.

Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. I would suggest enrolling your dog in an Obediance Adult 1 course locally with a dog trainer. Call your local pet stores/vet offices and ask if they have a dog training program or know who to recommend. With a positive reinforcement dog trainer you can learn how to teach your dog how to be polite, to not bark, commands, ways to keep your dog entertained and ways to keep your dog from being less destructive.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced pet care professionals :

Chihuahuas are known to be fiercely territorial and protective. They will often bark constantly at anyone they perceive as a potential threat, and to them, that could be almost any stranger in your home, even friends of yours.
Dogs are usually anxious in the car because they`ve developed a negative association with driving. They may have had a frightening car-related event that occurred in their past. Or they associate the car with going to scary places (perhaps the vet or groomer).
Treat-filled gauntlet

Lead your Chihuahua from person to person. As soon as she stops barking at all, reward her, encourage the stranger to reward her, and have the person throw her a treat. Then move onto the next person.

The simple answer is: they can. Chihuahuas, just like all breeds of dogs, are individuals. So, you may meet a Chihuahua who rarely barks, or a Chihuahua who never stops barking! Barking is both a nature and a nurture behavior, which means both genetics and training play a role on if a Chihuahua will bark a lot.
When a dog barks at strangers, it is generally an arousal response as a way to communicate an alert, a way to show fear, or as an act of protection. This bark can be reinforced by your behavior, by other dogs barking, or can even be self-reinforced as dogs will wind themselves up.
If your dog barks or responds in a disruptive or undesirable manner, refrain from scolding or tugging on their leash as it will increase their excitement and create a negative experience for them. Instead, simply walk in another direction and remove them from the situation so they can calm down.
Boredom, restlessness, fear, and separation anxiety are all common reasons that your dog might bark and whine while you`re gone.
Although humans may not quite understand it, for dogs, chasing is an instinct. For dogs, moving vehicles may be an annoyance, a thrill or something else entirely, but one thing is for sure: It sparks that natural instinct in which a dog recognizes the vehicle as prey they must run after and capture.
Reward them for eye contact with you or loose lead walking. Rushing away or panicking can make your dog more anxious. If your dog reacts straight away, it is likely the stranger is too close to begin with. Calmly encourage your dog away and reward them when they follow you.
You are not alone. Most dogs bark some when there is a surprise visitor at the door. Here are some of the reasons they bark and what you might be able to do to help them stop barking sooner. The dog doesn`t know what to do when people come.
You can manage aggression in Chihuahuas through proper socialization to make them less likely to see people and other animals as threats. Obedience training using positive reinforcement can also give you some limited control over their behavior.
Socialize your Chihuahua. Introduce your Chihuahua to other people, other dogs and other animals in a positive non-threatening environment. Reward positive interaction, remove your dog if aggressive behavior occurs while you continue to interact with others. While socializing, keep your dog at floor level.
There is a study by neuropsychologist and professor of psychology, Stanley Cohen, that says Chihuahuas are classified as fair or below average for working/obedience dog intelligence. Chihuahuas are actually ranked 125th out of 138 breeds tested. However, we would say that low ranking is actually proof they are smart.
While they might not need as much exercise as some larger breeds, it`s still important to make sure your Chihuahua stays active. Your Chihuahua will need a minimum of half an hour exercise every day to stay happy and healthy. We`d recommend splitting this into two smaller walks so they can have a sniff and explore.
Signs of Separation Anxiety

Each Chihuahua feels the effects of isolation in their own unique way. But, generally a puppy or dog will display one or more of the following signs: Excessive barking. Whining.

If your dog follows you everywhere then it`s most likely a sign that they love and adore you. When dogs interact with someone they like, the hormone oxytocin is released. Oxytocin is often referred to as the `love hormone` and makes you feel that warm glow when you`re around someone you like.
It is rather an innate response triggered by the dog`s self-defense system. The dog may feel alarmed, and he may go into fight-or-flight mode, but since a hug restrains him, he may more likely go into fight mode and react aggressively by giving a warning growl.
If you`re anything like us, you`ll probably continue referring to your dog as a puppy until they`re old and grey! But generally speaking, a puppy is officially considered an adult dog between the ages of 1 – 2 years, once their bones have fully developed and they`ve reached their final height and size.
Get your Chihuahua out as often as possible to see the big wide world. He needs to be comfortable with people coming into your home and with other pets being near you. A Chihuahua who is not well socialized will stick to his owner and fear anyone else. From early on, take your Chihuahua anywhere you can take him.
Barking – Barking usually only gets worse as your pup grows into adulthood. Dogs bark for many reasons – attention, boredom, frustration, alarm, etc.
Dogs bark at people for a variety of different reasons, whether because they are excited, frustrated that they can`t greet the person, or even worried or uncomfortable about another`s presence. If your dog is barking while in your front yard, they may feel protective of their home or be warning others to stay away.
The Behavior Is Being Reinforced

This is likely to take place when a dog perceives the presence of visitors as an aversive social interaction, and the reaction is usually fear-based.

Your dog might be trying to tell you to give more time and attention and share some family playtime with them. Although barking might have felt a lot more aggressive, remember that the dog can only do so much to communicate with its owner.
In puppies, it may have to do with the inner ear not being fully developed. Carsickness in adult dogs could be caused by an infection or other disorder of the inner ear, or by some medications. But carsickness can also be a psychological phenomenon, an anxiety response to riding in the car.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. Whenever I take my dog on walks he always barks at people and others dogs in my neighborhood. What should I do to resolve the problem
ANSWER : A. The very first thing to do is to make sure your dog is getting sufficient physical and mental exercise every day. A tired dog is a good, happy dog and one who is less likely to bark from boredom or frustration. Depending on his breed, age, and health, your dog may require several long walks as well as a good game of chasing the ball and playing with some interactive toys.

Figure out what he gets out of barking and remove it. Don’t give your dog the opportunity to continue the barking behavior.

Ignore your dog’s barking for as long as it takes him to stop. That means don’t give him attention at all while he’s barking. Your attention only rewards him for being noisy. Don’t talk to, don’t touch, or even look at him. When he finally quiets, even to take a breath, reward him with a treat. To be successful with this method, you must wait as long as it takes for him to stop barking. Yelling at him is the equivalent of barking with him.

Get your dog accustomed to whatever causes him to bark. Start with whatever makes him bark at a distance. It must be far enough away that he doesn’t bark when he sees it. Feed him lots of good treats. Move the stimulus a little closer (perhaps as little as a few inches or a few feet to start) and feed treats. If the stimulus moves out of sight, stop giving your dog treats. You want your dog to learn that the appearance of the stimulus leads to good things.

Teach your dog the ‘quiet’ command. Oddly, the first step is to teach your dog to bark on command. Give your dog the command to “speak,” wait for him to bark two or three times, and then stick a tasty treat in front of his nose. When he stops barking to sniff the treat, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat until he starts barking as soon as you say “speak.” Once your dog can reliably bark on command, teach him the “quiet” command. In a calm environment with no distractions, tell him to “speak.” When he starts barking, say “quiet” and stick a treat in front of his nose. Praise him for being quiet and give him the treat.

As in all training, always end training on a good note, even if it is just for obeying something very simple, like the ‘sit’ command. If you dog regresses in training, go back to the last thing he did successfully and reinforce that before moving on again. Keep sessions short, 15-20 minutes max, and do this several times a day.

Q. What can I do to stop my dog from barking at people and front doors?
ANSWER : A. Ignore your dog’s barking for as long as it takes him to stop. This means don’t give him any attention at all while he’s barking. Your attention only rewards him for being noisy. Don’t talk to him, don’t touch him, and don’t even look at him. When he finally quiets down, even to take a breath, reward him with a treat. To be successful with this method, you must wait as long as it takes for him to stop barking. If he barks for an hour and you finally get so frustrated that you yell at him to be quiet, the next time he’ll probably bark for an hour and a half. Dogs learns that if they bark long enough you’ll give them attention.

Teach your dog the ‘quiet’ command. It may sound nonsensical, but the first step is to teach your dog to bark on command. Give your dog the command to “speak,” wait for him to bark two or three times, and then stick a tasty treat in front of his nose. When he stops barking to sniff the treat, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat until he starts barking as soon as you say “speak.” Once your dog can reliably bark on command, teach him the “quiet” command. In a calm environment with no distractions, tell him to “speak.” When he starts barking, say “quiet” and stick a treat in front of his nose. Praise him for being quiet and give him the treat.

When your dog starts barking, ask him to do something that’s incompatible with barking. Teach your dog to react to barking stimuli with something that inhibits him from barking, such as lying down in his bed.

Make sure your dog is getting sufficient physical and mental exercise every day. A tired dog is a good dog and one who is less likely to bark from boredom or frustration. Depending on his breed, age, and health, your dog may require several long walks as well as a good game of fetch and playing with interactive toys.

Q. When I have to put my dog in the car she totally flips out. I put her in a crate and try to talk softly to her. Does not work, what can I do?
ANSWER : A. Your dog will need to be desensitized in baby steps in order to acclimate to the car.

First of all, consider if she’s comfortable with the crate outside the car. If not, start there. Feed her meals in the crate, keep it positive.

Next just have her outside near the car going at her pace and treat her with lots of praise and tasty treats just for being near the car. You will eventually work up to luring her in the car and into the crate rather than forcing her. You can achieve this by using pieces of cheese or hotdog, etc. The goal is to use the tastiest, higher value treats she won’t receive any other time.

In baby steps, once she is comfortable in the crate, start closing the door. Do this over several days. After that, turn the car on and keep giving her treats. After doing that during a few days, drive short distances, and so on.

You may need someone to help you keep giving treats. If she is too stressed out, go back a few steps. Also consider rescue remedy, other anxiety treats, and other calming options such as the Thundershirt.

Q. My Chihuahua barks every time someone shows up or there’s a car just going by . So everyone I have to either calm him down or I have to yell.
ANSWER : A. I would suggest enrolling your dog in an Obediance Adult 1 course locally with a dog trainer. Call your local pet stores/vet offices and ask if they have a dog training program or know who to recommend. With a positive reinforcement dog trainer you can learn how to teach your dog how to be polite, to not bark, commands, ways to keep your dog entertained and ways to keep your dog from being less destructive.

Q. How can I keep my 14 year old Yorkie from snapping at the younger ones?
ANSWER : A. It’s all about management. Do not allow the 7yo’s to interact with your 14yo unsupervised. You should be there each time they interact so you can redirect the 14yo’s attention onto some toys, or onto some treats when the 7yo’s are around. It sounds like you need to help your 14yo make positive associations with being around the younger pups. You should be trying to feed him treats each time he interacts with them, and doesn’t snap at them. Pet and praise him each time he is around them, or any time they are near. As I said, keep the separated when you cannot supervise their interactions because if you aren’t around when he is snapping at them, you could end up with a fight on your hands.

It could also be that they spend too much time together. Imagine spending 100% of your time with somebody, day in and out, doing everything together… including going to the bathroom.. that might bother anybody. I think you should give them more time apart from each other. Take them all on separate walks, separate them to play with them individually, separate them when you take them to potty, separate feeding times in separate rooms, etc. This can help alleviate the stress your older dog is feeling due to living closely with other dogs. You should always be giving individual activities in a houseful of dogs anyway.. when you expect them to get along 100% of the time, that’s when you find trouble.

Q. Husband shamed dog for having an accident inside, and now she won’t poop when he takes her out. Can we fix this? He realizes he erred
ANSWER : A. Good on your husband for realizing that scolding is not the way to potty train! Hopefully these tips can help both him and your pup get back on the right track and make pottying outside successful.

If your dog is still a puppy, that is good news as you may be able to more easily time your potty outings with your dog’s schedule. Even if your dog is older, this schedule may help. Dogs generally have to go potty about 15 minutes after eating, drinking, waking up or playing. Knowing this, get your husband to start taking out your puppy at these key times, so puppy gets used to going out with him, and the urge to potty may be higher than any fear to go. If the potty is successful, have your husband reward the dog with a favorite treat! For bowel movements, dogs may take a little more time, and you may have to stand outside for a while (sometimes even 10 minutes) to give your dog a chance to go. If she doesn’t go, take her back inside and play some, then try again in about 15 minutes. Again, a success equals a treat which most dogs will like right away!

For any indoor potty accidents that occurred, an enzymatic cleaner is great for cleaning up urine and stool. Not only does it remove the stain and smell, but it breaks down the enzymes in the urine and stool your dog can smell, which may deter her from going potty there again.

Q. 2yr old unfixed male Swiss Mtn dog Started a new behavior of barking loudly in my face. No does not work. He does this if I go to the barn what’s up
ANSWER : A. Fear barking should be treated delicately. You should use high value treats (chicken, cheese sticks, hotdog bits, diced ham, cooked fish, turkey pepperoni, turkey bacon – all cut into tiny little bits.. or peanut butter in a squeeze tube, etc) and with the high value treats you should begin feeding them as soon as your dog becomes uncomfortable. Try keeping your dog under threshold. If going to the bark makes your dog bark (out of fear of the barn), then slowly work on his attention just outside of where he would bark. Slowly move closer feeding him treats the entire way. If at any point he begins barking, back up and work under threshold.

If this is separation anxiety, you should be working slowly at leaving your dog behind. First, make it seem like you’re leaving, “coat/shoes/keys/hat” and open the door, but close the door and don’t leave. Toss your dog a few treats without looking at him or talking to him. Slowly work on exiting for short amounts of time, returning to toss treats

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Q. My dog used to sleep with me. Now I make him sleep in the bathroom, next to me, with a gate in the doorway, but he barks all night. What can I do?
ANSWER : A. First, make sure he has somewhere comfortable to lay in the bathroom, such as a nice dog bed, a nice crate with a dog bed in it or a nice thick blanket. You cannot expect your dog to sleep on the hard floor all night and be comfortable.

If you really want to make this change, and you really want your dog to sleep in the bathroom, you have to ignore the dogs barking no matter what. 100% ignore the dog when he barks, especially when he begins to bark HARDER and LOUDER.

If you are ignoring your dog and he starts barking harder and louder, scratching, or yelping, this is called an “extinction burst”. Basically, this is the moment before he stops trying to get your attention. He will give it all he’s got for a few minutes (normally up to 30 minutes), and will finally give up.

Again, it’s very important to ignore ALL the complaining if you ever want it to stop. Scolding him, telling him “no”, or engaging him in any other way will only encourage him to bark more; it shows him he can get what he wants (your attention) if he barks.