Recently Scout has started barking a lot when he is put in the crate. I live in a very close community and the dwelling units are on top of each other and close to each other on the side. When he persistently barks at 5:00 in the morning, it is not fair to my neighbors to keep letting him bark. When he is put on the porch in the backyard he will also sometimes bark. I'm afraid animal control is going to come by and tell me to get the dog to stop barking or I will have to give him up.
Would it be ok to put a bark collar on a 17 week old pup. I hate to do it, but I don't want to lose my pup. I know eventually he will grow out of it. If not any suggestions on how to curb this? I have to work at night at home and if I don't pay attention to him he barks, so I'm really frustrated right now. Appreciate any words of wisdom you can provide.
Debbie (Scout's Mom)
I'm not a fan of any of the bark collars, whether they use shock or citronella spray.
I would make sure that Scout is exercised a LOT in the morning and night before you put him in his crate. Make sure he has things to do in his crate so he's not bored - nylabones, frozen, stuffed Kongs, etc.
Some dogs prefer to have a covered crate, but be careful of what exactly you use because sometimes they'll try to pull it in through the holes of the crate.. Abbey did that once!
As already suggested, you might try the loud noise thing, but sometimes that backfires and you getdogs that are very scared of loud noises, like thunder.
You could try squirting him with water when he barks. I would also work on teaching him "speak" and "quiet." Works wonders with Abbey!
What do you do when he starts barking in the a.m. or anytime when you are home? Do you immediately go and get him from the crate? If so, that's where you are making a mistake. He sees barking = attention from Mommy. Ignoring works best, but in your case with neighbors, ignoring also takes time for him to "get" and it sounds like you can't have that. How about preparing a Kong the night before - plain yogurt, ends covered in lowfat PB - and stick in the freezer. Give it to him in the a.m. when he starts to bark.
"Each is a creature of Earth and is entitled to reside on it with dignity"