Need help with barking dog

(19 Posts)
HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 13:16:38

So I started a thread a while back that people were telling me my dog was going to eat my baby, I then followed up once baby arrived that dog hasn't eaten baby. He is really good, when she cries he tries to lick her feet (not sure where he got the idea that would help!) but other wise doesn't really notice her.

However one problem has developed that I don't know how to fix. Bailey was never a dog that barked much but the last few weeks he's started. Basically I'll be sitting down, he'll come in from the garden and he will want me to go out and play with him. I can't always, if I'm feeding DD for instance and then he'll start barking at me. I don't know how to stop him.

I don't want to keep him locked outside because that's just not fair or what he's used to but the day he woke DD (who doesn't sleep a lot) I was ready to throw him out.

DD is 4 weeks tomorrow
Bailey is a 16 month golden retriever

What hasn't helped is DH has taken over walking him and can't do it till he gets home from work, I used to take him in the morning. I live in rural Ireland, dog walkers do not exist. BIL helps by taking him once a week but he really doesn't want to do more than that.

Help please! I love my dog but I'm getting really frustrated and its not fair because he's lovely. I was sitting on the couch earlier feeding DD and he lay down beside me and put his head in my lap.

ender Fri 06-Sep-13 13:46:03

He's still a puppy so probably wakes up full of energy and raring to go. My lab would drive me mad if he didn't get a walk in the morning, he sleeps for hours when he gets home so worth the effort.
Is there any chance of him having a walk in the morning? Even a short one, with you sitting down somewhere and throwing a ball, might settle him down a bit and stop him barking for attention.

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 13:52:42

ender that's what I do but after a short while he lies down and starts chewing on his toy and doesn't run, then he's back in 10 minutes later barking at me OR comes in with his toy in his mouth and does huge puppy dog eyes at me - I'm not sure which is worse!

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 13:55:29

I just throw the ball in the garden - me walking him just isn't possible ATM.

Floralnomad Fri 06-Sep-13 14:18:07

Why can't you put the baby in a sling and take them out ?

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 14:24:33

flora I have to walk him on a lead because he gets over excited when he sees other people and dogs and I'm anaemic and have stitches so at the moment I'm not strong enough to manage him and baby. I have walked him once without baby and I nearly fainted half way through.

Whoknowswhocares Fri 06-Sep-13 14:31:56

It sounds like frustration tbh.
If you really can't walk him (too early after birth physically I'm assuming, otherwise I agree with floralnomad then you need to use the sling or buggy and get out for a quick walk to burn off the energy) then hubby will have to get up and take him out for a short walk before work.
It's a bind for you both but it's only for a very short while.
Also you could tire him out with some training and/or brain games at home in lieu of exercise. Rather than a ball, throw pieces of kibble when hes not looking and play' find it', teach him new tricks, bit of training, maybe a kong or commercially bought brain game (mine loves her buster dog maze) will all help settle him down

Whoknowswhocares Fri 06-Sep-13 14:32:27

Dammit, cross posted!

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 14:40:23

DH can't walk him before work unfortunately. Where we live has very narrow country lanes and no street lighting. It's too dangerous to take DDog that early.

The brain games are a good idea. Will look into those.

Whoknowswhocares Fri 06-Sep-13 14:45:10

Any friend/relative/neighbour who might take him for a short walk?
A dog walker could be enlisted for a few weeks, which wouldn't cost massively as it is only for a few weeks until you are back to normal?

Whoknowswhocares Fri 06-Sep-13 14:47:24

Also....any reason why DH can't just pop the dog in the car, drive the short distance to a safe place and then walk the dog?

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 15:04:38

I'm hoping to get BIL to walk him. He took him for a walk Wednesday but seems to think that should keep him happy for a week! It's complicated by the fact BIL lives at home with PIL who also have a golden and BIL doesn't walk him (he's never really been walked much so has adjusted whereas I walked my boy every day even when I was overdue) so he obviously doesn't like walking the dog.

Where we live it would be a 20/25 minute drive for DH to get somewhere he could walk the dog so not a short drive unfortunately.

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 15:06:40

I'm doing something I hate now. People giving great suggestions and me going no no no. I'm sorry!

Any advice on stopping the barking? Like training ideas?

ender Fri 06-Sep-13 15:15:56

The Dogs Trust has lots of info on barking.

Whoknowswhocares Fri 06-Sep-13 15:29:34

Google 'kikopup barking'
A really fabulous trainer posting videos on you tube using positive reinforcement. There are several different ones depending on why the dog is barking, plus a fab 'positive interrupter' one which can be used to great effect in a variety of situations.
If you don't already clicker train, that might help you, but it's perfectly possible to follow the steps without one.

ender Fri 06-Sep-13 15:30:38

Just seen the Dogs Trust video explains how to teach dog to stop barking, must try that with my new rescue GSD X. I'm having to restrict garden time because he barks at bees and we've got loads of them this year.

Floralnomad Fri 06-Sep-13 15:58:55

Well looking at it realistically you will be back in circulation soon so its only a short term problem so I'd teach him to stop barking. With mine I've done it by teaching him 'quiet for a sweet ' ,he also does 'no jumping up for a sweet' , infact he will do most things for a sweet !

HelgatheHairy Fri 06-Sep-13 17:17:42

BIL just happened to call in so DH asked would he walk the dog Monday, Wednesday and Friday and he agreed. We will be paying him as he's not working and we live 30 mins drive away. Happy days. Still need to work on the barking but he should be much happier.

moosemama Fri 06-Sep-13 17:31:23

I second Kikopup's videos. I use a positive interrupter and also the 'quiet' cue for my dogs.

My new puppy is a barker, although admittedly at poor old Lurcherboy rather than me. I have taught him to respond to the cue 'quiet' using a clicker and now when he starts haranguing Lurcherboy I just say 'quiet' and he stops.

I agree that he might be frustrated and need some more exercise, but he also has to learn to entertain himself and that he can't just demand walks and play whenever he wants them. If he's barking when you are feeding your baby I'd suggest having a pot of treats next to you, wait for a gap in the barking and say "quiet' 'good' then toss him a treat. After a few goes he will probably get the idea and you can start delaying the 'good' and treat delivery to extend the length of time he's quiet and ensure he doesn't just start barking then stopping to get more and more treats.

An alternative way is to teach him to 'speak' then you can teach him to be 'quiet' by rewarding him for the quiet spell after he barks rather than the actual bark, iswim.

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