View Full Version : Very Vocal- why???

Mom of Jato
18th August 2008, 01:41 AM
:confused: During the past few weeks, Jato has become very vocal (barking). He is 8 1/2 months old, and otherwise a very good boy. Just wondering if any of you have experienced this with your Cavaliers around this age. I can't even take him with me to the pet store because he barks in his new car seat, and then while we are in the store. It's embarassing. :eek: I think he gets so excited that he can't contain himself. Any help would be appreciated.

18th August 2008, 03:08 AM
How much exercise does Jato get? I mean I'm not very familiar with Cavaliers so some other people can give you more ideas about this behavior. It could also be a controlling issue, maybe he is afraid to be left alone in the car? Are Cavaliers very vocal dogs? Lucy the little rescue I had would bark at every little noise outside that she didn't know. But she also would stop when I talked to her. After a few days she got used to our noises and barking wasn't a big deal anymore.
I hope you get some more ideas on how to stop the behavior. If it is exitment about going to the store then I would get Jato exercised so some of that panned up energie is out of him.
Also my Australian cattle dog used to bark driving to the park when she saw dogs being walked on the sidewalk. I tought her to lay down so she couldn't see the dogs anymore and she stoped. After a while she would bark and while barking would lay down without me saying anything anymore. Then later on it wasn't a problem anymore.
All the best,
Elke, ZsaZsa, Bogart and little Lucy, now at her new adoptive home.

Mom of Jato
18th August 2008, 05:17 AM
Jato is NEVER left in the car!!! Maybe I didn't word it right when I said "when we are in the store", what I meant to say was when he goes in the store with us, he barks going up and down the aisles and that is what is so embarrassing. I won't take him anymore until the barking stops. I really think it is over-excitement. Again, is this normal for a pup his age? He didn't do it when he was younger. For the most part, he is a very laid-back guy.

18th August 2008, 10:54 AM
Well, this may be the way he actually is -- most puppies do not bark much, and dogs tend to start barking around adolescence, which is right at his age. Some dogs are barkers, and some are not, no matter how much training you do with them (Jaspar is a 'talker' in certain situations and this has been virtually impossible to stop). Barking is a natural way for a dog to express emotions, interest, excitement -- just as we talk. So it is perfectly normal for him to bark. It is just that that activity sometimes needs to be managed by us.

Has he been given any formal training? If not he is well into the point where he would benefit from an obedience class as this enables dogs to be less excited in new situations with stimulation around, and also teaches a dog self control and to pay attention to you. People often think teaching from a book at home is enough -- it really truly isn't. A dog needs to learn in a structured way and with distractions; and also hugely benefits from getting used to and meeting lots of different dogs and people. So if you haven't yet I'd immediately look for a rewards- based class in your area.

Exercise is also one possible aspect -- he needs to be getting a considerable amount of exercise now, not just little puppy outings as when younger. Think teenage boy -- from now on he really needs a good hour daily of *active* exercise, not simply a walk around the block but something longer and brisk, or swimming, or fetch, or agility, or something like that. Something that works his brain as well is good, which is where an obedience class can come in with a 15 minute to half hour of home training daily to work that brain.

Neutering at this age also tends to help calm boys considerably, if that hasn't been done. If he hasn't been neutered, the flood of testosterone in his system right now can make him ultra-hyper.

Training though, and from now on, is a key aspect of having a dog that you want to have around. He has no idea that barking isn't OK. You have to find a way to work positively to give him the outdoor manners you'd prefer. This takes a lot of time and commitment -- people always underestimate the dedication and time training takes and the earlier you start, the easier it is (I recommend from the day you get them home to lay down fun and easy basics like sit, and ask for a sit before they get food, for example -- a good way to teach the 'no free lunch' philosophy and get a dog eager to look to you for direction :) Keep it light and easy with no big expectations, just like getting toddlers to say please and thank you. You just give them easy things to do, don;t overtrain, and keep expectations in line with their small amount of ability when they are very small). A dog needs daily or many weekly practice sessions at home, too -- like kids and adult humans, use it or lose it!! Adult dogs are far more challenging in many ways than puppies, where training is limited to housetraining generally. As dogs grow into adults they need a lot of time and dedication by us just as children do, to be the dog they can be.

All that said: not all dogs are great companions for taking to shops and some will always be barkers and get overexcited. If that is the case, better to leave him at home and do the shopping without him along. I'd at least be doing that til you slowly work towards training him to be able to go someplace without getting overexcited. This can take many months of work.

18th August 2008, 11:16 AM
When Oliver barks, I will clap, loudly but firmly (not yelling) say "Kung Pao Chicken" (or any nonsense word, it really doesn't matter what you say). :) Then when he stops barking to look at me quizzically (this is the goal, to get his attention over the emotional, excited barking), I calmly and quietly praise him and say "Good quiet". Worth a try!

Daisy's Mom
18th August 2008, 01:57 PM
When Oliver barks, I will clap, loudly but firmly (not yelling) say "Kung Pao Chicken" (or any nonsense word, it really doesn't matter what you say). :smile:

Kung Pao Chicken -- that cracked me up! I may have to try that -- who knew Asian Food names could help us train our dogs? :razz:

Our foster dog is a barker, and Daisy is not, so I am definitely looking for ideas to help him know when he needs to stop barking. It's often hard to have treats right there at the exact moment you need them. I'll be laying on the couch watching TV, and all of a sudden, he'll start in barking so loud that I jump out of my skin! Lord knows he is food-motivated, so I'm sure it's just a matter of persistence, timing, and consistency with him.

18th August 2008, 05:37 PM
Rocky was great going to Petsmart and on outtings until he was 15 months old, and then he started the excitable barking thing. It actually started while we were IN group training with two other dogs who had that trouble. Rocky liked what he saw and heard - I guess?

Anyway, I tried a ton of positive reinforcement methods, with the help of the trainer, and nothing worked. Finally I went softly corrective and when he started barking I said "hush" firmly, and squirted over his head with a water bottle. That seemed to get the idea across, and that is what we continue to use. As the barking behaviour was at its worst at Petsmart (where our training was) we avoided going there for a few months. When we went back - armed with the squirt bottle and specifically in no-bark training mode - he was much better. It just took one trip that time to teach him that barking in the store was inappropriate.

He still barks excitedly the minute we get out the door with the leashes and harnesses for a walk, and as well if we dare to say "car ride". That is just him, and I think it is important to realize that some of these guys do need to talk.

Arlene and her three: JP - Alaskan Husky, Missie - Cavalier x Tibetan Spaniel mix, Rocky - All Cavalier

18th August 2008, 07:00 PM
How often do you take him to the store? or other places? Meaning he might be be fearful of going to these places meeting dogs? Some dogs bark to keep the others away from them. I'm just throwing ideas out into the room. My SIL has a Bichon that is very vocal also and I think he controlls her with his barking or is trying to at least. She has gotten tougher with him since he thinks he is the little prince that can walk all over her. My Golden is a pretty quiet guy and doesn't bark much at all, my Australian cattle dog is more vocal but I also only tolerate so much barking from her and she knows it too. You could try walking into the store as soon as he starts barking turn around and go back out. Then try again and again until he gets the message, oh I bark and we leave so no shoping that he enjoys or interaction with people that he might enjoy. Maybe that will help. Also when he stops start telling good quiet when he starts over again turn around and walk out again. He'll figure it out.
Good luck,
Elke, ZsaZsa, Bogart and Lucy now at her new adoptive home.

Mom of Jato
18th August 2008, 08:13 PM
Jato went to puppy kindergarten when he about 4 mo's old, so he knows all of the basic commands. I've thought about taking him back to the training center to learn further, but I'm really nervous about him barking all through class when he gets with the other dogs. He doesn't have much opportunity to play with other dogs- just me, since I am at home most of the time. He is very good and quiet with me. We play alot, and go for walks (not for an hour though, I guess I need to do that). Do you think a puppy would be good for him? I have been considering getting one, but I don't want to make things more difficult.

19th August 2008, 04:11 AM
It sounds to me he might need more socializing with dogs and diffrent places. Take him maybe to a diffrent park everyday so he has more oportunity to learn about the world. Exercisising is a good thing for mind and body, my motto is a tired dog is a good dog. Since I have 2 semi active dogs the backyard just doesn't cut it for them. My young dog gets at least 2 good walks a day and play time with other dogs. Then we go to obedience classes once a week. He loves it. Our obedience school is very big on clicker training so he learned all his obedience comands with the clicker. Last year we started with doggy freestyle (dog dancing) it's fun and the dogs learn new tricks like crawl, roll over, back up, walk through legs, touch a target, all tought with the clicker. My little guy has never had a training collar on him only a regular flat collar. He was tought to focus on .me even under distractions like other dogs loud noises.
Training is always a good thing.
I hope you find a good class for your pup. Also if you get another dog while you're dog is still barking alot. A pup can pick up bad habbits from the older pet. So until you got your first dog trained half way well I wouldn't get another dog.
All the best,
Elke, ZsaZsa, Bogart and little Lucy now at her new adoptive new home.