25 answers

My Dog Won't Stop Barking

I have a beagle doschaund mix. She is about 3 years old and won't stop barking or jumping when people come to our home. We put her behind the baby gate and she will whine constantly until we let her out. I have several people in my home weekly for my son's therapy and even though she knows them, she is constantly in their face. All she wants to do is play I know, but we can't get any therapy done because of her. When I put her in the back yard, she will bark and whine until she is let in, or she finds a way out of the yard and will run around to the front door and start barking and whining then. With just the family, she is very calm and a great pet until the garbage man comes, or the UPS delivery man, or the mail man, or even a neighbor walking by our front window. Any advice on how to stop the barking and jumping? Please help...she is driving me crazy!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Take a tin can and put coins in it, when the dog barks, shake the can, and it will scare the dog and he will stop
barking.

I would stay FAR from the shock collars as I think they are cruel. I don't agree with any type of pinch collars or choke chains unless ALL other methods have been exhausted. But even then, they are best for leash training, not for behavior training. I agree with watching the dog whisperer and water techniques. I have a Heinz 57 dog that has Beagle and Dachshund in it and he is the same way. I have noticed when I REALLY spend time with him and wear him out, as well as really spend decent money on his food (high energy, high protein) then his behavior is much different. We have treat techniques. He will bark when someone comes by and we will tell him thank you and then tell him it is time to stop. That way he knows that it is okay to be a "guard" dog but at the same time he needs to let mommy decide who is and isn't okay. It is taking a lot of time and patience but we are getting better. Also, use one command. I use no bark for him to know it is time to stop. If I just say no, he doesn't always understand what I am saying no to. The last thing to think about is that if you let him out when she is whining or barking, then you are reinforcing the behavior. It is like jumping. I do not let my dog out of the kennel while he is barking (he is 6 months and still working on the full potty training), but after he stops and sits, then I will let him out and praise him. Then let him outside to potty. It is the same way with whereever the dog is.

More Answers

Hello there K.,

I can't help but notice the frustation in your letter. I am a Veterinary Nurse and I may have some helpful advice for you. Your situation with a pet that seems uncontrolable is common. With your son having special needs and constant therapy I am not sure you will have the time it may take to train your pet. Right now it sounds like your dog is needing attention and alot of it. This is normal for any dog. You have the option of taking her to obediance classes which will help her uncontrolable urges to jump on people and the excited barking. It is very important that your pet becomes socialized to everyone welcomed in your home and other dogs. A way to calm your pet is exersise. Dogs are most content after a good walk or playing ball. Anything that shows her you have an interest in her as well. Remember she is part of the family and form her point of view, she is being excluded from alot of the family's home time. I don't know how old your son is, but it's important she get's to know him. You can make a special time for her and your son to be together. Another issue she could be going through is seperation anxiety and the more you keep her from the family the worse it can be. You will need a professional to evaluate the level of anxiety your pet may have and then they can explain to you what you would need to do. By having a beagle mix, you have a hunting dog. They have alot of energy to burn. This comes back to the exersize issue. She needs plenty of it. If you have others living with you, they can take the time to walk her or play with her if you need to be with your son. The reason it's important to train your pet is boundries. Dogs have a habit of pushing to see what they can get a way with. In the canine world, females are dominate. In a pack you will have a dominate female and male. However, the female is still in charge. Any dog will test this with a family. She sees you as a pack. If you don't take charge, she will. It's important that everyone in your family understands this so she realizes she is not the pack leader, you are. Examples of how you can establish this are, you and your family eats fisrt. Then you feed her. When you are going outside to play, she goes outside last. When you come home, don't greet her until she calms down and greet the rest of your family first. Dogs live better through routine and boundries. I hope I have been of some help. Please get intouch with your veterinarian for further advice and locations of obediance instructers. I don't know you and your family or your sweet dog, so it's important to seek advice from your veterinarian.

Lots of luck,
A. H.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi K..

First of all, the beagle part of your dog makes her very vocal. So what she's doing is what she thinks she should do -- alert the family. Also, the behavior is self-reinforcing, meaning that when she barks at the UPS man, for instance, the UPS man leaves. Same with mailman, garbage man, etc. She doesn't know they would have left anyway -- she thinks she made it happen by barking and therefore protected her family. So she does it more.

I have a german shepherd who is vocal. To curb his barking, I first taught him the word "quiet." If your dog barks, and you say "no," she won't know what not to do. She won't know if no is because of barking or running or whatever. So it's better to tell her something to do instead of something not to do. To teach quiet, I used Bonaca breath spray. When my dog barked, I said "quiet." If he actually stopped, then immediately praised with "good quiet, good quiet!" repeating the desired word. If he didn't, I sprayed Bonaca is his mouth while I said quiet again. It won't hurt them, and if you can't get it exactly in the mouth, that's okay. Just in the general vicinity is fine. Dog should stop barking because of the smell/taste. As soon as she does, ton of praise -- good quiet! good quiet! I used to carry the bonaca in my pocket so I always had it ready.

As far as the therapy session, does your dog know a down-stay? If not, start teaching her down stay behind the baby gate. Build up to a long time gradually. Down-stay for 30 seconds, then once she's good at that, 45. Then a minute, etc, until you get to a half hour or more. My dog down-stayed for an hour while I was on a conference call once. If she whines on the down-stay, correct her with a sharp, "Ah-ah, quiet" and the bonaca. She should learn to down-stay quietly. Of course, as soon as you release her (you need a word like "Free!") it's happy, happy play time and lots and lots of praise.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

My much bigger dog (part cocker, part collie)used to do the same thing. We did two things;
1. We taught her to "hug".
She knows a lot of tricks, and each trick starts with a command to "sit", then when she is sitting pretty we give her the command for whatever trick we want her to do. Whenever she would jump on us, we told her to "sit", then told her to "hug". That is when she is allowed to rise up on her hind legs and lean against us for some petting and attention. It didn't take long before she changed her way of greeting us at the door. Now she runs to us, but instead of jumping, she sits right in front of us waiting for her "hug". If we turn to the side, she will get up and move so she is right in front of us again. LOL ! That part is cute. She will NOT be ignored !
2. For the barking, we just had to start socializing her more. Take her for walks in places where you are sure to meet a lot of people(on a leash so you can control her around strangers).
Bring people into your home more often so she can meet them and get used to people around. This is especially helpful if the people you bring in are informed ahead of time of what you are trying to accomplish and are willing help you toward your training goal.
Our dog sounds vicious when she barks, and tends to frighten people, so it was especially important to talk with people first, and ask them to not show fear (in over 10 years she has never bitten anyone ..... just sounds like she is going to), then to please call her by name and talk sweetly to her.
She never completely gave up barking at visitors (she has too much of a protective instinct in her) but there are a large number of people she is familiar with now, so that when one of them comes to the house she only barks until she knows who it is, then she gets her "hug" and goes away no longer interested.
For newcomers, I explain her temperament before they arrive, and if they don't care to deal with her, we have a large doggie "crate" in another room where she will spend her time during the visit. Surprisingly, most people are happy to help with the initial socialization, and then they enjoy her after that.
I don't know if any of this will help you, but I hope it will.
Best wishes.

1 mom found this helpful

Try getting her that collar that shocks her when she starts to bark. I too sell Mary Kay & it is a grrrreat job. In life we're thrown many curves & it may come in any way...your lifes curves hasn't slowed?stopped you & I commend you for that. Keep the faith...your MK sister!

1 mom found this helpful

Have you considered getting dog training? Suezanne Law owns Sympawtico Dog Training, she is execellent. Check out her website www.sympawtico.com
Her # is ###-###-####

You might try a spike or pinch collar to let her know it is unacceptable to bark constantly. Try visiting a Website called dogproblems.com. He has videos about using pinch collars. If this fails, a last resort might be to have your vet operate on her vocal cords. She will still be able to make noise, but not loudly.
Good luck.
ALS

K., Good Morning! Get a collar for your dog that will shock him a little bit when he barks. He won't be hurt and the barking does stop. Or you could look into obedience training. You want him to bark sometimes but not constantly.

Good Luck K.,
God Bless You and Yours daily
K.

hi K.,

you may be used to your puppy, but it's not fair to anyone who visits you - or your neighbors - to have to deal with that. obedience school is a lot of fun. i really enjoyed the judy strickland school in kirkwood. community colleges and ymcas sometimes offer obedience classes. or, you can order dog training books & videos for free through the library.

another idea might be to have a special treat saved only for when you have visitors. there is a rubber tube-shaped dog toy called a "kong." you can stick peanut butter or a milkbone in there, and maybe he'll be so engrossed in trying to get it out that he'll be quiet for you. pigs' ears are good too :-)

You might check out Sympawtico Dog Training's new program Dogs and Storks... you can read about it here:

http://www.babybumps.net/blog/?p=19

BEst of luck!

Crate Training! I can not recommend it enough. Granted it won't help with the barking or whining, but it will be a safe place for your dog. Ours even lays in there with the door open. It becomes a comfortable place. You'll need to work with the dog to get it used to the crate. We use the command "go home" and ours will go even if he is barking at a visitor. Feed her there and give her treats. Make sure she knows that it needs to be a quite place for her to wait. Don't respond in any way, even to scold when she is barking or whining, just ignore it, shut a door so she's not so loud. She'll learn that you'll only respond when she has been quiet. Good luck. Email me if you need help or more suggestions.

Hi K.,Have you ever heard of a man called ceasar? He is known as the dog whisperer?He is amazing,and specializes in these things.I dont know if he has a website but i would be suprised if he didnt, you could google him . I love animals and i know the beagle breed are a hunting breed and are especially known for barking but are expecially energetic do you take him for walks?Well i hope i was a little helpful, i know how frustrating it must be and i hope you can find a solution.. Good luck!! S.

I have an American Eskimo that was a barker (barked at leaves blowing by)we got her an electric bark coller. I know that some people think they are mean, but one shock with that and the constant barking stopped. You can get training coller that have a remote, that may be what you need. Then when she barks you can give her a correction shock or jumping. I work with someone who broke her dog of jumping on people, doors furniture and everything else with the training coller. PetSafe has a large assortment of training and anti-bark collers. I have the anti-bark coller and electric fence and both have worked very well for our dog. She was only shocked a couple of times, it dosen't take much. Now we can put the coller on her (with dead battieries) if she starts barking to much and she will stop. We hare much happier and so are our neighbors! Crate training is also great, you have somewhere to put when people are. Plus we taught our kids that when Snow in her bed they are to leave her alone. So the dog knows this is her area and she is save there. She loves her crate.

Good luck!

have you thought of one of those shock collars? i hate to suggest it, it sounds so mean, but they are supposed to really work. water misters work with my shih tzu but he's pretty passive. good luck

Dear K.,

You have the problem of the type of dog. These breeds of dogs are known for the noise they make. They are great watch dogs.
Try the door trick. Ask a freind to knock on you door, if dog is quite pet and praise dog. If barks walk away without opening the door. After about a half hour of doing this every 5 minutes most dogs stop barking.
Good luck and enjoy your little boy. The kids grow really fast.

She is protecting the house. My dog does it to, she is shep/lab mix. You can always bring her to dog discipline classes. Do you have a neighbor that could watch her on the days of your sons therapy. Not sure what else to say but its normal for dogs to bark, some bark more than others.

i've never owned a beagle but i have friends that do, and they all bark like crazy. they're hound dogs! she probably is just very friendly and over-exhuberant, wanting to be part of the family and involved in everything you do. i would research the breed, as well as dachsunds, and see where she's coming from. my other suggestion would be dog training! it's definitely worth a shot. i'm sure in most other ways she's a great pet. good luck!

I had a dog before my daughter was born, she was a Rottwiler, and I heard somewhere that a squirt bottle with water works well, get the big kind like from the garden center or a beauty supply where you can adjust the spray to strong. Then every time she barks or jumps you say no in a firm voice and then spray her, if she doesn't listen say no and spray her again. It worked with my dog, and it doesn't hurt them, it just shocks them. I see a lot of mention of Ceaser Milan (the dog whisperer)below. I sometimes order things from or watch QVC, and I just saw a thing saying that he is going to be on QVC. QVC has a 30 day unconditional money back guarantee on all their products, so if you bought a book or video or something from there and it didn't work you could always send it back. Go to QVC.com and search for his name or dog training.

hey K.--The first piece of advice I would give is to watch the Dog Whisperer on friday nights--and sometimes thru the week on the National Geographic Channel. My family has bred, raised and trained dogs for ourselves and others for 40 years. Ceaser Milan (the dog whisperer) is the BEST at telling people how to deal with their dogs--and he has covered every problem you could imagine with so many different breeds!
Second If you cannot watch that show-- i will tell you this about your dog--the beagle in her is a HUNTER--that is what she has been bred to do for eons.since Roman times even. hunters of foxes rabbits and other critters...they are a HIGH energy dog! the weiner dog was ALSO bred for hunting, badgers and rabbits down their long burrows--hence the sausage shaped body! SOOO, the best advice I can give at this moment is --that you HAVE to get that little girl doggy some exercize--every day that you can! She needs to walk/run off some of that excess energy! If you can take her out on a leash with your son in his stroller now that the weather is nice. (this can help YOU TOO) OR do you have a treadmeill at home? they CAN and DO learn to walk the treadmill and usually learn to like it!> Also YOU and your signifigant other are "the leaders of the pack" (AND YOUR SON!) your dog HAS to learn this--you Must be firm--, NOT mean--But firm-and NOT let her get away with bad behavior--even if you feel "bad" for being strict-DON'T!!! She feeds off of YOUR energy--so if you seem like 'the BOSS she will start treating you like it!-- the D_O_G Needs the discipline and structure only you "grown-ups' can provide. You will ALL be happier--and healthier for it! ( The same goes for kids!) AND when she behaves---THEN praise and reward her! NEVER praise-reward-pet and baby a dog that is misbehaving! this only re-enforces the bad stuff.
P.S. I have a Jack-Russell-beagle mix right now--and believe me--I know of what I speak HA! His nose is always to the ground (hunting/tracknig) and he has seemingly boundless energy! Discipline and exercise are the only things that seem to work!------- NOW when she starts the barking etc... you will HAVE to remove her from the room--BECAUSE this is DOMINANT behavior she is displaying. she has to learn that it is not acceptable. If you remove her--form the area she becomes 'second banana' to the humans. and if you have to, go into that other room--and tell her FIRMLY __NO!!" maybe even time after time! You can even poke 2 fingers into her neck--as the mother dog does to discipline her puppies--and explain to the therapist--friends--whoever that your dog is in training... they will all probably appreciate it! I believe that if you stay strong and consistent--your dog will get better and you will all be happier.. Nothing happens instantly--stick with it..GOOD LUCK!

Hi K. I have a 7 year old schnauzer that is a yapper and I have been fighting it forever. My sister just kind of dumb lucked across this but it has worked for all our dogs in the family. A small squirt gun or just a spray bottle with water only has worked great for us. All I have to say now is "Do you want me to get the squirt bottle?" and he quits barking right now. I only had to squirt him a half dozen times and he hates it so much that he quits barking immediately. No harm to him cause it is just plain water and it works great. Sure hope this helps you. I also have a daughter that is severely handicapped with Tuberous Sclerosis. She is now 24 and has lived with me all her life.

Take a tin can and put coins in it, when the dog barks, shake the can, and it will scare the dog and he will stop
barking.

I would stay FAR from the shock collars as I think they are cruel. I don't agree with any type of pinch collars or choke chains unless ALL other methods have been exhausted. But even then, they are best for leash training, not for behavior training. I agree with watching the dog whisperer and water techniques. I have a Heinz 57 dog that has Beagle and Dachshund in it and he is the same way. I have noticed when I REALLY spend time with him and wear him out, as well as really spend decent money on his food (high energy, high protein) then his behavior is much different. We have treat techniques. He will bark when someone comes by and we will tell him thank you and then tell him it is time to stop. That way he knows that it is okay to be a "guard" dog but at the same time he needs to let mommy decide who is and isn't okay. It is taking a lot of time and patience but we are getting better. Also, use one command. I use no bark for him to know it is time to stop. If I just say no, he doesn't always understand what I am saying no to. The last thing to think about is that if you let him out when she is whining or barking, then you are reinforcing the behavior. It is like jumping. I do not let my dog out of the kennel while he is barking (he is 6 months and still working on the full potty training), but after he stops and sits, then I will let him out and praise him. Then let him outside to potty. It is the same way with whereever the dog is.

Hi K.,
We tried the shock collar for our crazy dog and it made her crazier. So, I went back to Petco and got a beeper. It is a high pitched (we can't hear it) beep that is irritating to them. It works so well. Read the directions carefully though. They give great advice on training using it. It has really helped our situation...especially during nap time.

These beepers are hand-held, not collars and they cost so much less than the shock collars.

Good Luck!

Hey there K.!
My sister had the same problem with her dog and they purchased a shock collar for snickers. It comes with this remote and 4 different levels of shocks. I know it sounds terrible but it is effective. By the way, we were all stupid enough to try it on ourselves so they do know how it feels. They only had to use it on snickers twice before she realized that if she jumped up on people that she was going to get a little jolt. (remember Pavlov's Dogs? It just conditioning.) They only put the collar on her when they go on hikes in the mountains just in case she gets daring and decideds she wants to take off. You can purchase the collars at any pet retailer. I've read some of the other responses and though very good and helpful I think in your situation with so much on your plate anyway the collar would be the most reasonable option. Do you really have the time for obedience school? No offense to those who suggested the school. Good luck with the little stinker!

-K.

I had the some problem wtih my boxer. When I would put her outside she would bark. I ended up tossing water on her. Took about 3 times and she stopped.
Cold water seemed to work best.

K.,
If you have the means, I highly recommend doggie daycare. In order to get a dog into a submissive state of mind, they need to be less energetic. They will be more willing to listen and receive praise. I have a 2 year old boxer who we took to training classes that did absolutely nothing for us. We took him to doggie daycare for a day and he came home a completely different dog. Since we've had our daughter, we do not have the means to take him every other day like we used to, but we do make sure we throw the frisbee around for him a few times a day. Putting a dog in the backyard is basically an extension of the house.
Most dogs require about an hour of exercise. My dog still requires more. I know how you feel - it can be very stressful. If you don't have the means for doggie daycare, I recommend you take her for a few long walks throughout the day. Especially if you know people are coming over beforehand.
I am no expert by any means, but I am just letting you know what has worked for us. Good luck!

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