Hanna is a year and a half old Maltese Shih Tzu mix. Recently, she began barking every time I sat down on the couch to watch TV and didn’t give 100% of my attention directly to her. I tried unsuccessfully to teach her that the barking was unacceptable, by speaking to her in different tones and volumes, ignoring her, locking her in her crate, or tossing her ball while trying to focus on the TV. I decided to purchase a shock collar, but after reading several reviews online, I was concerned it could malfunction and hurt her. So I called Oasis Animal Clinic and spoke to Trenton. I discussed Hanna’s excessive barking and asked if they had any recommendations on bark collars.
Trenton sensed my reluctance in taking this drastic measure, and made a few other suggestions to try first. I decided to try the “pebbles in a can” method. I got an empty soda can and put about 10 small pebbles inside and taped the top closed. The next time she began barking, I shook the can. She jumped back, looked at me, and barked again! I threw the can in her direction (not hitting her, but hitting the floor near her). That was all it took. She no longer barks while I’m watching TV! And now, if she tries another undesirable behavior (i.e. getting a hold of a Kleenex or sock, or bothering a visitor), all I do is pick up the can. Sometimes I don’t even shake it! She immediately stops what she’s doing and runs out of the room for a few moments. This works like a charm, and I’m so glad I didn’t have to buy an expensive and potentially painful shock collar. Thank you, Trenton, for the great tip!