How do I help my barky dog relax with contractors in the house?
April 8, 2013 9:44 AM Subscribe
My dog generally loves people, though she's usually a bit shy at first. Normally, when we have people come over, she has a chance to warm up to them and is their best friend in no time. However, we're having an upstairs bathroom remodeled, she's having a hard time with it (the noise and strangers), and is subsequently barking a lot. I have considered some of the anti-bark products (citronella, ultrasonic), but since I suspect this is fear-based barking, I don't want to encourage her to be even more fearful. We are especially motivated, because we're expecting a baby in 10 weeks or so, and we don't want her waking him/her up every time something goes bump. Does anyone have any tips or tricks that could make things better? Thanks, MeFi!
posted by stufflebean to pets & animals (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Some more information that may or may not be relevant:
She's a 4.5-year-old lab mix.
She seems to do better when I can be by her and treat her for not barking, but my wife and I are not able to be in the house for much of the time the contractors are.
She generally doesn't bark much, if at all, when out on walks with us, but can be barky when she hears noises around the house or when someone comes to the door, even outside the remodeling stuff.
We have been keeping her in her crate downstairs during the remodel to keep her contained, since the only other spaces where we could contain her are the laundry room (see below), our bedroom, where the cats currently are (and therefore a non-starter), and the nursery, which is immediately next to the bathroom under construction.
We've tried putting her in the laundry room with the exhaust fan on, which seems to help by blocking out a lot of the noise and helping her feel more secure, but in her crate, she takes up basically the whole space, which is inconvenient for us and potentially for the contractors, since the laundry room is directly under the bathroom that's being remodeled.