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5 Non-Collar Based Alternatives to Manage Dog Barking

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Home » Blog » 5 Non-Collar Based Alternatives to Manage Dog Barking

Behavioral Training Techniques

The focus of this type of behavioral training technique is on using positive reinforcement to teach the dog not to bark at a particular time or place. Giving clear and firm verbal commands in conjunction with a treat can be an effective method. For example, if the dog starts to bark, you say “Quiet!” and if it listens to you, offering a treat directly to the animal is a valuable tool over time. This is how the dog learns the relationship between this behavioral training technique and the specific time or place of barking. Of course, as in all types of positive reinforcement, giving the dog the prize should be the essential time when the dog stops, not when it begins to bark again. The training tool could have been to give that treat as a reward each time the usual barking scenario unfolded. Behavioral training techniques that rely on positive reinforcement are very effective.

A schedule of yelling

The method called scheduled yelling revolves around the concept of to specific times when the dog is allowed to bark, and then a clear “Quiet” at other times. One option is to teach the dog to bark once after the command “Speak” or “Speak” at an unusual time. This period should last for a few minutes, sometimes with a reward. The “Quiet” command follows to signal the end of the time when the dog trained under the previous command. In this case, at other times, when the dog starts to bark, it would give the command “Quiet.” The advantage of this behavioral training technique is that yelling is controlled, but it is not a solution to the endless bark. These types of solutions are also effective.

Environmental management

When the dog displays the barking behavior at the right time or place that you want to avoid, you should use the environmental approach to such behavioral training techniques. For example, the dog barks out of the window of the people passing by, and the windows could be covered with a curtain to prevent a clear stimulus from being stored.

Environmental Management

Environmental Management is a preemptive approach to reduce barking by modifying the dog’s immediate environment. For instance, if a dog’s trigger is pedestrians, moving through a living room, then apply some frosted window film to minimize their view. This is an inexpensive option because it will prevent the dog from seeing the pedestrians without necessarily darkening the living room.

Reducing Outdoor Stimuli

In the case of a dog barking at outdoor stimuli, adjust the dog’s layout to prevent it from having access to any external door or outside fence line. For example, if there is a kennel on the outside front door, then moving it to the back door is a simple way to restrain the dog from barking at pedestrians and vehicles on the street.

Soundproofing

This is a good long-term option to stop the dog from barking and is great for urban circumstances, where the dog will almost always remain indoors. For instance, soundproofing can be achieved using some denser and heavier curtains or double pane windows. This will make the house quieter whilst desensitizing the dog from any noises, which may cause it to bark.

Visual Barrier

If soundproofing is not an option and the curtains reduce light whilst keeping the home quiet, use a visual barrier. For instance, line up some tall plants or a freestanding privacy screen, which isolates the outside view from inside the house. The visual barrier is not only practical, but it also serves an aesthetic purpose towards enhancing the layout of your living room.

Anxiety Reduction Strategies

The Anxiety Reduction Strategies are focused on decreasing the level of stress, which often results in excessive barking. A common approach is to create a safe dog space. A safe space can be a specific corner in a home, where the bed or a mat has been placed, and where a dog can often be found resting with the favorite toys. One should choose the location that is not on a high-traffic place in a house and remains calm, create a nice pillow or a comfy resting place for the dog, and equip the area with the toys and other pleasant items.

Consistent Routine

Create a feeding, walks, and playtime routine. Dogs often get nervous and encouraged to bark when they are not sure about when they are going to get food and a chance to go for a walk. Feeding food at the same time later can be especially useful for calming them down. In fact, dogs love having a routine, so one should establish the one that could be relied on.

Calming Supplements and Foods

Incorporate a natural calming supplement or calming food into the dog’s diet. Experts have searched some ingredients that could give calming effects on dog. As the dog is going on their nightly meals, sometimes they can have a calming supplement in order to make them a bit more relaxed at night.

Physical Exercise

Physical exercise is a key to reducing anxiety. Every dog owner knows that physical activity can help burn a dog’s need to bark. Walks and runs, fetch sessions, and various other types of training and playing should be incorporated in dog’s daily routine. The more a dog’s energy is released in physical activity, the less the dog is likely to bark. In one paper, researchers found out that dogs taking longer walks showed way fewer signs of stress than those who experienced no walks at all.

Use of Calming Supplements

Use of such calming supplements as CBD oil, melatonin, and valerian root has been gaining popularity over recent years, particularly in terms of managing anxiety and excessive barking for dogs. The effectiveness of CBD oil has been subject to studies, with research findings reporting a significant decrease in dogs’ anxiety and stress levels and considerable improvement in calm behavior post-regular dosage.

CBD Oil

Many may be aware of CBD oil as a product extracted from hemp, which is used to relieve stress without causing the “highs” associated with cannabis. Dogs may be given a dose of the oil an hour before a prescribed stressor, such as fireworks or a thunderstorm, to ensure it is in a calm state during the event. Advisable dosages may vary, depending on the weight of the animal and the concentration of CBD in the oil. It is essential to consult a specialist or a vet to identify the adequate amount required to achieve the desired results.

Melatonin

Melatonin may serve as another supplement, which can be used to relax dogs. It has been reported to be particularly effective for dogs to adapt to a noisy environment and not undertake stress-related behaviors. It is generally safe for dogs to be used, and it may be administered as a treat an hour before bedtime or an event known to cause stress.

Valerian Root

Valerian root is a herbal supplement added to dogs’ diet to hold calming and sedative effects. It is beneficial for dogs experiencing severe anxiety and can be used to calm a dog down during a particularly stressful period. Typically, valerian root might be added to a dog’s food, in form of a chewable tablet.

Regular Exercise Routines

Regular exercise routines are important in managing a dog’s behavior, and among other things, in reducing the frequency of barking. Structured physical activity uses the energy but also helps to reduce the anxiety and boredom, frequent reasons for barking. For example, including two 30-minute long walks in a dog’s daily schedule seems to drastically lower the chances of the dog barking out of restlessness or agitation.

Structured walks

Walks are not only a great form of physical exercise – if done correctly, they also provide mental stimulation and serve as training time. For example, working on walking calmly without pulling on the leash can reduce the dog’s frustration with their own inability to control every impulse. When done regularly during exercise, it can reduce the tendency to bark at every possible stimulation. Walking the dog on the leash, the trainer should aim at making the dog walk in a straight line next to them rather than follow a zigzag pattern. It means the dog will be put in stressful situations, but these will be shorter in duration and lower in frequency.

Interactive play

Instead of boring repetitive walks, an interactive play, such as throwing a ball or a Frisbee for the dog to catch, can be used to provide both physical and mental exercise. A 20-minute session of fetch will tire a dog out physically and give it a routine not to be anxious about, hence reduce the stress-related barking.

Consistency is the Key

The above examples show that exercise can help in managing the dog’s behavior, and that the key to its effectiveness is consistency. The dogs need to be able to count on a routine, the regular walks, the regular playtimes. This may also help the owner to mask some of their other activities in a way that will be less likely to be met with resentment. For example, a calm morning walk can make the rest of the day feel less overwhelming. An active playtime in the evening can help the dog wear out and sleep through the night.

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