What you can do against barking – advice by a Markham veterinary clinic

By August 15, 2014Uncategorized

Veterinarians in Markham are frequently contacted because of nuisance barking.

Dog behaviours like barking is a natural instinct that dogs exhibit for many reasons. Unfortunately, it also one of the most common complaints of dog owners and their neighbors and veterinarians in Markham are commonly consulted with a barking problem.  In our veterinary practice in Markham we consult with many behaviour cases. Just last week we saw a dog who was barking always in the hallways of the condo building and was deemed aggressive. This dog was to be evicted from his home in Markham.

Barking has many causes:

  • Territorial protection
  • Separation anxiety
  • Excitement
  • Exposure to new or unusual sounds, sights or odors
  • Attempt of getting attention

The question is how do you get your dog to stop barking?

The key to prevent barking is to determine first what causes the barking in your dog. Determine the exact circumstances when your dog is barking and report these as accurately to your veterinarian. For instance a dog may be barking on the leash on a walk, because of territorial aggression, fear, desire to play, or because he is used to be let free after some barking – which would be caused by a training error.

Veterinarians in Markham advise, it is important to properly socialize your puppy to as many new people, animals, situations, traffic, and noises as possible during their socialization period (8-16 weeks of age). Proper crate training will also aid in reducing anxiety when left alone. Barking should only be allowed to alert owners and then be controlled and stopped.

“Announcing when a car stops in the driveway is useful and a better warning system better than any alarm …”, said Dr. Marsig, veterinarian at the Animal Hospital of Unionville.

Unfortunately, if you have an adult dog it’s going to take some behavior training and possibly some training devices to get your dog’s barking under control.

The key to training your dog to stop barking is to reward the behavior that you want (quiet) IMMEDIATELY when it occurs and not to give them any kind of attention when they are barking. Most people unintentionally reward and reinforce their dog’s bad behavior by allowing the dog indoors, feeding, petting, praising, playing, giving a toy or yelling at the dog to quiet down, WHILE the dog is barking. This rewards the barking.

You can teach your dog a “quiet” command by waiting until your dog is barking. Place a tasty food treat by his nose, which will cause most dogs to stop barking and sniff the treat. ONLY AFTER they stop barking immediately say “quiet”, give the dog the treat and praise your dog. Notice: You are rewarding the most recent behaviour, in this case being quiet.

Veterinarians in Markham also recommend some of the anti-barking devices available.

They work well for most dogs. We recommend these products if your dog is barking primarily when you are not at home. These devices ensure immediate and accurate timing by emitting a sound or smell that is unpleasant to the dog. Barker breakers are battery operated devices which you can use inside your house or out in your yard that emit an ultrasonic sound when the dog barks. There are also collars that emit citronella spray or air every time the dog barks. If the underlying cause of the barking is anxiety these products are usually ineffective and the dog will bark until the battery is dead or the citronella can is empty.

If you found this blog informative, please share it with your friends on Facebook.

Sincerely,

Dr. Ernst Marsig, veterinarian in Markham

Practicing Veterinary Medicine in Markham for a Long and Happy Life of ALL Your Pets.

Animal Hospital of Unionville, a veterinary clinic on the north side of  Hwy 7, serving all pets in Markham, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Stouffville, and North York since 1966. We are your family vets for dogs, cats, pocket pets (rabbits, chinchillas, gerbils, mice, rats, hamsters, guinea pigs, skinny pigs, etc.), ferrets, and birds (budgies, cockatiel, parrots, amazon, cockatoo, love birds, conures, African greys, finches, canaries, etc.).

Disclaimer: No part of this website constitutes medical advice. Readers are advised to consult with their veterinarian.

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