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 Post subject: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 10:27 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:41 am
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Location: North Shore, MA
Hi all! :wv It's been a while, but Sperry-pup is a year old and mere weeks away from his gotcha-day! His training has been poor this summer as we were always on the go and despite my best efforts, was pushed to the side. On a positive note, he has done exceptionally well on the boat launch, where he is often riding with lots of other humans and dogs. :joy I've been working on the "bark" command with him, but cannot get him to bark. I have barked in his face and he just sits there and looks at me like, "Mom, you're crazy". When dogs walk by the house with their tags clanking along, that noise will get him to bark. If I use tags as a trigger to get him to bark to teach the command, will he then associate the tags with barking and not stop after he is taught "quiet"? Any other suggestions on how to elicit a bark from my boy so we can keep on with our training?

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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 10:30 am 
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I used a stimulus to trigger Oliver's first barks when I started teaching him this trick, which we call "speak." I actually followed a method outlined in "101 Dog Tricks" by Kyra Sundance. (Look for it on Amazon) I'm including an edited portion (for brevity) of her explanation below:

Quote:
Observe what causes your dog to bark (doorbell, the postman, etc). Give the cue (bark or speak, etc) and trigger the stimulus. Reward him for the bark and reinforce it with praise. After doing this several times, give your cue but don't use the stimulus. You may have to cue several times. If your dog won't bark, go back to step one.


She also recommends changing rooms you use to train, as apparently that can cause some confusion. And, of course, don't reward for a bark unless you've asked for it, or Sperry might go crazy on the bark train. :lol2 If you can't find any other ways to trigger a bark, this trainer also recommends holding a treat and asking, "Do you want it?" Many dogs will bark out of frustration, giving you the desired result.

I taught this way and haven't had any issues with him barking out of turn. If you enjoy teaching random little tricks, I'd definitely recommend the book. :happy


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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 3:27 pm 
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Thanks, Adam! I knew I could always count on you. :th-up We live in a condo, so it feels weird to be teaching him a bark command, but I know in order for Sperry to be successful with the quiet command that is the first step. We're super sensitive to him barking, mostly because our next door neighbor got a lab a few weeks before we brought Sperry home. Long story short, it was an awful situation, he would leave the dog outside (yes, even in the winter months) on his deck where he would go to the bathroom and then bark and bark and bark. Needless to say, he was evicted this past Spring (he also got a second dog but that's a different story). So now we don't want to attract added attention. Sperry talks/whines when he is frustrated I am getting more of cry than a bark. I don't think that is the same thing, he's not giving me what I want so I haven't rewarded him. I held a piece of watermelon and I don't get a bark from him. :dk

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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2015 6:52 am 
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barrettol wrote:
I held a piece of watermelon and I don't get a bark from him. :dk


Maybe you've got a quiet one on your hands :bg From one building dweller to another, that can certainly be a blessing. Maybe you could try squeaking a toy for him? That always gets Oliver riled up...hmm.


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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 5:22 am 
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This may be helpful to you: http://www.dogstardaily.com/training/woofshush


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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 8:02 am 
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Ava is 6 1/2 and has NEVER barked. :dk

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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 6:34 pm 
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...so I'm confused- why do you want him to bark? especially if you live close to other people, a quiet dog is a real blessing!

Personally, I want my dogs to "sound the alarm" if there is someone approaching who shouldn't be. I also want them to "quiet" on command. So I work on the "no bark" command.

When I lived in the suburbs and was fostering, I noticed one could easily tell when and where the mail carrier was on the street. As he approached a house the dog(s) would bark until he got back out to the sidewalk, then the next one would start in. One day I was out unloading my car, and he asked why my dogs had stopped already, and I said simply, "because I told them to." He was amazed that they had obeyed me, and were still quiet even as we were talking.

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Cricket, home 1-29-2012 - 3-29-2017, 5 yrs, 2 mo of Love
Sophie, 10-22-2015, home 9/19/15-
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Maggie Mae: home 9/1/2014 - 3/31/2015, 7 mo of Love
Feather: 3/23/1994 - 11/17/2011, 17 yrs, 8 mo of Love


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 Post subject: Re: Teaching the Bark Command
PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:44 pm 
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I agree with why. I don't complain about my Ava never ever barking. She'd be the perfect apartment dog. She's silent, but yet loves to play and a total love bug.

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