Barking is part of being a dog. It’s innate to how they communicate and they express themselves. We love our dogs, and it’s important that we hear from them when they have something to say. Maybe they need food or water, maybe they can sense some sort of danger, or maybe they are just trying to get your attention so that you’ll play with them, pet them, or otherwise interact with them to show them you care. Maybe they just want to show you that they care.
There are times though that barking can be inopportune. Maybe you’re trying to calm them down so you can take a cute holiday photo for Instagram, or perhaps you’re trying to have a phone conversation with a relative or worse for business purposes. Whatever the case, there will likely come a time when your dog is expressing themselves vocally and you simply need them to remain quiet for the time being.
If you have the freedom of forethought on your hands, then you can quite often train your dog to understand when it’s OK to bark and when it’s not a good time. This can take from a few weeks to a few months, but it can usually be accomplished successfully with standard dog training tactics. Give them a treat when they respond positively to your command, or perhaps take them out for a run or roll around and play with them so that they know that their behavior is appreciated. It goes without saying that this is a long term approach though, and while it can be quite effective and it is often the best solution, the fact of the matter is that some people simply don’t have the time or the understanding of the training process to make it a reality.
Of course, there is an alternative to try out a barking collar for your dog. While there is some discussion as to whether or bark collars they are humane (the short answer, in my opinion, is that they are as long as they are used properly), there is very little question as to whether or not are an effective solution for getting your dog to stop barking in a pinch. Even still, some owners are hesitant to use bark collars on their dogs. If that’s the case then training is definitely the way to go at the end of the day, but of course, we shouldn’t forget about another effective short term solution that every dog owner can try right now.
Circling back to the beginning of this post, in most situations dogs are barking because they have something to communicate. By simply understanding your dog’s intentions and reacting to them in a way that satisfies their needs, you can very often put them at ease and bring an end to any form of relentless barking. Remember, dogs are living beings just like you and me. They just want to be heard so that they can be comfortable and have a purpose in the world around us.