How to Stop My Dog Barking When Out Walking

Wouldn’t it be nice if your dog could remain calm and just be “a good boy” when you take him out on walks?

I mean, without barking at everyone he comes across on the road?

In this article, I’d be giving you great tips on how to stop your dog from barking when walking.

Dog owners are usually embarrassed, or uncomfortable when their dogs just can’t keep quiet. I’ve had this experience before with my Shepherd and it wasn’t funny.

He bore his teeth and barked at every other dog that came our way.

Luckily for me, I figured out how to solve this problem, but first, I had to understand why my dog barked on walks.

The social structure of humans are very different from dogs, so don’t expect your dog to say “hi” when he comes across the next dog or a stranger.

A lot of dog owners don’t understand a dog’s social rules, that’s why they can’t figure out why they bark when they’re out. 

Dogs could feel tense and insecure when they come in contact with strangers and other dogs, and an insecure dog will bark all he wants when he’s on the road.

Barking is simply a response, one that triggers the fight or flight syndrome, which piles up the hormones in their blood stream. As they pile up, they will keep barking.

If you notice your dog is anxious, don’t take him out just yet, make sure he’s relaxed first. Or else you’ll have a whole lot of barking to deal with!

If The Dog You’re Walking Is Barking At Another Dog, What Should You Do?

Do you know what “barrier frustration” is?

Well it’s quite different from aggression, as most dogs have been found to be friendly with other dogs when they are off the leash, but very reactive when they are restrained.

First things first, have your dog examined by a vet to make sure he’s of sound mental health. If he is, then you can proceed with training him how not to bark at other dogs when you take him for a walk.

Below are a few tips that worked great for me, read on!

1. Bring another dog to your yard

Teach your dog to relax, and that other dogs aren’t threats, but friends.

You can have your neighbor's dog come over your yard and have practice sessions with them. Make sure you keep them on a leash during this exercise.

The more he interacts and familiarizes with the new dog in your yard, the better his chances will be at interacting with dogs on the road.

When you notice your dog is becoming friendly with the new dog, then you can move on to the next stage.

2. Expose him to other dogs on the road

Take him out on the road, be sure to have him on a leash when you do. Also have a clicker and some doggy treats in hand.

Create some distance between your dog and the next dog you come across, either on your street or at the park. The other dog should be close enough so your dog can notice him, but far enough to avoid physical contact.

If your dog sees this strange dog without barking, then he has made some progress. Make sure you press the clicker and give him a treat for good behavior. Treats will help him relax on the road, do this often at the beginning stages.

3. Teach him to heel

The next phase is to teach your dog to heal as he approaches other dogs. Don’t have him on a tight leash, as that will increase his reactivity, a loose leash is ideal.

Give him a treat if he walks next to you, and he’ll associate getting treats with being beside you. If he pulls on the leash, stop him immediately and draw him back with a treat.

You can walk past the other dog keeping a short distance, and reward your dog with treats after you do this successfully. When he gets used to walking past other dogs without barking, allow him to play off-leash, but only in a safe area.

You can also teach your dog to turn by using simple commands like “turn”, and slightly pull the leash towards your direction. Immediately he turns, give him a treat until he gets used to the command.

You can use this to keep him from getting too close to other dogs as you walk by.

How To Stop Dog Barking At People On Walks

When you take your dog out on walks and he barks at people, it isn’t just tiring for you, it also keeps the people on the streets uncomfortable. For this reason, it is great to have your dog trained to the point where he’d be calm when encountered with passers-by.

Before you begin training, be sure to find out why he barks at people. It could be for many different reasons, but the most common reason is the fear of new or certain types of people. For example, your dog could be afraid of tall people, children or people wearing hats.

Other reasons why your dog barks at people on the road include –

  • Excitement – Your dog might actually be a “people lover” and is just excited to see them. Hence he expresses himself in the way he knows best – barking
  • Frustration due to excitement – He may be excited at meeting people but frustrated he can’t get close to them since he’s restrained on a leash
  • Protection – This stems from fear. When your dog is afraid, he’s not just thinking about himself, he’s thinking about you too. He barks to protect you from what he believes is a threat

Now that you’ve understood the possible reasons why your dog barks at people during walks, you can easily train him not to.

Follow these simple tips

1. Make a list of triggers

As I pointed out earlier, a dog barks at people for different reasons, these reasons are the triggers.

You need to specifically identify these triggers and make a list of them. If you cannot observe all his triggers alone, you can ask members of your family to help you keep an eye out for possible triggers.

His trigger could be kids in strollers, tall men wearing hats or a person dressed in all black. Make a list of these, they will be helpful during training

2. Use his favorite rewards

In all my years dealing with dogs, I have never come across a dog who didn’t love treats. Treats are their “obedience” button and they’ll do just as you want when they know they’ll get a snack in return.

Now turn it up a notch, don’t just come with any regular treat, come with his FAVORITE treat!

As you walk him, look for possible triggers and approach them, don’t get too close though. Once you notice he’s becoming tense, call his name and when he turns, give him a treat. This will take his mind away from the person and he’ll be more relaxed.

This will make him associate triggers with treats instead of fear. Once he sees a trigger, he expects you to call him and hand him a treat.

Those triggers would over time seem more friendly to him and he’ll improve as his emotional response changes.

3. Use the right training collar

Using a good training collar is very important because it gives you better control. It can also prevent pulling and lunging.

I recommend a little slack in the leash because it keeps your dog by your side and it also makes him easier to control. Another advantage of holding him close is that dogs are usually calmer when they are closer to their owners.

4. Use bark control devices

Using a handheld anti-bark device has proven to be helpful. Be sure to use them with some voice commands during training

What Is A Bark Control Device?

Oh, in case you don’t know what an anti-bark, or bark control device is, well let me enlighten you a bit.

A bark control device is one that deters a dog from barking further by emitting harmless, ultrasonic waves that only dogs can hear. It is 100% inaudible to humans and it is perfectly safe to use.

There are 2 types – the automatic ones and the ones that are operated manually. The manually operated bark control devices are best for training your dog not to bark during walks since they are small and can be carried around

How Do Bark Control Devices Work?

This may be new to you and you may seem surprised, well don’t be. Dog owners have been using these devices for years and they have proven to be safe and effective.

The automatic models work slightly differently from the manual models.

With the manual models, all you need to do is press a button that triggers the release of ultrasonic waves. Humans can’t hear these sounds, but they are annoying to dogs.

Your dog will notice that the more it barks, the more the annoying sound is heard. Dogs can’t stand such frequencies and this will stop him from barking.

Many of these devices have frequency level settings, and it’s recommended you start with the lowest frequency.

Keep in mind that it is very safe to use and even though the sound is annoying to the dog, it won’t harm him.

As for the automatic models, you can keep those in your home or yard. These models have built-in microphones that pick up the dog's barks and automatically emits ultrasonic waves. It will keep emitting these waves until the dog stops barking.

They are also perfectly safe, as I mentioned before. These ultrasonic sounds are just annoying, not harmful.

Think about the effect a fork screeching across the surface of a ceramic plate gives us humans, annoying right?

So Which Brand Of Anti Bark Device Is The Best?

Great question! As a dog owner, you’d want the best for your dog. Honestly, not one product can be classified as “the best”.

There are just so many great brands and models of anti-bark devices out there. Luckily for you, I’ve come across some really great products you can try.

I recommend 3 of the brands listed below –

1. Ankuwa Ultrasonic Anti Barking Device

This device is shaped beautifully, just like a bird house so it’d fit right in! You could hang it in your garden or use as part of your interior decorator.

It has a 50ft ultrasonic range, meaning it could also help to keep your neighbor’s barking dog quiet!

Best of all, it’s very safe and easy to use!

2. Zelers Ultrasonic Deterrent

This device looks nice and friendly and doesn’t give off any harmful frequency. You can easily place it up on your cupboard, or fit it in with the rest of your home décor.

It comes in 2 colors (black & brown) and it has 4 adjustable sound levels. It also has a 50ft range so it can pick up your dog’s bark from anywhere in your yard.

It is very effective and it’s perfectly safe to use, 100%

3. Yao Yeow Anti Barking Control Device

This device is great because it is water/rain proof, meaning you can use it during the rains without any fear of it getting damaged.

It is totally inaudible to humans and its frequency is safe. It has a 50ft range as well, meaning it could also keep the barking dog from the next yard shut. I recommend!

Conclusion

We love our dogs and we want them to be happy, and we need to be happy too. A dog that barks constantly and uncontrollably could be frustrating, especially when we take them out on walks.

The tips I mentioned above worked for me, as well as for lots of other dog owners and I’m sure they’ll work for you too!

Let us know your favorite tip and how effectively it worked for you. Also, if you’ve got any extra tip on how to stop my dog barking when out walking then kindly share in the comment section. Someone may need it!

We’d be glad to hear from you!

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