Should I Let My Dog Bark It Out?

Why Barking It Out Doesn't Work

The effectiveness of barking it out is often limited and does not deal with your dog's fear. Instead, there are specific training techniques that you can use to manage your dog's barking.

It’s best to teach an alternative behavior in place of the barking, especially if the behavior is fear-based. Alternative behaviors may include having your dog turn and sit while looking at you or heeling past an oncoming dog. The alternative behavior teaches your dog what to do in this situation and gives her a better option than her habitual barking. Pairing the sight of another dog with rewards, such as play and treats, when she does the wanted behavior also increases your dog’s positive association with other canines and helps her relax in the presence of other dogs. If your dog's behavior is motivated by an underlying fear, it is your job to make sure she is not put in situations where she is uncomfortable. This may mean interacting only with select canine playmates or strictly with human friends. Controlling her environment in this way can help your dog relax and can put an end to the barking. Finally, as the pet parent, it’s important to practice calm behavior yourself, as your anxiety can transfer to your pet.

To give your dog the best help possible, talk with your veterinarian; she can provide behavior help or refer you to a qualified professional who will get your dog started on a training program to best address her underlying fear.


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