Date: 06 November 2007 19:56:41
Another thing we've had to do is make the decision to have the dog debarked. I've never really been a fan as I thought they completely lost their bark - and you can have that done - but our puppy will end up with a nice deep coughy bark (hopefully - or he could sound a bit like a duck!).
It's been driving us a bit nuts (well, completely round the bend) for quite some time - as those who know us will know - and we've tried just about everything under the sun. He doesn't bark when he's with us, we've almost (except for when we pass cows) trained him out of it in the car, and during the day we can usually get him to be a bit quieter or divert him - but at night, and when we're not there, there's just not one thing we can do to stop him. Some dogs wriggle, some dogs are smilers, some dogs express their joy in life by yipping - ours barks. A lot. And loudly - he's a blue heeler.
This is a dog that can walk into an electric fence and not be bothered so zapper' collars mean nothing to him - rolled up newspapers - yelling - bucket of water - rewards when quiet - it's all very well when you're there but if you're not it's all over. He just loves to bark when he's happy - when he's chasing birds - when he's sitting on his hill and the sun is out - just because he's breathing! He's just a barker ... and unfortunately we live in town and he's keeping shift workers awake (had one on the doorstep on Thursday, THAT was lovely, not!), all our neighbours know when he's up, and we're having him sleep in the laundry every night - and it just can't go on.
So he's booked in Friday, and the vet says he won't care - and we know he won't as he lost his voice while we were away but continued to bark (silently) quite happily - and he'll have some voice but be quieter and not as piercing - so hopefully we will get a good night's sleep now - I'm a bit over constantly, in my sleep, waiting to hear the dog bark so we can bring him inside - and if he doesn't bark having a disturbed night cause I'm waiting for it!