Princes Highway Vet Phone 9588 2088

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Barking Dogs
 Does your dog bark when you are not at home? Does the noise irritate your family and neighbours? Barking is an important means of communication for dogs, and a perfectly natural form of canine behaviour. However, excessive barking can be one of the most annoying forms of noise pollution, and the cause of many neighbourly disputes! There are several steps you can take to reduce nuisance barking.
Try to isolate the problem
Nuisance barking can be very annoying, however, it is important to learn why your dog is barking.
Some dogs bark because they are distressed at being left alone, and others bark as part of an obsessive-compulsive disorder.
If you want to control the barking, try to identify and treat the underlying problem.
The most common causes of barking include:

Most of these problems can be dealt with, by implenting certain changes in lifestyles for your dog as well as yourself.
However, if you already have a problem barker, there are a few other devices available, to help control nuisance barking.

Boredom can be treated by increasing the amount of mental stimulation your dog receives. You can hide toys and treats around the garden, to increase your dog's mental stimulation. Taking your dog for walks, and providing more human interaction can also help alleviate boredom. You can take your dog for obedience training, or provide more off the leash exercise.

Separation anxiety can be treated by training your dog to be apart from you, whilst you are still on the premises. It is caused by your dog forming a very strong bond with someone in the family. The bond is so strong, that the dog has trouble being apart from the person, and can become very stressed when it is away from the person. Some of the ways to overcome separation anxiety include, introducing short periods of controlled separation from the person, whilst the person is still on the premises. It also helps to vary your daily routine, to remove the "cues" that trigger separation anxiety. Eg when you pick up your car keys, the dog learns that you are about to leave, and may become very stressed. If your dog has separation anxiety, you can seek professional advice from your Veterinarian.

External causes, such as teasing children, or hostile neighbours can be dealt with by informing the parents, or trying to keep your dog in a different part of the garden, where the children cannot get to it. If you can block the dog's view of the street, your dog may not be as prone to barking at people walking along the street.

Health problems may also play a minor role in nuisance barking. For an example, if your dog has a skin irritation,or a minor discomfort, it may bark more than usual. If you are concerned about your dog's health, you can visit your Veterinarian for a health check.

Changes in lifestyle can play a role in nuisance barking. If the barking has started after a change in the dog's lifestyle, such as a new baby, try to enrich its environment in different ways. You can try not to change the dog's usual routine too much. Introduce the dog to the new baby gradually, and allow it to accept the baby as the newest member of it's "pack". Once your dog has accepted the baby as part of it's "pack", it will settle down However it is important to remember not to leave young children unsupervised with your dog, even for short periods of time. Other lifestyle changes can also be treated in the same way. Examine your routine and see if it has changed in any way. If circumstances result in your being unable to spend as much time with your dog as before, try to find new ways to enrich its environment.

Breeding can play a role. Barking is a normal form of behaviour for dogs, however, some breeds tend to bark more than others. Genetics may also play a role in the amount of barking that a dog does. Some research has indicated that if a dog's parents bark alot, it may also exhibit similar behaviour.