HELP - How do I stop my dog from howling?

My dog is beginning to howl excessively… and as the days go by, his howls become louder and more sustained. What makes matters worse is that I live in a quiet area (on the rooftop) so his howls are amplified and echoes like crazy… He’ll start just after I bail and not return [within a few minutes]… or when he hears me fire up my bike downstairs… he’s so loud that I can hear him from a block away with my helmet on.

What makes matters even worse is that my landlord lives just below me who I had to beg to keep my dog when I first took him in. He’s a pretty laid back fella – retired and practices his golf putt all day long at home… (unfortunately tho, he gets to hear the dog all day long too… which I’m sure doesn’t help his putt cause a bit. I’m sure the neighbors aren’t too happy bout it either.

Although my landlord has been ultra cool about it… it’s definitely wearing thin… Now, I’ll get calls from him in the middle of my work day calmly telling me that my dog is howling [once again]… and when I say calm, I mean sorta in a scary calm kind of way… he’s been very cool about it so far, and I’d hate for it get any worse than it already is… or for him to think that I’ not trying to do anything about it.

My landlord has already suggested chaining the dog up to the far end (away from his windows) – obviously not a solution… and I think he knows that, but I think his point is not so much the chain but his underlying message… :frowning:

The frustrating thing about all this is that the dog is pretty smart and knows better (I think)… I mean, I don’t have to train him much to get him to behave – he won’t go into rooms that he knows he’s not supposed to be in, he does his business only in the designated areas, he doesn’t beg for food (most of the time), etc… – all this never really took much effort to get him to learn… BUT I can’t get him to stop howling. :frowning: :frowning: :frowning:

I don’t want to give him up. I’d really hate to do that to him, specially since he’s already been abandoned once.

So that’s the situation anyway… my question is what can I do to keep my dog from howling while I’m gone?

The howling started about a month ago… weak howls at first so I thought nothing of it (DAMN!!!)… He doesn’t howl when he hears sirens and nothing has really changed up to that point in time either. I mean, I’d give him daily walks to the park and spend quite a bit of time with him as I always do… but he seems to get worse with more time I spend with him – and especially when I have friends around. He’ll go bezerk when my friends are kicking back at my pad and then we all leave… He’ll whine and scratch at the door when they leave [and I stay] too… he’ll even bark at the taxi’s when my friends take off in them… (hmmm…)

So I’m thinking that it’s becasue he’s afraid to be alone, or hates to be left alone… I’m pretty sure that’s the problem… but the bigger problem is that I dont know what to do to fix it? I’ve tried toys, I’ve tried giving him yummier food just before I leave (which he’ll harldy eat until I get back), I’ve even tried calmly talking to him to get him to relax before I leave… but so far, nothing has worked.

:help: :help: :help: :help: :help:

How often are you taking him out for a walk? It doesn’t matter how big your rooftop or yard is, a dog that doesn’t get to go out every day for a decent walk will become frustrated and seek his own stimuli - usually barking, howling, chewing furniture, etc. A tired dog is a good dog.

If you really want to keep your neighbours happy and, more importantly, your dog, give him at least 45 minutes of walking exercise each day.

He may also believe he is the leader of your pack and be concerned about his charge being away so long. It is important to tell a dog in his own language that he is not the leader, that you are.

(1) Walk him, not him walk you - the dog in front of the pack is the leader and everyone else is a follower

(2) Go through doors first, not your dog go through first - the leader of a dog pack always goes through entrances first

(3) Ignore him for five minutes when you come home - packs always try to reestablish leadership at every reunion, be it after 5 days absence or five minutes, and your dog will try to get you to obey his will by barking at you and jumping up to get your attention - ignore this, and once he is calm, say hello in a calm manner - the same goes for when you leave - keep your goodbyes calm and brief - don’t make your partings and reunions th high point of his day

(4) This is the most powerful - eat before your dog - prepare his food but have a snack of your own ready - place his food near your snack so he will think it is part of his food - while he is watching, take your time to eat the snack item while ignoring him, then, once you have finished, give him his food (if he is calm) - the alpha dog always eats first while subordinates get his leftovers - very powerful message

Once your dog is relieved of his perceived leadership role, he will not pine for his charge any more as it’s not his job. Take him for a long walk every morning before you leave and practice obedience (sit, stay, etc.) at every opportunity, and your dog will happily accept his new role as a follower and be relieved of all the stresses involved with leading a pack in a human environment.

Do it, and I guarantee success. Ignore any of the advice, and you will still have an unhappy dog and unhappy neighbours.

Good luck!


Feel free to call if you need more help: 0920 620 109

I’ve abeen watching a few dog training videos, from animal planet, (bought them in carefour)

basically your dog is suffering from seperation anxiaty.

you have to reasure him/her that it is ok to be left alone.

so 10-20 minutes after you get home and 10-20 minutes before you leave the house, you must ignore him/her. to make them understand that it is nothing special when you are there to when you are away.

do dummy leaves. walk out and when he/she starts howling walk in clap your hands, and say NO in a very low voice/growl.
When your dog is quiet when you leave, go in and tell him he is good but not too much praise, as the dog must understand he hasn’t done anything special just something he is supposed to do.

take him on very long energetic walks before you leave to tire him out.

don’t give him his toys until you leave, when you are there take all his toys away from him.

You must teach him that you are the master and that you are in control.
let him walk by your side and not pull,
go through the door before he does.
make him sit and wait nicely before you give him any food.
then when you give him comands like to be quiet he will listen because youare the leader of the pack.

try this, hope it works.
i’m training my dog not to bite things that aren’t hers to bite.

you could always concider getting another dog to keep him company. :smiley:

Good post - great minds, and all that. :wink:

Excellent post by Stray Dog. I’d add one other thing to the list - if your dog disobeys you, flip him over on his back, straddle him (don’t put any weight on him of course), and stare him down. He’ll eventually look away. Repeat as many times as necessary to establish your alpha status. Vanessa does this to me all the time, and it really works! :blush:

Thanks for the great feedback… much appreciated! :slight_smile:

Stray Dog – I definitely don’t want my dog to be an unhappy dog… My rooftop [outside area] isn’t very big and when I’m home, I keep the door open for him to roam around… but he prefers to hang out or nap indoors most of the time anyway. He has his own designated areas inside the house and is not allowed to venture beyond that, which he doesn’t. In fact, I would have to drag him into the “restricted zones” which he’ll quickly run out after I let him go… prolly cuz my room is an insane pig sty. :blush:

As far as the walks go, I walk him [almost] everyday and let him run loose in the park field as well… and in most cases, our walks last well over 45minutes (distance of approximately 3 MRT stops)… Then I’ll let him run freely when we get back in since the field is just around the corner and on the way in from my place… I’ll usually walk him very earlier in the mornings or in the evening when I get back in… hardly ever just before I leave (cuz I’m usually running late more often than not…) :blush: but I think that its an excellent idea – which I’ll start doing come monday. Thx for that tip UKbikerchic! I guess I shoulda thought of that.

In regards to Alphaness… I used to have a problem with him pulling on the leash but that problem has been solved… He does however walk in front of me but on a slack leash… he’ll usually only walk besides me when he’s a tired doggy… should I get him to always walk besides me (as opposed to in front of me?)

As for me going through the doors first, I’ll definitely change things up there… I’ve always let him go through doors first since it was easier for me that way (I have auto shutting spring doors in my building that shut a bit too quick). He used to sit there whining and wait for my gester to usher him through the door first… but now he walks through em without me having to do so – doh!

I’ll try the eat before he eats routine too. I’m prolly wrong here but I honestly dont get the feeling that he is trying to dominate here. He does hate to be ignored tho… especially when my firends are around. He’s definitely an attention seeker times like these.

UKbikerchic – I was actully thinking about getting another pooch to keep him company, but at this point in time, I really doubt my landlord will let that fly. Perhaps when I move out… or get kicked out lol. As for the toys, he never really plays with them until I’m gone, which I’ll find shredded to smithereens by the time I get back in… I’ve tried the dummy leaves routine too… worked for barking, but doesn’t stop the howling :frowning: :frowning: :frowning:

Mao – He lays on his back with his leg sticking out in the air already lol… I’m thinking he’ll prolly get confused or think I’m playing with him if I straddle him maybe? I must say tho… he is an ultra hyper dog; in the field, he’d run full throttle directly at me like a missle then jump and do a 180 in the air with his back turn to me, expecting me to catch him or something lol – another problem… another question… another day… but first the howling.

I’ll defintiely try out the suggestions… and again, thx for the input! I’ll post back to let ya know its working :slight_smile: Much thx :notworthy: :notworthy: :notworthy:

You might want to give your landlord a quick visit saying that you are dealing with the problem and make a sincere apology…he seems to be a cool guy from what you’re saying…might be nice to let him know you acknowledge the problem and are trying to resolve it…I’m sure you apologized over the phone, but going over in person might be a good gesture…

Yeah, I definitely let him know this… with baskets of fruit and all. I’ve got the dog to stop barking when I’m downstairs (literally a few feet away) while I’m hangin out with the big boss – he knows I’m trying… I’m just dreading the day he tells me “I told you so…” :frowning: :doh: :blush: :silenced:

Did she do this after your lap dance night out? :laughing:

zerosu, I forgot to say how great it is that you want to work with the dog on his issues - I like that.

Also, you are obviously a great dog guardian - I have no doubt about that.

The only point I want to make is that only a few dogs want to dominate; many feel they have to take the dominant position as that is the message they are being given in dog speak. In fact, dogs who feel they have an alpha role but don’t feel up to the job display all kinds of visible stress, such as biting themselves, barking at everyone and anything, etc.

Take a look at some of the clips on this site and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about:

The Dog Whisperer

Click on ‘Browse by Program’ and then click on ‘The Dog Whisperer’. There are two pages of clips - be amazed, be enlightened, and enjoy! :slight_smile:

A tight muzzle? That might be a short term solution while you’re working on it.

Excellent posts once again Stray Dog! :bravo:

If you’re going to train a dog, you might as well think like one. :wink:


[quote=“bobepine”]Excellent posts once again Stray Dog! :bravo:

If you’re going to train a dog, you might as well think like one. :wink:


I eat like one…and sometimes I go for pees in the park…just for the heck of it…does that count for anything?

I think you ought to pet him first.

[quote=“Mordeth”][quote=“bobepine”]Excellent posts once again Stray Dog! :bravo:

If you’re going to train a dog, you might as well think like one. :wink:


I eat like one…and sometimes I go for pees in the park…just for the heck of it…does that count for anything?[/quote]I think you’re not hairy enough. But nice try. :laughing: :wink:


[quote=“bobepine”] I think you’re not hairy enough. But nice try. :laughing: :wink:


You obviously didn’t read the thread where I talked about wanting to wax my butt.

My new puppy has howled twice…and only twice. Both times were when I put it on the roof and closed the door. As I started to walk down the stairs it started to howl in protest. Both times I ran back up and out onto the roof and bit down on its ear…hard. Its never once howled since.

Tried tiring him out before going out and he’s still howling like crazy… I swear, this dog has too much energy in him for his own good… I took him in when he was about 5-6 months old (according to the vet)… so he’s about a year old now. Not sure if that has anything to do with anything… or why I even said that lol… GRRRR… doh nevermind.

Ok… I’ve gotta admit, it’s beginning to drive me nutz! I’m forgetting all kinds of stupid stuff now (ie. keys, helmet, shoes) on the way out the doors – cuz the anticipation of his howling and the thought of my poor landlord puts me in a #@% up panic mode. He’s turnin me into a paranoid schizophrenic!! …and my work-mates keep wondering why I’ve been in such a bad mood lately…

Oh, and he knows the phones now – so as soon as he hears the phone go off, he’ll go into his “yippy!! I’m going out!!” mode… Instant 360’s… 720’s burn outs and barking at the door as soon he hears the phone. …

This is off the subject… but my dog loves to take shits right in front of the 7-11’s – ALL THE TIME. I think he does it on purpose so he can watch me pick it up in front of people walking out with their twisted faces and freshly microwaved grub in their hands…

Ok… I’ve gotta get a grip. I haven’t slept and it’s 5:30AM… Where’s the JD at? Damn, I’ve got WORK!!

Ok… before I crash out… I’ve gotta say some good has come outta all this. He’s learned quite a bit of stuff in a short amount of time already… He’ll now sit and wait for my “ok” before entering doors and wait for me to go through first. I can make him sit and wait for me to give him the “ok” before he’s allowed to chow down. Even better… he’ll sit in his corner and not even pay attention to me when I eat now (instead of sitting in front of me whining). He’s getting better with other dogs too… he’s not as wild.

It’s only been a few days since I’ve started training him to do these things… Like I said, he’s a smart dog and he learns quick – which makes me think – wtf is wrnog with me!? It’s gotta be something I’m doing (or missing) that’s making act like super werewolf dog. That said, I think I’m beginning to get a grasp on this dog dominance concept. I notice more things in his behavior and the look(s) on his face now more than I ever have before… AND I’m much more mindful of the things I do around him that might make him think he’s the alpha…

It’s true – you gotta think a bit like em to understand “the how,” thats for sure… and I realize that now. But if he’s not quiet by the week’s end, he’s not gonna have any ears left to chew on!!