Although a puppy’s consistent barking can be annoying, it’s just as natural to him as breathing is. He uses barking to communicate his needs such as being scared, wanting attention, warning you of a visitor or wanting to play. Even though braking is normal, there are ways to limit your pup’s vocals so that he doesn’t become excessively drawn to barking for every need. Remember that some breeds of dogs are more prone to barking than others. The individual personality of your pup will also determine if he’s a barker or not.
One of the most effective strategies for controlling barking is not to react. Otherwise, when your puppy sees that you immediately respond to her barking, she’ll continue to do it. If you ignore her for a while and then give in, that will teach her that persistent barking is what gains your attention. And if you tend to yell at your puppy when she does bark, she’ll think that you’re barking along and joining in the fun.
Ignoring your pup completely is hard to do, especially when he needs something and deserves to be heard. Try using a simple command each time your dog barks such as “Quiet”, “Enough” or “No Bark”. Say it firmly and make sure you are consistent each time. When your pup does quiet down, reward him with a treat and praise. When your puppy sees which behaviors are being noticed, he’ll eventually learn that persistent barking isn’t the best way to get your attention.
Remember that your puppy won’t learn to control her barking overnight, which is why it can be helpful to set up training scenarios. For example, have a friend or family member ring the doorbell for a surprise visit. When your dog barks, see who’s at the door and then say the command of “Quiet”. When your pup quiets down, reward her with a treat.
Controlling barking isn’t always easy. If this is the case with your pup, keep him indoors, as leaving him outside will make him more prone to nuisance barking. Give him adequate play time and stimulation, and if he starts barking while playing, take a few minutes to calm him back down and then try playing again. Make sure that there isn’t a particular factor that may be causing the dog to bark such as kids teasing him or a bird’s nest outside. If all else fails, behavioral training can work wonders and will train your dog to lessen his barking in methods that fit with his personality.