|Barked: Sun Jun 9, '13 5:27am PST |
|I tried ringing the doorbell over and over again a few days in a row until he stopped responding and my roommate could reward. I rang it consecutively over 300 times and he only stopped for two of them. I can only do that so many times.
As you probably figured out, this wasn't a good idea. The more opportunities you give him to practice bad behaviour the more ingrained it will become. You should have rung it once, and regardless of his reaction, your roommate should have provided something amazingly valuable like roast beef. Even if he's barking, toss some beef at him, have it rain from the sky until he forgets the doorbell rang. Then, maybe 3-5 minute later, you can try ringing it again. Same roast beef reaction. Repeat on a regular schedule for several days/weeks. The reason the doorbell is so arousing is that each time it rings, the people in the room engage, they move around, there's an unknown outside the door, a new person may come in... it's all very exciting for a dog. If you remove the craziness of people moving around/entering and instead pair the sound with an amazing high value treat it will, eventually, be what's associated with the sound. Booster sessions will be necessary to maintain that association.
How much exercise is the dog getting? 9 times out of 10, problem alert barkers can be helped greatly by doubling the exercise they get each day. If a dog is a bit less on edge due to a good run it'll grant you better access to do some conditioning work as I suggested above.
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