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Discussion Starter #1
Tatze has begun guarding/alerting behaviour.

So, if she hears a strange noise, or sees a person she doesn't know in next door's garden she barks (and sometimes growls).

I respond by saying 'good girl, good guarding' then distract her and expect her to stop the barking and alert behaviour then relax.

Am I doing the right thing?
 

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Mine don't really bark much. If Merlin does summon the energy to woof at something I always go to see and thank him with a good boy for letting me know. The last time was when next doors dog got her head stuck in a gap in the fence. Willoughby just copies him or barks at silly things that he's not sure about.
 

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Personally, I'm far more inclined to NOT want my dog to think its a good thing to make noise at any time. Yes one day maybe I will have burglars and it will bite me on the bum, but for me, they aren't my guard dogs, they need to just live and let live with strange noises etc. I have a couple of less confident dogs that do tend to be inclined to 'woof and huff' aat strange noises or 'unusual things they don't understand', and my attitude is 'yes... yes.... very clever.... and for your next trick foolish child!???...Button it ;-)' Very jolly hockey sticks.

BUT it might be you, as an individual, prefer them to alert you to noises (although they may start to become more and more sensitive if they think 'shouting at strange noises' gets them praise) and you feel safer for it, in which case, yes to teach a dog to be reactive to noises, you are doing the right thing.

Di
 

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I think maybe it depends on your environment. Poppy woofs at things she doesn't like or gets excited about, but after a couple I tell her 'enough!. I am always a little concerned her barking might escalate (she has a very loud bark sometimes I think she just likes the sound of her own voice). I live on a new build estate and I appreciate not everyone likes dogs, so try to keep her quiet before she irritates the neighbours :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Tatze barks very little - if she needs to go out to wee she 'huffs' at the door, if I take no notice she then barks but has to 'make' herself do it. Otherwise she never barks, even in excitement. So this is a new departure.

No, I'm not looking for her to have any guarding role here. So I shall do what Diana suggests and tell her not to be daft.

:)
 

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Pepper is a barky little mare ... and I promised my hubby that labradors don't bark :roll:

She barks when the phone rings, doorbell goes, people enter the house, and when she wants "in" to anywhere.

I have tried ignoring her and waiting until she stops to praise or permit. I have tried telling her to stop, sometimes more forcefully than others! :? And I have tried thanking her and telling her "enough".

So far, nothing has worked. I'll be interested to hear others' experiences.

Hannah & Pepper xx
 

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I'd distract her.... grab a ball or treat, and ask for something first, a sit, or whatever and then treat or throw the ball... distraction works better than shouting or ignoring ;-)
You aren't PRAISING or rewarding the barking with the treat or throw of the ball IF you ask for something to happen between her barking and getting the item.... like a sit.... and pause for a second or two so that sinks in.... then throw or treat...
Di
 

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Diana said:
I'd distract her.... grab a ball or treat, and ask for something first, a sit, or whatever and then treat or throw the ball... distraction works better than shouting or ignoring ;-)
You aren't PRAISING or rewarding the barking with the treat or throw of the ball IF you ask for something to happen between her barking and getting the item.... like a sit.... and pause for a second or two so that sinks in.... then throw or treat...
Di
Brilliant idea Diana! I'll give it a go - I do that a lot (with success) in other areas of training, no idea why I hadn't thought of doing it here. Thank you (again, lol)!

Hannah & Pepper xx
 
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