Why does my dog bark at our baby?
(Q) When our baby grandchild first started coming to our house our dog, Pippa, hid, but after a few weeks she came out. We let her say hello to our granddaughter and told her when she was being a good girl. However, three weeks ago Pippa started barking as soon as our granddaughter started to make a noise or cry.
I tried amusing her, playing with her, and even put her on her lead but as soon as I let her back off it she started barking at my granddaughter again.
(A) Behaviourist Claire Arrowsmith says: Whenever there are issues when a dog and a baby come together, I strongly advise that a proper behavioural consultation is conducted to ensure appropriate safety and to avoid any mistakes. The fact that your dog initially avoided the baby and is now barking intensely is a concern for me because it could indicate an ongoing anxiety which needs to be addressed urgently.
Using the lead each time they are together and offering nice things to distract her will be essential. This will need to be repeated each time until the habits change and so it is not a surprise that she resumed the barking after a single attempt. Please find a qualified behaviourist to come and observe and help you to address this.