How to stop dog barking?
Teach your dog the "Quiet" command.

How to stop dog barking? There are many methods and techniques. In this section I want to teach you how to train the "quiet" command to your dog so you can gently ask him to stop being so loud.

This useful command, can tell your pet to quiet down when he is barking incessantly. I highly recommend you train this to your pet from puppy-hood (see also the "settle" command to calm a hyper dog or puppy).

If after teaching the Quiet command your pet still has barking problems, please visit our main page on barking for more solutions, tips and advice.

To learn how to stop dog barking, we are going to use a dog training method called "capturing". It is very easy and efficient if done properly. The idea is to wait until your pet does the behavior you want (on his own), so you can instantly reward him for it. With many repetitions the animal learns that doing the behavior pays! Now you can add a command to it and work on making it a reliable "quiet".

How to stop dog barking?

Step 1: Charge the clicker! (or teach your dog the meaning of a Marker word, like "good dog").

How to stop dog barking? First, teach him that the sound of a clicker or your words "good dog" mean - "Yes! That's it!" It's like teaching your pet English.

To do this, click the clicker and immediately afterwards give your pooch a treat. If you prefer, you can use the words "good dog" instead of a clicker. The method is the same, say the words and immediately follow with a piece of food.

Repeat this many times, no matter what your pet is doing at the moment. Repeat in the morning, afternoon and evening. Repeat in the living-room, the kichen and the yard.

Your dog has learned the word when he hears the sound (click or your word) and his eyes light up, tail wags and he looks excited (before you even give him the treat!). This is basic classical conditioning and it will be a great tool to teach your pet any commands from now on!

Your furry friend didn't know what "good dog" meant before you taught him. Now that he knows, you will be able to say it as praise and your hound will understand it!

Step 2: Reward a quiet dog and ignore a loud one!

The following infographic and instructions will teach you how to stop a dog barking. It's simple enough if you are consistent with your training.

how to teach dog to be quiet on command, how to stop dog barking

When your pooch gets into one of his barking moments, take a deep breath and wait. Wait until he is quiet. Be patient, do not say anything, do not touch or even look at him…just wait….WAIT….

As soon as your pet becomes quiet say "Quiet". Then immediately click and treat if he is still being quiet.

If your furry friend remains quiet you can keep clicking and rewarding him for longer and longer periods of time in one training session.

Note: I will be using "Click and treat" to refer to the time you should praise and give your dog a food reward. If you are using a marker word, just say the word followed by a food treat.

For example, your pet stops barking, you say "Quiet" and click and treat. He sits there and looks at you for more. You get up and walk around the room, ignoring him. If he is still quiet …say "Quiet" and click and treat again. Now you can walk to the kitchen and back, if he is still quiet…say "Quiet" and click and treat!

If you know of something that triggers barking in your pet, you can use it for training sessions. For example, if your pooch barks at the door bell, ask someone to ring it for training sessions. The more repetitions you can get, the easier it will be for your hound to understand what he is being rewarded for.

Repeat this many times, it will take a while for your pet to understand that what brings the click and treat is actually him being quiet, not the door bell or the person walking by outside your house. But you are teaching a reliable command with positive methods…so the time is worth investing!

This article explains how to best apply the method "ignore good behavior and reward bad behavior".

It will help you understand better how to stop dog barking.

Step 3: Test the command "quiet".

Golden retriever puppy barking by Ryhor Bruyeu

Are you getting the idea of how to stop dog barking? With many training repetitions your hound should start being quiet more often, specially around you. This is basic animal learning and can be explained by Operant Conditioning. When a behavior is rewarded, it is more likely to happen again.

Now it is time to test the command "Quiet" and see if it stops your dog from barking. Because up until this point you have been saying it right after your pet got quiet. Now you have to say it before it happens!

If you have been using a known trigger (like the door bell), you can use it again to get your dog to bark. Now say "quiet". Did he stop barking after 10 seconds of your command? If he did, click and treat. If he didn't you will say "quiet" again as soon as he is quiet, but you will NOT give him a food reward this time. You can click or say good dog.

From now on you will only give your dog a treat if he quiets down AFTER your command.

Note: I do not endorse the use of punishment, but if you will use it anyway, please do it right. Teach your pet steps 1 through 3. At this point, if your dog doesn't stop barking, you can punish him (a loud and startling noise should be sufficient, never physically punish your canine friend). The idea is to give your pet the chance to learn that Quiet means to stop barking and he has a chance to avoid the punishment. It is extremely important to reward quiet times too!

Step 4: Fine tune how to stop dog barking.

Do you want your pet to stop barking sooner after you say the command? On step 3 you were rewarding your hound if he stopped barking within 10 seconds of your command.

Now you can ask for 8. When he succeeds, go down to 6…and so on and so forth. Until finally your furry friend stops barking right after your command.

Then you can further raise your criteria and only give your pooch a food reward if he stops barking immediately after your command AND STAYS quiet for longer and longer. Using the same idea above you first reward him for being quiet for a few seconds and as he succeeds you can ask for longer and longer periods of time. You can even teach your barking puppy a release signal like "FREE". A release signals means that your furry friend must keep doing the requested behavior until released by you.

Please learn how to use treats correctly here, to avoid having a dog that only responds when you have food in your hand!

Step 5: How to stop dog barking in a reliable way.

You are almost done teaching your dog how to stop dog barking when asked with the Quiet command.

Finally, you want your command to be reliable. This means that no matter where you are or who is around you, your hound needs to stop barking when you say the command "quiet". The idea is to train your dog the quiet command from step 1 to 4 in many different places and situations. You must start from the beginning each time, but as your pet learns he will fly through the first steps.

Read how to train a reliable command for more information on how to accomplish this.

You are done! And remember if your problem is not completely solved, go to the Barking main page for more ideas and solutions. There are always many different ways to try and solve a dog behavior problem.

If you have specific questions on how to stop dog barking, you can fill out this form. Please be as specific as possible, details and pictures are helpful for me to help you find the right solution!


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