About the Dog:
- ~3 years old
- Rescued Stray
- Finnish Spitz / Miniature Belgian Sheepdog / Mix
First week I had her, I worked from home for house breaking, crate training, and bonding. She is not afraid of her crate, and is now (almost) house broken. She is intelligent enough to have learned her name, as well as sit, down, up, come, and paw in the first two weeks.
She is a curious dog and will follow whoever is active in the house. When there is no activity she will stay near me.
She whines and barks when she thinks she's alone. This does't matter what the circumstance is. Examples:
- I am in the bathroom making no noise (and the rest of the house is sleep or empty)
- She is confined to an empty room in the house
- She is confined to the crate and there there is activity upstairs (However the barking is not nearly as persistent)
If there is any sign that she is not alone, she generally stops barking and behaves well. This can be actual visual contact or noises around the house that indicate movement in her direction.
So, she has behaved well in these situations:
- I come downstairs in the morning to let her out of the crate
- I put her in the crate at night
- Anyone is near the crate
I have found it difficult to reward "silence in absence" because approaching the crate (or door, or stairs, if confined to a part of the house), will cause her to stop and settle down.
I ignore any barking or whining when she's in her crate, and I never let her out or give treats when she's barking. I try to keep departures and arrivals as low-key as possible, so she's not waiting anxiously all day for an exciting return. I don't want to teach her that barking makes people appear, either.
How can I handle this situation?
- Crate is in the lower-level of the home.
- The crate is covered with a blanket.
- A radio did not seem to help.
- I will occasionally reward good behavior with treats while I am home and she is in the crate.
- She will claw at the crate some, but otherwise is calm outside of whining and barking.
- When she senses someone nearby, she will stop barking.
- Barking lasts about 30mins from what I've been able to observe. She is quiet when I or anyone else gets home. I'm trying to solve that first 30 mins.