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More barking woes…


rubysmom
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Ruby is almost three now. She’s an awesome dog. Super sweet, smart and loves to play. She’s trained in all kinds of commands and tricks. Genius. 
All of the manners go out the window when:

- the doorbell rings

- a dog is in sight

- a bee, bat, bird, rabbit, fill-in-the-blank-God’s-other-creature is around 

She doesn’t even know we are around… well, that’s what she wants us to think until she stops, looks at us, and continues to ignore us while she barks her face off. Our neighbors have grown weary of this (we do not let her bark incessantly outside or without attempts at correction), and are not very forgiving. One has kindly printed the town ordinance on such topic for our leisurely reading and printed ads for several corrective collars we might consider. 
 

I don’t want to go to puppy jail but I struggle with the idea of a collar. Even a normal collar with a tag on it makes her depressed and she won’t move when she has it on.  I don’t want her to be sad all the time. Also I don’t want her to stop barking all together because we live in an area with some wild animals from which she should be able to defend herself. 
 

suggestions???

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She can and will adapt to a regular collar if she wears it long enough. Put it on  before dinner a couple days and she'll likely be ramming her head into it eventually in an effort to speed up meal service. 

A collar plus a leash plus some work training attention and you'll have some tools to use to redirect her. 

To change a behavior it's also sometimes easier to change the environment in which the behavior occurs. When our dogs have vacated their senses in the yard and not responded to a single (just the one) request to KNOCK IT OFF I wordlessly (and quickly) stroll out — in any weather if need be — and simply pick them up and wordlessly drop them in the house. If they need to be crated they are put, wordlessly, in a crate. If they are barking in the front room with the street view, they are simply relocated to another room. I'm not going to argue with them, nor plead.

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I had the same problem with Ruffy when he was three and we were the targets of annoyed stares from any number of folks within earshot. It seemed to take forever, yet eventually, he outgrew it, but other dogs might not.  (I can't recall the time frame). Ruby sounds very trainable so perhaps, with patience, persistence and repetition she might improve. For sure, you don't want her to go to "puppy jail", but puppy school (or a one-on-one trainer) might  work for her.

Also, dogs have much more sensitive hearing than we humans do. If her collar is like many others with ID's and other metal tags that jangle and clang against each other and her food/water bowls, it might explain her sadness or dislike of the collar.  Others on this site have recommended short circuiting barking with a firm "no!" while shaking a can of coins, or tossing a soft baseball cap in the dog's direction.

Wishing you and Ruby a Happy (and quiet) Thanksgiving. Good luck!

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FEAR THE CAIRN!

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 Barking is a part of a cairn's inheritance. When they were used for their original purpose to chase out animals from dens their barks signalled where they were underground.

Barking may not be eliminated entirely but it can be controlled. Suggestions above are excellent as I found with my barky boy.

I'd say learning to walk on collar and leash important for some control. No need for tags etc Attach info to a metal tag the shape of the collar. Collar can be light but strong. 

Start like brad suggests. Later attach leash and let Ruby drag it around for a while in an enclosed area where you are. Then gradually pick it up and hold for minute and progress from there. Praise and reward whenever you can. 

Remember Sanfords advice patience, persistance, and repetition plus know that it may take a LONG time to modify this behavior. 

Ruby sounds like a typical smart fun cairn. Good luck with her!

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I use bribery….it works every time. Nothing like a piece of their favourite treat to have instant obedience. I know , I know it’s like awarding them for bad behaviour…not sure who is the winner in this game, Sam who gets what he wants or me for a peaceful afternoon.😇

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Until one has loved an animal, a part of  one's soul remains unawakened.  - Anatole France

Adventures with Sam &Rosie

 

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you won't go to puppy jail. in many living circumstances (perhaps most), barking can become a serious issue that can cost a dog its whole world, and in the long run perhaps its life. in that perspective a collar is a small price to pay, for everybody, including the dog. there are a variety of collars and there is no reason to advance to anything that is in any way inhumane. i tried a citronella collar on my cairn with no discernible effect. in more modern times, i have used a vibrating collar on a maniacally barking dog with very surprisingly good effect. he simply stops barking, looks puzzled, and creeps off to a nap zone. i read long ago in a dog manual that being able to surprise a dog is often essential--much more important than begin able to intimidate or punish. of course being able to surprise (and puzzle) depends on not overusing it, so as soon as he becomes reliable the collar comes off. when he starts forgetting his manners, it goes back on. this dog is half cairn, and i cannot know whether the cairn part is responding to this intervention. in my experience, cairns are rather hard to surprise, they are usually so far ahead. but i am pleased with the vibrating  solution. there is no pain at all, it has the desired effect.

that said, I think Sanford's comments are worth meditating on. habits can be outgrown, and it is certainly true that many aggravating phenomena in a dog's environment are things we might not notice on our own. 

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I have noticed lately, in my own attempts to stop the barking here that has increased with covid, that barking always seems to happen when I am least able to give it my full attention: when folks are at the door, whether guests, delivery people, mail carriers or the inevitable political/religious/sales folks that show up regularly in the city. It's hard to try to talk to someone at the door while corraling two frenzied terriers circling my feet. Even worse when I am on the phone.

For these types of bark fests, I am trying to be more aware, and to control action before the motivating activity begins. Often, I am controlling more of what irritates the dogs than the dogs themselves. I have a sign up asking folks not to ring the doorbell, and to knock instead.  A sign asking folks to leave packages on the bench on the front porch. And a sign saying we don't need religion, politics or magazines...(I have had folks ring anyway and tell me others have "made an exception for their cause...and they thought I might as well" NO) The dogs will bark even if they just see someone up on the porch, but it is less frenetic. If a friend will be visiting, I am on the watch and the dogs are gated into the kitchen.

Oban still barks loudly and consistently when he needs to go out...I guess I am okay with that.  Both bark as though the world is ending when they see a squirrel out the window.  

I have tried yelling, tossing caps, shaking cans of coins, canned air (sometimes this works...), and almost everything else suggested here.  I bought one of those vibrating collars. Tried to slow them down, made them sit and wait if I could. Bribed with treats (not always within reach when I need them most). They still bark...but probably less. And if I don't stay on them, it picks up again to unacceptable levels.  

I guess I just figure they are terriers, I own my own home and can set the house rules, and I live on a corner (fewer neighbors to bother) in a very dog--friendly neighborhood.  They are not as bad as I know they have been.  They do offer a sense of security -- they will alert me to anything out of the ordinary, however trivial that is. There are other barkers in the neighborhood as well.  They don't usually bark at night...

I don't think, as I reach the age where folks sometimes move into senior communities, that I would be welcome in one. Anyway I do hope to spend the rest of my life here...in the company of dogs.

I write all this to demonstrate how much I have arranged my life and my home around my dogs, even though together we have developed some bad habits. They bark.  I let them. I can say I think every day that it is worth it. They have been the best possible company, they make me laugh, they get me outside and moving, they cuddle more closely than my husband on cold winter nights.  

So, in context, barking? A small problem...not a deal breaker. Owning terriers has been a life choice, and I am dealing with the consequences.  But I am pleased with the choice.  

 

 

 

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Well said Kathryn. If I had wanted a non barking pet I would have gotten a rabbit. 

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Until one has loved an animal, a part of  one's soul remains unawakened.  - Anatole France

Adventures with Sam &Rosie

 

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wow, Kathryn has gone the heroic mile and more. my cairns and paracairns bark, and ii'm not surprised that they cannot be deterred. fortunately some of us live in circumstances where is it annoying and nerve-wracking but not harmful. others live at least temporarily in circumstances where it can lead to real hazards. i guess we just have to keep trying. 

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PK - I think I shared my story more to demonstrate just how much I have adjusted my life to fit within my dogs' habits than they have adjusted to accommodate mine but I do understand that both luck and privilege have afforded me the opportunity to do so. 

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We live in the country with lots of wildlife around, but I’m facing my first true barking problem. I’ve learned to take the girls seriously because recently they’ve spotted bobcats and deer that don’t belong inside our deer fence. Lately, though, the frenzied barking has really gotten out of hand because the turkey neighbors (the feathered ones) have been promenading right outside the dog pen and the windows that are the dogs’ favorite lookout.
 

Aila does seem to be adjusting, and now mostly whines when she sees them. Unfortunately Birdie carries on and is making me nuts. Lately we feel like we’re having some success when we go to her and acknowledge that we see the birds and talk quietly. She is deaf to both scolding and the offer of cookies. Thanks for the other good suggestions. I think I’ll do more crating when she gets carried away. I would get a vibrating collar, but she’s still being shown and we are keeping a collar off when she’s at home. Any ideas are welcome. 
 

 

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ha that reminds me of my first cairn, who would bark furiously and unrelentingly in the middle of the night of something (usually deer) walked past the house. i finally discovered that the only "cure" was walk with him to each window in the house (he was too short to see out), and i would have to report in the appropriate voice that all was well, then on to the next window, and so on. that seemed to do it. it wasn't the greatest to have to wake up in the middle of the night, but it was nice to have a solution. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 11/21/2022 at 1:05 PM, rubysmom said:

Ruby is almost three now. She’s an awesome dog. Super sweet, smart and loves to play. She’s trained in all kinds of commands and tricks. Genius. 
All of the manners go out the window when:

- the doorbell rings

- a dog is in sight

- a bee, bat, bird, rabbit, fill-in-the-blank-God’s-other-creature is around 

She doesn’t even know we are around… well, that’s what she wants us to think until she stops, looks at us, and continues to ignore us while she barks her face off. Our neighbors have grown weary of this (we do not let her bark incessantly outside or without attempts at correction), and are not very forgiving. One has kindly printed the town ordinance on such topic for our leisurely reading and printed ads for several corrective collars we might consider. 
 

I don’t want to go to puppy jail but I struggle with the idea of a collar. Even a normal collar with a tag on it makes her depressed and she won’t move when she has it on.  I don’t want her to be sad all the time. Also I don’t want her to stop barking all together because we live in an area with some wild animals from which she should be able to defend herself. 
 

suggestions???

I feel your pain!  Our neighbors dog is a barker and we do not appreciate it.  Our first female  Carin was not a barker however our 18 month old male is very alpha.  i bought a collar.  It’s has a vibration and a shock.  I have felt the vibration on my wrist and its really just a buzz.  These little terriers are so smart that they will get it fast.  We are on week 2 with the collar and I have to say it is working.  Get the two pack, it helps to have the collar charged up and ready to go so you are consistent .  If she sees a wild animal she will bark!  Don’t let that little ball of beautiful fluff and personality trick you.   Good luck!

B2844E40-B1A1-4A5E-A82F-0653926E003F.jpeg

 

 

 

Edited by dee glen
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Yes… super helpful. We are going to give the collar a try… I’m nervous but agree. The dog is smart and currently she’s winning!

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