Is your Chihuahua wearing your down with excessive barking? Take a deep breath and look at the situation clearly. There may be things that you are overlooking or just plain ignoring. Here are five easy tips to get you and your Chihuahua started on the road to peaceful living.
Do Your Research
It's important to know the background and history of the Chihuahua in order to better understand the breed. For example, did you know the Chihuahua is typically reserved towards strangers but tends to demonstrate protectiveness of its domain and human family by barking? Reading a bit more about the Chihuahua will give you insight into your dog's personality and temperament.
Provide a Healthy Diet
Food plays a big part in a dog’s behavior. A balanced diet can sometimes make all the difference between a sluggish dog to one that runs up the walls and everything in between. Consult with your veterinarian or a veterinary nutritionist and ask if a change in diet may be in order. Also, limit the treats your Chihuahua gets and be vigilant of your friends and family — they may try and sneak some sugary human treats when you're not looking. And enough of those would send anyone up the wall.
Daily, rigorous exercise is a must for overactive and unruly dogs. Chihuahuas, of course, don't require the same long walk a Labrador would, for example. However, it is important that you exercise with your Chihuahua. Pick something that you both enjoy. Perhaps it's running, a game of fetch or even trotting alongside while you pace back and forth in the house. Whatever it is just make sure your Chihuahua gets proper exercise. And remember — the more tired your Chihuahua is the less likely it will be in hyperactive or barking mode.
Try the Stress Test
Some dogs are known to suffer from anxiety disorders. These Chihuahuas will often pace the floor rapidly and pant heavily. Similarly, Chihuahuas may have a compulsive disorder and can repeat the same behavior over and over again, and can't be distracted from what they're doing. If you suspect something may be medically wrong with your dog's behavior, consult your veterinarian or a veterinary behaviorist.
Train, Train, Train
Dog training classes are great for Chihuahuas that just don't listen, cause too much chaos or use their boundless amounts of energy for ill. Training and obedience schools abound, so research and find that fits both your needs. Practice the lessons and commands at home and remain consistent. Chihuahuas are like any other dog — with enough practice and determination they can accomplish anything.
So there you have it. Five easy tips to control that hyperactive, barking dog in your family. Good luck!