So when having a Yorkshire Terrier as your pet dog, you need to be prepared for lots of barking, especially when the dog has found something, it is eager to alert its owner. Also, as a sign of excitement or sometimes aggression, Yorkies can make a lot of noise. So in some cases you can reduce this barking.
Minimizing the Barking
Perhaps it is not a good idea to try to stop your Terrier from barking at all, because after all this is the dog’s nature, but you can minimize it. There are just a couple of saturations when the dog will continue bark endlessly, but you still want your dog to warn you in such a way when you are threaten by some kind of danger, when the dog needs to go outside or to keep the other animals away from dog, when it is afraid or feeling uncomfortable.
How to Stop a Yorkie from Barking
1. Do not reinforce the dog’s behavior
The main reason that the Yorkshire Terriers continue with their barking is simply because their owners reinforce such behavior and most of the times it happens without even understanding it. When the owner is tired and wants the dog just to stop barking or he feels bad that he was not able to pay attention to his dog a bit earlier, then the owner does things that provide this attention when the dog is barking – like giving the dog some food or taking it outside for a walk. The thing you should do is never to give the Yorkie something when it is barking. You need to be strong and wait while the dog does not bark so intensively. The dog must learn that you will not break and give it what it wants while it barks; otherwise you will have a problem with this endless barking.
2. Dog’s Confusion is caused by Shouting
This endless barking can make you really angry after some time. But yelling at your Yorkie will only cause confusion into its mind. The dog actually does not know that it is doing something wrong, as it happens in most of the cases, concerning its behavior and shouting only get it confused. When you are in such a situation, you should not use any kind of punishment, especially some items like shock collars, which are truly inhumane.
It is in the Yorkshire nature to bark when it sense some kind of disturbance – this could be the doorbell when it starts ringing, a person, passing outside your front door, etc. Such triggers are common, and they cause immediate barking, because the dog thinks it is important enough to give a verbal warrant for them, and the only way for doing this is by barking.
What you need to remember is that if you are disturbed and feeling angry because of the dog’s barking, it barks because it is also disturbed by some kind of trigger.
In this case you will hear the so called Disturbance barking – this is a low toned bark, which aims to warn you or a high toned barking, trying to get your attention. In most of the times, dogs respond really well to desensitization training. There is of course a method for training this type of behavior, which aim is to slowly reduce the disturbance to the causes of the barking.
In order to see and understand how this training works, we will take for example the situation ‘Barking at the doorbell’.
Summarizing the aim of the training with one sentence, this method aims to make the dog understand that when barking, it will receive zero attention and zero fun, and when it does not respond with barking to these causes, it will receive attention, treats and fun. When putting things in such a way, the dog will quickly get the main purpose of the training.
1. Ask a member of the family or a friend to help you with the training.
2. Let your helper ring at the doorbell at a random time, and then ask him to ring one time at every ten seconds until opening the door in the end.
3. When the dog barks, your command should be to sit.
4. Talk calm to your dog, with a quite tone. Talk something that will relax your dog, showing with your tone and your behavior that this ring is not a sign of immediate danger.
5. Every time when the dog stops barking for at least five seconds, you should immediately praise it with a yummy treat and pat it for achieving the desired behavior.
6. Your behavior should be the opposite when the dog is barking – you should not pat it for calming it down. On the contrary, stand beside the dog and completely ignore it. That is how you achieve your goal to show your Terrier that barking will get it only zero attention and zero fun.
7. After some time, when the door bell is ringing at every ten seconds, but your dog is already calm, and has realized that it is not a danger and when it does not bark it will receive a yummy treat, you should open the door. You should great your helper with a smile and talk to him with a happy tone. And it is good if your helper can pat your Yorkie and give it a little treat.
Here are a few other things that can help you when training your Yorkie not to bark.
1. Home environment
Your Yorkshire Terrier should live in a calm and comfortable home environment. One of the main reasons for barking is when dogs feel frustrated or because of separation anxiety when they are left home along, especially for a longer period of time. If you need to leave your dog alone like this, establish a routine, so that your dog knows when to expect you to come home. But if you work longer shifts, you need to consider a doggie daycare or a dog walking service.
Exercise with your dog. Most of the times when dog barks, is because of boredom or when feeling anxiety. So the special exercising will help you reduce this type of behavior of your dog.
Your dog needs a range of toys to play with so it does not feel bored. If you regularly change your toy collection, you will keep its interest, giving it something new to deal with during the day, and preventing barking as a form of entertainment for your dog.
Minimizing the barking behavior of your Yorkie is achieved with simple training. You can teach your dog to sit, to lie down, to be quiet, as well as to speak. When the dog receives a command it focuses on you and draws away its attention from the thing that is the cause for starting to bark. For having more control over the vocal habits of your dog, you can teach it to start and stop barking on a command.
3. Control your Dog’s Outdoor Behavior
When your dog is barking a lot when it is left outside, it will never stop barking when it is at home. You will not achieve anything with yelling, so go out and divert the attention of the dog from the thing that makes it bark. Your aim is to teach your dog that there are also other ways to communicate with you, not only barking. The dog should understand that it has to be focused on you and your home, not on the things that are outside the door or beyond the fence.
For the Yorkshire Terrier, controlling its barking is one of the hardest things. But when you use a proper training, exercise regularly and draw your dog’s attention away from the things that cause its barking, this behavior will be reduced and barking could even be stopped.