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Debarking your Sheltie.

Discussion in 'Behavior' started by Phil Hughes, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. Phil Hughes

    Phil Hughes Premium Member

    Jul 15, 2017
    I have seen here and on other sites where some folks atr having a REAL hard time with their barking Shelties. We are lucky with our Koz as he rarely barks, and when he does it a quiet bark unlike the Corgi's that we had who would bark at the leaves falling outside. Anyway I just came across this article and thought I would post it here for anyone who has tried everyhing else.

  2. magnoliamg

    magnoliamg Forums Regular

    Aug 31, 2017
    My rescue, Sophie, was debarked before I got her. I can't say that it negatively impacted her but I sure hate that it was done. She has a constant cough that the vet can't say if it is the debarking or the fact that she was heartworm positive when we rescued her. I do get lots of questions from people when she "barks" at them.
    Hanne likes this.
  3. Chris

    Chris Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    Usually bark-softening isn't an issue when done by a vet who is skilled. Many, many breeders have it done for their show dogs. It's not legal in Virginia -- PETA got to the legislature.
  4. RikyR

    RikyR Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2013
    Baton Rouge LA
    Everyone knows Shelties love to bark, don't they? Zulu loves to bark, he is really good at it. But, he is learning to quiet down when I say "that's enough!". I do not expect that he will always listen, but he is trying. As I type this, he is at the window barking at the kids across the street...That's Enough Z!!
    Hanne likes this.
  5. mimiretz

    mimiretz Premium Member

    Oct 14, 2014
    We got Oberon at 8 weeks. He didn't bark at all for the first 2-3 months he was with us. The first few times he did bark, he came to wherever we were with this really proud look on his face like, "Did you hear that? I made that noise!" Now he barks quite a bit. I've never had any complaints from any neighbors about it - and we used to live in an apartment complex, now in a townhome with attached houses on either side. I think the barking bothers Lee and I more than anyone else. But Shelties bark, it's who they are.
    RikyR, Hanne and Piper's mom like this.
  6. Hanne

    Hanne Forums Enthusiast

    Nov 13, 2014
    Yes, why buy or breed for that matter if you do not respect the breed :confused2:

    I really get so sad when I read that such interference is legal :cry:
  7. danisgoat

    danisgoat Moderator

    Jul 23, 2009
    We have many types of interference that is legal. Think of spaying and neutering...we know that dogs will mate, but yet we spay and neuter to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

    When considering a sheltie's personality, I feel like bark softening, when done by a skilled vet, would be much less traumatic to the dog than rehoming or constantly screaming at them to stop doing something they were bred to do.

    Just my opinion.
    Ann and Chris like this.
  8. mimiretz

    mimiretz Premium Member

    Oct 14, 2014
    Yes, it probably is less traumatic than rehoming -- and life definitely brings with it unforeseen cirumstances that might require bark softening in the future. I would stress in the future. I would definitely have a problem with someone getting a Sheltie (not referring to anyone specific) and planning from the get-go to have this surgery performed; i.e., desiring all the positive qualities of the breed but deciding IN ADVANCE that they wouldn't tolerate the barking.

    As a side note, while bark softening has been compared to declawing a cat, it must be made clear that they are two completely different things. As has been made clear in this thread, while there are differing opinions on bark softening, in the end it is done for humane reasons and can be beneficial. More importantly, the dog is not permanently injured and still barks, albeit not as loudly. Declawing is, IMO, inhumane and deprives the cat of its only defense mechanism, It is equivalent to child abuse.
    Hanne and Chris like this.
  9. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    Well, I have to come at this issue from two perspectives.
    First, I had a friend who had three Shelties. She got a notice from the city citing her for barking dogs and the fact that she was over the limit of two! She was out of town at the time of the incident so it came as a shock! They told her she would have to remove one of her dogs! Thank goodness her mother lived close and took one of her Shelties. It was traumatic as her neighbors always called the police to complain about her remaining dogs! Eventually she decided to move to the next city over and got all three dogs back together. Would debarking have helped in this situation? Maybe...

    Second, I had a breeder of my first Sheltie that had one of her dogs debarked and on the way home the dog bled out! She was dead by the time they got home. She was apparently a hemophiliac and did not know it.

    Either way, it is a personal decision...

    Logan came to me debarked. He is very talkative! I have never had to choose wether or not to debark. My boys know the 'no bark' command! Thank goodness.
    Hanne likes this.
  10. Jams

    Jams Premium Member

    Sep 8, 2017
    I've read that even an experienced vet can't predict the outcome of this procedure. Has anybody viewed videos on u tube of debarked dogs? Check them out. Many of the dogs were given up after the surgery anyway! There are also videos of vets discussing this.
    I've recently been around a debarked sheltie. She still constantly "barked". But what surprised me was how heavily and loudly she panted, and she panted liked this whenever she wasn't barking. It would take me, personally, a lot to adjust being around a dog with this panting!! She was so lovely looking and somewhat unpleasant to be around. I'd much rather deal with the barking!
    magnoliamg and Hanne like this.

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