Q: I need affordable bark control!
I'm going back to school so we have just moved into an apartment. My dog is NOT an excessive barker but whenever we leave him alone he cries and barks for about half an hour. He's never lived in an apartment before and I don't want to annoy my neighbors. The problem is that because I'm a student I really don't have the money to drop $90 on a bark collar. I'm also not sure how comfortable I feel with a shock collar. Does anyone have any good recommendations? I need something that WORKS to control his barking when we're gone that costs less than $60.
Aug 12, 2010
shock collars are cruel, so you're right to question them. other bark deterring collars also work under negative association, which isn't how you want to train your dog anyway, and the dog will quit listening to them after awhile.
shelby is right, keeping your dog interested in something else while you leave can be helpful. if you can, take him for a long walk or play w/him enough to wear him out before you walk out the door. make him want to nap it off instead.
if this doesn't work, or if you have to basically get up and go, opt for buying a two way baby monitor or two sets of cheap walkie talkies. i say two sets b/c you have to hold the button to talk and you're dog isn't gonna understand the button function.
what you'll want to do is set it up so you can hear him but talk to him at the same time.
before you do this though, you have to train him the "quiet" command. this is provided a reason to make your dog bark and as he does say "speak" and reward him for the barking. you'll understand why do this in a moment. practice this several times - he barks, you say "speak", treat him, and "good boy" - until he will actually speak on command.
now set him up to back again, but ignore him entirely until he quits barking. then you say "quiet" and treat and "good boy". now practice this several time until he will stop barking on command. he'll never understand what quiet means until he has the barking reference, so both commands must be taught.
now set up your monitors or walkie talkies or whatever. lag behind a little - not inside, but around the premises where he can't see you. give him about twenty minutes the first week and gradually take it down to five. during this time you'll be listening and telling him "quiet" through the monitor. no treats now, but continue w/the good boy while he's still learning.
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