When you live in a rural area where you don’t have near neighbors, you may not worry as much about your dog barking a lot. But for people living in a more urban or city area, a constantly barking dog can really cause problems.
In this article, we are going to take a close look at this important question so you can make an informed decision.
Do Dutch Shepherds bark a lot? If so, is there something you can do to minimize this issue? Let’s find out now!
Listen to a Dutch Shepherd Barking in This Video
If you have not yet heard a Dutch Shepherd in full voice, this short candid video from a Dutch Shepherd owner shows you what an adult dog barking all out sounds like.
Dutch Shepherds may bark or howl or whine spontaneously depending on what is going on around them.
But Dutch Shepherds are also frequently trained to produce certain sounds as a part of doing specific jobs, such as scent tracking, search and rescue, police, or K-9 work.
Do Dutch Shepherds Bark A Lot: An Honest Answer to a Great Question
After listening and watching the short video in the previous section here, you may be understandably concerned that your Dutch Shepherd is going to bark all day and all night!
But there is good news here if you are concerned about barking problems with a Dutch Shepherd.
While these dogs are by no means recommended for inexperienced dog owners or trainers, the issues you may face likely won’t revolve around too much barking.
In fact, the Dutch Shepherd isn’t known as a “barking dog,” especially when well trained and socialized by their owners. Instead, they will use vocalizations as they have been trained to do when performing different actions or working specific jobs.
There is one exception to this, however, and that is when a Dutch Shepherd is not well socialized or trained. A neglected, abused, poorly trained or untrained Dutch Shepherd will bark just like any other dog in difficult circumstances.
This is especially the case if a Dutch Shepherd gets bored. Dutch Shepherd dogs are among the most intelligent of all canines and they are working dogs through and through.
If a Dutch Shepherd is allowed to get bored, you can expect your dog to act out by barking, howling, remodeling your home’s interior and your yard, escaping from the yard, and possibly becoming aggressive.
All that to say, as the American Dutch Shepherd Association (ADSA) points out if you want your dog to be a quiet and content canine companion, the key is early and ongoing, consistent, positive socialization and training.
What About Dutch Shepherd Puppies – Do They Bark a Lot?
It is great to consult owner forums before deciding whether you can accommodate a Dutch SHepherd’s needs and what behavior traits to expect, including barking.
This popular Dutch Shepherd owner forum sheds helpful light on whether Dutch Shepherds bark a lot like puppies.
The answer to this question is that it really depends on the puppy and the breed line, but in most cases, yes. Just like human babies, puppies often use barking as an all-purpose communication tool.
Puppies need to be trained and taught that they have a lot of other ways to communicate with their people. Until you teach your Dutch Shepherd puppy to use other communication methods, you can expect a fair amount of barking.
There are two other times in a Dutch Shepherd puppy’s life when you may hear more barking than is typical for this dog breed.
When your Dutch Shepherd first comes home
When your Dutch Shepherd first comes home with you is when you are likely to hear the most barking. This is normal because your new puppy is learning to sleep alone and live apart from their littermates and mom dog. Everything is new and kind of scary.
As one testimonial from Aachen Dutch Shepherds Breeder and Kennel highlights, a new eight-week-old puppy is going to be barking a lot until they settle in. How fast that puppy settles in will have a lot to do with you.
During crate training
Crate training can be another particularly stressful time in a Dutch Shepherd puppy’s life. These dogs may be independent thinkers and workers, but they are intensely bonded to their people and are used to living in the center of their human family.
Crate training must be done gently and appropriately to minimize anxiety for this sensitive dog breed.
Another post on the Dutch Shepherd owner forum offers tons of hints and tips on how to minimize crate anxiety so it won’t turn into separation anxiety.
As many owners on the forum explain, Dutch Shepherds are so intelligent and have a high degree of independent thinking, you can expect your Dutch Shepherd puppy to learn quickly if a behavior causes you to let them out of the crate.
In addition to barking, you may hear howling, crying, whining, and a lot of scratching and biting at the crate interior. But once your puppy gets used to the crate as a haven of peace and quiet, this is likely to stop on its own.
Training Dutch Shepherds to Bark on Cue Is Highly Recommended
The American Kennel Club (AKC) explains that the Dutch Shepherd is an intensely energetic, active, true working dog breed that needs to exercise their body and mind daily.
Once your Dutch Shepherd matures into adulthood and the barking lessens, you may actually find you want to train your dog to bark on cue for specific types of work or service.
As Nitro Canine dog trainer and Dutch Shepherd owner shares, Dutch Shepherds can easily be trained to bark appropriately as part of their strong working dog drive.
A Dutch Shepherd that barks once or twice as an alert to their owner when someone approaches the door is using barking appropriately as a communication tool.
Dutch Shepherds can be trained to use their bark in lots of different jobs, including guide dog and service dog work, police and military work, search and rescue and nose work, K-9 protection, and guard dog work, and many more roles.
A Dutch Shepherd that knows how to use their bark as an effective mode of communication is much more likely to be a confident, calm, happy worker as well as a contented and well-socialized member of the family and the local community.
Tips to Reduce Problem Barking in a Dutch Shepherd Dog
As Journey Dog Training points out, there are a number of effective ways to reduce problem barking in a Dutch Shepherd.
The first tip is simply to understand the history and background of the Dutch Shepherd dog breed, a breed with a naturally high prey drive and strong instinct to guard and protect.
The next tip is to engage in lots of exercise and activity so your dog isn’t tempted to burn off extra energy by barking.
Another tip is to use games to reward your dog for not barking when something that would normally set them off is presented.
Still another tip is to train your dog to look to you first for a cue rather than acting on their own to decide barking is the right strategy.
By following the guidance and tips in this article, you can help your Dutch Shepherd right from puppyhood to learn to use their bark appropriately and confidently.