Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Guest Post: How to Stop Barking Dogs with Dog Socialization

This guest post was provided to you by Jennifer. Jennifer is a dog enthusiast who enjoys caring for dogs, especially her own. She loves to talk with fellow dog owners and share tips or advice, while discovering new trends by working with Havahart Wireless, a pet product company.

Is Your Dog Sociable? How to Stop Barking Dogs with Dog Socialization

There is nothing more annoying than a dog that barks incessantly. This cannot only be very irritating and frustrating for dog owners, it can also destroy neighbor relations. While it is unrealistic to want to stop dogs barking completely – for that is how they express themselves – it is possible to both prevent, and stop, nuisance barking in dogs. Follow the advice below to learn how to prevent nuisance barking in dogs, and how to stop barking dogs from barking uncontrollably.

Proper Socialization
The key to preventing bad social behavior in dogs is to properly socialize your dog when it is still a puppy. Puppy socialization and training is essential to set boundaries, rules, and to develop social interactions and social rank within the family hierarchy. During puppy training your dog will learn to respect you as leader, and obey your commands. He will also gain confidence that will stand him in good stead throughout the rest of his life – this will prevent other social problems, such as separation anxiety, chewing and digging, fear and mistrust, and barking for attention or reward. Puppy socialization teaches your puppy social skills, both in the family setting, and when mixing with strangers and other dogs.

Leader of the Pack
First and foremost, your puppy must learn to recognize you as the pack leader, and respect your authority and commands. Proper training is generally achieved through conditioning – usually by providing a reward when commands are obeyed. The essential element is consistency. Your expressions must be consistent with your demands so as not to send out mixed messages, which will only confuse your dog. There are training devices that can be used to stop barking dogs, including bark collars, and electronic anti-bark devices, but ultimately, prevention is better than cure. By giving your puppy a good grounding with proper training and socializing, you will prevent undesirable behavior from developing from the onset, and will own a dog that is a pleasure to have around.

Social Skills
Take your dog out of the yard under the control of a leash so that he gets used to strange smells, and to other dogs. Visit the local park, dog park, or the beach with your dog so that he gets used to mingling with other canines. This will prevent aggressive barking and aggressive behavior towards other dogs developing from a young age.

Provide Companionship
Dogs are sociable pack animals and are generally don't enjoy being left in isolation for lengthy periods. It is important that you provide your dog with human or canine company rather than isolating him to the back yard on his own. If your dog is confined to the back yard on his own it will ultimately result in a bored, lonely, and unhappy dog that will inevitably resort to barking and whining to vent his frustration, or to seek attention. This is unfair and unkind, as you also have responsibilities to ensure that your dog is stimulated, and that his social needs are met.

If you have to leave your dog alone for long periods of time, make sure that he receives adequate attention and companionship when you are home. Try to walk your pooch daily to provide him with both physical and mental stimulation, as he struts down the road sniffing the curb for telltale signs left by the other dogs in the neighborhood as they passed by. Allow your dog to enter the home as a welcome member of the family when you return home from work.

If you want to know how to stop barking dogs, the answer is proper socialization and training, together with love, companionship and stimulation – this will result in a happy, well-balanced dog that will be your loyal companion.

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