As a dog owner, it is more than likely you’ve been caught up in the nerve-racking situation of your dog barking on for hours and seemingly wouldn’t stop.
Although your pet dog is undoubtedly one precious member of the family or perhaps your only lonesome companion, the noise discomfort in its period of seeming unending barks can be very annoying.
Thus you may have wondered, “do dogs get tired of barking?”
Dogs definitely bark for several reasons or as an indication of something or someone.
However, sometimes they can be excessive barkers, and this as well boils down to many other reasons.
This article entails everything regarding dog barking behaviors, from identifying the motivation for dogs barking, stretching to effective ways to deal with your dog barking.
Dog Barking Behavior Explained
Dog owners spend a lot of time putting effort into training their furry friends to understand humans.
But rarely do dog owners invest the same effort in learning the language of their furry companion.
Hence, as regards dogs barking, the real question isn’t “does your dog understand you?” but rather, “do you understand your dog?”
Dogs communicate in a variety of ways, including scents, body language, but the most common is barking.
A dog’s bark is an entirely different language dog owners need to be observant about.
It is not just an act of show by dogs, but a means of communication, and a bit more complex.
According to Dr. Stanley Coren’s book, “How to Speak Dog: Mastering the Art of Dog-Human Communication,” a dog’s bark in a different situation and surroundings conveys a different meaning and is emotionally complex.
Dogs’ barks are not generally one interpreted vocal signal of attention or imminent danger as many dog owners think.
But as with humans, it is a complex variety of messages and their primary way of reacting and conversing with the environment around them.
It is similar to humans with their primary means of communication through speech.
In speaking, humans can talk, shout, scream, whisper, exclaim, yell, sing; all to convey different meanings in different situations.
Barking is part of a dog’s communication, and dog owners could use some friendly help in understanding the language of their beloved pet.
Reasons Why Dogs Bark
A dog’s bark is perfectly normal and inevitable; however, when excessively done can mean another thing entirely.
As we’ve seen in the previous section, a dog’s bark most times isn’t just a random show or an act, but rather there are messages behind it.
These messages could be boiled down to several reasons for their continuous barking.
If such reasons are not addressed, there’s a high chance the barking will continue causing noise discomfort to you and your neighbors.
Below are some of the common reasons why dogs bark:
Alarm barking is often common among dogs.
For most dogs, when they see a stranger entering a property uninvited, they warn the owner of an intruder by barking.
They sense a storm, bad weather, or potential natural phenomena such as an earthquake; they go on a prolonged howl of barking.
This is usually communication among dogs.
You may notice your dog barking in response to other neighboring dogs’ barks or chaotic barkings among several dogs on a block.
This is social barking, and those barks are conversations, which express their emotions.
Dogs are social in nature and enjoy company with humans or canines alike.
A dog that is left alone to its self will become lonely and channel its boredom in barks.
Having a dog sitter or taking such a dog to a doggy daycare may be all that’s needed to counter the problem.
Barking as a form of greeting
It may be strange to know this, but dogs greet their owners and others they’re acquainted with, just the same way humans greet each other.
They do this by friendly short barks and sometimes accompanied with other body gestures.
They also do this to other dogs or animals they’ve become familiar with.
Barking to get attention
If a dog needs attention from its owner, barking is its way of notifying its owner, while expecting a response.
The attention they need may differ; it may be that they’re hungry or thirsty or feeling too cold or warm, or perhaps they’re just in need of some little petting.
Whatever it is they’re in need of, they’d bark to get the attention of their owners.
When dogs become settled in a particular environment, they develop a territorial behavior and consider the place their own.
If they sense someone or any animal invading their space or territory, they would bark and get protective until the intruders leave the territory.
Dog Separation Anxiety
Dog separation anxiety is a condition whereby dogs feel anxious in the absence of their owners.
The behavioral results are often long hours of barking, howling, pacing, and sometimes engaging in destructive habits.
A dog that is often or overly anxious every time it isn’t around its owner has likely developed a behavioral issue known as separation anxiety.
Canines suffering from this behavioral disorder need to be taken in for behavioral therapy treatment; otherwise, the condition can get worse over time and lead to more damaging effects.
Treatment varies depending on the severity of the anxiety.
Do Dogs Get Tired of Barking?
Dogs do not get tired of barking. They will continue barking until their need for barking is addressed.
Although dogs may get physically exhausted from long hours of barking, this doesn’t mean they’d stop if they’re not given the due attention needed.
They may slow their barking, but the urge will keep them on.
This behavior is quite similar to babies. Babies can’t directly tell you what they want or what bothers them; hence, they’d register their voice in the only language they know, crying and fretting until their mothers meet their needs.
Barking is dogs’ primary way of communicating.
Thus, when they need their owners to do something or want something, they make their thought known by barking, and they wouldn’t tire out of barking in the hope their owners will address their needs.
When is Dog Barking Considered Excessive?
It is perfectly normal for dogs to bark even at a constant interval when playing or when they hear something alarming.
Appropriate or acceptable barking in dogs occurs five minutes every hour and not more than four times a day between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Anything beyond this can be considered excessive barking.
Nonetheless, many dog owners believe excessive dog barking includes barkings beyond a minute or frequently late at night for no seemingly obvious reasons.
Certain regulation in certain neighborhood kicks against dog barking between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. and continuous barking for 30 minutes nonstop.
Also, a dog barking for more than an hour in a 24 hour period is considered excessive barking.
Normal barking is a standard response to any form of situation. However, barking is considered excessive when a situation has ended, yet a dog continues barking.
Its volume and rate of barking are tense and dramatic in response compared to a situation.
How to Stop a Dog from Barking
It is completely normal for dogs to bark when they feel threatened, startled, or sense dangers.
However, in some instances, dogs may bark out of compulsiveness, which should be remedied if it becomes a norm.
Often the first step in stopping your dog from unnecessarily barking is to understand the reason behind its barking.
Below are further ways to stop your dog from barking:
Identify the motivation and kill it
Most times, when dogs do bark, they derive some sort of satisfaction or reward from it; hence this encourages them to continue the barking spree.
Figure out what is exactly getting them worked up to bark and kill that motivation.
In the absence of a motivating factor to excite them into needless barking, they’ll stop barking.
For instance, it could be that your dog may enjoy watching passersby and spooking them with barks.
In this situation, simply close the curtains or find a way to restrict your dog’s view of the outside street.
Once it can’t get a view of the open street or passersby, there’d be no reason for it to bark.
Use of commands
Dogs generally are trainable to obey commands.
Therefore, you can apply these tactics in communicating to your dog to stop needless barking with a simple sound, gesture, or look.
However, this doesn’t stop at just gesturing your dog to stop barking; otherwise, your dog will in no time resume barking again.
Along with gesturing to your dog to quit barking, you’ll have to ensure your canine is physically and mentally relaxed before taking your eyes off it.
This tactic can also be used to train dogs to bark on command. Treat-based training proves effective following this tactic.
Exercise your dog
If you exercise your dog often, both physically and mentally, it’s likely it won’t go on a barking spree.
On the other hand, under-exercise dogs are filled with energy ready to burn off in whatever ways; thus, they’re more likely to engage in unnecessary barking.
Tired dogs rarely bark as exercise help dogs release calming hormones; thus, the urge to bark is greatly reduced.
The amount of exercise a dog needs differs and depends on such dog size, breed, and physical traits.
Ignore the barking
When your dog begins barking excessively, it’s a message they want your attention, but sometimes the attention it craves from you may be unnecessary.
So, if you deem whatever attention your dog craves isn’t something an important need for food, warmth, or water, you can choose to ignore its barking completely.
In doing this, you must not look, touch, or show any sign of concern to your dog barking.
Once it stops barking, you can reward your dog with a treat; this way, your dog will understand that silence gets your attention and not barking.
However, to achieve this requires patience and endurance on your part.
You may as well want to notify your close neighbors ahead of your intention in the event your dog’s barking causes noise discomfort to them; they’d understand what’s going on and be prepared.
Dog Bark Spray Collar
Shock collars have proven effective in restraining dogs from unnecessary barking; however, it is not advisable.
A better alternative is spray collars, and they are equally effective.
Spray collar contains a lemony scent that would be automatically sprayed across a dog’s face upon barking, thereby discouraging such dog from excessive barking.
Since canines generally do not like the lemony scent, they’ll avoid triggering it.
When a dog eventually stops excessive barking, you can take off the spray collar.
Get professional help
Another option is to hire a professional to curb your dog’s excessive barking habit.
These professionals could be experienced dog trainers, massage therapists, or psychologists.
However, you have to figure the best professional expert needed based on your dog’s condition.
For instance, if your dog’s excessive barking results from separation anxiety, you may want to consult with a vet first before getting any professional help.
Can You Train a Dog to Stop Barking?
Worthy of mention is a report by Dr. Sophia Yin of the Veterinary Information Network family.
According to her research, dog barks likely have specific functions in a specific context.
It is ideally possible for people to recognize the barks and the message behind them in a specific context and better understand the dog’s behavior generally.
If explored, Dr. Yin’s proposed theory can be helpful in diagnosing and treating excessive dog barking problems.
If anything, Dr. Sophia Yin’s research shows that it’s possible to understand the underlying behavior behind a dog’s bark and possibly train it to stop barking excessively.
Nonetheless, there are other ways as stated above earlier.
It is vital to know that training a dog to stop barking isn’t possible. Barking is natural to dogs.
However, it is possible to train a dog to stop barking excessively or to bark on command.
How long can a dog bark for?
There is no definite timeframe for how long a dog can bark. But dogs can bark for days with only a few breaks and will continue barking even if it’s gone hoarse.
Will a dog eventually get tired of barking?
Eventually, dogs get tired of barking, but that doesn’t necessarily stop them from barking. It just means they’ll take a break and get right back on when they feel fully rested.
Is it best to ignore a barking dog?
There is no straightforward answer to this. Dogs don’t just start barking and then stop because it’s not getting your attention. It depends on the reason your dog is barking in the first place.
If your dog is just engaging in nuisance barking, then ignoring it isn’t the best call. You’ll have to train your dog to stop needless barking.
However, if your dog is barking, perhaps to get a delightful treat that you do not want to oblige it because it may cause harm, then, in this case, ignoring it is a good call.
Barking is dogs’ way of communicating, and thus they rarely get tired of it.
Most times, a dog barking is a sign that they need or crave something and wouldn’t tire out until you figure out its need.
The case is different with nuisance or excessive barking.
Hopefully, this article has provided helpful information in dealing with your pet dog’s excessive barkings.