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Pug Dog Barking


While we all want and depend on our dog to bark to protect us and we certainly would not want a dog that was never vocal, there are many frustrated Pug owners who are wondering just how they are supposed to handle barking issues when the barking seems to be unjustified.

The first step is to realize that to your dog, the barking is quite necessary... It a communication, whether it means, "I'm bored" or "Feed me!", there is always a reason and therefore always a method of decreasing the frequency of barking.

There are different triggers for why a Pug may be extremely vocal... Once your determine the "why", you can then start training to stop it 
There are about as many reasons why your Pug barks as there are reasons why people speak or yell. But it all comes down to a way to express feelings, whether they seem logical or not to us humans...

Let's look at the most common reasons why your dog is barking up a storm and steps that you can take to address each: 
perfect Pug dog
Photo courtesy of owner Srinivas from the city of Dubai

Protection Issues

Your Pug may be barking out of an instinct to protect you and the house, even if you do not see or hear a threat.

While this breed is not one of the better known watchdogs; a Pug has a strong sense of territory and family and will guard his owners even if that only means barking as a warning defense.

Often owners do not believe this is the cause since they do not see any people. cars or animals nearby. However, your dog has exceptionally better hearing than you do; he or she may be hearing a noise that he perceives to be a danger.

Any noise or movement may be a trigger...This ranges from the squirrels in the tree outside your front door to an airplane flying overhead.

To fix this issue, in a calm and relaxed voice, tell your dog that everything is alright. The tone of voice is so important... Too soothing and your dog will think that you are agreeing that there is reason to be concerned and on high alert...Too impatient and agitated brings about the same results...And you don't want to do that since it encourages the behavior
Best is to keep an even tone, what one would refer to as a "matter-of-fact" type of speech.

Keep repeating your words and gently give a pat. Do not jump up and look out the window or move suddenly. You may whisper, "Shh" and reward your Pug if he or she quiets down. Even if your dog remains quiet for a minute, make sure to show him that he is doing as you wish: give a small treat and praise. 

A dog will learn that barking= zero attention and brings about no benefits and that quieting down= attention in the form of a pat, praise and, if he's lucky, a small tasty treat. Rewarding desired behavior and ignoring negative behavior often brings about the fastest results.

Boredom Issues 

Let's face it, being a dog may not be the most exciting thing in the world. Some owners see and hear their Pug acting out and feel that the dog must be barking at something. However, the dog may not be focusing on any one element or trigger... 

It may be an overall feeling and being vocal may be in reaction to a feeling of frustration.

A canine family member does not require a full day's schedule of activities; however it is appropriate to provide the needed essentials. You will want to provide:
  • Fun and interesting toys. While he or she may have a favorite toy, they must have a slew of extra toys to go to when they get bored. Don't just grab an armful of cheap ones; choose wisely and opt for quality, interesting toys for Pugs that will capture your puppy or dog's interest.  Your collection should include interactive and puzzle toys. 
  • Daily exercise. This can be playing catch with you, going for a walk or being allowed to run around the yard (supervised and in appropriate weather) 
  • Interaction. Pugs, in particular, crave human companionship. A dog is meant to be a companion; do not miss out on the joy of bonding and interacting with your canine companion. You can teach him tricks, talk to him, play games and include him on some of the errands that you run. 

Excitement Issues 

Many times, a Pug dog will be so attached to its owner, that having that person arrive home after an absence will throw the dog into a crazed state of excitement. 

This behavior includes relentless barking, jumping and even urination as the dog can not control himself. While it is nice to be loved so much, in this instance, an owner can help guide the dog to have better control.

In cases like this, it is best to not interact with the dog immediately after entering... Check the mail or get a drink of water...The goal will be for the owner to behave as if it is no big deal that he arrived home. Ignore any attention seeking behavior. 

After a minute or so, approach from the side, not straight on. The dog should be taken outside for bathroom needs and once that is complete, some play time can start which will help the Pug to release pent up energy.
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