I'm getting a lot of help from a friendly poster on these forums in the bird section for my African Gray, and then it dawns on me: Maybe, just maybe, old dogs can be taught new tricks?
My Chiguagua, Stanley Ichabod, is very mouthy. He barks and is mean to everyone in the household.
When I bathe him, he is calm for a day or two, and then it starts again. I do love our dog, but he is mean.
I am wondering if there is anything I can do to make him less vocal over people who are not even looking at him or heading in his direction.
He barks at noises outside, which is okay I guess, because it's just a quiet "testing" bark I suppose, but when the doorbell rings or the door is knocked on, or a car door is heard, he freaks out. It hurts our ears, and makes us uptight.
He is a rescued dog who was supposedly abused - in what way, I don't know. It seems like the only way to make him shut up is to get loud and act like you're going to smack him, and then he cowers and as soon as he sees he is safe, he comes and apologizes. That does not work when he thinks someone is outside or coming in, but that's okay, except for when someone is in fact entering the home after a long day at work.
He is such an adorable dog, and a loving dog, but the barking is sometimes too much to bear. Can I have some advice, short of a muzzle which I feel is inhumane for small dogs and dogs not in a public setting, to make him shut his trap and stop being so hostile?
He is about 12 or more years old - we don't know for sure because of the rescue.