my puppy settles down when i bark back at her
My 3 month old poodle puppy goes bananas sometimes barking and nipping like she's possessed. After trying your suggested techniques again and again, today I decided to try to bark louder than her.
She instantly calmed down and came to me and started licking my hands instead of biting.
What did I do and how do you feel about this?
Well, you know that's a new one on me! I haven't actually ever heard of that working, and never tried it myself so I'm at a loss :o)
Often, raising your voice or acting in an emotional way (whether frustrated, angry or whatever) only results in raising the puppys' excitement level and worsening the behavior. However, in this case it seems to have had the opposite effect.
It could be that she recognized the 'tone' or 'message' behind your 'bark', or that you said something she understood lol! I think it's more likely that she was just so surprised that it worried her and she came to you for reassurance, and forgot about what she was doing that triggered your reaction.
It's definitely not something I would be recommending to others, but if it worked for you and it's not scaring her, then I can't see that any major damage could be done. If it does seem to frighten her, make her 'act out' more, or fails to be effective, then stop doing it. It's likely one of those 'flash in the pan' type things, that works with the element of surprise once or twice.
The suggestions I normally give usually work given time and repetition, but there are always some puppies who are stubborn about it, or that just don't seem to 'get it'. That's okay, they're all different. However, if she really won't pay attention to your corrections, I'd recommend talking to your veterinarian, and maybe a professional dog trainer, for more advice - they should be able to help.
Enrolling her in a Puppy Class at a local Dog Obedience School will also help.
Best of luck your pup!