One of the most important things that a dog owner can do to avoid excessive barking is to reduce the amount of time that their dog is away from them. This is called separation therapy, and it can help your pet understand that you aren’t there to hear every bark. The goal of separation therapy is to eventually teach your dog to be away for longer periods of time without having to correct your dog for barking. In order to do this, the time must be built up gradually. It is best to start with five or fifteen minute intervals and slowly increase the time. If your dog remains quiet during this time, praise him or her. Never wait until he or she starts barking to praise them. The dog will need your recognition that they are doing something appropriate.
Interrupting barking with a quiet cue
Using a quiet cue while you’re away can help stop your dog from barking while you’re away. Dogs bark when they’re excited, and a quiet cue will interrupt the barking cycle and redirect the dog’s attention. However, this method will only work if you practice it in a quiet environment.
Start by letting your dog know that you’re away for a few moments. If the dog begins to bark, you can give it a quiet cue by saying, “Quiet!” or “Too Bad!” Repeat these commands as necessary, and your dog will learn to stop barking on cue.
You can also use a distraction device to control your dog’s barking. A head halter or remote leash works best in this regard. You can pull the leash or head halter to close your dog’s mouth and reward it when it stops barking. When the dog has a quiet period, praise him and reward him with a tasty food treat.
Reducing the intensity of the bark-triggering stimulus
There are several ways to stop your dog from barking while you’re away. One method is to reduce the intensity of the bark-triggering stimulus. Ideally, you should aim to reduce the stimulation to the point where your dog doesn’t feel stressed. For example, if your dog barks when the vacuum cleaner is turned on, try placing the vacuum cleaner in another room. Be sure to keep the door closed. This will prevent Fifi from seeing the vacuum cleaner.
Another way to stop your dog from barking while away is to distract it with food-containing toys. These toys are available at pet stores and allow you to put dog food or treats inside. This will keep him happy and distracted while you’re away.
Canine senility causes excessive barking
Excessive barking can be a sign of a number of medical problems, including canine senility. Like Alzheimer’s disease in humans, canine senility is a cognitive problem that manifests itself as behavioral changes. Dogs who are suffering from this condition often exhibit increased barking in the morning and evening. They may also experience sensory limitations, including partial hearing or vision loss. These conditions cause an increased sense of worry about their environment.
Canine senility or cognitive dysfunction affects a large portion of the senior dog population. Although it is a relatively common problem, it is not widely understood. Veterinary behaviorist Dr. Leticia Fanucchi, director of Veterinary Medicine Behavioral Services at Washington State University’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital, answers some of the common questions about canine dementia and its effects.