Before I tell you exactly what the product is, let me give you a bit of a background…
We’ve always known that our dogs bark when we aren’t home and would always try to be out for 3-4 hours at most, so that they could go in their crates. They love their crates and are happy and silent when they are in there, but we don’t like to leave them in too long (unless it’s bedtime). If we were going for longer, which was rare, we’d make sure to be home by 10pm so that they don’t disturb the neighbours too much at inappropriate hours.
I think we had sort of fooled ourselves into thinking that they stop barking after the first few minutes. It was how we coped and made it possible to go out without worrying the whole time. Little did we know…
They are so lucky they are cute…
In order to see what the situation was my husband designed a robot that detects when the dogs are barking and sends a message to Twitter. We call it the Tweeter Tattle.
I KNOW, he’s a GENIUS! Seriously, this is a ROBOT that TWITTERS. I love this man!
So once the robot was functional we decided to test it while we went to the grocery store. We set it up, left the dogs loose with it in the living room and headed off to the grocery store. We had our phones with us so we could check the robot’s Twitter updates while we were out.
Sweet baby Jesus, we had no idea what was going on while we were out. Check this out, this is a screenshot of what went on in the short time that we were at the supermarket (the first few minutes are at the bottom, so read from bottom to top):
People, this all took place within the space of an hour. I shit you not… my dogs are idiots.
As I said, we sort of knew this was going on. We’d asked the neighbours now and then and they’d say yeah they bark a lot while you are out, no it doesn’t bother us, it’s not so bad… but clearly we have been blessed with some incredibly patient people in our building.
Not only did this bother me because of the disruption for our neighbours, but I also hated the thought of the dogs being so agitated the entire time we are gone. I want them to be happy and feel secure, not miserable and distressed every time we walk out the door.
I started thinking of what we could do. When we are home we have been trying to Cesar Milan their asses as much as possible, but that doesn’t do us any good when we aren’t home. We had considered getting one of those collars, you know the ones that give a small static shock or shoot out some citronella spray, but I just couldn’t shake the feeling that it was not such a nice thing to do to them.
I went on Facebook and asked the opinion of some of my friends who also have dogs. They had some great advice in regards to making the dogs a little less sad when we leave, the best being giving the dogs a Kong with treats inside just as we are leaving, so that they see us going as a good thing for the, rather than bad.
I didn’t think this was going to solve our barking issue entirely though, so I cracked my knuckles and got my Google on.
That’s when I found it…
The Petsafe Indoor Ultrasonic Bark Control System. Otherwise known as, the gadget that saved my dogs’ lives. Best. Money. Ever. Spent.
The way it works is, it detects when the dog barks and then sends out a really high pitched ultrasonic noise. It doesn’t hurt the dogs, it just startles and annoys them, so they quickly learn that if they make annoying noise they will get annoying noise in return. As humans we can’t even hear it, but if you are standing really close to the machine there is a soft mechanical noise that it makes that you can hear.
I was a little skeptical when I was reading about it, I mean how is this little thing going to stop my crazy ass dogs from barking? There’s no way. I mean I think there have been times that I got so irritated with them that my own shrieking reached ultrasonic levels and they didn’t stop barking then! Still, I was desperate and we had to try.
I checked with Wesdijk.nl to see if they had it, and luckily they did! What was also lucky is that they are only a few minutes drive from here so we were able to hop in the car and go pick it up right away.
You see, we had a BBQ to go to that night and now that we knew without a doubt that the dogs were assholes, we had to try this thing RIGHT AWAY. Our sanity and their existence depended on it.
So we get this thing home and I look at it, still unsure… but we didn’t have time to worry about it. We popped the battery in, set up the Tweeter Tattle and headed out to the BBQ with our fingers crossed.
Oh the suspense!! I think I checked my Twitter about 400 times on my phone that evening… and do you know what I saw?
That was IT, for the ENTIRE EVENING. Omg… and that was probably just the amount of barks it took them to figure out “Wait a minute, wtf… when I bark that annoying sound goes off and I don’t like that!”
The next day we went out again to a party at a friend’s place, once again as we are on the way I check Twitter on my phone.
Again, it probably took them a few minutes to realize what was going on, but then they were silent for the rest of the day while we were out.
Honestly, this thing is FANTASTIC! I sit here and shake my head because I don’t know why we didn’t look into this years ago. When I think of all the times we’ve had to leave places super early to make sure we’d get home to make sure the dogs weren’t barking and bothering the neighbours, I could scream.
We also notice a remarkable difference in the dogs’ behavior when we are home. They don’t bark nearly as much as they used to (which was pretty much anytime the wind blew) and just seem generally more chilled out. I used to feel like we were constantly getting up and trying to get them to stop barking at whatever was under their skin at that particular moment, now they’ll let off one bark now and then and are quickly reminded that they need to zip it.
Since it can only detect barking within 8 meters, it really just works in the living room. Although I have had it on the balcony with me and manually pressed the button on the top when the dogs bark and dogs that are passing by. I’ve also sat it on our shoe rack in the hallway when we were expecting someone, to stop them from barking like mad at the door (which they are terrible for). I’m pretty sure we are going to pick up a 2nd one for that end of the house (by the entry) to also cut down on their frantic barking when the doorbell rings.
Honestly, if you have a dog and have trouble with barking and don’t know what to do, you must try this. I can’t guarantee it will work on all dogs, as I read in the reviews that some just ignored it or became immune to it after a while… but so far it’s been a godsend for us. I recommend it wholeheartedly!
Now, if only we could find a machine to make them stop jumping on people, or shedding, or licking between our toes… or eating other dogs poo…. *sigh*
P.S. I forgot to mention, there is also an OUTDOOR VERSION of this if you have issues with your dog barking outside! It’s even cute like a birdhouse, makes me wish I had a garden to hang it in!
*I am in no way affiliated with Petsafe. I paid for this product and this is my own personal opinion, I was not sent this product for review.