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Old 06-14-2014, 12:17 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Excessive barking

Have been reading up on this issue and am trying to do something about it.

I have a 9 month old GS pup and he barks alot, and his bark is very loud. He had become fixated on a neighbors window and will sit there and bark at it if left to himself.
He has found that squirrels go into trees, now he goes nuts and barks at trees squirrel or not. I have 2 neighbors in close proximity, one he likes and doesn't bark at at all, the other he seems to hate with a passion and the feeling is mutual.
I have a privacy fence up along most of our adjoining fence, but of course he knows when they are there and tends to go ballistic, very aggressive with raised fur and all. He will eventually listen to me and grudgingly stop when I get after him, but 5 minutes later if someone else walks in the yard it starts all over again.
Another factor is they are muslims and tend to despise dogs, I think my dog picks up on this and hence his aggressiveness towards them and his docileness with the other neighbor [who has a beagle on his last legs]. Dogs of course pick up on fear and can basically tell when a person is not a "dog person", and these people are anything but.
They have a young daughter and of course she is highly intimidated by him and has a hard time going to her backyard unless I am there to reign him in. Also doesn't help that she likes to tease him from a distance, barking at him and peeking around corners trying [successfully] to get a rise out of him.

Today she stopped me and asked if she could ask me something, I said sure.
She said "did you know it is illegal to let your dog out at night when people are trying to sleep" ? I said well, he is barely out at night, dogs do bark, and if you guys have a problem, feel free to call the police. She said well, I just don't want to see you get arrested !
Knowing she didn't think up these things herself, I decided it was time to have a convo with her father and cut our dialog short.

I should add that he isn't out much at night, I take him out of course to play with a ball a bit and do his business, and I'm on him quick if he starts barking. He is usually to bed well before midnight, and not out again until 9am or so.
Also, me and the father have had a very good relationship up until now, I even considered him a friend. I built his garage for him and am constantly doing things like letting him use my charger for his cars or air pump for flat tires ect.

Well the convo with the dad was like something out of the twilight zone. He said the barking was indeed driving him nuts, he felt he is going to get ambushed every time he goes in his backyard ect.
I told him I see your points, I am not happy about the barking but he is a pup and will learn not to bark at neighbors soon enough. I said the majority of time I or someone else is out with him and he gets immediately corrected when he starts his aggressiveness.
He said a dog is a dog and will always bark, he said he will never learn, then he proposed a "compromise" .. I said sure, what do you have in mind ? He proposed that I simply get rid of my dog so they can live in perfect peace and quite !
Needless to say this did not sit will with me and I said you can stop right there ,,, But he kept going on and on they he was being driven crazy and the only solution was for my dog to go. I kept trying to impress him that it is an evolving situation with a young puppy that I am working on ,,, Then he said he would "compensate" me if I got rid of him, or at least replace him with a dog which doesn't bark much.

Got pretty testy after that, I said whats the next step, are you going to call the police ? He didn't say anything, and I said ,, You going to toss a poison burger over my fence maybe ? He said oh no, I am a medical professional and wouldn't do that, but I had to put him on notice, I really think he would consider this as an option to stop his self professed torment.
We went back and forth and he kept going back to the premise that the only solution was for my dog to go, I had heard enough and walked away.

So yes I am concerned, I do grant the point that he is a bit yappy and that having to go past my gate with him out there can be annoying to intimidating, especially for the young one.
I got him to the point where he is starting to control his instinct to bark at the adults and older children, at least while I'm there with him ... But he can't control himself with the young ones, no doubt he remembers and resents the teasing and badgering they subject him to.

So I don't know, I'm open to suggestions. Would like to avoid a shock collar. Until I can control him a bit better I'm going to try to make it mandatory that someone from my household be out there with him. He barges through the door himself often, so I'll have to keep the door shut to avoid that ,,, But I'm looking for solutions before this situation spirals. I was highly insulted that he'd have the gull to request that I get rid of my dog so he can have 100% peace and quite, I'm not inclinded to say anything else to this guy after that ,,, But I wanted to control his barking before this and have been trying to do so, even more so now.

My method until now has been to tell him to shut up repeatedly until he listens, perhaps with a smack on the ass if he ignores me. When he does listen and shuts up, I say good boy ect and try to pat him, but he is still so worked up that is is just a hairs trigger away from starting again.

Sorry to ramble, I'm sure this topic has been gone over before, not much in the searching mood right now.
He might be somewhat compulsive, when he barks at trees he leaps as well, same with cars coming down the alley, he just goes nuts.
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Old 06-14-2014, 12:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Sorry, this may not be an answer to your question, but...
I saw a "Cops" episode where someone complained about the neighbors dogs barking at night. The cop wouldn't/couldn't do anything and said "They're dogs, they are going to bark. There's not much you can do about it, other than move out."
Though the law may be different in other areas.

But I would not want my dogs barking either. I try to be considerate of our neighbors. If my dogs bark after dark, I just tell them "No!" and they usually stop. If not, I just bring them inside. Sorry I couldn't help!

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Last edited by HarleyTheGSD; 06-14-2014 at 12:36 AM.
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Old 06-14-2014, 12:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Well, this guy is highly exaggerating.
He is literally not out much at night, certainly not "sleeping hours" after 11 pm or so. When he is, I am with him playing with his ball, yeah he lets out a few barks here and there but I shush him after a few. And this as before the incident today, I am not an irresponsible dog owner. This is my 4th shep, all of them have been house dogs. This guy has got himself into a funk and probably believes his own lies, I could not care any less if he calls the cops, a poison burger is what I'm worried about.
And like I said, I grant his points. He is overly aggressive towards them, and he does have a loud, piercing bark. When he said "a dog is a dog and can never learn and will always bark", I knew I reached a dead end trying to reason with him.
If I was vindictive I'd let him bark up a storm and even encourage it just to spite him, but I'm not. When I tell him to be quiet, I want him to be quiet and I do want him to recognize that he does not have to bark at neighbors, people he sees every day.
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Old 06-14-2014, 11:01 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Get a bark collar and use a low stim. Collar plus your verbal correction can modify the behavior. I like the sportdog 10r.

Also find ways to keep him occupied outside. Bones, toys, etc. make sure to exercise him mentally and physically.
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Old 06-14-2014, 12:34 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Xray View Post
My method until now has been to tell him to shut up repeatedly until he listens, perhaps with a smack on the ass if he ignores me. When he does listen and shuts up, I say good boy ect and try to pat him, but he is still so worked up that is is just a hairs trigger away from starting again.
I was in a similar situation with my dog, so I understand and can sympathize. I think you need to make it clear to your pup that the first time you ask for quiet, you're going to get it. How you do it is up to you, even if it means a long line and reeling him in and crating him. That's what worked for me: having my puppy outside with me and immediately crating him when he continued to bark, and then I went back outside alone. I'd repeat this every 10 minutes (yes, tedious, lol - but effective) until he learned what, "Quiet! Or you're going in your bed!" meant. And preventing the window barking has to happen too, so he learns that this is unacceptable behavior. Good luck - BTDT, lol.
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Old 06-14-2014, 12:41 PM   #6 (permalink)
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He was out of line for suggesting to get rid of your dog but if people are not dog people then they probably don't understand the connection and what a dog means to us.

But in any case, I try to be considerate. It's not always easy to shut them up but then bring him inside if you can't.

Also, if he's aggressive to them then I understand their feelings. It doesn't feel good to have a dog going at you.

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