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Discussion Starter #1
2yr old, very social, loves people.

When I am outside with him, Magnus never barks at the neighbors. When I am inside, if he sees the neighbors he will bark constantly. They are getting angry, have called the police 2x, and I've had to appear in court and pay fines.

I have tried correcting this behavior by going outside and immediately ordering him to stop. He does stop barking, but when I go inside 5min later he will begin again. I am assuming he wants to alert me to 'a threat'.

This is a major problem. I am considering an ultrasonic anti-bark device such as these

http://www.amazon.com/Lentek-Super-Bark-Free/dp/B0002Q89O6

http://www.amazon.com/Lentek-Super-Bark-Free-PRO/dp/B000F78G0O

Please help, I don't want to get a shock collar.

Here is the offender



 

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He's lonely! Of course he'll bark, he's bored and wants to be with you. He stops when you come outside because he got what he wanted- YOU! Then he starts again because you leave and he wants you back.

Take him inside, exercise him, train him, just be with him and do something with him. He looks beautiful. GSDs are NOT good outside dogs- some are okay outside but these dogs are usually worked to pieces so they're too happy and tired to care. Take him in and play with him!
 

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I forgot to add that he has a door and can go in and out as he wishes. He loves it outside. I'll be inside and he'll decide to go out on his own.
 

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In that case, he likes to bark and likes reminding the neighbors to keep away from his territory. You're the boss, control access to the door. Your dog cannot handle the responsibility of being outside on his own and follow the rules (or he was never taught the rules), but the point remains the same- either keep him inside when you cannot be out with him or spend time with him outside exercising and training.

A longer term solution would be to plant some very, very fast growing hedges that will eventually prevent him from seeing the neighbors, hopefully cutting down on the barking; out of sight, out of mind!

Welcome to the forum, btw! Weekends (especially holidays) can be slow around here, so just sit tight and I'm sure you'll have a ton more responses.
 

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It sounds to me like territorial barking, and the link you posted for the anti-bark collar does mention that this kind of anti-bark collar does not work so well for territorial barking.

The good news is, that he stops barking when you are around. That means that he sees you as a leader, and defers barking decisions and territorial defense decisions when you are there to you. Good work! Well done!

The bad news is, that when you are not around (and it sounds like it is most of the time), then he feels obligated to take on the mantle of defending his territory, and thus bark at potential intruders. Very normal behaviour.

Is he tied outside? This causes a ton of behaviour problems, including boredom and frustration, all contributing to the non-stop barking.

If I were your neighbour, I'd be upset also. This is not something to take lightly. Diana in her post above gave good advice: make this gorgeous boy a house dog! The only time he gets to go out, is when YOU are out with him. More excercise and interaction will tire him out and take his mind off negative behaviour. I'm in the country on acreage, and I don't allow constant barking behaviour to develop by not allowing my dog outside on her own. If she goes out, I go out. Problem solved, problem never developed.

Having a dog that barks constantly is just obnoxious, rude, and disdainful of your neighbours.

As far as a bark collar, more people will tend to go towards ultrasonic and citronella-spray type collars, because they do not like the idea of using a shock collar. From past posts on this forums, these don't seem to work very well. Some people have tried shock collars, and they worked like a charm. The dogs only needed to bark once or twice to figure out that this is not a good idea! I have a friend who uses them on her GSDs, and contrary to what might be expected, it does not stress the dogs to have them on. On the contrary, it seems to calm them. Uncontrolled barking can become ingrained behaviour, and they can feed off their own barking noise and excalate it into a barking frenzy. By controlling their barking with shock-type barking collars, they remain calm, and seem relieved that the responsibility of audibly defending their territory has been taken away from them.
 

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I would bring him in and close the dog door until you fix this problem. I cannot believe the neighbors have had to call the cops twice!
I wish I had the nerve to do it to our neighbor. There dog is obnoxious and nonstop barker when outside. It is effecting my boxer who NEVER used to bark. I would hate this behavior to go on. My only salvation is they do not let their dog out much.
 

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Also, didn't see your second post: Agreed with Diana: Control acess to the dog door. Not up to him to decide who gets barked at, and when. As his leader, controling his movements (comings and goings), barking and defending territory is up to YOU!!!!
 

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Another vote for keeping the dog in. My GSD's have been the best house dogs. If you are concerned about housebreaking, then kennel train him. Really you may be suprised at having a calmer dog. He is just telling everybody to keep back. If he is in, he will not have to worry about it.
 

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He's a very handsome boy! I would bring him in too. It's been my experience that they don't like being tied - all my dogs would bark constantly if tied and left alone.

Oh and a gentle reminder, please don't tie him out using a choke collar - if he gets it caught on something, he could strangle himself.
 

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Thanks everyone for the feedback. But I think it's cruel to consider a 2yr old 110lb German Shep a "house dog".

He has been 100% housebroken since 7mon old. He does not ever chew or touch anything inside that is not his.

Magnus is inside when I'm away M-F from 8am to 6pm and not permitted outside. When I get home and on the weekends I want him to enjoy the yard, running around, playing with toys, etc.

Magnus has a large fenced in yard. He likes to go outside through his doggie door, explore all the smells, and lie out in the grass in the sun. And I never ever tie him up. Access to his door is controlled by me. And I never force him outside, nor do I ever lock him outside.

Other than keeping him inside, or supervising him when he's outdoors, I just can't seem to find a way to stop him from barking at the neighbors.

[yes he is a good looking boy, he gets SO many compliments when I take him to NYC
]
 

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My gsd, Basu, was like this. When he started barking I would just bring him in. He was actually scaring people walking by with his barking! When I moved to Buffalo the new house had a 6 foot privacy fence. That solved the problem because the other house had a chain link fence and we were on a corner lot and he could see everything. I tried a bark collar and he didn't care; he thought he was doing his job.

I also like my dogs to have access to the outside; Rafi and Chama are sitting out there right now. But if they are being a nuisance then I bring them in and restrict their access. Since I walk them a minimum of an hour a day and spend an additional hour outside playing with them I don't worry that they're not getting enough outside time.
 

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pjdelsh007
Quote:Thanks everyone for the feedback. But I think it's cruel to consider a 2yr old 110lb German Shep a "house dog".
That cracks me up!


I have 2 GSD's and they are both housedogs! Poor things, this is what I do with these 'abused' babies...... (instead of having them in the yard barking at the neighbors)









This is at a pet Expo with the PA Dog Law guy ....






It's my job to exercise and keep my dog entertained. Otherwise they also will find fun stuff on their own that would annoy my neighbors. When they are quiet, they are allowed in the yard. If they bark, they come in.

Frankly, because I am so much fun and the center of my dog's lives, they tend to NOT stay outside. They go out, poop/pee and then scratch to come in. Cause I may be eating a treat, or have some tricks for them, or a kong with treats, or may be going out for a walk/hike, or ready to run and play in the house or or or or.

So the best place in the world is with me. I wouldn't have it any other way (and my neighbors all love me!
).
 

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Sorry about the choker thing - it's a pet peive - from the picture it looks like he's on a tie out.

Originally Posted By: pjdelsh007Other than keeping him inside, or supervising him when he's outdoors, I just can't seem to find a way to stop him from barking at the neighbors.
When you're inside, keep an ear on him and when he starts nuisance barking, call him inside for time out. 'No barking, go take time out inside' or whatever you want to say to be consistent. After 15 minutes or so, let him back out to try again.

He's just hasn't figured out he can't sit outside talking - he will get it as long you keep repeating that he can't be outside barking for no reason. If the neighbors hear you scolding him and trying to get his barking under control, they might give you some slack and not call the police/animal control.

My girl is a barker. Every spring we go through a few days of NO BARKING - Time out! She gets it again after a few days...
 

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Quote:But I think it's cruel to consider a 2yr old 110lb German Shep a "house dog".
The founder of this breed actually knew it was detrimental to not work the dog and not allow it to live with the family. It's cruel to NOT consider *any* GSD a house dog! They were bred specifically to be the best jack-of-all-trades that could also be the family housedog. Keeping this in mind, it is very detrimental to keep a GSD and let it be outside and do mindless stuff. The typical GSD is not a dog to just have around the house, it is a dog that needs exercise, training, stimulation, all of this as quality time with its owner. In fact, if you gave a GSD a choice between a 1 bedroom apartment but always with its owner and five acres of land but rarely with its owner, guess what it'll choose- whatever option allows it to be with its owner!

Quote:When I get home and on the weekends I want him to enjoy the yard, running around, playing with toys, etc.
Spend this time WITH HIM. You may think he likes to be out there on his own but if he's barking either he's not enjoying it much (which is even more true seeing as he never does it when you're outside) or he found an inappropriate way to have fun. A bark collar will solve the symptom but it does not solve the problem of having a bored dog. If, after a good jog, fun obedience training, and a game of tug in the yard he still barks at neighbors, then yes, a bark collar is fine. But if you do not change how you interact with him and toss a bark collar on him, he'll find some other thing to do that you may not like such as digging. It's very easy to Band-Aid the symptom but that never solves the problem.
 

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DianaM said:
Quote:Spend this time WITH HIM. You may think he likes to be out there on his own but if he's barking either he's not enjoying it much (which is even more true seeing as he never does it when you're outside) or he found an inappropriate way to have fun. A bark collar will solve the symptom but it does not solve the problem of having a bored dog. If, after a good jog, fun obedience training, and a game of tug in the yard he still barks at neighbors, then yes, a bark collar is fine. But if you do not change how you interact with him and toss a bark collar on him, he'll find some other thing to do that you may not like such as digging. It's very easy to Band-Aid the symptom but that never solves the problem.
 

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"A longer term solution would be to plant some very, very fast growing hedges that will eventually prevent him from seeing the neighbors, hopefully cutting down on the barking; out of sight, out of mind!"

Bamboo willows - grow like heck. We have the infamous nosey neighbors.

Also, check to see what the neighbors might be doing to get the dog to bark. Long shot, but we caught ours doing that. I yelled over - why are you baiting my dog? That stopped immediately, along with the fact that our dogs did not bark much. We also moved the kennel and their area to the other side of the property.
 

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you've gotten some great advice so far. I'll share my 'barking' dog story and do with it what you may :))

I have a male aussie who is a barker, a BIG mouth barker, he's a rescue with other issues, I've had him since he was 12 wks old. He is now almost 7.

I've always prided myself on working thru ANY problem that may arise with the pack I have, and have always been successful in working thru just about anything, EXCEPT this dog's barking.

He ends up working himself into such a frenzy, he zones out. I decided to try a bark collar as a last resort, that a friend had recommended. IT WORKS :)) for him anyhow.

He actually LIKES me to put it on him, comes a running wiggling with delight..(he is a weird dog)...Anyhow, the first bark, it gives a warning beep, if the dog barks again within 15 seconds, it gives a small jolt, and so on, as there is three levels..Believe me, I tried this on myself before I put it on the dog, and it isn't a jolt that hurts, but gets your attention.

With Jag, it not only keeps him quiet, it keeps him settled down, as I said he goes into a frenzy and just zones out,,redirects his frustration onto the other dogs, yada yada..

I see they are now selling the same collar at Walmart for like 40$.

It works for my dog's situation, I would never use it on a "soft" dog, and it's never on him unsupervised. I might add, I've never had to resort to something like this with any other dog (gsd's included) that I've lived with :))

diane
 

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This can be territorial barking which is very different from boredom. That's what Basu's issue was.

Many gsds--even the most loyal--do enjoy spending time outside without their people. But I think they should only get that privilege if they are behaving nicely and that means not barking at everything that moves.
 

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Quote: I would never use it on a "soft" dog, and it's never on him unsupervised.
Good story and personal experience. Nice to have the comparison that your dog would get so frenzied you'd be ignored.

Luckily it sounds like the original poster's dog will still listen to them even while the barking is going on. And since with either the collar OR not it's best to be present when the situation comes up with the barking.............. for me, I'd just save the money for the collar and get the dog back in the house.

Along with the exercise and training.

Though, have to say, if the owner is absolutely consistant on ending the dogs fun when it barks by bringing it into the house immediately. And if the 'fun in the yard' isn't about the barking at all. Then a smart dog would quickly learn that what it wants (being in the yard) is deprived 100% of the time when they bark. So within month the barking should improve.

But I'd never trust my dogs if I wasn't home to make sure they remember the rules. So when I leave the house, my dogs are in.
 
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