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This is a question that I am certain is a problem for all GSD owners. My 1 yr old is very attached to me, I am home fulltime. But, sometimes I need some time to do things, so I put him in the large run at the side of the house. 20 ft long, 8 ft wide. He can look out into our backyard, but is blocked from looking at the street. I leave good bones, toys, den and treat filled Kongs. The little-bum will bark incessantly at nothing. We live out in suburbia, so there is not much noise...except 'him'. I am worried because even though our neighbors are not home during the day, I don't want the potential for future problems.

I have listened to him bark solidly for one hour. And looking out the top window, I can see him sitting on his rump, ears cocked in between barks.

He is exercised thoroughly before I put him in....I love him, but 22 hours a day with him should be enough......

Thanks,
 

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This is an easy fix. I'm guessing he follows you all over the house all the time driving you nuts, and that's why you need the 'alone' time?

What he's showing you by following you, pestering you, being with you, is that he is BORED (and you are the most exciting thing in the house) and he's wide awake and full of energy (and running after you is the only game in town).

So if you get pro-active with this and deal with the real issue (a bored and energy filled dog) you will then have tons of free time with him in the house and snoring in his bed/crate.

DOG classes work well for mental stimulation as well as training the both of you. Teaching tons of tricks (you have NO IDEA how smart these dogs are until you see the tricks) Hey, just go to http://www.silvia.trkman.net/videos.htm#tricks to watch the video and see the exercise and tricks involved. CRAZY amazing dog and handler. And EXERCISE!!!! Miles and miles of running running running. Off leash is best. Playing with dog friends in a fenced yard. Chuck it in a fenced area. CAR RIDES!!!! Walking the dog around town to meet and greet and say hey.

You figure out a way to mentally keep your pup stimulated. And physically wear him out. You probably won't have to put him in the outside pen at all. And the times you do he'll just bark for you a few times (that's what he's doing, calling for you cause he knows you just misplaced him and when you remember, you'll hear him and run to get him) and then take a nap.
 

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It could also be anxiety. When Basu was outside alone he would bark at nothing because he was nervous about being outside alone. And some dogs really don't like being outside alone. My dogs have always been very well exercised but I've had several who really didn't like being outside alone.
 

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Barking is a self reinforcing behavior..it feels good, well, to a dog! The more he practises it ..the stronger the behavior gets.
Dogs easily learn that barking gets your attention.

And I do agree with Ruth that some dogs just don't like being outside alone.
 

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My dog barks as she's going out the door to the back yard and barks incessantly at anything that moves past our fence. The vet did say that a lot of this behavior is the herding/territorial instinct, but, I agree, it is annoying (especially to the neighbors). I'm in the process of finding an agility class to enroll her in.
 

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my 8wk old puppy barks when I let him out of the craig for feeding every morning then when I get out of school in the afternoon
 

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I have a similar problem. I like Maggieroselee's advice but it just wouldn't be that easy. I work full time outside the home. I can't possibly keep this old dog of mine that busy. He doesn't bark much in the home but when I let him out he barks on his way out - and then barks at every moving molecule in the atmosphere. If I speak loud and tell him "no bark" he will usually quiet down, but sometimes he's just stubborn. I live in an old neighborhood but our houses are close. There are dogs living next door and across the street. If any of them bark, my Wilson joins in without even knowing the reason why. But he is by far the most frequent and loudest barker of them all. Again, Maggieroselee's advice is true... If I take Wilson on an hour long walk, he is pretty quiet for the rest of the evening (worn out). Oh, but his barking does drive me mad sometimes!
 

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My gsd is our protector also. Hence he barks. I am amazed alot of the time when he hears things I have no idea is coming and comes. He is something else. Yes it can be annoying at times but its his job.
 
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