I’m going to a campground for vacation and want to take along my two Yorkies, but they constantly bark. The campground rules state that only quiet pets are welcome. What can I do?
From the Editors of The Dog Daily
Your dog chorus duo sounds rather amusing, but probably not when people are trying to sleep, read or relax nearby. Most dogs bark to signal hunger, boredom, anxiety, aggression, playfulness and other emotions.
You may be unintentionally reinforcing the barking. Sometimes, attention-seeking pets would rather have you come to yell at them to “shut up” than have no attention at all. The solution is to train each of your dogs to be “quiet” on command.
Separate your dogs so that you can work with one at a time. When your dog barks, say “Quiet!” in a firm voice while placing your hand over your dog’s muzzle. When your dog is quiet, offer verbal praise, perhaps in combination with a bit of doggie biscuit. Over time, your dog should come to associate being quiet with something pleasant and will follow your instruction.
If the problem persists, you may have to hire a professional trainer to help you out. Pet stores also sell anti-barking collars that spray a smelly yet nontoxic mist whenever your dog barks. I would use those as a true last resort, however, and rely more on patient training of your bark-happy dogs.