Do Flat-Coated Retrievers Bark a Lot?

by Matt Bostic

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Having a flat-coated retriever is a great pet for the whole family. 

They like to play and seem to have endless energy to run around with the kids and everyone in the home. 

However, many worry that with a dog of this size and type that they will need to worry about how much barking will happen. 

This can lead them to wonder whether flat-coated retrievers bark a lot. 

Do Flat-Coated Retrievers Bark a Lot?

The flat-coated retriever will bark on occasion. They like to bark to alert you that someone is nearby or to get your attention. Most flat-coated retrievers will not bark that much. If barking becomes a big problem and seems to be constant, then this is a sign that they need additional training.

Barking can be a pain when you have a dog. The sound can annoy you and all the neighbors. 

Let’s take some time to learn more about how much the flat-coated retriever barks and some of the steps you can take to stop this behavior. 

No one wants to bring home a dog and find out that they bark all the time. 

This can be annoying and you will have to worry about upsetting the neighbors and whether someone else will get mad at you. 

Having a dog that gets along with everyone in the home and does not bark all the time can be critical when you choose the flat-coated retriever. 

Compared to other dogs, the flat-coated retriever will be an average barker. 

They can bark on occasion when they are playing around with members of the family or having some fun. 

Most of the time, they know when to stop barking. 

You may have to do a little bit of training if the dog tends to bark all the time and will not stop when you ask. 

The flat-coated retriever can even change up the types and sounds of their barks. 

The way that they are doing this will depend on what they want to tell you and their current emotional level. 

Different barks could mean the same and the same barks could have different meanings. 

You will get used to the different types of barks that your flat-coated retriever uses and this will help you figure out what is going on so you can fix the problem. 

There are also a lot of reasons why a flat-coated retriever is going to bark. 

In some cases, it is out of fear or boredom.

Some dogs like to do it as a way to get attention from their owners. 

It can be for protection or alarm, as a form of separation anxiety, or even as a greeting when their owner does come home. 

For some dogs, it turns into compulsive barking, which is where some training needs to come into the picture to make it stop. 

Why Does My Flat-Coated Retriever Bark?

There are a lot of different reasons why a flat-coated retriever is going to bark. 

Often it is just a few barks and the dog will stop and not do it any longer. 

Other times it becomes more compulsive. 

Recognizing some of the reasons that your dog barks and understanding what the different types of barks mean can make a difference. 

One reason that this dog is going to bark is as a method of protection. 

They may notice that someone is coming near the home and it makes them nervous or worried. 

They can bark to alert you that this is happening and to sound the alarm. 

This kind of barking is more for fear, alarm, or protection. 

There are times when the flat-coated retriever is going to bark in order to find something to do. 

With all of the energy that is found in this kind of dog breed, there is the potential for them to get bored often and they will look for other things to do to keep their interest. 

When this happens, the flat-coated retriever is going to bark to get attention or just because they are bored. 

Some dogs are going to bark as a greeting. This can be a greeting to the members of the family when they first walk in the door after leaving the dog at home all day. 

This is a sign that the dog missed you and wants a bit of love and attention since you have walked through the door. 

They may also share this greeting with others who come in the door or people and other animals that they see out the window. 

If your flat-coated retriever has problems with anxiety and with their owners leaving, then there is the potential that they are going to bark due to that. 

Many dogs will have separation anxiety, especially when they are young or left at home alone all the time

The owner will need to work through some of the issues of the separation anxiety before they can expect the barking to stop. 

And finally, it is possible that the dog is becoming a compulsive barker. 

This happens when they bark all of the time and nothing seems to be causing it at all. 

This can get annoying to everyone and it is important that the pet owner finds some ways to make this stop before it gets worse. 

And it will get worse. 

This is a behavior that the dog has learned and it is not enough to just hope it will go away on its own. 

Learning some of the right training methods and working with the dog can make all the difference. 

How to Stop the Flat-Coated Retriever From Barking

Excessive barking is going to be startling and frustrating and all pet owners want to find a way to make it start. 

It may be a sign of an underlying behavioral issue and it is important that you take the right steps to train your flat-coated retriever about the right times to bark and the times when they are not allowed to do it. 

There are several steps that you can use to help stop this dog breed from barking all of the time. 

The first step is to use a method known as positive reinforcement. 

This is where you ignore the bad behavior (the barking) and reward the good behavior (when the dog is calm and quiet). 

This helps the dog learn that they will not get attention when they bark all the time, but they will get attention when they behave and are quiet. 

This can help reinforce the behavior that you want. 

A calm verbal cue is an important thing to add in as well. 

You can pick the cue that you would like, but it needs to include the command and something else and it must be said in a way that is calm and collected. 

You can start this out with a training session where you will reward the quiet behavior of the dog with this cue.

Then you can follow it with a favorite toy or a treat. 

Once the flat-coated retriever has been able to learn their verbal cue, you will be able to use it any time that they are barking and you do not want them to do that. 

This could be during the ring of the doorbell, the sound of others barking, or when someone walks by the window. 

If the dog does stop barking when you use the cue with them, make sure to provide them with the reward. 

The most important thing that you can do through all of this is to never reward the barking. The dog is trying to get attention when they do this. 

If you give them any attention, whether it is negative or positive, they are still getting the attention that they want and they will keep barking. 

If you notice that your dog keeps on barking after you give the cue, then a small verbal cue like “oh well” can be given. 

Then remove your attention and walk away. 

The duration that you do this is usually only a few minutes so they have time to stop the barking. 

With practice, they will stop the barking and will listen when you give the original command to them. 

Making Sure Your Flat-Coated Retriever Doesn’t Bark All the Time

While the flat-coated retriever is a great dog breed to have at home, they have a tendency to bark more than some pet owners would like. 

Being able to recognize when the dog is barking compulsively and using the right training methods will make life a bit more enjoyable. 

Some barking is a normal behavior in the dog, but when it becomes obsessive and happens all the time, the pet owner needs to take the right steps to make it stop. 

With some of the tips in the article above, you can make that happen. 

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