Have you ever tried to stop a Labradoodle from barking? Having a Labradoodle loudly barking outside is a huge annoyance not only for you but also for your neighbors.
It doesn’t matter if they have that deep “Woof, woof” or the more ear piercing “Yap, Yap” of a smaller dog, it can drive anybody crazy in no time.
The good news is that barking isn’t required for a Labradoodle to do in order to be happy. Actually, barking is often a sign of anxiety, frustration, stress or overexcitement and none of these emotions are considered to be particularly good for a dog, or for you!
Remember that a happy and content Labradoodle doesn’t bark much.
Let’s have a look at some of the reasons for barking and what you can do to put a stop to it…
Why Do Dogs Bark
Having a dog that barks when you aren’t home is an extremely common problem. And more often than not, the owner doesn’t have a clue that they have a problem until the neighbors complain, or even worse, that a dog control officer comes by for a visit.
Knowing why your Doodle barks, is the answer to how you can stop it, as you can actually find and address the root of your dogs’ problem and not only attempt to constantly treat the symptoms.
Remember that you have to see all this through your dogs’ eyes, and it doesn’t really matter why you “think” your dog is barking. If you really want to stop the barking, then you will have to find the main cause of the behavior.
The first thing you should know is that all breeds of dogs bark to some extent as a way of communicating. Your Labradoodle probably has numerous different kinds of barks and each one is used to convey a different message.
This can be an issue due to the fact that some of a dogs’ barking is a matter of sociality. I have told my family that it is not reasonable to expect a dog to never bark at all, as that would basically be like expecting your child to never speak a word either.
If you’re able to listen closely enough, you will typically be able to find out just what your dog is saying. By listening to Monty, I have learned to tell the difference between his barking, from being a warning to a stranger walking by the house and when he’s just “speaking” with the next door dog.
If you really want to understand these differences, you will have to pay attention to the duration, frequency, and pitch of the barking.
If it’s a rapid, high pitched bark, it’s typically a sign of a happy dog. Where on the other hand, if your Doodle is barking with a slow, low pitch bark mixed with a sense of aggression, your furry friend is feeling threatened in some sort.
If you are able to understand what your dog is saying with the barking, then you will be able to address the problem. If you manage to remove whatever is threatening your dog, he will almost certainly stop barking.
So, the first step to stop a Labradoodle from barking is to understand what he is communicating and why he is barking.
What if the Labradoodle Barks While You are Gone?
Labradoodles are pack animals and they understand that there are followers and leaders. And one of the primary goals for the pack leader is to protect the pack.
And suddenly it’s Monday morning and everybody is leaving to go to work or school and the dog is left alone at home and they start getting stressed, so would you if you had just lost your entire pack.
That’s the main reason why a Labradoodle is stressed and barking when you leave them by themselves. They are just howling out for you to return back home. They are really just trying to do one of their primary jobs.
Look at it like this, if you are a parent with a toddler, one of your primary tasks is to always keep that child safe, so you’re constantly keeping a watchful eye on them. All-day long, and all over your home, you know exactly where they are. They are always safe.
But what if they suddenly walk out of the home and close the front door behind them locking you inside, how would you react? You’d most likely start looking for an exit and run after them.
But what if you found that the door was locked and there was no way for you to it. Every single door and window in your home is locked tightly. Then how would you react?
Would you find your phone and call for help? That’s not an option for your dog.
Shout and scream for help then? Well yes, you probably would, and that is exactly what your Labradoodle is doing in this situation.
You surely wouldn’t take a relaxing sit and drink a cup of coffee, if you knew that your small child was roaming around the streets by themselves.
Stress is a Reason for Labradoodle Barking
Perhaps it’s starting to make sense why your dog is stressed and barking when you leave them?
And it’s the same with all those other irritating behaviors such as chewing, destruction and attempting to jump over or digging under the fence that only happens when you aren’t around. Those signs are all symptoms of a dog that’s stressed and desperately worried about you not being home safe. Remember that your dog can’t tell you this in any other way.
What Not to Do
So what’s the answer to how do I get my Labradoodle to stop barking? Well, it’s almost surely not by throwing them a bone to chew on while you’re away. That’s like telling the parent who is completely stressed because their toddler is out on the streets: “Don’t worry, here’s a box of chocolates,” and while you might love chocolates, it’s not really going to work in this situation.
But for some reason, this is still one of the most common practices to get a Labradoodle to stop barking. But giving them toys stuffed with food doesn’t treat the cause of the problem, and neither does other types of distractions.
They are only treating the symptoms and, if you’re lucky, might work for half an hour or so, but it’s not the best long term solution. I think that because these distractions temporarily manage to stop the barking is the reason why so many people think they seriously work.
But if you searched for how do I get my Labradoodle to stop barking, I’m sure you will already know is, because you have already tried it several times.
The QUIET Command
In situations where your dog is just “talking” to other dogs that are walking by your home, the QUIET command can help you with those temporary barking quarrels.
As with any other attempt to train your dog a response that isn’t instinctive, you will need to have some patience. You must give your dog enough opportunities to associate the command with being quiet.
There are several benefits to teaching your Doodle this command. It gives you a verbal cue that will quiet down your Labradoodle in any given situation. You can stop a Labradoodle from barking when you’re home or in other familiar situations.
Train the Command
Try and figure out what situations make your Labradoodle bark and attempt to recreate one of those. Sometimes it’s another dog walking by or a doorbell ringing. When you’ve discovered what gets your dog to bark like crazy, just recreate the situation.
Your Doodle will usually start barking when you do this.
Now you hold a treat beside his nose and say the command QUIET (or STOP or ENOUGH or anything or the sort). It doesn’t matter what exact command you use, just be sure that you are consistent and always use the same command.
When your dog has quieted down, give them the treat, and once again repeat the QUIET command.
Then you repeat this process several times.
You can probably expect that your Labradoodle will test your resolve. But stand firm, and don’t give the treat until your dog stops barking.
As you keep doing the exercise, you should extend how long you want your dog to be quiet before you give him/her the treat. When it’s possible for you to wait 10 seconds or more, it means that you are on the right track and that your dog is becoming accustomed to the command and what it means exactly.
If you have a Labradoodle that barks for no apparent reason, they might also simply be bored! And while you might not believe that, as your dog as plenty of space to roam around in and use some of their energy, that doesn’t mean they’ve been mentally stimulated.
Labradoodles are highly intelligent dogs that require mental stimulation to avoid boredom from becoming an issue.
Take a look at my post on Brain Games for Labradoodles if you want to see several different ways you can challenge your Doodle, to ensure they don’t end up being bored.
- READ MORE: 15 Great Brain Games for Labradoodles
Additional Tips To Help Stop Your Labradoodle From Barking
Besides what I’ve already written above, let’s have a look at some additional tips that you should use to help stop your Doodles’ barking.
- Exercise: You should always exercise your dog before you leave as a tired dog is a lot more likely to relax. Just opening your door and letting your dog outside to take a pee isn’t adequate. One of the most efficient ways to help your dog burn off some excess energy is to take them out for some playtime. If your dog starts barking while you are playing with him/her make sure you find the cause of the barking.
- Find the right area: Try leaving your dog in different sports. Some dogs will relax more when inside, others outside and some also prefer smaller spaces such as a bathroom. If your dog is in a space that makes them uncomfortable, they will almost certainly call out to let you know that they aren’t comfortable. There are several things that can make a dog uncomfortable. So consider if your Labradoodle has enough shade, space, water and so on.
- Watered and Fed: You should always make sure to leave water down and that your Doodle is well-fed and warm before you leave. A hungry Doodle is a noisy Doodle, and it’s extremely important to the overall health of your dog that they are able to stay sufficiently hydrated.
- Pick up the Bones: You could also try and leave toys around for your dog but avoid using bones. It’s important to remember that toys are only temporary relief and that you should only use toys when you are home. If you’re looking for something to occupy your Doodle’s time while you are in the house, a solid KONG toy stuffed peanut butter is always a great option. Check out this link to see the current price on Amazon.
- Music and TV: You could also consider leaving the TV or music on for your dog as these distractions can also be of help.
- Herbal Remedies: There are many herbal products for dogs available which are designed to help relax them, but again it’s not something that really treats the root cause of the problem, they are only there to help relax a dog, and they are also quite expensive.
- Dog Walkers: A break during the middle of the day can definitely help break up a monotonous day for a dog. I’ve previously had to take my dog to work for a few weeks while we fixed a part of his kennel. I got him out walking twice a day, and he loved it and it was also highly beneficial for me. I was able to get out of the office twice a day, and the walk gave me a lot more energy for the rest of the day.
- Leave Quietly: You should leave your dog quietly. While it can be fun to get all riled up when you leave your dog, it’s much better if you just leave calmly. Say your goodbyes 5 minutes before leaving to help your dog stay relaxed when you finally leave.
- Anxiety Jackets: You can also find comfort and anxiety jackets online, that will help to keep your dog calm and relaxed. They are not guaranteed success though, as it depends on the dog. I’ve had quite a lot of success with it with my dog, but other owners haven’t been as successful. Take a look at the ThunderShirt Classic Anxiety Jacket if you’re interested in knowing more. They offer a money-back guarantee if you, or your dog, isn’t satisfied.
- READ MORE: 11 GREAT LABRADOODLE TRAINING TIPS
A Great Program to Help Stop A Labradoodle From Barking
So with all that said hopefully, you should have a far better understanding of what could possibly be your dogs’ problem.
I would suggest if you are really serious about how to stop a Labradoodle from barking that you also take a look at something called The Dog Solution.
They have an entire section dedicated to stopping this sort of barking under the dog problem section “Separation Anxiety”. And they offer many training methods for other issues you might have with a Labradoodle.
It’s not a step-by-step program, but it’s a great reference source if you’re looking for some extra guidance for any additional training you’re already doing.
Always Be Patient
As you try to find your way through your dogs’ natural response to stressful situations, you will have to be a source of stability. If you provide your dog with confidence throughout the entire training process, they will be able to gain a sense of confidence if you are able to remain consistent with the expectations and commands.
You will have to remain calm and patient. These are two personal traits that will inspire confidence in your Doodle. When you first introduce your Labradoodle to any new skill or behavior, it will typically take some time. Their initial response may seem like they are not ready to play along, but the reality is that they are just trying to figure things out. Give them a chance and it usually shouldn’t take long.
If everything else fails, you could consider getting a bark collar. You can get many different models that are quite efficient, and aren’t designed to give your dog a shock as older models, but only some increasing vibrations until they understand what’s going on.
Take a look at my article on the best bark collars for Labradoodles.
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