Dog Crate Barking Solutions
For most dogs their crate is their home, their man cave, the place where they feel safe and secure. However, if they weren’t introduced to crate training from a young age they may be resistant to spending much time there, which can lead to excessive barking.
So what is the best way to handle a dog that barks whenever he or she is in his crate?
Well, negative reinforcement such as yelling or punishment tends to worsen the behavior. And responding in just about any way at all achieves the goal your pooch had in mind — getting you to pay attention to them.
Therefore, canine behavioral experts recommend the following strategies to stop the barking:
- Ignore the barking — this is referred to as the best first step for changing the behavior but requires patience. Your dog will test you to see if barking more and for longer will make you give in and reward them with your attention. Step One can take one to six weeks to change the excessive barking behavior.
- Reward their silence — When your pup is quiet in his crate it’s important to praise him for what he is not doing — barking. Be sure to recognize this behavior by telling him what a good boy he is. Also, consider giving him distractions that will encourage him not to bark, such as puzzle feeders filled with his favorite treat or his favorite toy. It’s important to offer him praise when he is eating or playing in his crate so he’ll begin to associate not barking with a positive response from you.
- Obedience Training — When a dog learns to follow commands through formal obedience training it is much easier to correct unwanted behaviors, such as excessive barking in or out of a crate. For example, the Speak and Quiet Commands will teach your pooch when barking is and isn’t acceptable. Albany Off Leash K9 Training’s Basic and Advanced Obedience Training packages cover a range commands that lead to good manners in all situations!
- Things Not To Do — Don’t yell. Your pooch will interpret that as a cue to bark more; Don’t punish him while he is in his crate or he may start to fear it; Never respond to his barking. Don’t look at him. Only acknowledge him or pet him once he stops barking; Never punish or hit your pup when he barks! There is never a good reason to do this!
Patience will pay off in the long run. If you try a few of these strategies and still have questions, ask your dog’s veterinarian for some pointers and to rule out any health issues. If your dog gets a clean bill of health consider enrolling him in a reputable obedience training class.