4. Guard Barking:
Guard barking is commonly misunderstood as aggression or a dog showing dominance. However, it should be noted that when a dog is aggressive or dominant, he rarely shows it through barking. Guard barking happens when a dog feels the need to defend himself, his belongings, his home, his owner or his pack. Guard barking is a survival skill and it is more inherent in some breed than others.
This kind of barking is characterized by a shorter but deeper kind of fear barking, oftentimes accompanied by growling. It is also commonly accompanied by a lunging, defensive body position. The dog may also bare his teeth. If a dog’s guard barking is not acknowledged, he may take further steps to protect and defend himself.
How to stop guard barking:
To address guard barking, do not reprimand the dog as this will usually just aggravate the barking. Because guarding barking and behavior can very quickly escalate to a dangerous situation, immediately remove either your dog, or the person or other dog he is guarding.
If your dog is guarding resources, like food, toys, bedding or other items of high value to him, he will need to learn to tolerate people and other animals near his things. This can be taught using the desensitizing and counter-conditioning methods described above for fear barking, but may require the assistance of a certified trainer or animal behaviorist due to the risk of aggression.
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