Excessive dog barking is annoying to many dog owners -- and their neighbors. While you cannot totally stop your dog from barking, there are several training techniques you can use to stop your dog's excessive barking
Understand Your Dog
One of the best ways to get your dog to stop barking is to understand why he is barking in the first place. Take note of the times he is barking. Is he is barking for attention, from excitement, out of fear or because of separation anxiety? If you don't know why your dog is barking, you will never get anywhere -- especially if your dog is trying to get your attention.
Reinforce Not Barking
Reinforce with your dog that not barking is a desired behavior. If your dog is barking to show you something, or to warn you about a potential intruder, acknowledge that you know what she is doing, then command her to stop. Once she has stopped barking, reinforce her behavior with treats and attention. That said, teaching your dog not to follow his protective instincts is nearly impossible.
Teaching a No-Bark Command
Many people teach their dogs to bark on command -- to "speak." The same trick can be used in reverse. Many dogs can be taught a do-not-bark command. First teach your dog to go somewhere in the house on command, such as a corner, a bed or a crate, using positive reinforcement. Once you have taught him to do that, you can use this command to get him to stop barking. When he barks, interrupt him and say "go to your crate." This command will distract him from his barking and, in most cases, get him to stop.