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I'm at the end here..... help!

1026 Views 4 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Amaryllis
I feel like giving up. I'm living with my parents while i go through college. Collectively we have 3 dogs. Our oldest dog is 11 now, she's a Great Pyrenees, Chow, German Shepherd mix. She spends a lot of time indoors now because of her age and the roughness of the other dogs. The other two dogs are brother and sister (the male is mine) and are 3 years old and they are Mareema Sheepdog, Shiloh shepherd cross.

Obviously, having dogs around isn't my problem. The problem is the two "puppies" bark a lot, at anything, everything, and nothing. Best fix? Training. Totally makes sense and my dog (Zeus) is undergoing training now to work toward CGC so naturally (especially living in a neighborhood), it would make sense to train them when to bark and when to be quiet.

Except.... I'm the only one willing to do it! I'm a full time college student and i work part time. I'm not home enough to take on the challenge of training 2 dogs not to bark (the oldest dog rarely barks but hasn't had training either). My dad (whos the only other person who might be willing to help...... if it doesn't require much effort) works all day, honestly pretty much 6-7 days a week so hes not home. My mom wants nothing to do with the "puppies" and my sister wants nothing to do with any dogs and is leaving for college in a couple months.

What can i do? We tried a can with coins in it and a little birdhouse shaped high frequency emitter, which didn't phase them at all and it didn't have a big enough range for the yard. My dad has tried collars, he got them without my knowledge and it led to a yelling match where i told him no dog especially mine was going to have one of those. They chewed up the collars anyway (not sure how, they must've used team work or something, and i'm actually glad they chewed them up, and i don't blame them) and the collars didn't really work. My parent's dog is the worst offender, though mine usually joins in.

So.... help?

Should i try and get a better quality high frequency emitter? are they worth the money?

i mean if training's my only solution, has anyone had this problem and what are some tips on approaching my family members?
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You get dogs from a mix where one breed are known to be "barky" and the other breed is bred to guard independently, then you're surprised and annoyed that the dogs let you know when things are happening in their limited area? A squirrel ran up the tree ... a car passed by outside ... a new smell whiffed past ...
How often, and much, are the dogs walked? How do you stimulate their brains?
You didn't train them when they were young or give them a job & you are surprised when a mix of working/guarding breeds finds his own means of work & entertainment? I don't know how to convince your family to get on board but I can tell you hat training is the only option.
You are in a tough spot. I truly hesitate to say this, but it may be that the puppies need a home where they can get more of what they need. It's not to say you won't be a great pet-parent at some point, but can these dogs wait for that? Should they? Perhaps this was not the time to take on these particular dogs. If you can find a home for them, or a no-kill (foster-based is best) shelter that will take them, you might be doing them a favor in the long run. Of course, your first obligation is to make sure they're safe, then happy and healthy. If you're not in a position to do all that, then it's best for the dogs to re-home them where they can be happy.

I sincerely hope the best for you and the puppies!
Well, thanks for not doing the collars. That's a start!

I guess I could complain about dogs left outside and guardian breeds, but it's been said. You know training needs to be done, you're not sure how to do it. I'll just copy and paste from another thread:

I would train a "quiet" command. That's what I did with mine. I would wait until he stopped barking on his own, then say "quiet" and give a treat. (You have to do this immediately upon cessation of barking, so keep treats handy and pay attention.) Eventually, he'll figure out that "quiet" means "stop barking." Then, you want to start giving the command. Reward for any degree of success. One second of not barking gets a treat. Once you can reliably get any pause in barking, start lengthening the time between stopping and treating. Eventually, you should be able to reliably get 5 minutes out of it.

Note: If I told Muggsy to stop barking at the mailman and then a kid on a bike rode by, I'd have to give the command again. Dogs don't read minds.
(I wrote that, so I'm not stealing.)

Here's the problem: the dogs are outside, together, reinforcing each other. I don't know how great my method will work in that situation.

What these dogs need just as much as training is exercise, physical and mental. They need long walks and obedience training and puzzle toys and games of fetch and time with a flirt pole. These kinds of dogs need jobs, if you fail to provide a job, they will provide their own. Barking at the wind is a great job for a dog, you need to do better.
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