We have two dogs that run to the front door and bark at any noise.I use a can filled with pennies that i shake to startle them. That usually works.But i don't want to train them never to bark, but bark only at legitimate "noises" So, how do i isolate non-threatening from potentially threatening situations? Also, our little dog sometimes charges at people when they come over and tries to bite them in the feet. Does shaking the can work or should i use a training collar and leash to correct him? I try and introduce people slowly to him so he can get used to them but i don't want anyone to get bitten. Thanks.
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As a trainer of canines, I allow my dogs to give off a couple of barks when some one is at the door and then I teach them to come back and sit at my side. I do all training with a leash on. I thank them for watching out for me and then I command a (come and sit) and then all of us go to the door and with the leash still on I have complete control. I find once you have allowed your dogs to do their job- and that is to warn you when someone is at the door, they will then listen to your come command and be at your side.

Yelling at them while they are barking only gets them upset and they feel they need to bark even louder. Have a leash on them when they are in the house and should some one come to the door you can use that person as a learning lesson for your dog. You must have a leash on them to this training lesson. Pulling them back with your hands will get you no where. Use the leash to guide them back to you and use your hands for rewarding them with a pat or simply tell them thankyou.

They are only doing their job and once they realize you are in control of the situation they will back down and let you be in control. You must have a leash on to control the situation.As for the dog that runs at people and bites their feet, have a leash on him also. This is unexceptable behavior and will get you into trouble if he bites and draws blood. If he has a leash on prior to someone coming to the door, you simply get the handle of the leash and make him come back to you. Do not go to him, have him return to you. It sounds like he might need to be socialized and you need to learn how to correct for unwanted behavior.

There is a proper way to correct and if I were there I would show you how. See if you can find a trainer and have them show you how to use a leash to correct for unwanted behavior. There really is a right way and a wrong way to use a leash. Good luck Sully
With regards to your dog that rushes at people to bite them, a can of pennies will be not give you lasting results. This method serves only as a "pattern interrupt". It doesn't associate anything negative to the action of charging. Your instinct is correct to use a leash and training collar.
Ty Brown
dogbehavioronline.com
We have two dogs that run to the front door and bark at any noise.I use a can filled with ... them never to bark, but bark only at legitimate "noises" So, how do i isolate non-threatening from potentially threatening situations?

Why dont you praise them for telling about the noise first and tell them it's ok once you check it out, (prolonged, non physical praise) THEN, if they continue after you have told them it's "ok" use your can with pennies (one quick, sudden sound) to distract their thoughts and praise. The can though, if it ALWAYS comes from your hand is going to become expected by your dogs, and become background noise, (something to ignore) so you must alternate the direction of the sound.

There was a time when I did not take this detail into proper consideration and I didn't get the results I wanted, Once I took note of alternating the sound things started working out.

Not a professional, but it worked for me,
hope this helps:-)
Crystal
"(Email Removed)" (Email Removed) said in
Why dont you praise them for telling about the noise first and tell them it's ok once you check it out,

Good advice and works well.
(prolonged, non physical praise)

This I've never understood. Why nonphysical?

Matt. Rocky's a Dog.
And why prolonged?
Mustang Sally
Hi Matt,
Non physical praise doesnt interrupt the dogs thoughts as physical praise pretty much blocks the thought process or worse; Sometime, I have noticed with my dogs in the past, that when they are upset and barking at something "scary and unknown" and I would touch them(as in physical praise) it would seem to lock their thoughts on that scary thing and cause for an over-reaction in my dogs.
Simple, calm, prolonged, non physical praise is what calms them and lets them know everything is ok, never stunting or blocking their own thinking, which is good I'd imagine for next time the issue comes up and they want to bark. They will remember the last instance clearly and how to handle it. And of course being consistent with the sounds/distraction. that's my take:-)
Crystal
And why prolonged? Mustang Sally

Hi, Sally,
Prolonged praise (5 to 20 seconds) is so very important. The dog is listening and thinking even when he is making to movement to carry through with the command, or stop the behavior you dont want. If the dog knows the command already but is not preforming or, if his behavior is stressed induced, prolonged praise will calm him, get his attention, keep his attention and encourage him to proform:-)

Crystal
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