Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My 8 month old puppy has started barking at people. It sounds like a warning bark and usually just a few barks sometimes with a low growl. She has started to do it randomly to my husband and other extended family members that she has been around. She is very well socialized and I've really tried for her to only have positive experiences. While barking at both male and female it tends to be more male. I've tried treating her during these times and pull her attention to me. Her barking is at such random times I'm finding it hard to be ready. Recently she has also started barking at me usually when cooking dinner or something other than paying attention to her. This bark is more playful, but can be quite annoying as she doesn't stop. She gets plenty of physical and mental exercise each day. Could it be "I'm bored bark"?

I'm looking for a way to correct her as it seems to be getting worse. She doesn't bark while on walks in the backyard or in her crate. I can't pin point what exactly is bothering her. She is an australian shepherd, very well behaved dog, definitely a one person dog, can be a little timid at times, loves all people and kids.

Help!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
168 Posts
By any chance do you "smother" her?

She seems to be EXTREMELY attached to you.

She'll start to growl at other people [ even if she knows them ] if she feels they are a "threat" to you.

And when you're cooking, she is either excited for the food or she is wanting attention [ as you stated above, she growls/barks at you when you do not give her attention ] or maybe even both.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply. That did cross my mind…
I am the one who mostly takes care of her. Both my husband and I work. I walk her in the morning and we crate her until I get home at 3:00. I usually take her to a park or go play with her when I get home. I do spend a lot of time with her but don't feel I smother her. She follows me around but will sometimes follow my husband. I've seen her outside with my husband working in the yard for a few hours be fine and then out of nowhere start to bark at him with me no where in sight.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
168 Posts
If you are the main care taker/giver, I do feel she may believe [ as funny as it sounds ] that she owns you. [x

If at all possible, maybe have your husband try working with her, feeding her, playing with her, etc.

As well as various other people.

If this is the case and she realizes that your husband [ as well as other various people ] are "in control/the leader", she should stop the barking. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,288 Posts
While barking at both male and female it tends to be more male. I've tried treating her during these times and pull her attention to me. Her barking is at such random times I'm finding it hard to be ready.
Are you sure that you're not actually REINFORCING the barking by administering treats ? Sounds like you are, .... perhaps unknowingly.

Try an NRM for the vocal outbursts, in conjunction with marking and rewarding for the periods of silence, instead. See how that works.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,074 Posts
I am also thinking that if your timing is off you may be rewarding her for barking. I would give her a treat just as she first sees any person " before" she begins to growl or bark. This way she will associate people with good things. If you reward her as or after she barks and growls she is getting the wrong message. :)

I use a clicker for this. I click and treat before the problem begins. Timing is everything in training. :)

My Dobie/Rott has been trained this way ... now Abbylynn just "huffs" under her breath. LOl! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks all for the advice. I have tried to be very careful when I treat. I do a lot of treating before the actual problem happens. When those times come out of the blue and she is barking I usually try to get her attention, which usually stops her barking, and then I treat. I'll make sure to be really careful on my timing.

Will ignoring the barking make it worse?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,074 Posts
You know, going over your post again ... I see that you are getting barked at in the house also. I wonder about this myself. I have the outside thing under control .... but Abbylynn does bark at me when she wants me to take something away from one of the other dogs and give it to her. She also barks when I do not want to play with her and her toys( when I am busy doing something else such as cooking) If I turn my back to ignore her she still does not stop ... I read to do this somewhere. Instead she will take a toy and shove it up the crack of my pants to get my attention. Lol! :) It is comical, ... but not to other people in general. I wish I had a way to curb this myself. What works outside does not seem to work inside. So ....ignoring the barking does not work for me. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,536 Posts
I would try a command like "quiet" after a few barks. With Roonie if we ignore his barking when someone comes home he just barks louder like we didn't hear him. If we say "enough" or "quiet" he knows we heard him and he is ok now that he knows we know that there is someone out there. He still "talks" growling and making those talking sounds dogs do without barking, but its better than a high pitched constant bark.
He also barks at us if he wants a biscuit, we use the same technique and it seems to work for us.

Let me elaborate as I re read this I can see how it really didn't apply to you.

Your dog may just be trying to tell you something, "someones home", "I needs to go outside", "wow thats exciting", "play with me" "That looks tasty, I want some".

I would stick with it the same way though, let your pup know you heard her and then ignore. It may not work for you if your pup is really pushy, but it might.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top