Stop Dog Barking
Dear AKC: I have a 3 1/2 year old Yorkshire Terrier named CoCo. She isa very needy little dog. I work night shifts occasionally and place a gate up to keep her in the kitchen during the day while I am sleeping. She will bark for hours on end, until I goto get her. I have tried saying "no bark" very firmly to her. I have tried ignoring her. All of these actions comewith no success. I do not know what to do to make her barking stop! Please help. -- Not Sleeping Soundly
Dear Not Sleeping: Yorkshire Terriers are incredibly social creatures who just love to be with their owners. I'm curious where your dog sleeps when you are not working the night shift and how long you have let this barking go on? Does she sleep in the kitchen behind the gate or does she sleep with you in your bedroom?
Are you keeping her in the kitchen when you sleep during the day because you think it is daytime and that's where she normally spends her day? I find that when dogs are with their owners their activity level tends to mirror that of their owners. If you are working around the home and busy, so too is the dog, following you around with keen interest what's going to happen next. When you go to bed at night they know it's time to sleep. Even a midday nap, they will curl up near you and catch a few winks.
Sleepy Time Suggestions
I would suggest that you bring Coco in the bedroom with you whenever you are going to sleep whether it's day or night. Make her a comfortable sleeping area near your bed where she can see you: most importantly, where she can see you relaxing and going sleep. Develop a little bedtime routine with her such as giving her a tiny treat on her bed before you hit the lights out. This way she will begin to learn that a treat on her bed, means sleepy time for her owner and for Coco too.