Anyone with one of these majestic grey dogs knows that Weimaraner barking is a big problem. The Weimaraner is bred to hunt, to move around all day and to be with his owner constantly – it’s a survival mechanism.
In your home, however, that survival mechanism can quickly be channeled in ways that will result in lots of barking, lots of neurotic behaviors and lots of upset neighbors. If you have a Weimaraner barking problem, however, there are some things you can do about it.
The Roots of Weimaraner Barking
There are different kinds of barks and they each have different root causes. The two most common kinds of barking for a Weimaraner are anxious and alarm barks.
The first of these, anxious barks, are related to a strong sense of companionship that Weimaraners develop. They do not like to be left alone and can develop extreme separation anxiety if you are not careful.
Unfortunately, there are few things you can do about this innate desire to be close to someone. You should definitely reconsider buying a Weimaraner if you work a lot or are rarely home. If you are home frequently, however, and your dog continues to grow anxious when you leave, adjustments will need to be made.
The second type of barking relates to the somewhat jumpy nature of Weimaraners. These are fantastic dogs for watching your home, but it can grow excessive. New sites, new sounds, and any intrusions into the home will be treated with instant alarm. Again, if you’re not home often, this is probably not the right breed for you.
How to Deal with Weimaraner Barking
Now that you know the roots of the barking behavior, we can take action to curb it. First off, know that you can never make a dog stop barking – not completely. They are born to bark – it’s how they communicate. If you were able to do so, it would deprive them of something too important. But, you can teach them when it’s okay to bark and eliminate situations in which they are prone to bark.
• Teaching Your Dog to Speak – One way to curb a behavior is to teach your dog through obedience and clicker training how to perform that action, and then how to stop that action.
If you teach your dog to speak, they will recognize the act and be able to associate it to another command to be “quiet”. In this way, you can avoid yelling at or punishing your dog. A simple, calm command will work.
• Crate Training and Disassociation – If your Weimaraner barking problem is due to separation anxiety, you should look for a way to disassociate the dog with your coming and going. Start with crate training, which provides a safe, quiet place for you dog to relax when you are not home.
• Desensitizing Your Dog – If your Weimaraner barking is due to anger or aggression toward outside things like the mailman, your neighbor or a local cat, find ways to desensitize them. Take your dog outside with a bag of treats and reward them for being quiet while observing all the agitating aspects of your neighborhood.
• Proper Socialization – Aggressive barking can also be alleviated by socializing with other dogs and people. This should be done at a very young age – between 6-14 weeks, and then throughout the life of your dog. You will likely never remove the tendency for your Weimaraner to bark at other dogs, but you may be able to limit it.
When properly trained, Weimaraner barking can be cut down to such a degree that you will rarely, if ever, need to worry about anxious, jumpy behaviors ever again. That doesn’t mean Weimaraners will ever turn into calm, relaxed dogs with nothing to say, but at least you can leave the house without your neighbors calling animal control.