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The Reasons Why Dogs Bark

A barking dog can be one of the single most frustrating things in the world, especially if they refuse to stop barking for any reason.

But, there are very specific, and numerous reasons why a dog might bark. If you understand those reasons and act to handle them each in turn, barking can be handled.

The Different Types of Barking

As I mentioned, dogs bark for any number of reasons. They don't just sit around barking to annoy you. They might be upset, or angry, or simply bored. How you handle dog barking problems should depend on the source of the behaviour, not how it affects you.

   * Territorial - A dog may bark to assert its dominance over territory. Usually, you'll see this when another dog appears near the fence or windows of your home or when the mail man shows up each day with letters.

The territory can expand over time and include anywhere you take him for a walk, your car, and the park he gets to play in.

   * Alarm - Dogs with an alarm bark are doing so with the intent of announcing something of alarm, but it can get a bit misguided very quickly. Dogs that alarm bark will bark at anything they see, regardless of territory designations.

   * Attention Seeking - Dogs bark to get attention as well, something that we generally reinstill by giving them that attention as they ask for it.

   * Greeting - A dog that is excited to see someone might bark when they appear to great them. If the dog is wagging a tail and seems relaxed, this is why. Some dogs will whine instead of barking in this situation.

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   * Compulsive - Dogs will bark for no reason at all sometimes, compulsively repeating their barks because they are bored or because they're anxious about something. The tone will rarely change and will repeat over and over again.

   * Social - Dogs will also bark to tell other dogs where they are. It may sound angry or unnecessary, but the dogs are just responding to each other. Of course, at a certain point, it can get excessive.

   * Frustration - Dogs might bark out of frustration as well, such as when they are locked in a crate or when they are left at home behind a door. They might also bark when tied up outside.

   * Injury or Illness - A dog will often whine or whimper when in pain, and you should pay close attention for this. If their tail is between their legs or they bark excessively with whines, they might be seeking attention to help with an injury.

   * Dog Separation Anxiety - This is a big one for many people and can be problematic, for you and your neighbours. Look for other symptoms here like destruction, pacing, making messes, or other distress related signs. Dog barking comes in a variety of forms and for a first time dog owner, it can be hard to distinguish exactly why it is happening. However, if you pay close attention to the behaviour and reduce any situations in which it might continue, you'll be able to control it far better.

Reducing Barking

First, take special note of when a dog is barking, how long they bark, and what they are barking at. If your dog barks only occasionally when someone comes to the door, this is not necessarily a problem, as it is a good thing to have in a family pet.

If he barks whenever the light hits his collar wrong, you may need to consider adjusting your dog training routine to reduce excess energy and address his habit of making so much noise.

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