Cocker Spaniel Barking

Cocker Spaniel BarkingCocker spaniel barking can be a boon and a bane for owners.  On one hand, it is a boon during the hunts as it helps in flushing out the prey, be it a pheasant or a rabbit.  Since it is also a form of communication, owners often discern the needs and wants of a cocker spaniel by learning to listen to its bark vocabulary.

On the other hand, it is a bane when done in a rude manner such as in barking at house guests, barking during inappropriate times like in the middle of the night, and barking excessively for no apparent reason than to, well, bark.  These are the types of barking that every owner and trainer will want to control for the sake of peace and quiet.

Barking Up at the Wrong Tree

Unfortunately, many pet owners will be barking up at the wrong tree in trying to control the negative cocker spaniel barking behaviour. We are referring to the failure to identify the causes of the barking before taking action.  Think of it as putting the cart ahead of the horse or pulling out the weed without killing the roots.

Dog experts have identified three main causes for excessive barking among dogs.  First, the barking can be an offensive/defensive action against unfamiliar persons, against intrusions into its personal space and against perceived threats.

For example, the barking may have been caused by an unfamiliar houseguest who was not properly introduced to the dog or an unwanted intruder when the family is sleeping.  It may also be that the dog’s food dish or chew toy was taken away while it was eating or playing, respectively.

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Second, the cocker spaniel barking behaviour taken to the extreme may be a sign of separation anxiety, of boredom and of neglect from the owner.  Keep in mind that cocker spaniels form stronger bonds with their masters faster than other dog breeds.  As such, the symptoms of separation anxiety can be more severe than average where other breeds are concerned.

Third, the cocker spaniel may be communicating an illness to its owner.  Take note that barking is the dog’s language and it is the owner’s responsibility to understand it in the same way that the cocker spaniel learns to respond the human commands.  The barking may be to tell the handlers that the dog is in pain.

Indeed, the causes behind the extreme instances of cocker spaniel barking must be determined first.  One never knows if the family’s life or the dog’s life is at stake.

Barking at the Right Time

When the causes have been determined, it is easier to adopt the right methods to ensure that the cocker spaniel will have its right manners in place.  These measures to control the barking include the following with more than two steps adopted depending on the cause:

  • Respect the personal space and possessions like toys and food of the cocker spaniel.
  • Command the dog to keep quiet by using simple commands like “Quiet” or “Shush” when there appears to be no reason for the barking
  • Provide for more socialization opportunities especially through physical exercise and mental stimulation with other dogs as well as with the family members

Indeed, cocker spaniel barking negative behaviour can be made positive.  Thinking like a dog will help in this regard as canines do have feelings, too.

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