Barking is a natural impulse for dogs, as it is one of the main ways they communicate how they’re feeling. Dachshunds are one of the more vocal dog breeds, so learning how to manage your dog’s tendency to bark is essential if you’re thinking about getting a Dachshund puppy. Keep in mind that if your Dachshund is a barker, it doesn’t mean they’re a bad dog. They’re simply trying to tell you something, or they’re reacting to something and barking is the only way they know how to cope.
Excessive barking can not only be annoying for humans, it can be a sign of other unaddressed issues. Many dogs can be trained to stop barking excessively, given some time. However, keep in mind that it is unfair to think that your dog will stop barking completely, even with the best training and support.
Why do Dachshunds Bark
Like any other dog, Dachshunds bark for a wide variety of reasons:
- To get your attention
- As a warning to strangers
- To relieve anxiety and stress
- To communicate with other dogs
- As a reaction when they get too excited
Observing your dog and why they bark can help you identify the triggers for your dog barking. Do they do it when the mailman comes to the door? Are they barking at prey animals such as birds or rodents? Or do they bark because they need food or water?
How to Control Your Dachshund’s Barking
1. Have a command to stop the barking
When your Dachshund starts barking excessively, you can try to break the hold of the trigger by getting the dog’s attention and giving them a command to stop barking. The choice of command is up to you. Many dog owners use words such as ‘quiet’ or ‘calm down’. Getting the dog’s attention may be the hard part of this, as when they get overstimulated they can become hyper focused on the trigger.
One way that works is to stand up, get in between your dog and the barking trigger, and then give the command to stop barking. If the dog shifts their focus to you and stops barking even for a moment, then you should give rewards and praise. This teaches the dog that being quiet and focusing on you instead of the trigger gets them something that they want. However, you will have to do this consistently in order to solidify that idea in their mind. It can take weeks to months for your dog to completely learn this command.
2. Stay calm
Your dog doesn’t understand the content of your words. What they do understand is cause and effect, and the type of energy you have when you speak. If your dog is barking and you get agitated, upset, or excited, they can quickly pick up on it. Yelling at your dog to be quiet can just cause them to bark even more. The key is to stay calm and give your dog commands in an authoritative tone.
3. Remove the triggers or take the dog away from the triggers
Avoiding triggers may be necessary while your dog learns the stop barking command. Even when your dog is able to stop barking on command, the triggers that cause the barking may still cause stress and anxiety. For your dog’s mental and emotional health, certain things may simply need to be avoided. Speak to your vet or a dog trainer to determine whether there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed, such as past trauma or a medical condition.