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My Dog Barks at Everything! Here's How to Stop Dog Barking | Pupford

November 29th, 2023

Filed under Training

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Excessive barking can be frustrating and stressful in many areas of everyday life. If your dog is barking whenever someone comes to the front door it can make social situations at your home very tricky.

Abrupt and aggressive barking at the sound of every leaf blowing in the wind or squirrel zooming up a tree can be a strain.

It may seem impossible to teach your dog how to stop barking, especially if you have an older dog or the barking problem is very extreme. Not to worry. With patience and consistency, it can be done.

Who knows? Training with your dog for barking issues could lead to a healthier and happier relationship in more ways than one. It is a journey of positive adjustments and techniques that can be fun for you and your pup.

First, let’s look at the root causes of barking…


why dogs bark excessively

If you’re here reading this article, the question you may ask yourself far more often than you’d like is: Why is my dog barking so much?

The answer is straightforward. Dogs rely on barking as a primary communication tool. This means that barking is not inherently a bad thing. It is great that your dog is communicating; we just want to make sure they are not falling into bad communication habits. It’s also important that you do the same.

When they bark they are looking for a response of some kind and excessive barking is likely to generate a response out of you - negative or positive. Simply put, dogs bark to get what they want.

For example, if your dog gently nudged your leg with his or her nose in an unsuccessful attempt to get your attention, they will learn that it's not the best form of communication when trying to get your attention.

They may resort to barking instead, and continue to do it if it works to get your attention.

If your dog gently nudges your leg and instead of ignoring or becoming annoyed at them you reward them with a treat or a stimulating activity every time they do, after time they will learn that gentle nudges earn them things that they love. This is a key principle of the approach.

Related Reading: How to Stop a Dog From Barking at Night


small dog excessively barking | Pupford

Before we dive into how to get a dog to stop barking, it's important to understand the different types of barking.

Each type of bark can warrant a different approach to stopping it!

Here are 5 of the most common types of barking:

  1. Excitement barking
  2. Warning barking
  3. Fear barking
  4. Resource guard barking
  5. Demand and frustration barking

Let's look at each one below.


The first type of barking is excitement barking. Excitement barking typically occurs when you come home, other people greet your pup, or when your dog sees other dogs.

It is typically high-pitched and can be accompanied by whining in between barks.

You may also see jumping and tail wagging as part of excitement barking.

We'll cover more techniques later, but this type of barking is often remedied with redirection, such as playing with a toy, or replacement behaviors, like teaching place.


corgi giving a warning bark out the window | Pupford

It often occurs when an irregular sound or smell enters your dog's environment.

This is most common when your dog can see out of windows, through fences, or other areas around your home.

You can put yourself between the dog and what they are barking at to assure them you are aware of the situation. Some people will start to introduce a cue word like 'I got it' to let their dog know it's handled.


Many dogs will fear bark at new sounds, people, situations, or other unfamiliar things.

Fear can often result from their learning history, lack of learning, or lack of socialization. Forcing your dog to stay in scary situations will only make it worse (the same goes for us humans)!

To stop this type of barking, remove whatever is causing your dog fear or anxiety!

Practice systematic desensitization and counter-conditioning.

Stay calm, again, dogs pick up on our energy and emotions. Remember to NEVER force or pull your dog into a situation, that will be extremely problematic for your dog's mental health.

Let your dog approach on their own accord.


Resource guard barking can also stem from fear, especially fear of something being taken away.

This type of barking is often accompanied by growling intermittently and sometimes a dog will lunge toward something to try to make it go away.

Some dogs will also show their teeth or snap. If none of the methods above work to put your dog at ease, they may bite!

Head here to learn more about how to handle resource guarding.


a dog demand barking at a human | Pupford

Demand and frustration barking is typically endless static barking. For example, you often hear this type of barking in shelter dogs or dogs left overnight at the vet.

Demand barking is often caused by the boredom of a situation. It can often signal that your dog is frustrated with a certain situation.

Demand barking is often a sign your dog needs more physical and/or mental exercise, so start there!

Now that we've given a brief overview of each type of barking let's look at how to get a dog to stop barking! 👇

🐶 Overcome your dog's problem barking with safe and humane training techniques and finally regain peace and calmness in your home with the Barking Solutions Course. Get access here!


how to stop dog barking

High-value dog treats (or other rewards) are pretty much an essential part of the process. As mentioned above, creating a consistent reward system for positive actions is a key principle when attempting to adjust dog barking behavior.

In general, it’s great to identify the main stimuli that are causing your dog to bark. Once you can identify what’s triggering them, you can set up a situation where you can divert them from it. You can steer them into a pattern of habits that is more rewarding and engaging. It takes consistency, but if you stick with it, the good habits should become second nature to you and your furry friend.

You don’t have to do this alone. It’s always great to reach out to a trainer who specializes in non-invasive and non-punishment techniques. They can help equip you with the skills to succeed with your dog.

If you are looking for some practical approaches to do on your own, here are a few ideas…

Also, here's a podcast interview that dives deep into all things barking!


This is a great impulse control game that focuses on a common pain area for barking dogs and that is at the front door. Specifically, when someone arrives and knocks or rings the doorbell.

Goal: To get your dog to stop barking when the doorbell rings and to sit patiently in a designated place until released.

Note: “Marking” and “rewarding” are two dog training terms you’ll hear often. Marking can be done with a clicker or a consistent sound that signifies to the dog the exact moment they did something good. Rewarding is simply giving your dog a yummy treat/toy/praise when they have good behavior. It’s best to have a ranked value system of rewards in situations where you most need them.

Training Steps:

  1. Start by marking and rewarding your dog when they stop barking near the door
  2. Have someone knock or ring the doorbell (or use training noise tools)
  3. Wait until your dog stops barking
  4. The instant they stop, mark and reward
  5. Repeat

You can do this in five to ten-minute intervals at a time but be careful not to overstimulate your dog. Depending on your dog, you may need to work on this frequently for a few days. The more you do it, the quicker they will stop barking


SMART x 50 is an extremely simple and powerful dog training technique that will help you improve your dog's behavior. The acronym of SMART stands for See, Mark, And, Reward, Training. SMART.

Goal: Mark and reward 50 positive behaviors that you see from your dog in one day and repeat until you see progress.

Training steps:

  1. Get 50 low-calorie treats ready and place them in a bowl in a central location of your home
  2. Actively look for instances your dog does things you want them to do without asking
  3. Mark and reward each instance
  4. Repeat steps two and three 50 times a day

For dog parents who want to focus on barking specifically, look for instances of calm and quiet and mark and reward. Measure the 50 treats to be enough food for their entire day without feeding them traditional meals so they value it even more.

smart x50 training method to stop a dog from barking | Pupford smart x50


Counterconditioning and desensitizing your dog are key! Set them up at a safe distance from the stimulus and reward them when they don’t react to it. The stimulus must be at a distance where they don’t bark if they see it; if they do bark, it is too close. Gradually get closer the more you do this exercise until they are no longer triggered by it.

Training steps:

  1. Ask a friend to control the stimulus, whether it is their dog on leash passing by or holding up a fake doggy doll (this really works as a trigger)
  2. Make sure they are far enough so your dog won’t bark at the sight of them
  3. As they come into view, mark and reward your dog unless they begin to bark
  4. If they bark, divert and walk them in the other direction using high-value treats to get their attention
  5. Stop feeding the treats as soon as the trigger is out of sight
  6. Repeat the process multiple times.

Make sure the environment is safe and all dogs are on a leash. We don’t want dogs to bolt at the sight of their stimulus

🐶 Overcome your dog's problem barking with safe and humane training techniques and finally regain peace and calmness in your home with the Barking Solutions Course. Get access here!


In addition to the training exercises above, here are some pointers for other common scenarios where barking becomes a problem.


why does my dog bark on walks and what can i do

Avert the situation by avoiding other dogs and stimuli you know will make your dog uncomfortable. Try to get to a safe distance where you can practice desensitizing the stimulus. Always have high-value treats on hand when walking a dog with barking or aggression tendencies so you can lead them away from potential conflict.


why your dog may bark at you

Some dogs bark because they need more engagement. They could just be bored. If they are barking directly at you, it is possible that they want to play or train. Remember to treat them like you would anyone else you care about and try to give them as much healthy interaction as you can.

Going on walks or training for fifteen minutes can sometimes calm a dog down and help them stop barking at you for attention. Remember, yelling at your dog can inadvertently reward them. Even if you are yelling, the dog may receive it as a reward because they successfully got your attention. Try to keep your engagement with your buddy as positive and joyful as you can.


dog barks when left home alone

Some dogs get separation anxiety or respond to stimuli when they are left alone at your home. White noise machines and calming music can both drown out triggers and create a relaxing environment for your dog. Closing blinds can also help if your dog is barking at objects outside. Try stimulating their minds before you leave by going on a walk or training for fifteen minutes. This way you leave them enriched and ready to relax.

Related Reading: How Long Can You Leave a Dog Alone?


dog barking even as their human tries to get them to stop | Pupford

Barking, although a natural part of a dog’s life, can be minimized through proper training and alternative behaviors. Remember that patience and consistency are key to training a dog not to bark.

Pupford aims to help all pups and pup parents by providing valuable tools, treats, and training resources. As part of Pupford Academy Plus, we offer an in-depth video course all about barking, the Barking Solutions Course.

With the help of the Barking Solutions Course, you can overcome your dog's problem barking with safe and humane training techniques and finally regain peace and calmness in your home! Get access here!

Have other questions about excessive barking? Ask in the comments below.

🐶 Overcome your dog's problem barking with safe and humane training techniques and finally regain peace and calmness in your home with the Barking Solutions Course. Get access here!


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