Cocker spaniels make wonderful and loving pets and they look immensely cute but for any owner, excessive barking can create nuisance both at home as well as for the neighbors leading to loss of peace and hostility. But with the right kind of approach, attitude and training, it is easy to control this problem.
Although Cocker Spaniel Barking, while it is actually helpful for keeping guard at night against unwanted strangers or other animals, can be a source of incessant stress when the cocker keeps barking without reason. Here it becomes important to identify the source of this problem and to understand as to why it is perpetuating so that a solution can be arrived at.
There are a variety of reasons. Cocker spaniels tend to form a close attachment or bond with their immediate owners, stronger than other dogs. This often leads to intense separation anxiety among them. They bark to express a plethora of emotions, including separation, fear, anxiety and loneliness. This is a sign when the cocker starts barking in the middle of the nigh accompanied with whining or starts barking continuously at the gate when the owner is about to leave.
For this type of Cocker Spaniel Barking, there is an effective exercise which requires tact, time and patience. The cocker, which unlike humans, does not possess a sense or idea of workplaces, errands or home, needs to be made understood that the owner is only going for awhile and is not leaving the dog. The cocker must be kept in a gated area and the owner must walk away and return before the barking starts. The idea is to reward its silence and this can be achieved with success by repeating the exercise and increasing the time duration.
Another very significant reason for excessive Cocker Spaniel Barking is boredom arising out of loneliness and frustration. Canines and especially cockers have strong emotions and where their owners are generally away for a long period of time due to work and other reasons, they can inculcate a habit of barking without reason merely to kill time. One solution is providing more exercise or timing the exercise with the dog before leaving so that the dog is relaxed in the owner’s absence and can even rest. Another solution, which has been recommended by various cocker spaniel breeders and dog behaviorists, is to have a companion pet for the dog which may be another cocker spaniel, another playful breed of dog or even a canine friendly cat.
Providing the cocker with its own toys and making its crate a welcoming and playful place with its own special bed also helps to keep it occupied. This space and the toys must also be respected by the owner and the other family members.
At times, Cocker Spaniel Barking, out of ignorance culminates as a result of owners giving rewards to cockers as puppies initially for little things accompanied with barking, and the dog takes barking to be the most preferred mode of communication. This can be reversed, though it may take some time, by rewarding the dog when barking is absent to appreciate its silence. Using commands like ‘shush’ and ‘quiet’ can also help when the dog I barking for no reason.
Excessive Cocker Spaniel Barking therefore can be controlled by employing the above methods and providing more opportunities for socialization with other family members, neighbors and other dogs to encourage familiarity and comfort.