About 2 weeks ago, my dog Sky and I moved into a brand new apartment in a brand new city. Being my first time living roommate-free, I was pretty psyched about the new-found privacy and extra space to decorate to my heart’s content.
Also, I was ready to let Sky (who has been crate-trained from the start) stay out while I was at work. Not only would this give her the opportunity to play with her toys and wander the apartment during the day, but I could count on some added security (she’s pretty big and has an even bigger bark).
Well… I guess I underestimated the barking factor. Not even 3 days into my stay here, I got a lovely letter wedged in the side of my front door from the only person I had met so far – my downstairs neighbor, who seemed like a pretty cool guy in his 40s. The letter read:
Good morning Rebecca,
Just letting you know that your dog barks almost the entire time you are gone. Also, if you could walk a bit softer, I would appreciate it.
Initially, I was slightly offended about the walking softer thing… I weigh like 125 lbs, and I was walking completely normally… Was I supposed to tip-toe around in my own apartment? I pay my rent and I should be able to walk around like a normal human being. But then I decided to focus instead on Sky’s barking.
What I thought would be an advantage (free security) was really just a nuisance. Over the next week, I tried out different things to experiment with how to keep her from barking, but when it came down to it, Sky was going to bark if she heard or saw ANYTHING. So, for now I have had to put her back in the crate when I’m not home, and away from the window. Total bummer!
How do you control your dog’s barking – is it something they grow out of, or do some dogs just like to bark no matter what?
Kimberly LeMaster, a certified dog trainer, has some answers for Becca. You can read her advice here – Problem Barking – In Answer to the Barkoholic.