In this article, you will know the answer to the query “When do puppies start barking at strangers?“.
So you’re a new pet parent with an adorable ball of fur and suddenly your cutie was yapping and barking at a delivery person on your front porch as your little cutie goes berserk. Afterward, you think, “Isn’t she too young?”.
Perhaps you have a 3-month-old pup who hasn’t made any attempts to bark like a normal dog, and you’re already worried that something is wrong. In any case, when do puppies start barking anyway, and when would mine start yapping at strangers like the other puppies in my neighborhood?
You will find the answers to all those puzzling questions within the next few minutes when you grab a cup of your favorite beverage. Sit back and scroll.
1. When do puppies start barking at strangers?
The first time you own a dog, you may be surprised when your little ball of fur starts barking at everything that moves. Maybe your dog is refusing to bark, or it could be the other way around.
I suppose the latter is a little disappointing, especially if you prefer very protective and vocal dogs. Before you get too down, it might just be that your pup hasn’t found his/her voice yet. Barking is something that all dogs do naturally, but they still need to learn how to do it fully and it takes time.
It is important to remember that puppies do not grow or develop at the same rate; some start barking in their 6th week, others will take longer, and a few started earlier. Dogs will bark at anything that moves when they start barking, including strangers.
You may notice that your puppy starts barking at strangers through the window, neighbors crossing the yard, or visitors. If she barks, it could be because she’s excited to see someone new, or because she’s trying to alert you.
2. Do puppies go through a barking “stage”?
Before they become full-grown dogs, puppies undergo different stages of development. Puppies need time to get up on their feet, become aware of their environment, and find their voices during the first few weeks of their lives.
Between the second and third weeks of a puppy’s life, she will begin to vocalize, but only small whines and grunts. The barking of some puppies can start as early as the 7th or 8th week. This is usually the case for small dog breeds, whereas large dog breeds take much longer (16th week or longer) before they can start barking like adults.
During the puppy stage, dogs learn and develop new characteristics, and it is undoubtedly exciting for them to learn a new trait. A pup who has just discovered her voice will excitedly bark at everything and anything. Barking is something she does when she wants attention when she wants to play when she wants to watch TV, when she wants to play with other dogs and when she just wants to bark for fun. Barking is something they do because it is fun.
She may just be going through this stage if she barks at anything, even the smallest sound. While you may want to ignore your pup and let this behavior fade away with time, maybe you shouldn’t. Unprovoked and perpetual barking can be annoying, and if not quickly dealt with, it can easily become a life-long habit, and you will have to deal with a noisy dog.
She may bark at strangers to warn and scare them off as your pup grows and becomes more territorial. You should start training your pup to bark on command once she becomes vocal and shows off her voice.
3. How to train a dog to bark on command
Barking is one of the most common ways dogs communicate. It is common for dogs to bark when they want your attention to something, when they see something unusual, and when they are having fun. There are also dogs that will bark for no reason at all, just because they feel like it.
Barking for no reason at all can get a bit over the line and may come across as a disturbance. This is a behavior you want to curtail before it becomes ingrained. By training your dog to bark on command, you will be able to control when he/she barks and when it is time for quiet. This is how you teach your puppy to bark on command.
Choose a treat
When you’re teaching your puppy a new behavior, it’s very important to reward her when she does exactly what you want her to do. Positive reinforcement will help her learn faster. You can reward your puppy with her favorite treat, the more your dog loves the reward, the faster she’ll learn. Have fun with the training to make it more fun and exciting for her.
Get your dog to bark and reward her with a treat
You can make your dog bark by exciting her in some way, for example, waving a treat at her and hiding it when she reaches for it so that she barks for it. You can play her favorite game by simply getting her to bark and then rewarding her with a treat when she does.
Pick your command word
Choosing a name for the behavior is the next step. Dogs are often instructed to bark by using the command words “speak” and “talk”. Either of these words can be used, or you can choose your own. When your dog is about to bark, say the word just before she barks and then reward her if she barks. It is also possible to use a hand signal when you say the command word.
Use the command word and a treat
You can expect your dog to keep barking when she realizes she gets treats for barking. Don’t reward her when she barks without your direction. When she responds correctly, reward her by saying the command word before she barks. Practice this several times until she only barks when you want her to. You can also do this outside your home.
Gradually withdraw the reward
As soon as your dog responds immediately to the “speak” command with a bark, start gradually removing the treats. Basically, don’t reward her every time she barks on command. This will only slow down her learning process. If she barks on command three times, give her a treat every five times, then every ten times, etc.
How to train a dog to bark when a visitor is at the door
You can train your dog to bark when a guest arrives or when a stranger approaches your property if that’s what you prefer. Even though it may seem odd, there are some advantages to having your dog alert to strangers.
There is a possibility that you live in a large house and may not be able to hear the doorbell from some parts of the building, and that your dog’s barks will get your attention faster. If you leave alone, it may be strictly for security reasons. Even better than a sleepy pet is having a furry friend as well as an alert guard dog in one. Being looked after by your dog is a good feeling.
By training your dog to bark when a visitor is at the door, you establish the habit of barking on command. It is much easier to train your pup to bark when the doorbell rings after he/she has been trained to bark on command. It would be helpful if you enlisted the assistance of a friend or neighbor.
Ask a friend or neighbor to come and knock or ring your door when you have your dog’s favorite treat. Provide your dog with a treat when she barks and the “speak” command when someone knocks on the door.
Repeat the exercise until your dog barks without you having to give her a “speak” command when the doorbell rings. Praise your dog when she responds to the doorbell or knocks without following the “speak” command, and continue to practice at intervals for several days.
It is even possible to ring the doorbell and see her reaction when you go out the back door. Your dog will eventually get the message and bark when the doorbell rings or when there is a knock, once the reward starts to set in as a new behavior, you can gradually withdraw the reward.
5. How do I stop my puppy from barking at strangers?
Dogs get excited when they realize that they can bark to get people’s attention, and as your dog learns to bark, expect him/her to bark for fun. When a puppy gets to the stage of experimenting with her voice and simply enjoying being vocal, the way she is handled at that stage will determine whether she will end up being a nuisance and barking at everything that moves.
In addition to teaching your pup to bark on command and when to be quiet, socialization is a crucial step to getting her to meet strangers without going berserk with yips and barks. If you do this, you may have to always apologize to people for your dog.
Three-week-old puppies are ready to start socializing and meeting new people, so taking your puppy out with you to meet and interact with other humans and animals is a great idea. You will need to work with your dog if he will bark at strangers and can’t stand them.
You must first determine if she barks at everyone or just certain people. A puppy that barks at every strange face needs serious socialization and obedience training. Teach her the “quiet” command most importantly. Keeping your dog calm and being quiet is just as important as training her to bark on command.
You can teach your dog the “quiet” command very similarly to how you teach her the “speak” command. The “speak” command causes her to bark, but the “quiet” or “enough” command gets her to stop barking.
Training your dog to stop barking becomes much easier if she already knows how to bark on command. Get her favorite treat (as usual) and tell her to speak, then tell her to “quiet” and give her a treat after she speaks.
Speak again, then say “quiet” and give her a treat. Repeat the exercise, but this time say “quiet” and wait for her to stop barking before giving her the treat. Once she associates “quiet” with “stop barking and get a treat”, then you can gradually withdraw the treatment and continue the exercise.
Even though it sounds easy enough, it will take hours of practice spread out over a few days. You can get your pup to stop barking at random strangers by teaching her the “quiet” command, which she will eventually learn.
6. Why does my dog not bark at all?
You ought to anticipate that your canine should bark once in a while since it’s not unexpected canine conduct. The issue emerges when you have a canine who is by all accounts mature enough to bark however isn’t woofing in any way. This can be an extremely troubling event.
The ideal canine is neither clamorous and routinely yapping nor totally tranquil. Indeed, even as some canine varieties are more vocal than others, complete quietness in canines is very unnatural and can be an indication of some ailment.
However, there are different motivations behind why a canine will be generally tranquil (however not totally quiet) and the following are a couple of justifications for why your canine may seldom bark — or not bark by any means.
Some canine varieties are normally disposed to bark much more than others, particularly breeds that are regular watchman canines. For example, German Shepherds are more vocal and will quite often bark significantly more than the Basenjis.
Basenjis normally don’t bark because of the uncommon state of their larynx, however, they aren’t by and large voiceless either, Basenjis convey by making a sound called “warble”.
There are other canine varieties that can bark, however seldom do, similar to the Great Dane, Greyhound, Bullmastiff, Bulldogs, and so on These are exceptionally quiet canines, and assuming that you have one, you won’t see her bark regularly.
Very much like varieties are unique, individual canines inside a given variety type are additionally unique. Canines have characters as well, and they all remarkably vary from one another. A timid and withdrawn Frenchie won’t be close to as clearly as a super-vivacious and fun-loving one, and this doesn’t have anything to do with weakness.
On the off chance that you’ve had the chance to intently notice altogether different canines of a similar variety, you’d have an unmistakable image of shifting canine characters. A few extremely timid canines won’t ever bark without incitement since they never need to cause pointless to notice themselves.
Possible medical condition
At the point when a canine doesn’t bark by any means, then, at that point, there could be something medicinally off-base. A condition is known as laryngeal loss of motion influences a canine’s capacity to bark.
Laryngeal loss of motion is a condition where the muscles of the larynx become deadened. This influences the canine’s capacity to take full breaths and bark typically.
This condition for the most part influences more established canines yet it can likewise influence little dogs. At the point when found in grown-up canines, it’s designated “obtained laryngeal loss of motion” and a similar condition in pups is classified as “intrinsic laryngeal loss of motion.”
Inherent laryngeal loss of motion is just found in the Bouvier des Flandres canine variety. Manifestations of laryngeal loss of motion incorporate, toiled breathing, choking while at the same time eating/drinking, and voice change or misfortune.
As a pet parent, it’s fascinating to watch your shaggy child as she bit by bit changes from a delightful pup to a fiery and faithful canine. Now and then, this change might happen way too early and on different occasions, it might seem like it takes for eternity.
All young doggies (particularly those of various canine varieties) develop at various rates. A neighbor’s 7-week-old Bulldog as of now barks at each bizarre face, while at 10 weeks old your Greyhound isn’t putting forth any genuine attempt to bark like an ordinary canine. This is likely in light of the fact that your Greyhound is developing at her own speed and will bark when she can.
Breed type, development rate, and individual canine character are a few factors that decide when a little guy will begin woofing at outsiders. The presence of grown-up canines additionally assists a puppy with becoming vocal a lot quicker. Yelping is a characteristic canine attribute and regardless of whether at 2 or a half years, yours will ultimately begin yapping.
If you want to read more about puppies-related updates, read here: Puppies.