The constant barking of a dog can be very frustrating for owners and neighbours alike. But barking is the only way your dog can communicate with you, so it would be a good idea to get familiar with the different types of barking and what you can do about it:

Distance decreasing: This type of barking can be considered attention-seeking barking. The dog is barking to communicate with the owner – “pay attention to me!”. This is often in the form of a low-pitched bark, stiffly wagging tail, rigid body posture, display of teeth, growling/snarling, snapping, kicking of back feet, etc.

Boredom: If your dog is barking because of boredom, consider more physical exercise and positive training. Introduce new toys and games e.g., Kong toys, kibble hunts, and chew toys.

Frustration: While some frustration barking is boredom barking, not all boredom barking is frustration barking. Dogs work on schedule and routine, so make it the same daily. Dogs also bark out of frustration when they are not sure what is expected of them – e.g. new environment or not enough training.

Invitation to play: “Hey, I want to meet/play with you NOW NOW NOW!” (puppy barking frequently falls in this category). These barks are generally high pitched, and are often accompanied by wagging “propeller tails”, loose and wiggly body language, play bows and jumping.

Alert barking: This is the bark we are most accustomed to and react to. A bark that tells us something is wrong.

Separation distress/anxiety: if your adult dog is alone for more than eight hours (or shorter periods for puppies), find a dog walker or pet sitter to break the day up, or provide her with mental stimulation through puzzle toys, kibble hunts, etc.

If your dog is injuring herself or destroying your home, urgently seek the assistance of a behaviourist in addressing the issue.