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Boronia

Any tips on how to stop new dog barking

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Boronia   

We have had her for two weeks.

7.5 y/o desexed female terrier.

barks at my OH when he comes inside...wooobarkbarkbark

as soon as she hears him coming she starts with her wooo

(like this photo from Google Images)

59cecbaa45058_Screenshotfrom2017-09-3008-38-38.png.1640a14db4a9a2f8dc154496f97e25af.png

then barks.

barkbarkbarkbarkbark

she keeps a watch at the door to keep a look-out for him coming up the steps

won't eat the bones he gives her but will eat them if I give them to her

she won't walk nicely on the lead with him if I don't come as well...she just ploughs ahead as if she is trying to get away.

She is marginally better than when she first arrived here but I feel that she should be used to him by now.

 

Any ideas that may help would be appreciated

 

Edited by Boronia

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Is she not used to men?  

 

I'm no expert, but I would start desensitising training.  So OH sits quietly on the floor, with dog in room, no eye contact and throws best treats ever (cheese, salami, anything smelly that she loves but keep an eye on the quantity) in her direction.  Hopefully she will then slowly start to move towards him on her own accord, so the treats get closer and closer and become more relaxed around him.

 

I had a Poodle here that was petrified of any visitors but I found he was much happier if he was in a crate.  After he was resting calmly, I would get the visitors to calmy pop a treat into his crate for him, every few minutes.  Luckily I had pre-warned the visitors!  lol

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Boronia   

we will try that tonight J

and

will be  keeping an eye on quantity as she is DoggieMcFatBum

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Bribery?  Can you organise for him to "come home" while you're in the yard so she can see him coming and he just lobs delightful treats at her - gradually working towards being able to get in the house quietly? 

 

It can always come from her daily kibble allowance. 

 

As for the bones - I'd maybe play tough love - if she wont take it from him - he can either leave it in her bowl or she can have it offered to her another time. 

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RuralPug   

Two weeks is a very short time when you are dealing with a deep seated anxiety.
Be patient and remember that the way to a dog's heart is through their stomach LOL so could he possibly take over feeding duties temporarily - so that, in the evenings at least, no pup gets fed until he gets home?

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Boronia   

She ate some little bits of cheese that OH tossed behind him while he was sitting in his chair, she wouldn't take them while he was looking but snuck up and made a dash for the bits when he looked away.

This is a tiny bit of progress as she wouldn't even touch the cheese two days ago when she was convinced that he had covered it in poison.

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Mjosa   

I wonder if she has had a bad experience or no contact in her previous home with a male. 

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Boronia   

there was a husband in her previous place and I don't think he was a threat.

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Mjosa   

It was just a thought, so that is not the reason why she is reacting to your husband like she is.

I wish you luck with getting her to accept him without all that barking going on when he comes in.

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Boronia   

She is gradually settling in though is still barking so yesterday I tried the 'time out' method...we have walk-in room that I use as a pantry/broom cupboard/vacuum cleaner home; shelves along one side and plenty of space, it's 3m long and 1m wide (it was originally the room for a toilet so that'll give you an idea of size) Henry has his chicken frame in there as it gives him time to eat it in peace (Saffy used to take it from him) sooo when she started her barking I popped her in there for five minutes, she stopped immediately anyway. I don't have room for a crate for 'time out' so the pantry is the next best thing. 

This method seems to be working fairly successfully but I am concerned it may be cruel and cause her some psychological damage.

I found that with giving new homes to much older dogs, most of which were not house-trained, the best method for training was to start at the 'training a puppy' stage, it works well.

What do you trainers think?

Is the 5 minutes 'time out' acceptable?

 

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I think she's barking at your husband because she is afraid of him so I'm not sure that this is the correct way to stop it.  

 

A friend told me recently that her new adult dog was barking and lunging at dogs while out walking so she consulted a behaviourist.  The behaviourist came to the house and worked with her and told her, that when out walking, as soon as another dog was in sight, treats should start raining from the sky.  The idea is that eventually the dog will realise that when he sees another dog, good things happen.

 

Perhaps you could use this method.  So when your husband is approaching, start dropping treats and distracting her (before she starts barking).  And your husband should keep up with the no eye contact and throwing treats in her direction, when she is quiet.

 

It is going to take some time to get on top of this so be patient.  :)

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Boronia   

ok J, I'll get ready with the hail-storm of treats

though it may be interpreted as rewards for barking

time will tell I suppose

 

edited to add that I don't forcibly put her in in the pantry-room, I open the door and say 'in you go' and she walks in. She is probably spending her time licking Henry's place mat where he has his bone :)

Edited by Boronia
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RuralPug   

I doubt whether the five minutes time out is going to harm her psychologically, but nor do I think that it will do anything to stop her fear of your OH.

I agree that your hubby coming home needs to be associated with good feelings like food and treats! Which is why I suggested that he serve their evening meals but possibly the storm of treats will work just as well, as long as she doesn't (as you fear) associate it with her barking at him.

I'm curious, though. What happens on weekends or public holidays/days off?
Is it just him coming through the front door at the end of a workday or does it happen if he comes inside after an errand or watering the lawn or whatever? I imagine she eyes him sidewise and avoids him the rest of the time, is that right?

Does she ever see him with one of the others in his lap while he watches TV or something? That is often reassuring to a scared dog, to see another dog being cuddled.

I couldn't agree more on just be patient!! It will take time and do continue in your efforts.

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KobiD   

I wouldn't be rewarding her for barking, but the trick her is to find the threshold at which she can still function and then reward and with time close the gap down. 

 

As above, is it a particular scenario in which she barks, or is it whenever she see's him? With what you've described I would start by him telling you when he's getting home. That way you can get the flow of treats started before he gets out of the car. Keep rewarding as he approaches. The moment she stops eating and goes to vocalising stop the treats and stop the progress. Have him move back to a point where she stops and then reward heavily again, approach.. continue the cycle. She will soon associate the action of not barking with the treats coming. I'd then move her away and put her in your time out area with some treats while he comes inside and that way she doesn't get to practice the barking in that instance.. it becomes positive all around for the dog. 

 

Eventually he should be able to close enough distance to where your husband can actually deliver the treats. I'd also try and get him involved in feeding time if possible. 

 

Our pup used to (and still sometimes does) get very excited when guests would come over. I found giving her a high value reward such as a kong or bone would give her a buffer where she'd 1) associate guests arriving with good things happening for her, and 2) to watch the interaction with the guests and take some of the initial excitement off before she'd greet them. 

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Boronia   

OH is here most of the time, he has his office under the house where he does all his Coastcare/bushcare stuff as well as at his work bench making automatic proximity cameras to take photos of the rare little water mice at selected feed stations (O/T but so far only has photos of ibis!) so he comes upstairs fairly often.

She sits on the back landing waiting until she hears him moving then starts with woof......woof....woof and then starts her woofwoofwoofwoof when she sees him and trots into the lounge room and looks at him from the (safety?) of the opened front sliding door, if that's closed she will peek around the arm chairs.

He does talk to her but is now trying the ignore method, she is definitely not so bad as last week but it's still is a pain.

I will try the 'lets all sit on the sofa together and watch TV' method tonight.

She has this odd quirk; when I sneeze, cough or blow my nose she comes running over and will jump on my lap so perhaps I will ask OH will start sniffing and blowing his nose.

I am finding it rather awkward as OH wouldn't hurt a fly and dogs like him so he may become paranoid with her antics.

The hail-storm of dry cat food seems to be working as a distraction.

She also is carefully watching when he pats and fusses over Henry and calls him a good dog.

She doesn't run away down the front stairs anymore but if the sliding door is open she will go out to the veranda and keep a watchful eye on what is going on inside.

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22 hours ago, Boronia said:

ok J, I'll get ready with the hail-storm of treats

though it may be interpreted as rewards for barking

time will tell I suppose

Im so far from an expert its not funny - but I see this as "bringer of good things" not a reward as such.

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Does she ever go into your OH's office Boronia?  Perhaps she could be lured in there, with treats, when he isn't in there at first and build on it.  It may be this mysterious room that is part of the problem?

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Boronia   

It may be just too scary for her as when you go under the house it is divided into two rooms, one large and the other small, the large area is full of shelving as well as the work-bench and honestly there is just sooo much crap associated with his Coastcare stuff...I mean boxes of stuff as well as heaps of 'Clean Up Australia' bags used for the group who have just finished cleaning up CobbyCobby island https://www.facebook.com/SMBICoastCare/  the smaller is his office and you get to that by wending your way past the shelving and associated [email protected]

sigh...

 

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Sounds like that's part of the problem.  Would she follow you in?  Perhaps you need to keep walking in and out of the area, dropping little treats, to encourage her to go in, when you have time.  You would need to ignore her and go about your business, maybe look in boxes or poke around in shelves, all done quietly.  Just take it step by step.

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Boronia   

she follows me readily if I have her on a lead, it's a pity there are no rats in those boxes; no need for treats if there is rat-smell or rat-scuffling noises

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