Dog Barks at Candles? Here’s How to Stop It!
You want to see the mood, or maybe just get a nice scent going in your home, but every time you do your dog barks at the candles non-stop! Why are they doing this? Why do dogs bark at candles? Are dogs scared of candles? Should you keep them away? Are dogs safe around candles?
Today, we’re going to answer all of these questions including the one you’re probably most interested in: how to stop your dog barking at candles once and for all. Very soon, this will all be behind you and you’ll never have to worry about it ever again. Keep reading below for our article “Dog Barks at Candles? Here’s How to Stop It!”
Table of Contents
How to Stop Dog Barking at Candles
To stop dog barking at candles:
- Teach your dog the “quiet” command to use whenever they bark at candles or at any other time you need them to be silent.
- For us to do that, you should take your dog to a place you know they’ll likely bark (the park, etc) with plenty of treats.
- As soon as your dog begins to bark, say “quiet” in a positive and calm voice. If they respond and get silent while also giving you their complete attention give them praise and a treat right away.
- But if your dog keeps barking or quickly begins again, then hide a treat in your fist.
- Put your hand right next to your dog’s nose. They’ll still be able to detect the scent even inside of your hand and should pause their barking to investigate it.
- As soon as they’ve quit barking and are giving you all their attention, again say “quiet,” and then open your hand to reward them with praise and a small treat.
- If they keep being silent and are paying you their attention, continue rewarding them with treats and praise.
- But if they again start barking or are not paying attention, repeat the process of hiding a treat inside of your hand, placing it by their nose, and pausing until they stop their barking and give you their focus.
- Be sure to always pause until they’ve quit their barking and are giving you all their attention, and then say “quiet” before you give them any praise or treats.
- This creates a positive connection with your dog with the “quiet” command, and with being quiet and fully focusing on you.
- With time, practice, and patience, you should be able to get them to respond with just the “quiet” command, and you’ll no longer have to place your hand next to their mouth.
- When your dog is doing well with just the command, then you can start lengthening the amount of time you pause until you reward them.
- Begin by waiting for 1-2 seconds, then as they do well move that up to 5 seconds, and so on.
- Soon, you’ll no longer need to give your dog any praise and food, and they will be quiet and give you their attention solely by you giving the command.
This will get your dog to stop barking at candles, but you’ll still need to do something about their misbehavior which was rooted in their underlying issues with anxiety and dominance. Not doing anything will just lead to your dog continuing to think that they are in charge and that they make the decisions, and things will only get worse for the both of you.
And to do that, we must first talk about what makes dogs tick and has for thousands and thousands of years now. I’m sure you’ve heard before that dogs are pack animals, and that in every pack there is a pack leader.
But when your dog barks at candles, they are definitively showing you that they don’t respect you in this leadership role.
If they did, they wouldn’t bark at your candles and then refuse to stop even when commanded to do so. They wouldn’t engage in any other types of dominance or anxiety-related misbehavior. And they would obey your commands at all times — immediately — and they would do so happily.
Make it clear to your dog that you are not just their pack leader, but a deserving and capable one who they must respect, and you’ll make all of these wonderful transformations happen.
Obviously, you’ll be better off. But your dog will be too because they’ll no longer have to deal with all of the worry and confusion that their dominance & anxiety problems are currently saddling them with 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Sounds terrific, wouldn’t you agree?
“Yeah, absolutely, but how do I do this then?”
You should watch an excellent free video series by a renowned trainer named Dan which is on this very subject: how to be your dog’s pack leader. In Dan’s series, he explains absolutely everything in ways that are very simple to follow and teach to your own dog, and he gets immediately to the point so that you can start seeing these crucial changes in your dog before things escalate any further.
Start watching Dan’s free training series now by clicking here. And no, you’re not going to have to yell or be mean to your dog. Dan uses only 100% humane and loving teaching techniques at all times. Not just because they’re the right thing to do, but also because they’re the fastest way to achieve permanent changes in your dog’s behavior.
Why Do Dogs Bark at Candles?
Dogs bark at candles because they are instinctually afraid of fire, even when it’s as small as the flame from a candle. This makes them feel very anxious and worried, which many dogs will then respond to by barking. Dominant dogs will also be barking because they see it as their duty to protect you, themselves, and their territory from this “threat.”
While it’s normal for a dog to bark at a candle or a flame, the real issue is when they refuse to quit even when you command them to do so. This disobedience can’t be allowed, or your dog will see it as tacit approval that their behavior is correct, and possibly even that they are in fact the leader that can do whatever they want.
Your dog’s behavioral problems will then only get worse and become more frequent. You’ll see that your dog barks at the fireplace or barks when there are fireworks. Even random noises will set them off, and they’ll be barking when the doorbell rings, barking at the garbage disposal, and barking at the alarm clock. They’ll feel that they have free reign to react in any way they please.
I’m sure you can see how obnoxious this could make life around your house. Forget lighting a candle for a romantic night or just to fill the room with a nice scent, your dog’s never going to allow that. But if you start addressing things now, you can easily get ahead of all of this and teach them to behave properly.
To learn how to stop your dog barking at candles — and at anything else — using only a simple verbal command, while also addressing the root cause of their misbehavior, go back to the first section now where we’ve laid out exactly what to do in easy-to-follow steps.
Are Dogs Scared of Candles?
Dogs are scared of candles. They’ve instinctually learned to be afraid of candles and any source of fire. This dates back thousands of years to their ancestors, the wolf. Some dogs will attempt to flee, while others might stick around to bark at it, feeling that they are protecting you and the home. Nearly all will feel very anxious if they haven’t received training.
To help your dog to learn to not be scared around candles, you can slowly desensitize them. Start by taking them into the room with an unlit candle. Sit and hold them while speaking softly and petting them. Light the candle while continuing to pet and praise them. If they stay calm, give them small treats. This helps form positive associations.
Do not force anything if your dog is showing signs of stress. Be patient, and know that it will likely take a series of training sessions before your dog is comfortable around a lit candle. Finally, remember that it’s been proven that multiple, regular, short training sessions are more effective than less frequent, longer sessions, so plan on keeping things brief.
To learn how to address your dog’s core anxiety issues, go back to the end of the first section now.
Are Dogs Safe Around Candles?
Dogs are not safe around candles in many cases. It’s very common for dogs to become very stressed, anxious, and overexcited at the sight of a candle’s flame. Some may become so worried that they could attempt to attack it or try to flee the room. Either could result in the dog coming into contact with the flame or knocking over the candle and starting a house fire.
If you’re unsure of how your dog will react to a lit candle, ensure that there is a barrier between them before bringing them into the room. This way, if your dog reacts very negatively you’ll know that no damage or injury can occur. You should then spend some time in another room reassuring your dog and petting them to get them calm again.
You can learn more about helping your dog with anxiety issues by going to the end of the first section of this article now.
I’m sure you’re looking forward to lighting your candles without worrying about your dog’s reaction, so I’ll let you get started on things now. Good luck, and thank you for reading our article “Dog Barks at Candles? Here’s How to Stop It!”