Dogs’ barking is a perfectly typical part of their lives. Because they can’t talk to humans, they use this method of communication instead.
When a dog barks, it may be to alert other dogs, to convey emotion, to mark their territory, or to get the attention of their owner. A dog’s barking reaction may be triggered by almost any sound.
Behavioral difficulties are another reason why dogs bark.
Barking is a totally typical behavior for dogs, and it’s their way of attempting to connect with their owners. While excessive barking in dogs is typically a sign of something more serious going on, this is not always the case.
Here, you’ll find out why your dog is being aggressive to others, as well as how to stop a dog barking at people.
Tips on How to Stop a Dog Barking at People
Dogs communicate with other dogs by barking. However, you can’t absolutely prevent them from barking at people. Do not expect them not to bark since thinking that they will not bark is like assuming that a baby will not cry.
The good news is, nuisance barking can be eliminated or diminished by means of training. There are various methods and steps on how to stop your dog from barking at people.
You could prepare preliminarily by understanding your dog’s barking language, like listening and observing.
Removing the triggers for the behavior is also necessary in order to make your dog show his best behavior whenever approaching someone.
Below are some tips on how to train your dog not to bark at people.
1. Observing how your dog barks
Our canine companions have a wide variety of barks that could give out different meanings depending on the tone and pitch of the bark. Some barks may indicate his fear or alarm especially if they are nervous.
There are barks that show their territorial tendencies while some would show that they are seeking attention.
You can also recognize fun barks that tend to greet while low whines would indicate their anxiety and frustration. Recognize different barks because they tell a lot about the mood of your dog at the moment.
Here are ways on how to observe why your dog barks:
Your dog being protective or territorial.
Barking is a common response when someone or something enters the area your dog considers to be its territory or if your dog feels threatened.
The barking typically becomes louder as the danger it considers gets closer. During this style of barking, your dog will seem vigilant and perhaps hostile.
Any sound or item that captures their attention or startles them will cause your dogs to bark out of alarm or fear. In fact, this may happen everywhere, not just in their own backyard.
When they are afraid, their ears will be tucked back and their tails will be tucked in.
This sort of barking may be decreased by minimizing your dog’s exposure to anything he perceives as a danger to his area.
Solid wood fencing is preferable than chain fencing if they are in a fenced yard. Windows and doors should be restricted or covered with an opaque film within your yard. This is a good way to stop dog barking at neighbors.
Your dog is bored or lonely.
Dogs live in packs. A bored or depressed dog is likely to bark if it is left alone for lengthy periods of time, whether in the home or out in the yard.
Providing more activities or companionship for your dog while you’re away will help keep them from becoming bored or lonely. Your neighbors will appreciate the reduced noise and added protection that an inside dog will provide to their homes.
If you leave your dog alone in the yard, you run the risk of him becoming stolen, being poisoned, or being harassed.
If they become bored, dogs indoors may still bark. Get someone to walk or play with your dog for at least an hour a day if your dog is always barking while you’re working.
Keeping your dog occupied throughout the day might also be beneficial. Try laying out a few different food-dispensing toys, which come in a variety of sizes and shapes.
These may keep them occupied for many hours, after which they’ll most likely take a snooze on the grass. When a dog is constantly yelping, it should be kept inside.
As an extra layer of safety, dogs may be trained to sleep peacefully within your home.
Dropping your dog off at a daycare facility two or three days a week is another option. You could also sign up your dog for agility or obedience classes.
Your dog is greeting or wanting to play.
Dogs typically bark while welcoming humans and other animals. If it’s joyful, it’s likely to be punctuated by tail wags and occasional hopping.
You’ll need to train your dog new habits if you want to stop it from barking whenever you get home or the doorbell rings. When the door opens, you may teach your dog to wait in that location until the door closes on its own.
While it’s better if they can see the door, they shouldn’t be too near to it either. The door is not yet open, so try training your dog to go and remain in a certain location. Make it a game with plenty of rewards and praise.
Start opening the door while your pet is in their location if they have mastered this skill to a high degree of confidence.
Allowing someone to enter the door once you’ve mastered opening it and having your dog remain seated is the next logical step.
Naturally, at first, your dog will leave his position when the door is opened, but with time and effort, he will learn to remain in his area.
Don’t give your dog a pat on the back for barking at you as you walk through the door. Until your dog calms down and sits down, do not touch or even look at them. Recognize and congratulate them after that.
Your dog is seeking attention
It is common for dogs to bark when they are seeking attention or a reward, such as going outdoors or playing. Never give a dog a treat if he barks.
Barking to obtain water teaches your dog that it can get what they want by whining. It doesn’t matter whether they bark to get out of the house.
So, when it’s time to go, have them ring a bell you’ve fastened to the door handle. It’s possible that they’ll begin to push the water dish with their snout to produce the same noise as when it’s filled.
Find methods to communicate with your dog without causing him to bark.
To keep them from noticing that their dish is empty after they’ve barked, wait a few minutes before doing anything else and then replenish it. Avoid scolding your pet. That’s still attention for a dog.
The key to getting your dog to stop barking is to ignore their needs until they go away.
Your dog is having separation anxiety
The increased barking of dogs with separation anxiety is a symptom of this condition. Pacing, aggressiveness, and stress are also common symptoms.
Compulsive barkers, on the other hand, appear to be compelled to bark for the sheer joy of it. Repetitive motions, such as running in circles or along fences, are also common.
Veterinary behaviorists and certified applied animal behaviorists should be consulted for the treatment of separation anxiety and compulsive barking.
Many dogs who suffer from these issues require medication to help them cope and learn new, more acceptable habits.
2. Start them young
Training a dog is a lot easier when they are still young. Early dog training is one of the greatest methods to ensure that your pup is safe and happy, and that you, too, love your pup.
Dogs acquire habits at a young age because they are eager and ready to learn. You are alone responsible for determining whether your behaviors are good or detrimental.
Having a well-rounded and flexible dog is the duty of the dog owner.
Learning how to stop your puppy from barking at people will result in a well-disciplined dog and that would mean less problems for you and your dog.
3. Learn how to read your dog’s body language
Knowing your dog would not just depend on understanding its bark, but also observing his body language. There are signs and symptoms that indicate how your dog feels at present.
When dogs are afraid, they like to make themselves smaller by slightly hunching over and tucking their tails.
Happy dogs show his relaxed muscles and would even show his wagging tail. Dogs that are alert may be perceiving a current threat, and you can see that their gaze is focused, and they appear to be stiff and still.
Playful dogs can be energetic and somehow look like they are smiling. Dominant ones would look more assertive while aggressive dogs would make themselves look bigger in any way.
4. Avoid giving the dog attention when he barks
If you try to give him attention when he barks, he will see it as a reward and the action will be repeated instead.
Speaking to the dog or showing a hand gesture will only be seen as a reward. Shouting at your dog or telling him to “stop” and “be quiet” will only reward the dog with attention.
What you should do instead is to completely ignore any barking coming from your dog. Also, there are other effective ways like spritzing some water at your dog if he is barking.
Spritzing a little amount of water should be an effective but harmless way to make your dog get out of barking.
5. Reduce actions that may seem rewarding to his barking
As dog owners, we sometimes give out rewards unconsciously that happen to be counter-effective in training dogs. Giving out rewards for an unwanted behavior will only reinforce it, like how you give your dog some attention if he is barking.
What you should do is to ignore your dog every time he is barking. Although difficult, you should be able to handle this with practice and willingness.
Not even a glance should be performed, as your dog will still mistake it for a reward. This signals that you don’t like his barking behavior and in time, he will stay quiet if you do this.
If he successfully stops barking, you might want to praise him and give him rewards like delicious treats. This will make him realize that barking is a bad behavior while being quiet is a good behavior that entitles him to a reward.
6. Modify your dog’s environment
First, you have to be aware of what triggers your dog’s barking behavior. If possible, you should remove these triggers to reduce the frequency of your dog’s barking.
If he is observed to be barking at the passers-by, then you should consider closing the curtains or blinds to make sure that he won’t see these people outside.
If your dog barks at your visitors, try isolating him in a comfortable room where he will not be able to realize that there are strangers inside your home.
Some territorial dogs may require having fences that are pretty much opaque, like wood fences, to reduce the chances of him encountering another dog from the outside and showing territorial tendencies.
Unfamiliar noises could also trigger your dog. You might want to leave out something that plays a familiar sound so he would get comfortable enough to stay quiet.
Your dog might be able to quiet down if he learns how to socialize properly with people. Try to show good behavior while walking at the park by interacting with people.
Also, there are day care centers exclusive for dogs that allow them to socialize with other dogs and humans.
These methods will help territorial and awkward dogs to understand that it is not always necessary to bark at people wherever they go.
Teach these methods for your dog to learn how to socialize with other people:
• Your dog should be trained to wait for guests in a designated area when they arrive at your house. As you (or a helper) go through the door, have her sit and remain. Praise her and give her sweets as a reward.
• As an alternative, you may teach your dog to look for a specific toy at the front entrance when guests arrive. When visitors come, he’s less likely to bark if he has a toy in his mouth.
• Before allowing people to touch your dog while you’re out, teach him to sit quietly. As a result, there will be a lower chance of someone being injured by a dog that is very eager.
• Rewarding your dog’s welcoming barks with praise is a bad idea. Do not meet her or offer her snacks or petting until she has calmed down.
8. Teach your dog a command to be quiet
If you want your dog to follow you and somehow be in control in most situations, you can also opt to teach your dog a command in order for him to be quiet. You may use some words like “quiet” or even phrases such as “stay down” or “stop barking”.
You can also include a gesture to reinforce the command that you have assigned.
This could be anything from a wave of the hand, showing your palm, or even showing a “shush” motion by putting your index finger to your lips while having the rest of the fingers clenched.
Every time he barks, mention the command and show the designated gesture to your dog every time. If he stops barking, reward his behavior so as to reinforce it.
Just make sure to be consistent in using the command and the gesture every time your dog barks.
9. Making your Dog comfortable with people living with you
A new puppy that doesn’t get along with your spouse, flatmate, or any other person living in your home may be quite upsetting.
For some dogs, moving to a new location may be a difficult experience. For a dog that has not yet learnt to trust, every encounter is a new and terrifying one.
As a result, this individual has to practically ignore the dog, not look at him, and so on. There are many positive things to come from that individual, though.
The dog may approach him whether he is standing or moving and he may drop rewards. Tossing the goodies includes moving the hand toward the dog, which is dangerous.
It’s impossible to make a dog trust a person, but it is possible to progressively demonstrate to the dog that humans are trustworthy.
Something far worse may happen if your dog does not like your youngster. It’s one thing if he’s responding to your youngster doing something like picking up or falling on your dog.
Help your dog get out of harm’s way. Although it’s heartbreaking, it’s the best thing to do for everyone involved if you have a young child or if your dog simply does not get along with kids.
In these cases, you should return the pet to the shelter/rescue where you originally adopted it so that he can find an appropriate home free of children.
Dogs Barking at People FAQs
How to stop dog barking at visitors?
When your guests come to visit, your dog may bark at them. Barking can be a dog’s way of welcoming guests or a dog’s way of scaring them away.
Doorbell or knocking might trigger barking in certain dogs. Their barking may be territorial or fear-based if they are not used to meet other people.
Other people may bring unwanted attention and intrusion into your dog’s personal space when they enter your home.
This is an effective way on how to stop dog barking at neighbors as they get more comfortable being with other people.
A kennel, a tether, or other means of containment may help keep your dog from rushing through the entrance and injuring your guests. If you have unexpected home visitors and haven’t had time to prepare, this may be important.
Instead of barking, teach your dog what you want them to do. Dogs rely on routine and consistency, and this will help your pet get the most out of your time together. Try teaching them to keep calm and go to the mat to earn goodies.
Always do this routine to keep them from barking and scaring your visitors away. To get him to go to his mat, you may even use the doorbell as a signal.
If you do not have that many guests coming into your house, then you would probably have a hard time consistently practicing them or making them comfortable with other people.
Therefore, enlist the help of your friends and everyone you know to assist you normalize your dog on seeing visitors coming in your house.
Should you use bark collars?
Several products promise to put an end to your dog’s barking in a matter of minutes. If your dog wears a collar, you may use auditory or ultrasonic corrections on him or her, although not all dogs respond to these methods.
If your dog learns to associate pain with the person or animal they are barking at, shock collars can be harmful to your pet and even make them aggressive.
If your dog’s barking is restricted to a specific area, other off-collar devices can be useful. When your pet barks, bark-activated water sprayers or noisemakers turn on and shoot water at your pet or make an annoying sound.
These methods can sometimes stop a dog from barking in a specific area. But they are most effective when you are present to reward your pet when they stop barking. That reinforces your dog’s behavior.
When should I see my veterinarian?
It’s possible that you’ll need to see your veterinarian for aid with your dog’s excessive barking or with your dog’s training.
Your veterinarian might be able to give you some methods that are effective for your puppy.
If your dog is a compulsive barker, which means they bark for lengthy periods of time, followed by other repeated behaviors like circling or leaping, a veterinarian consultation is recommended.
As part of the behavioral adjustment, your veterinarian may give your dog medicine. Veterinarians may also diagnose and treat any underlying medical conditions, including chronic pain or cognitive loss, in all instances of excessive barking.
Negative punishment is notorious for instilling fear in dogs and ultimately making the problem worse. So if you decide to seek outside assistance, avoid any dog trainer who utilizes it.
When is barking a problem?
A dog’s barking is quite natural. It is possible that he may bark to alarm you if he hears anything unusual in the middle of the night or if your dog sees another dog across the street.
Knowing whether to ignore your dog’s barking and when to take action on it may be tricky. A dog’s barking is an issue when it gets excessive, causes a nuisance to the neighbors, or disturbs our personal time to relax.
When dogs are barking out of fear or anxiety, it may be an issue. You should aim to get to the source of their fear in order to help them relax and feel better.
Why does my dog keep on barking?
Dogs may bark to communicate with other dogs, to express their feelings, to protect their territory, or to get their owner’s attention.
A dog’s barking reaction may be triggered by almost any sound, including rustling leaves, other animals, smashing windows, lightning, anxiety, or even the ring of a doorbell.
Dog Management to Remember
• Make sure you keep your dog at a safe distance while you are working with him.
You are too near to your dog if he responds. Avoid pressuring people to engage in conversation. Allowing your dog to make the decision on whether or not to be approached is the best course of action.
• Brain disorders, and chronic discomfort may all lead to excessive barking.
It is possible for older dogs to suffer from a sort of canine senility that results in excessive barking. Having a pet checked out by a veterinarian is usually a smart idea in the event of a problem.
• In addition to preventing your dog from barking at people, management also gives him a sense of security.
• When a dog is exhausted, he or she is usually silent.
If your dog is prone to barking when left alone, make sure to give them a good workout before you leave. Before you go, go for a long walk or run, play a game of ball, or take your dog for a stroll at the dog park.
• Bring some dog treats with you when your dog barks at people on walks.
When your dog is calm around people, reward him with a treat. Make sure that you stop your dog barking when out walking to avoid annoying other people.
• Make sure you’re protected.
Just because your dog’s behavior has improved does not mean you are free to approach others. It’s possible that your dog may bite to defend himself if the person suddenly approaches close or bends over your dog to pet him.
• Don’t let issues go on indefinitely.
When a dog performs anything for an extended period of time, it gets more embedded in its behavior. The barking might be enjoyable for dogs since it gives them an adrenaline surge.
Allowing a dog to bark in particular circumstances, such as when the mailman comes, may lead to a dog being violent in such circumstances.
What if your dog escapes when the postman is delivering the mail? Take action as soon as possible to stop the barking.
• Keep your dog away from people he’s terrified of while teaching him that humans are trustworthy and that nice things happen when they’re present.
• It’s best to cross the street, turn around, or wait for a vehicle while walking your dog if there’s someone up ahead.
When you take your dog on a walk, try to keep things interesting by varying the pace, going around obstacles, and pivoting in various directions.
• Remove the chance for your dog to engage in fence-fighting and keep him from barking at people outside the house.
Restrict access to the room with the large picture window by putting up a baby gate or closing all of the drapes.
• A little dog may get the confidence and chance to snap or bite another person if you carry him around.
• If your dog has bitten or is likely to bite someone if you don’t intervene, you should take him to a reliable dog trainer.
To prevent your dog from barking at people, seek the assistance of a reputable dog trainer in your area. Your dog may even need medicine to help calm him down if the situation demands it.
Never Do These to your Dogs
• Your dog should not be encouraged by certain sounds and discouraged by others.
Maintain a level of consistency throughout your training with your dog.
• For lengthy periods of time or when a dog is not being watched, never employ a muzzle or other kind of restraint. It might be harmful to your dog.
• Debarking is a hot-button issue, with many deeming it cruel and inhumane.
It doesn’t get to the root of the problem. For dogs, the larynx (voice box) is surgically reconstructed by removing the folds of tissue on each side.
Complications, including breathing difficulty, coughing, and continuing discomfort, are the result of doing this to your dog and this may be life-threatening.
After surgery, some dogs seem to have their voice back again. The surgery merely alters the sound of the dog’s barking.
As a dog owner, you care about your dog’s well-being and happiness. Your dog’s constant yelping might be a problem for you and your neighbors.
If you feel that your dog is barking excessively, you should take actions like behavioral modification training or consulting your veterinarian to prevent having the issue reported to your local council.
Let us know in the comments what your favorite methods on how to stop a dog from barking at people!
Do you want to put an end to your dog’s annoying barking problems? CLICK HERE to watch this FREE Step-by-Step Video from Doggy Dan’s Program!