Incessant barking

(13 Posts)
bloodypatterdalebarking Sun 25-Sep-16 18:12:35

I have a rescue patterdale who barks incessantly. I have tried the air horn style anti bark things and a calming band style muzzle and nothing works.

Someone at work suggested the humane shock collars but I am not sure I feel ok about them. Has anyone used them? Are they actually humane or are they as evil as they sound??

Googling flags up some plug in am ultrasonic devices - do they work?

If not can anyone offer advice because it is getting to the point we will have to look at rehoming her if we can't solve this issue

Floralnomad Sun 25-Sep-16 19:17:09

None of what you have mentioned sounds very pleasant . What is she barking at ?

bloodypatterdalebarking Sun 25-Sep-16 19:21:09

Flora - not a clue. She has always been neurotic but is getting worse the older she gets

Mybeardeddragonjustdied2016 Sun 25-Sep-16 19:36:08

Holland and Barrett rescue remedy drops are great for anxious dogs. Bit more pet friendly than electrocution!

musicposy Sun 25-Sep-16 21:01:36

I feel your pain. We have a rescue sheltie (shelties love their own voices at the best of times) who barks incessantly at anything and everything. The number of times I have thought of rehoming as a happy solution could not be counted; I could never do that, though, because she had an awful time before coming to me.

Punitive methods of any sort seem to fail as did training to bark on command. I don't have any great solution, but a couple of small ones.

I walk her as often and much as I can. If I pop in the car to collect a DC, she gets strapped in and comes too. The more mentally and physically tired she is, the more she sleeps and the less she barks.

We've tried valarian, rescue remedy and a dap diffuser with limited success. They may help a little, it's hard to say. I think mostly they've helped as a placebo to me feeling I am doing something to improve things!

Known triggers (DH coming in, doorbell, dinner time, me doing anything that looks a bit exciting, oh dear I could go on!) I pick her up and carry her round for a bit. This seems to shut her up instantly and she seems to be calm if I'm carrying her. I couldn't have done it when I first had her, she'd have bitten me out of fear, but she follows me round adoringly nowadays and so is happy to be picked up. The first four months she was totally silent anyway - she then found her voice in a big way!

When we go out I leave dentastix, treat filled stuff, and shut her in the most insulated, away from neighbours and outside noise room we have. I keep up regular discussions with the neighbours as to whether they hear her and when. Luckily we don't have to leave the dogs alone too often or for too long. If we did I'd have to employ a dog walker.

I don't know if any of this helps. I feel at my wits end sometimes - I just try to minimise it, really.

bloodypatterdalebarking Sun 25-Sep-16 21:39:25

Bearded - thanks will try that. I don't like the idea of the shock collars at all but I am genuinely ready to try anything!

Music - her "normal" alerts aren't so much of an issue - door bell, postman, car in drive, horse riding past. the pet corrector air horn thingy help hugely with those. But for the last couple of months she is alerting to absolutely nothing. We got her a companion about a year a go in the vein hope he would help calm her down which dos work briefly but he doesn't alert to anything other than when he feels either me or dd are in danger. For example he barked and guarded against dp when he was stood in our dining room in the dark and spoke. Even I couldn't see him so didn't blame the dogs for alerting.

It's the 3-5am every day that I can't cope with the patterdale doing it. I have tried letting her out in case she is telling me she needs a wee but she won't go. She is nuts!

She comes everywhere other than work that I can take her and gets a good hours run every night but it doesn't help unfortunately. Her breed is known to be neurotic I think she is just additionally so due to mistreatment before she came to us.

musicposy Sun 25-Sep-16 22:10:02

3-5am would drive me mad. Having said that, if she was not on my bed she would bark solidly. If I shut her in another room she barks solidly. I think neurotic due to mistreatment and breeding just about sums it up.

I do wonder though if your dog is anxious whether the pet corrector is not helping. I mean it will look as though it is helping In that moment but it won't be taking away the underlying reason to bark and possibly could be making the dog more anxious and likely to bark at other times. We found that really calm is the only way to go with ours which is why I tend to pick her up and cuddle her. It felt a bit counter-intuitive, like I am rewarding her for barking, but it does seem to reduce her need to bark constantly overall. I do think the DAP diffusers are worth a try. I'm less sure about all the lotions and potions I've tried over the last couple of years.

I don't have a 3-5am barking issue to deal with, mind you. I really hope someone with proper expertise can help.

bloodypatterdalebarking Mon 26-Sep-16 06:31:49

We haven't used the pet corrector for about 8 months because she had responded so well to it we didn't need it so I don't think it is that.

DAP - is them at the calming diffuser? Have heard mixed reviews but will order one and see how that goes before we go down the more drastic channels I think.

Picking her up and cuddling only delays the barking with her unfortunately and we got a large metaphorical slap from a trainer we tried to enlist. They see it as rewarding the behaviour.

The vet was less than useless as she just shrugged and said there was nothing that could be done.

musicposy Wed 28-Sep-16 08:24:50

Yes the DAP is the calming diffuser. I'm not sure really if it helped much but might be worth a try.
Our behaviourist taught us to train her to bark on command then stop on command which she learnt but that only led to her barking more so she could get the stop signal and a treat! Then she'd start up again to get another stop signal. It was a nightmare. Everyone says something different - I too wish someone could give me something that really properly worked confused
Sorry not to be able to offer more help.

bloodypatterdalebarking Wed 28-Sep-16 14:55:32

Just knowing I am not on my own is nice music so thank you!

We have borrowed a friend's spray collar thing which had absolutely no effect so I have resorted to having to order one that makes a loud beep to deter them and then sends out a pulse vibration of the barking continues. According to the website it is along the lines of a tens machine so isn't designed to hurt them which does make me feel a hell of a lot better

TrionicLettuce Wed 28-Sep-16 15:16:33

What training have you tried with her?

The problem with aversives like spray collars/air horns/ultrasonic devices/etc. is that they don't deal with the source of the problem. If she's barking because she's anxious about something then even if they "work" and she stops barking she's not going to be any less anxious.

I'd look for a decent behaviourist (through either the APBC or the CAPBT) and get some help to work on the source of the problem.

littlemissneela Wed 28-Sep-16 15:55:59

I have a barker too, but she doesnt bark in the wee hours unless someone stupid person posts something through the letterbox angry
I haven't tried this myself, but most things I have read about barking is teaching your dog to bark or 'speak' on command and then you can train them to not speak.
As your dog is older, this might not work. The other thing is there might be a medical issue with hearing or eyesight. Might be worth getting that checked out.
But please do not get a shock collar. Hateful things. Training a dog is about mutual respect and not about fear and pain, which is how I see these things.

bloodypatterdalebarking Wed 28-Sep-16 19:04:14

Have tried most kings and also a trainer. Her age goes against us as it is now classed as habitual and harder to un-train. Even the vet has recommended this type of collar but I have wanted to try everything else first.

Trust me this is a last resort and I am not happy but I need to do something or I will be forced to give her up.

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