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Training Tips

  • Rattle Tin Stops Ozzy Barking!

    Hello all we have been trying to do some serious training with our dog Ozzy McDougal or Tinie or barkster as he now likes to be known. What with the house move and website development we have been very bad dog parents and kind of just hoped that he would start behaving himself when he was older! What wishful thinking.... For a long time we have not tackled his barking which he does when he is excited and as a result when anyone came to visit he would just bark constantly from the moment he heard the door bell until he decided he wanted to stop. Telling him to be quiet only made matters worse. So I decided to try him with a rattle tin, to be honest I had heard about this technique before but had completely forgotten about it.

    Dog training rattle tin


    So armed with a colemans mustard tin with some coins and a key inside I waited for the barking to start. The first opportunity came when I got back from shopping. Laden with bags I usually open the door to a nice little whimper greeting from old boy Dougal kind of like a little howl of delight that I am home again, and a complete barkfest from Tinie. I had already thought to leave the tin in the hall so that it was at hand for me to use when I got in, so when I entered I said hello and down which Tini will do for a few seconds before he starts barking for attention whilst doing a little skittish run around the place. One sharp shake of the tin..... He was startled even a little scared looking, it stopped him in his tracks and he stopped barking, ran away and when into a down position looking at me in a curious way. He stood and barked again, I said the command "Quiet" and shook the tin once more. Almost immediate result, back into down position and no barking. I praised him and asked him to come, over he trotted looking very happy and greeting me in happy calm way. Next stage was the arrival of Jasmine for work the next morning... usually we have a mad barking half hour as he tries to get to her, I keep him away and usually send him outside until he has worn himself out. He then comes back in but has to be kept out of the office as he barks and barks for attention. So Rattle Tin in hand I answered the door, yes he was already barking having heard the door bell, we both walked in to the room, Tinie gets totally overexcited barking and jumping, cue one sharp shake of the tin. Response stops barking immediately and goes into down position..stays down until he is called to come say hello.
    Ozzy McDougal


    Throughout that day he was calmer and did not bark for attention like he usually does. Things were looking good and I though that this was probably enough training for one day, but we had been looking after Scooby - Dougal's brother as he has been a bit poorly so when Karen turned up to collect Scooby with my two godsons I was expecting the usual barkfest. I followed the same steps allowing him to see that we had visitors, he usually goes especially mad when he sees Adam and Ryan, he loves children so to everyone's complete amazement one shake of the tin was all it took for him to calm down considerably and stop barking. Don't get me wrong he was still wagging his little butt like crazy and doing a little howl of delight. But he was only allowed to greet the visitors when he was calm and not barking. So it seems like we may have a solution to the barking, we will continue with the training next week and start to combine it with the "Good Boy Quiet" command after he has been quiet for 15 -20 seconds, with the aim of eventually being able to just use the Be Quiet command ! At least for the moment we have a happier solution all round for the barking boy. We will be posting more about our training journey with the little boy and would love to hear your training tips too!

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