Cockapoos (also known as Spoodles) are growing increasingly popular because of their small size and Teddy-bear-like appearance, especially for apartment living. But, both the Poodle and the Cocker Spaniel are dogs that bark a lot. So, if you are considering getting one of these adorable dogs, you might be wondering if Cockapoos bark a lot.
Do Cockapoos Bark a Lot?
Cockapoos tend to bark more than some other dogs. This is often because they are territorial and experience separation anxiety. However, the Cockapoo is very intelligent, and with sufficient training and socialization, especially from a young age, their barking can be controlled.
Let’s look at some of the factors that influence Cockapoo barking. And, what you can do to prevent or improve it in both puppies and older dogs.
Does Genetics Play a Role in Cockapoo Barking?
Genetics can play a large role in whether or not your Cockapoo barks a lot. It is important to remember that the Poodle and the Cockapoo were both originally breed to be hunting dogs. This means they would have been very vocal when on the job.
Both parent breeds of the Cockapoo were also designed to be with people for extended periods of time. The Poodle, the Cocker Spaniel, and ultimately your Cockapoo, may suffer from separation anxiety because of this.
If your Cockapoo is from working line parents, it will be more likely to exhibit these negative characteristics associated with the original purpose of the breeds. On the other hand, show-line dogs tend to be more laid back.
However, there is no guarantee that your Cockapoo puppy will not bark based on its breeding. This is because environmental factors have a far larger influence on barking than genetics does.
Reasons Why Your Cockapoo Barks
Now that we have looked at some of the genetic reasons why your Cockapoo might bark, let’s look at some environmental stimuli that can cause barking.
If your Cockapoo is uncomfortable, it will try to communicate this to you. The only way that it can do so is through barking.
There are a variety of different reasons why your Cockapoo might be trying to communicate discomfort to you. It may be as simple as being too hot, too cold, hungry, or thirsty. It might even be struggling with itchy skin due to an allergic reaction or dryness.
There are a lot of different things that may be wrong, this variety can sometimes make it a little bit difficult to identify the problem. This is especially true if there are no visible cues, such as limping or panting.
This is very similar to discomfort. Your Cockapoo might bark because it is in pain to try and get your attention and ultimately get you to help them.
I have found that this kind of bark can be very easy to identify once you get to know your dog. Additionally, your Cockapoo might constantly lick at the area that is bothering them, or you may notice that it won’t put pressure on a specific limb and will hold it in the air.
Like all other animals, Cockapoos might be afraid in some situations. This can be when they are interacting with another dog or when they are on their own.
Also, Cockapoos suffer from certain health conditions which may make them lose their sight. If you suddenly couldn’t see, you would be terrified.
In most situations, it is best to try and get your Cockapoo out of the situation if they are afraid, as barking can be a precursor of aggression.
Both the Poodle and the Cocker Spaniel suffer from separation anxiety, as mentioned above. This means that your Cockapoo will likely suffer with it too.
If you leave your Cockapoo alone for long periods of time, it will start to feel incredibly lonely and ultimately start barking. This may be in short bursts or may continue for long periods of time.
Cockapoos are small dogs, so people do not think of them as being very territorial. But, like some other small breeds, these dogs can be fiercely protective over their home.
How To Reduce Cockapoo Barking
Resolve Immediate Pain and Discomfort
The best way to make sure that you take care of whatever the problem is. Make sure that your Cockapoo has everything they require. This includes food, water, and a comfortable temperature.
Once all of those are covered, make sure that you examine your Cockapoo thoroughly for any signs of joint pain or small wounds that may be bothering it. If you do find a wound, wash it thoroughly with lukewarm, salty water to make sure that you prevent infection. You may be able to get mild pain medication from your vet if your Cockapoo struggles with this often.
Remove Known Stimuli
Certain dogs are just reactive to certain stimuli. This will be especially prevalent in Cockapoos that have been adopted later in life.
These reactions can be worked on, but an immediate fix is simply to remove the thing that is bothering them.
If you know that your dog reacts to the sound of the mailman, try to put up a mailbox as far away as possible or get a P.O. Box. If your Cockapoo reacts to people passing too close to your home, close your curtains during periods of high foot traffic.
Of course, this is not a permanent solution. But, when you have an angry neighbor breathing down your neck, a temporary solution may be the best option.
The Cockapoo, even though it is small, requires a relatively large amount of exercise. If you make sure to tire your Cockapoo out with physical activity, it may be too tired to bark in certain situations and will stop far sooner.
Of course, this does not apply to situations where your Cockapoo is genuinely afraid or in pain. But it can really help with territorial barking. Additionally, if your Cockapoo is tired and sleeps while you are out of the house, it won’t be as prone to separation anxiety.
All dogs bark occasionally, and the Cockapoo is no different. However, with sufficient training, your Cockapoo will be able to stop barking on command. If there are specific indications in their body language that they are about to start barking, you may even be able to distract them with other commands. One of my personal favorites is targeting, which is taught in even the youngest puppy classes.
Training your Cockapoo from when it is a puppy will also encourage it to behave better overall. If your Cockapoo has never been trained before, they are not used to following commands and can become overwhelmed or distracted. If your Cockapoo is used to focusing at all times, then it will be less likely to bark at things happening outside.
Socialization is another way that you can get your Cockapoo to stop barking or decrease the amount of barking. Just like with training, socialization works best when you start really young.
Imagine you only ever knew the four walls of your home and then suddenly realize there is a great big world outside. A lot of the things in that world would terrify you. The same is true for your Cockapoo.
This fear of the unknown leads to barking and aggressive behavior.
However, if you introduce them to the world around you when they are young, and they constantly experience new things and meet new people, they are less likely to react badly.
Even if they are unsure, there is trust that is formed between your Cockapoo and yourself. They learn that you will not take them into situations where they can be hurt. Of course, this trust can be destroyed very quickly, so make sure that you approach socialization with a healthy amount of caution.