Help with problem barking? *long, sorry!*

  1. Hi everyone

    I have a 6 year old jack russell terrier. Yesterday, I received a complaint from our neighbour: apparently, he barks non-stop all day while I am at work. He never barks while I am at home and the neighbour admitted she knows when I am home, because there is no barking.

    I think the reason he is barking is because the neighbour recently got a cat who wears a collar with a bell. The sound of the bell drives him crazy (sigh, terriers!) but I have taught him to be calm and ignore it. He has evidently since learned that when I am not home, there is nothing to stop him from barking like a maniac. I don't think that asking my neighbour to take the collar off her cat is an option!

    I've searched and searched for solutions, but most of them seem to require the owner to interrupt the barking with a squirt bottle, a distraction or praise etc. Obviously, this isn't viable because the problem only manifests when I'm not around!

    I've read about sonic and citronella collars - has anyone had positive results with either of these with a very headstrong dog?

    Anyone have any other ideas? Thanks so much in advance!
  2. You can get a special collar for your dog. It has a sensor on it, so that when he barks, it will spray citronella on him :p Dogs don't like smelling that, so it should get him to stop.

    I haven't used it myself, but have known people who've used them and it's worked quite well. And lso, he could just be bored? You can try to give him some toys, etc. to distract him.

    I wouldn't recommend the shock collars and a lot of people consider them inhumane.
  3. Argh, these situations are always so tricky. I have no useful advice, but please do not debark your dog or use a shock collar!
  4. why not leave a loud ticking clock? I think its because your dog is bored and lonely. I heard that the sound of a ticking clock can calm the dog. Goodl luck!
  5. Can you leave the radio or TV on so that he doesn't hear the cat?

    We usually leave the news channel on for the dogs when we go out.
  6. lol, any reason why the news channel? Your dogs like to watch CNN? :smile:
  7. I tend to believe your doggies barking has more to do with you not being there. dogs are pack animals and do not like to be alone. it may be stress barking. and getting him a buddy isn't always the answer either cause then you may just have 2 dogs barking (some breeds are more high strung than others.) I would look up someone who breeds your kind of dog and see what they say. and your vet may have some ideas as well.

    btw - we had the same problem years ago with one of our neighbors. she had 2 scottish terriers that barked all day long when she wasn't home. they stopped when she came home. they also stopped when they escaped the house and came over to our house to visit. they were really starved for attention.
  8. Hi everyone

    thanks so much for your help!

    I totally agree, shock collars and debarking are some of the worst kind of cruelty and I wouldn't even consider them! When I said 'sonic collar' I meant one of those ones that emits a loud beep when the dog barks, kind of like a citronella collar.

    I might try a combination of things that you have all suggested. Thank you thank you all - I felt better just knowing there might be a solution out there!
  9. Please post the results. I would like to know what worked.
  10. there are tons of collars out there, one that lets out a loud beep which only your dog will hear. I personally do not believe in using any such collar that lets out a loud noise or shocks a dog, but if it comes down to keeping your dog, you might want to try some sort of collar. In my case my first chi, barked like crazy when I was not home, after a year or so I got a second chi hoping they would keep each other company and it worked perfectly. Neither of my dogs bark now when I am not at home. Maybe you can try getting your dog a friend.
  11. Well i_wona I hope that something works out. *long post warning* I had the same type of thing happen when hubby and I lived in an apartment complex several years ago. We had a Weimaraner who would bark when we were gone if in his house. We tried citranella collars, sonar collars/devices, leaving on the tv, making sure he got exercise, just about everything and nothing worked. With the citranella collar...he learned how many times he had to bark in order for it to be empty and not spray anymore. We wound up leaving him out of his kennel and then he started destroying furniture and such. In reality it was this whole ordeal of anxiety and separation which required me to actually drop the dog off at my parents house anytime husband and I were going to be gone for a period of time. Even after we bought our house the craziness continued with him destroying kennels and actually wearing down his teeth and injuring himself being so frantic to not be in a kennel. And the barking continued. After two years...I sadly gave up and took him to the humane society. He probably needed someone to be with him close to every minute of the day OR some meds and extra attention. It broke my heart, but there was just no way hubby and I felt it was fair for him to not have a mommy and daddy that could be with him all the time he needed. could try those things and they could help or they could not. I have two jack rusell terriers currently (one 4 yrs old and one 6 mo. old) and they are very good in their houses but I know they can have quite loud barks when they want to. I hope things work out. I would suggest if things continue maybe consult with your vet as well.
  12. Just going to add a few things to what my wife has already posted.

    Regarding actual shock collars first: There IS a reason to have these types of collars, and they are NOT for bark prevention. The best usages for true shock collars are for VERY specific situations and training.

    The citronella may work, but understand that there is a high chance that the Jack will either learn to out last the spray or it will learn that it can bark whenever the collar is NOT on.

    Is the Jack in a kennel while you are gone or is it running free? How long of a duration are you gone when this happens? You may want to get a cheap voice recorder or something so you can see if the dog is barking the entire time you are gone or if there are other issues at hand. For example, a former apartment complex we lived at had horrid management. They claimed our dog was barking all the time. This was news to us so we recorded for a few days to see what was going on. The phone would ring, and the dog would occasionally bark, but overall it was nothing extreme. We come to find out that one of the managers would knock on the door to see if the dog would bark, and if he did they would claim the dog was barking again. Just something to think about.

    Is the cats bell loud enough that you can hear it actually? If so I WOULD ask the other woman to do something about that, as it is an annoyance to you as much as your dog barking is to her.
  13. Thank you all again for your advice and kind words...

    LuvLVRN I've heard that weims are so clever that they often figure all sorts of ways to outsmart humans! In fact, I used to know a lady who had a weim and as soon as she would leave the house, he would venture into the kitchen and open the microwave. She would come home to an open microwave and a very innocent looking dog and just couldn't figure out what was happening. One day, she set up a video camera in the kitchen and found out the dog was sneaking in, standing up on his hind legs and pushing the door release button just like a person! Turns out, the weim had noticed that whenever she was in the kitchen, she would push the door release button and food would come out, so he thought he'd have a go himself! They are just so adorable!

    And Addicted DH, thanks so much for your advice - I spoke to a lady at the Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and she also suggested we record the dog, as some people are just trouble makers. We haven't done so yet, but we've started walking him in the mornings to tire him out, I bought one of those treat balls where they have to figure how to get the treats out and we spoke to our neighbour and she has offered to take the cat collar off. We're also trying a new thing - we've bought the dog a cat collar to wear so that maybe he'll get accustomed to the noise... So far so good - I'm going to ring her in a week to see if things are still good.