Dog barks at children at play next door.

Posted by jeff-perring
Feb 9, 2016
Our new addition Bella 11 month old border collie, Shepard mix is having difficulty with any noise our neighbors are making in the backyard, The children are not teasing the dog they are just out jumping around and making noises kids make. She really gets worked up by barking and jumping on the fence, To break the behavior I have tried to bring an over all calm demeanor and get her attention and break the cycle, I then giver her the sit command, After she complies I try and bring her excitement and energy down, This will work for a few minutes but she will be right back at it, I have tried the water bottle and it does work for a sort period as well, I am concerned that If I do this too much I will just be the guy with the water bottle, Please advise thank you,
Posted by Preethi KOP
Feb 10, 2016
Hi Jeff,

Thanks for your message.

Collies are a 'talktative' breed by nature. The good thing is they are also one of the most intelligent breeds around, so it shouldn't be too hard to train her. To begin with, please rule out boredom. Is she getting enough exercise? Does having her in the yard after a good walk stop the barking? Secondly, will distraction help? Have you tried giving her a chew toy or throwing a ball out to her? Lastly, you could train her to bark on command and then teach her a quiet command to use when she bark inappropriately. Lastly, if all else fails, you would have to 'remove the stimulus', or in this case take her away from it.

I hope this helps! Do let us know if you have any other questions.

Good luck with the training!

Posted by jeff-perring
Feb 17, 2016
We have another dog we adopted from another shelter at the same time and about the same age (Shepard mix). We walk them everyday about 45min. Play fetch as well, She just will not come down, I use a ball, squeeze toy, Squirt bottle, It will distract her for a minute but she goes right back at it. I stay calm and assertive but she gets wound up and has a difficult time calming down. I have removed her from the distraction to help bring her out and take a minute, But as I mentioned she is right back at it. Are there any training steps to help her and me to be consistent and reach our goal.

Posted by Preethi KOP
Feb 22, 2016
Thanks for your reply Jeff. Here is a little plan for training dogs to stop barking
1. Find a way of encouraging the dog to bark (a treat, toy or sound of a doorbell).
2. The minutes the dog barks, praise it immediately and start to repeat the word 'speak!' during the vocalisation.
3. Repeat the exercise until the dog associates the word 'speak' with the act of barking and is consistent with it.
4. Reserve praise and rewards for times when the dog has barked only after having heard the 'speak' command.
5. Introduce the word 'quiet!' or 'stop!' while your dog is barking on command, and give it a toy or food treat as soon as it stops barking.
6. Reserve praise and rewards for times when the dog has stopped barking only after having heard the command.
7. Repeat step 6 whenever the dog is barking without being told to speak. This links the signal to be quiet with the cessation of spontaneous barking. Reward liberally for all appropriate responses.

Ideally, use hand signals in addition to verbal commands. Keep your neighbors informed about the training, and, if you know them well enough you could tell them about the commands/signals and give them rewards to hand out to her when she behaves. The kids, would especially love doing this!

Good luck!