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Excessive barking

PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:49 am
by Lcheviron
My cocker, Tucker, is 4 years old. He is usually very well behaved. He never has an accident in the house, can be left alone and does not bother anything. Recently he has started barking for no apparent reason. He will sit and look at us and bark. The only way we can stop him is to either put a leash on him or put him in his kennel (after we finally catch him). The strange thing is he usually does this about 6-7 p.m. every night. If we put a leash on him he seems to calm down. Does anyone else have a problem like this or a suggestion to fix the problem ?

Re: Excessive barking

PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:23 am
by Lisa R

Hard to say what exactly is going on with Tucker... I had a couple of thoughts.

Sounds like Tucker could be doing a good job of training you. :gig You are not alone, we are very well trained by our dog too! Chesapeake "talks" to us every night to get a treat. Once she has it she's content. Tucker could just be in the habit of wanting a your attention at that time. You could try putting his leash on a bit before he starts asking for it. Then it's under your control instead of you giving in to his demands.

Or there could be something triggering his reaction... perhaps a neighbor coming home from work that he hears?

Three things you can try....

~ The above thing with the leash. Catching him BEFORE he starts barking and putting his leash on or to bed.
~ Ignore him when he's being demanding and praise/reward when he's quiet.
~ Distract him or give him a command to do instead of barking.

How Chesapeake "talks" doesn't bother us... it's very cute not really a bark. But if Tuckers action is obnoxious, to you, then taking the time to break the habit is time well spent. Just be consistent... don't allow it sometimes but get angry others.

Good luck!

Re: Excessive barking

PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:36 am
by SusanT
I agree with Lisa's advice and I have one additional option to consider.

Jennie will sometimes come to me, barking and wagging. I have her sit and wait, and then I ask her to 'show me'. Quite often, she will take me to a couch or chair and she will put her nose underneath it. I'll find that a toy is stuck there. I dig it out for her and then she will usually try to get me to play with her. After that, she will go back to playing with it by herself.

At other times, she will run to the front window, still barking. Then I know that there is something interesting happening in the neighborhood. It may be that the mail carrier or UPS is making a delivery, or a neighbor has opened their garage door or the kids are walking home from school. Just now she barked to let me know that a robin was in the tree in our front yard. As soon as I see what she wanted me to see and tell her she is a good girl, she will stop barking and go back on 'guard duty'.

If Tucker is barking only at the same time every day, it may be that one of your neighbors comes home or lets their cat out at that time or something else is happening every night at that time. You might try teaching 'show me' and let him show you what he's seeing.