Beagles make for excellent companions; they’re loyal, loving, and full of energy animals. That being said, they are also game hounds, which means their instincts tell them to react to lots of different stimuli – this, usually, results in a lot of barking. If your beagle has a tendency to bark at even the slightest disturbance, I’m here to outline how you can train this out of your dog.
So, how do you stop beagles from barking? To stop your beagle from barking you need to train your dog not to bark. You can do this yourself in your own home, or with the help of a professional, but the important thing is to keep the training regular and consistent until your beagle has learned not to constantly bark.
In this guide, I’ll walk you through the various training techniques you can use to gradually get your beagle to stop barking so that it won’t keep waking you up through the night, or spooking your guests whenever they ring the doorbell. I’ll also look at specific situations where your beagle might bark a lot and outline some ways to help you teach them to not do this.
How to stop beagles from barking?
It may seem counterintuitive, but ignoring your pup when it is barking is one of the best methods to get it to stop barking. Beagles especially love the sound of their own voice and, when they bark, they are trying to alert you to something, whether they perceive it as a threat (territorial barking) or just something interesting.
If you react, even to encourage the dog to be quiet, you are providing them with the attention they’re after and so conveying that their strategy worked; barking will get you to stop what you’re doing and pay them attention. You can still calmly speak to your dog (use quiet command) if you like, which can be used in a training method that will be outlined in the next section.
Beagles bark – simple as that. They are particularly vocal dogs and will sometimes just bark or howl to keep themselves occupied. In other words, if they’re bored, they’ll have a little sing. This isn’t exactly ideal if you’re trying to sleep or get some work done.
The best way to counteract this is to make sure your beagle doesn’t get too bored. Keeping them active with plenty of walks, physical activity, and playtime will use up their energy and lower the chances of them breaking into song. You can also give them chews or toys to occupy themselves with while they’re relaxing.
If you need a really quick fix to stop compulsive barking, you can distract them with another activity while they’re in full flow. Getting them to fetch something like a ball or toy can be an effective way of diverting their attention and stopping the barking. Of course, you then run the risk of having to play an endless game of fetch.
Is it possible to train a beagle not to bark?
As mentioned, the most effective way to stop beagles from barking is to use training; more specifically, reward training (positive reinforcement). This means you are rewarding your beagle (with a tasty treat) for positive behaviors, rather than chastising it for bad behavior like excessive barking.
One of the simplest proper training methods is to teach your beagle the “quiet” and “speak” basic commands. When your beagle is barking, look at them and firmly, but calmy, give command of “quiet”. At first, this won’t have much effect as your dog will not attribute any meaning to the command.
However, eventually, your dog will pause their barking, even if just for a moment to catch a breath, and when it does you can reward it with a treat. Provided you have been giving the “quiet” command, you can build on this progress.
Continue this process consistently, being sure to not raise your voice when giving the command, and eventually, your furry friend will attribute the command with getting a reward and so will stop barking. At this stage, you can begin to phase out the treats, but still praise your beagle for following your command.
Eventually, your dog will know to stop barking whenever you give the command, meaning you shouldn’t have to worry about excessive noise coming from your lovable companion.
Teaching the “speak” command is a bit more complex. The aim here is to teach your dog that barking is something to be done on command, not in response to other stimuli (other dogs bark, loud noises and distant noises).
First, you need to identify something that causes your dog to bark. This could be ringing the doorbell or knocking on a wall; something that you can be sure will set them off.
Once you’ve triggered the noise – let’s say ringing the doorbell – and your beagle starts barking, give them praise and say “bark” repeatedly in a happy tone. This will help them associate the word with the action. Keep repeating this step.
Then, give the “bark” command before ringing the doorbell. If your beagle begins to bark, reward them with a treat. What this does is teach your dog that barking is an action that you essentially control by telling them when to do it.
This will make giving the “quiet” command easier, as you’ll be able to tell your dog when to bark so that you can then practice giving the “quiet” command.
How to stop beagles from barking in crates?
If you need to keep your beagle in a crate from time to time, you’ll also want to ensure that they won’t be distressed and begin to bark while in there. The main step you can take to achieve this is to make the crate a welcoming space for your dog.
First, make sure the crate is a suitable size; your dog should be able to stand up and comfortably move around while inside. Place a comfy bed or rug inside the crate for your dog to lie down on, and it can also help to place some of your old clothing in there so that your dog associates the smell of the crate with you and, thus, safety.
You can add to the positive affirmations by placing treats inside the crate, perhaps tucked under the bed or a toy, and having your beagle find them on their own. Have someone play with the dog while you place a few treats inside the crate. Then, allow your dog to find the treats on its own. This way, they will associate the crate with rewards and positive things.
As you would when they are outside of the crate, if your beagle is barking while inside it then make sure you don’t react. Do not shout at them and do not give them much attention while they are barking, as this will only inform them that they should bark while in the crate.
How To Stop Beagle From Barking At Night?
Lastly, there is the issue of your beagle barking at night. Many of the conditions outlined above still apply here; your beagle might be bored, it could be anxiety-driven barking behavior, they might be seeking attention or they might have been alerted by noise or seeing someone walk past the house.
Again, it’s important not to react when they’re excess barking. As tempting as it might be, don’t head downstairs and shout at them to be quiet. Try to ride it out and eventually your dog will learn that constant barking for attention doesn’t work.
If your beagle is getting bored at night, make sure they’ve got toys or chews nearby for them to play with while you’re asleep. If they’re reacting to noises or sights outside, consider keeping them in a room where they maybe can’t see out of a window during the night. You could also play calming music or have some sort of white noise in the background to drown out any noises from outside.
Adult Beagles are particularly vocal dogs and will bark for a variety of reasons at pretty much any time of the day or night. The key trait you’ll need is patience because you should ignore unexplained barking as much as you can to communicate to your dog that it is not appropriate behavior.
This will be difficult at first but will eventually get easier. Once you feel confident, you can implement some brain training for dogs to try and teach your dog how to control its barking instincts, which will lead to a much more peaceful atmosphere for everyone in the home.