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Many Dogs Bark at Passersby
A common problem that does have a solution

A lot of dogs bark out the window at everyone who goes by. In fact, this is one of the most common problems motivating people to seek the help of a canine behaviorist or dog trainer. Luckily, most dogs can be taught a more appropriate response than barking like a maniac at every passerby.

Dogs tend to bark even more if we say, “Quiet!” Barking is a social, contagious behavior, so when dogs hear us vocalize in a sharp way in response to their barking, it’s no wonder that our dogs keep going with their own barking. A far better plan is to teach them to come away from the window whenever they see anybody going by and then reinforce them with a lot of treats for that behavior. I offer detailed advice in a recent newspaper column.

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Karen B. London, PhD, is a Bark columnist and a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist specializing in the evaluation and treatment of serious behavior problems in the domestic dog.

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