Okaw Veterinary Clinic

140 W. Sale
Tuscola, IL 61953

(217)253-3221

okawvetclinic.com

Holiday Howling: How to Stop Barking at Guests

Barking at the Door

Bella on bed with toysHave your dog wear a leash tied to the collar - a dragline. When someone enters the door/room, call your dog to you. If they will not come to you, pick up the dragline and jolly tone, lead your dog to a spot and tie (tether) there. Use a heavy piece of furniture, or screw eye in the wall.

When you put him/her in the spot, place a hand full of treats on the floor to reward. As you go to the door toss treats back at your dog even if barking.  

If barking, lunging or growling persists - Take your dog farther away from the door. Put your pet in a room or kennel if they are happy there. Give him/her a kong, treats, handful of food or a special toy so they see that the other room is a good place.

If he/she is calm in their spot or in another room, toss rewards as you allow your guest to enter. Break it down into every step - Then touch the door knob toss treats, open the door toss treats, greet the person toss treats, have the person toss treats to him/her as they come in, have the person come in and sit down and toss treats. If he/she is calm and laying in the spot keep tossing treats to him/her as you are talking. If you feel okay with how he/she is doing then you can let him/her off then tether but leave the dragline on him/her. Have the person toss kibble to him/her as you are talking.  

Practice with friends coming over at least 2 times a week. Try various people and have your pet hungry.