Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum

Has anyone had good luck getting their dogs to stop barking at ghosts? 

It's open window weather and it doesn't last very long so I'm trying to take advantage. But the girls keep spazzing out barking at, as far as I can tell, nothing. I'm sure there is something out there. A squirrel, a bird, once I saw a cat. But nothing I want to know about. So far the only solution that sort of works is to close the curtains, which sort of defeats the point of having the windows open. 

I've never tried to train a no bark command. I don't really understand how it's done. I've heard stuff about teaching them to bark on command so... they only bark on command? They're don't generally bark so much that it bothers me. It would just be nice if I wasn't just starting to fall asleep when they decide they need to tell me there is something (nothing) outside. 


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They're not barking at ghosts, lol, they're hearing things you can't hear. Possibly even having a conversation with a distant dog who is driving her own mom crazy blocks away from you. :) 

I have no suggestions on what to do about it, though. This is one of the few dog problems I've fortunately never had. Hopefully others will have some ideas for you. 

They are so silly. I know they hear the mailman when the window is closed. But when the mailman comes and the window is open they feel the need to tell me all about it. And the problem is compounded with two. It's like Katie barks and then Ava has to tell me that Katie is barking and then Katie tells me Ava is barking and then I close the windows and we all suffocate.

I wish I could live as a dog for a little while. I would love to be able to smell and hear the way they do. Just to experience the world the way they do. I don't think I would mind being one of my dogs.

We have dogs in four of the five houses on my little dead-end block, as well as in the houses all around, and when one starts barking, they all bark. Pack mentality is a thing, lol. Fortunately, JD is kind of an outlier, and he usually only barks once, to be polite. :) 

I don't know if I'd enjoy being a dog. I'm really sensitive to noise, those boom boxes some kids have in their cars where you can actually feel the bass rather than hear it really throw off my equilibrium; I can't imagine what that must sound like to a dog. And I like to talk too much. I would probably be a very barky dog, lol. I do sometimes wish JD could talk, so I could understand him better. :) 

It's like 101 Dalmations. They're having a very important city-wide conversation about something! Your JD always sounds like such a wonderful dog. He's invited over here any time. 

What I wonder about is their sense of smell. What do they think of all the perfume out there? I just wear scented deodorant and occasionally a little lotion. But I have a friend who wears enough Patchouli oil to chase me out of the room. I wonder what her dog thinks of that! 

I have a nephew who is 20 months and isn't talking yet. But he is so expressive it's almost like he's talking to you. One day he wanted to go outside and I told him it was too cold. And he tugged on his jacket and I swear I could hear him saying, "but I'm wearing my jacket. Can we go outside now?" Ava in particular is kind of like that. She talks to me. If I'm getting ready to leave I put Katie in her kennel and Ava will go stand at the back door. "I'm going with you, right?" And she has the pet me paw. She sits right in front of me and pats me until I give her all my attention. She is a special dog. The other night when my parents came over she got up on the couch and sat next to my dad. For just a minute - I think she almost didn't realize what she did and then she got down. But she has made so much progress. 

Your girls always sound wonderful to me, too. :)
Ava getting up on the couch next to your dad must have given you a lump in your throat; I know that feeling. :) 

It was a great moment. We all just sort of stopped. I wasn't sure what she was doing for a second. How she has bloomed since she came to live with me.

Love tends to do that. :)

With the windows open I'm now informed about the car door closing 3 blocks away, not just the ones in the neighborhood!  Picco is a very verbal dog so "quiet" doesn't have a great effect.  I have a citronella antibark collar which works (he wears at night) and during the day I can just show it to him and he'll stop, at least for that round of barking!

So far I've been lucky with Chloe not barking when the windows are open. Now and again she will sound the alarm and she will stop once I go and see what it is that she is trying to warn me about.  I calmly tell her that it is nothing and to be quiet. That seems to work in most cases.  BUT she does have a tendency to bark at our neighbor in the back alley when they are on their balcony.  Why? I have no idea.  I just close my blinds for a little while, blocking her sight of them, but still keeping my window open for fresh air. 

Zoey only barks at me when she wants to play - with her head down and rear in the air!  Sometimes she will carry along with the neighborhood dogs howling at sirens. 

I do remember Doggie Dan talking about this problem once.  He said the dog is actually thinking he is in charge of telling you something is amiss.  He had a 3 step rule to follow to get it to stop.

1 - Acknowledge the dog's bark and tell him Thank you

2 - Next bark, go to where the dog is and look for cause - repeat Thank you

3 - Barks again, take to timeout for 1 min.   Repeat as necessary.

I saw this work on a really yappy dog barking at kids playing basketball.  It took awhile, but he finally got the idea.  I think the general idea had to do with the owner letting the dog know it was not his responsibility.  Can't hurt to try!  :^)

This is great advice. I used this method for barking at the fence, (I live on a corner) and it worked like a charm. I never had to go past step 2; I "reclaimed" the fence by placing my hands on it, and JD backed off every time. Now, all I have do to is calming start heading toward whatever part of the fence he's at, and he backs away immediately. 

Of course, if I had to get out of bed in the middle of the night to go to the window, not sure I could be calm about it. 



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