Dogs are wonderful companions; they are loyal to a fault, always happy to see you, and they provide excellent emotional support, amongst other qualities.
They are dubbed “man’s best friend” for many reasons, and it’s hard not to find them adorable. However, they can be noisy, and certain breeds are far more likely to create a ruckus than others. Bichons definitely fall into this category. As incredibly fun as they are to be around, these spunky little breeds tend to bark a great deal. If you recently got one, but wonder how to make it temperament easier to deal with, then read on for more information.
The first thing you might want to try out is to be extra sweet to your bichon when it’s not barking endlessly. Although bichon frise generally are fairly quiet, they are very excitable when they see a new guest. This is a marker of their friendliness and love for people. However, if you want to train them to control their excitement, then giving them extra tasty treats when they are quiet will help them understand quicker. Whether you give them store-bought doggie treats, or pieces of liver, cooked chicken, etc., the delicious treat will motivate your puppy to quiet down. Another tack you can take is to allow your dog on the couch when they’re quiet — otherwise, keep them lying on the floor till they get the message.
Go for a Walk
One way to get your dog to calm down is to take them out on a walk. Sometimes, your bichon might be hyper because they need to burn extra energy. Take them out to receive stimuli from elsewhere and help quiet their nerves. Boredom often creates far more problems than necessary, especially with dogs. If you are not taking out your dog to walk around once in awhile, you might have one restless pooch on your hands.
Also, don’t underestimate how lonely your dog might feel. If you work long hours and leave them alone most of the time, they might be feeling antsy and in need of your companionship. A form of separation anxiety may also take hold, creating more behavioral problems. Therefore, adequate exercise and plenty of quality time together should have a calming effect that makes your bichon less prone to barking.
Don’t Give in to Demands
Bichons thrive on plenty of attention from their human parents; they require lots of petting, snacks, cuddles, and positive reinforcement. This is a big reason as to why they are such a beloved breed for many people since they are so friendly and welcoming. At the same time, consistently giving in to their demands and providing reinforcement for bad behavior, such as excessive barking, by petting them and cooing words like “good girl” will give them the wrong impression. Don’t give them attention whenever they want it and don’t readily give in whenever they come by looking for cuddles and such. Make sure that you will only reward them for good behavior— unless there’s an emergency or they’re really hungry. That will help curb their barking a great deal.
Bichon Frises are known to be dominant alpha dogs. Building off of this same theme of not giving in to their every whim, you need to establish your presence as one of authority. Through the enforcement of different rules and boundaries, you will be able to force upon them an understanding of your relationship, and they will soon change from alpha dog to follower in demeanor. One common way of making these limits clear is by prohibiting your dog from jumping up on furniture for at least three weeks— this tends to show them that you will not give in to their every whim.
Teach Your Dog New Tricks
This might surprise you, but the constant begging for attention through incessant barking is not only an attempt to get your attention, but it can also indicate low self-esteem. We typically think dogs are immune to such feelings, but they’re definitely not. One way to boost their confidence and get them to calm down is by teaching them new tricks. Try looking up different tools online, and train your dogs to perform various tricks for you. Positive reinforcement and encouragement will help ease their nerves over time.
As many people will tell you, having a bichon is akin to having a baby; they are adorable, sweet, loyal, and extremely loving. However, they can also be tiring, loud, and hard to train if you do not take the time to draw boundaries and set limits that they could follow. Without sufficient exercise, proper training, and positive reinforcement, there is a big chance they will keep you up all night barking.