Dog barking is as natural to dogs as talking is to people. This behavior is their means of communication to their canine kind and to their humans, and it could signify different things, depending on the situation. For example, when they sense imminent danger, they would bark as a way to alert anyone around them of the impending threat. They may also bark when they’re happy and want to spend quality play time with you.
However, what if your dog barks constantly for no apparent reason, disturbing you and everyone at the house… and also potentially annoying neighbors?
Of course, you shouldn’t force your cocker spaniel to not bark at all. Remember, cockers can be notorious barkers. They are some of the most energetic and vocal breeds, but they do have the tendency to bark excessively, especially when they are not properly trained. Here are some tips on stopping excessive barking for your cocker spaniel.
– Remove The Problem
A dog usually barks because something triggered them to do so. If you see them barking because of normal bodily functions like hunger or elimination, address the issue at once. Also, visual triggers might make them bark more, like a stray cat or passersby. Territorial barking may sometimes be too much, so keep his line of sight away from roads or pathways during the day to avoid this. However, if the problem happens to be an intruder he is sensing, turn on lights to deter ill intentions and also stops your dog from barking.
– Keep Him Moveing
When a cocker spaniel is lonely or bored, he might vocalize this by barking a lot to get your attention. Take him for long walks to release all his pent-up energy. Cocker spaniels can be really active and energetic, and can excessively bark when they are too excited. Long walks or even runs helps deplete this energy and is also a good exercise and agility training.
– Teach Signals
Sometimes, dogs bark a lot because they think it is perfectly fine habit if they do not get reprimanded. Prevent them from thinking this is positive behavior by teaching him to respond to a “No” while firmly looking him in the eye. Tell him to Sit and let him calm down. A cocker who cannot follow commands such as “Be Quiet” will also not stop barking even if you warn them, so take the time to train them to respond to your signals.
– Corrective Devices
There are available correction collars in the market that help control excessive barking if all the other methods have failed. This is worn around your cocker’s neck and is activated when your dog barks, spraying a mild but slightly unpleasant (but totally safe) current each time he barks. The only issue is that other dog’s barks might trigger it, too. You can use an alternative spray with water or mix it with lemon juice and spray each time your cocker is barking too much. However, make sure that you can consistently activate this method or it would be ineffective.
Before you employ harsh tactics like punishment, try positivetraining like showing him how to follow commands. With the right attitude and patience, you will be able to curb your cocker’s excessive barking. The trick is to find the cause of the problem and solve it from there. Reward-based methods are known to be more effective, because kindness goes a long way in rearing your pup.