
Excessive barking is very annoying to humans. The first step in helping a dog stop barking is to understand WHY they are barking and work together to fix the problem.
If your human needs help, they could ask you vet or they could find a good trainer like our friend Eric at amazingdograiner.com
Looking forward to some quiet,