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Why Does My Dog Chase The Mailman?

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Jeff Tinsley is the owner and behavior therapist at Sound Animals Dog Training. He specializes in rescue/shelter dogs, and behavior modification. His nearly 20 years of experience working with anxiety, fear, and aggression issues.

Why does my dog bark at the mailman?

One of the reasons dogs will bark at people going by the house is because it is a continually self-reinforcing behavior. As the dog goes by and your dog barks, that dog or individual leaves, and when that person leaves your dog now believes that they chased them off. Now it is their job and look how great they are and how tough they are because they can chase off this person or dog and they do this all day long.

This is why dogs hate mail carries. Some people think dogs hate the uniform. Dogs don’t hate the uniforms. Dogs hate someone coming up to the house, not acknowledging their barking, not leaving and still coming up toward the house. And then the dog must bark and lunge at the window and scratch at the door and then the mail carrier finally leaves, and the dog thinks I really have to work hard to get this person to leave the yard.


How to get your dog to stop barking at the mailman, or other passerby’s?

This can be very stressful for you and your dog. Territorial barking can be stopped. With a lot of patience and reinforcement of the correct behavior, your dog can learn that he doesn’t have to scare anyone away.

The video on how to stop territorial barking helps you teach your dog that passersby’s are not a threat. This is a good place to start if your dog is exhibiting territorial behavior. Your dog can get to like the mail carrier. Try to see if you and your dog can meet the mail carrier. This way your dog can learn that he or she is not a threat but a buddy. Give your dog a lot of rewards when they see the mail carrier but not bark at them.

If you want your dog to stop barking click here to begin to learn the command “quiet.” This command teaches your dog you don’t want them to bark in certain situations.

If you want your dog to alert you that someone is coming to the door and then stop, the command “leave it” is a good one. Click here for the first steps in teaching your dog to “leave it.”