Stop barking at the neighbors? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-26-2010, 02:16 PM Thread Starter
Crowned Member
 
Chicagocanine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,510
Question Stop barking at the neighbors?

Bianca constantly barks at my next door neighbors every time she sees them, and I am not sure how to stop it. It is only one couple she barks at, she ignores the neighbors on the other side.
I don't want to stop her barking completely, I don't mind if she barks at strangers, but my neighbors are getting annoying at being barked at every time they enter or leave their house. A few months ago I asked my neighbor if she could come and give Bianca treats so she could get to know her, but Bianca barked at her when she walked up to us, and she declined to try after that.
I think the reason she barks at them and ignores my other neighbors is because of the proximity to our house. The neighbors she barks at, their walkway up to the front door is right near our living room windows and the walkway in their backyard is right next to our fence. Bianca used to live in a rural area so I think she doesn't understand that the property ends so close to the house and so feels the neighbors are trespassing every time they use their walkways. I always tell her to leave it when she barks at the window or in the yard and she always obeys, but the neighbors come and go when I'm asleep so she barks at them then when I can't stop her.
Interestingly enough, my neighbors have had relatives visiting for the past week or so and they are often out in the yard with their kids, and Bianca NEVER barks at the kids even though they are strangers, but will bark when the couple comes outside.

Any ideas, that don't require my neighbors' cooperation?


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jubal/Tesla (Beauceron) 3/14/14
Bianca HIC CGC TT (GSD) 4/24/04-10/23/12
Chicagocanine is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-26-2010, 11:41 PM
New Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 14
Wow, I could use some help with this as well. Our Klarra has a fetish with the neighbor's GSD behind us "Haley". The funny part is that one day I was talking to my neighbor and he handed me his dog to come play with Klarra. She immediately stopped barking. I thought perhaps some play time together would solve the problem but as soon as Haley went home the barking began once again. When I tell her to stop barking it's almost like I don't exist. There are only two things that get her in that state of mind, Rabbits, and Haley. I would like some suggestions as well.
Milo223 is offline  
post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 02:40 PM
Crowned Member
 
Courtney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 6,075
Maybe she didn't bark at the kids because she could hear/see them talking, screaming, running, etc.-it was a constant noise. But with the neighbors she's caught off guard when they are coming and going and she's alert barking.

Do your neighbors work an off shift? I ask because my neighbor works 3rd shift-it took mine sometime to get use to hearing him coming and going and our yards are pretty far apart-but he still heard him and barked. He no longer barks-because he "knows" what's going on. lol

It's interesting that she barked at the neighbor when she approached? There's something that's upsetting her.

I'm also interested in what others have to say. This could be something so apparent, but we are missing it-and maybe even a quick fix.
Courtney is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 02:45 PM
Moderator
 
JakodaCD OA's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Old Lyme, CT USA
Posts: 21,382
I certainly believe dogs can 'sense' things we can't. Maybe your neighbors are giving off bad vibes to bianca, since the woman was reluctant to treat her, and then she barked, so now refuses.

Just throwing this out there, but when bianca is left alone can she still see the neighbors coming and going? Maybe they yelled at her, teased her, did 'whatever' as she barked at them, and well these dogs don't forget a single thing..

Diane
Ozzie vom Kleinen Hain
Danger Danger vom Kleinen Hain aka Masi
Tranquillo's Kizzy
Jakoda's Kholee
"Angel" Jakoda's Bewitchen Sami CD OA OAJ OAC NGC OJC RS-O GS-N JS-O TT HIC CGC
"Angel" Steinwald's Four x Four CGC HIC TT
"Angel" Harmonyhill's Hy Jynx NA NAJ NAC NJC RS-N JS-N HIC
"Angel" Jakoda's Jagged Edge
JakodaCD OA is offline  
post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
Crowned Member
 
Chicagocanine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,510
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakodaCD OA View Post
Just throwing this out there, but when bianca is left alone can she still see the neighbors coming and going? Maybe they yelled at her, teased her, did 'whatever' as she barked at them, and well these dogs don't forget a single thing..
Yes, she can see them through the window when she's in the house, and sometimes she stays out in the yard without me watching her for short periods (she loves to lay on the porch in the sun.)
Actually come to think of it I remember one time I was in the yard (in a part where the neighbors couldn't see me and didn't know I was outside) and I overheard the couple next door in their yard, the husband made some remark about Bianca's barking like "I'd like to see her try something" so that makes me wonder.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jubal/Tesla (Beauceron) 3/14/14
Bianca HIC CGC TT (GSD) 4/24/04-10/23/12
Chicagocanine is offline  
post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 10:28 PM
Crowned Member
 
Stosh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: tyler texas
Posts: 9,615
We only have two neighbors- we live way out in the ginky weeds- and our neighbors on one side could care less about the dogs so they feel the same. The other neighbor is a lovely woman who adores dogs and her husband couldn't wait until I had a dog again because they missed Omy, our last gsd, so much. Well Stosh can not stand the guy! He won't go anywhere near him, puts his fur up and barks when he sees him out in his yard and wouldn't go to him if he had to. The wife on the other hand, Stosh just loves. So I have to go with what he thinks and feels. I don't encourage him to like the guy or explain it to the neighbor. As you say, they sense things we don't and not everybody has the same tastes in people
Stosh is offline  
post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 04:05 AM
Crowned Member
 
3K9Mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 7,575
My guess is that she continues to bark at the adults for the same reason that many dogs bark at the mailman. It works, from her perspective.

She hears them. She barks. They leave. So in her mind, she scared them off. She was successful. Every time she barks and they grow quiet and leave (going into the house or the car or whatever), she is getting reinforced again, building new neural pathways, and getting better at this behavior.

The kids, however, run around and play and play and play. She can't scare them off. She probably tried that barking behavior with them a few times. But it didn't work. So it faded away before it ever became a habit.

Even when the adults aren't scared off at any particular time, if it works for her some of the time, she's going to keep doing it. It's a variable interval of reinforcement -- only the most powerful way to train a dog.

If, when you're not there, they give her any attention at all (perhaps telling her to be quiet), that's even more reinforcing. If either is afraid of her to the point that their cortisol levels rise and change their body chemistry, she may smell that. That's a change in the environment that might by itself not be reinforcing, but along with the other stuff, amps her up.

I think you're going to have a really hard time with this one, but it's doable. I'd keep her in the house when you're not home. The more she practices the behavior, the better she gets at it. We have to do whatever we can to stop the behavior from occurring. When you're home, I'd have her on a long line, call her to me the instant I see/hear the adult neighbors and reinforce heavily with favorite treats or games for come/quiet (which I would train as a single command like "hush") .

And I would train this, at first, with a 100% reinforcement schedule until she KNEW that coming to me would be more reinforcing (EVERY time) than her previous reinforcers...maybe as long as a month or two. Then I'd move a variable interval. But it would be a long time before I faded reinforcers, if ever.

Extinguishing unwanted but highly reinforcing behaviors is difficult. It requires consistency, excellent reinforcers of our own, and attention to detail.

I'm sure you can do it.

Last edited by 3K9Mom; 09-28-2010 at 04:08 AM.
3K9Mom is offline  
post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 04:36 AM
Crowned Member
 
3K9Mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 7,575
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicagocanine View Post
I overheard the couple next door in their yard, the husband made some remark about Bianca's barking like "I'd like to see her try something" so that makes me wonder.
It's just me, but I don't normally assume that my dog's unwanted behavior is the result of the extraneous people around her (unless I have proof of that).

It seems likely that your neighbors have probably told Bianca to be quiet, perhaps even shouting at her over the fence. But it also seems likely, based on what you've said, that Bianca's barking predated your neighbor's getting frustrated.

I'm a dog lover, but if I got barked at every time I went into my yard, I'd get annoyed after a while too. So I wouldn't necessarily read too much into that comment you overheard by your neighbor.

Maybe you could do let your neighbors know that you've started an intensive training program to deal with the barking, and if they hear barking, to please not say anything to Bianca because you're on it and taking care of it.

I've never met these folks of course. But even if Bianca doesn't like these people, who knows why? I had a dog that didn't like really obese men. Short/Tall/Overweight/Skinny men of any race were ok, but not morbidly obese ones. And morbidly obese women were ok. Who knows why? I never figured it out. They just made her really uncomfortable. Other dogs have their own "issues" perhaps based on temperament, perhaps based on a gap in socialization. For example, dogs who aren't raised around smokers or drinkers may have problems with people who smoke or drink a lot. People tend to assume that dogs act weird because humans in their lives have mistreated them, and certainly in some cases with some dogs it's true. But much of the time, it's simply temperament and socialization/training that was inadequate, non existent or had peculiar holes that no one noticed.

There are just a lot of weird reasons that dogs don't like people. Heck, humans are the same way.

That doesn't mean it's the other person's fault though. Bianca MAY be an excellent judge of character. Or she may just not like people who smell like pepperoni pizza and these folks order Domino's four times a week.

That's why I'm kind of a strict behaviorist when it comes to my dogs. I don't care so much WHY as how do I shape/modify the behavior? It keeps us from laying blame on anyone. We just look at the behavior, try to determine how or why it's being reinforced (unreinforced behavior doesn't naturally repeat itself); then we figure out a way to replace the old behavior with a new one.

Last edited by 3K9Mom; 09-28-2010 at 04:41 AM.
3K9Mom is offline  
post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 12:35 PM
Elite Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,008
I've found that if I claim the yard then I control the actions in it. I'm sure I look like a nut but I take the pooper scooper, 1 piece in each hand, and I patrol the fence and never hit the dog but poke and you stay between the fence and the dog, don't let the dog get to the fence. The fence is yours!!! Once the dog gets the idea they learn to listen outside and then teach they can bark once then stop and wait for you to investigate, if it is nothing they must not bark again. Very time consuming and exhausting at first but very worth it
trudy is offline  
post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 03:24 PM Thread Starter
Crowned Member
 
Chicagocanine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,510
I wanted to add, she already does respond promptly to me when I call her back in the house if she's outside barking at the neighbors, and if she is inside and barking/lunging at the window and I tell her 'leave it' she stops barking and comes to me. She is also never outside when no one is home. She doesn't respond as well to my other family members, but I'm trying to train them.

She already listens when I tell her to stop, but I don't want her to start barking at them in the first place, because I can't call her away if I'm not home or asleep or quickly enough if I'm not in the room when she starts barking at the windows... Since she doesn't bark at the neighbors on the other side I'm hoping there's a way I can teach her not to bark at these neighbors either.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jubal/Tesla (Beauceron) 3/14/14
Bianca HIC CGC TT (GSD) 4/24/04-10/23/12
Chicagocanine is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
stop.. Stop... STOP!!! My2shepherds Training Our Puppy (basic) 15 07-25-2014 04:14 PM
Oh no not barking! How to stop barking? mandiah89 Training Our Puppy (basic) 0 08-16-2013 01:08 PM
For those with non-stop barking neighbors Twyla General Information 23 04-24-2012 02:44 PM
Barking barking and more barking... katdog5911 Development & Socialization 2 01-21-2012 09:30 AM
Barking, barking, barking, I can't TAKE it Anymore! Konotashi Chat Room 10 12-06-2010 11:10 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome