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Getting Started With The BarxBuddy — How to Use an Ultrasonic Trainer for Your Dog

how barxbuddy works

How does BarxBuddy work? Whether you are considering The BarxBuddy for training your dog, or you’ve purchased one and need tips on how to use it, this guide will help you understand how ultrasonic dog trainers work and get started with humane and effective training.

Unboxing & Testing The BarxBuddy Device

When you purchase the BarxBuddy ultrasonic training device, your box will contain the ultrasonic training device, a 9-volt battery, a wrist strap, and an instruction sheet. 

Don’t forget to install the battery! Remove packaging from the 9-volt battery (included), remove the battery door from the device, and snap the battery into the connector. Tuck it into the battery compartment and slide the door back into place. 

To make sure the battery is working, slide the light switch forward, toward the light. If it comes on, the battery is working. If it doesn’t illuminate, check that you fully installed the battery properly. If all connections are correct, and the light still doesn’t come on, try changing the battery.  

If you change the battery and the device still doesn’t work, use this form to contact us. We’ll respond as quickly as possible with instructions for returning the device and getting a replacement.

The BarxBuddy device and what the buttons, switches, and components are for.

What’s on The BarxBuddy

The device itself is about the size of a TV remote control with a button and a switch. It is 13.8 x 5.8 x 3.1 centimeters or 5.4 x 2.3 x 1.2 inches. It is very lightweight, weighing less than 1 pound.

Ultrasonic sound button

The ultrasonic button is an oval button that looks like a typical on/off button. 

Press and release the ultrasonic sound button to emit the ultrasonic sound. You will not be able to hear the sound, but your dog will (also, some children can hear ultrasonic sounds). If you want to know what the ultrasonic sound sounds like, our blog post on Why You Should Use Ultrasonic Dog Repellers and Deterrents includes an embedded video with sound. 

The ultrasonic sound is an annoyance to your dog; it is safe, humane, and painless to dogs. 

Two items of caution, though. First, do not wear headphones to listen to this video because the sound could hurt your ears. Instead, use your computer’s speakers or nearby wireless speakers. Second, put your dog in another room or outside (or better yet, at least 50 feet away) so the sound will not disturb them. 

Light switch

An additional feature we built into The BarxBuddy is the flashlight, which can be used with and without the ultrasonic sound. Our philosophy is, you can’t have too many flashlights at home, and it’s also a good way to check to see if you need to change the batteries on your device. When the lights flicker or dim, it’s time to change the battery. 

The light switch has three settings. 

  1. Slide the button all the way forward and it works as a flashlight. This is a handy feature for nighttime outings or finding your way around a dark house. 
  2. Slide the light button to position one (middle setting) and the light will come on only when you press the ultrasonic sound button. When you press and release the ultrasonic button, the white LED lights will flash. This is an added level of distraction for your dog. 
  3. Slide the light button to position two (marked with a Roman numeral II), and the middle “stubborn dog light will illuminate when you press the power button. More on that in a minute. 

Wrist/hanging strap

The included attached wrist strap is handy for slipping your BarxBuddy device on your wrist when you go for walks. You can also hang it on a door handle or hook in areas where your dog hangs out. 

Ideally, you’ve got two or three ultrasonic trainers in your home. Keep one in the main living area, hanging on a coat hook so it’s easy to grab as soon as a knock on the door sends your dog into fits of barking. You might also keep one in the main living area of your home, where everyone can reach it. We suggest a third device works well in the bedroom, to silence midnight barks (once you’ve determined there’s nothing to be alarmed about, of course). 

Ultrasonic speakers

You’ll see two speakers on the wide end of your device. This is where the ultrasonic sound emits. You will not be able to hear the sound, although some children and young adults might be able to hear the high-frequency sound.  

LED and ‘stubborn dog’ lights

For most of your dog training, you will set the light switch to the middle section, marked with a Roman numeral I. When your dog starts barking, jumping, digging or exhibiting other unwanted behaviors, press and release the power button. Your LED light will also flash. This is an added feature to interrupt your dog’s behavior with sight and sound. 

The “stubborn dog” light, however, is a different story. Its redness is a level up from the white LED light. Use it on particularly stubborn dogs. We also recommend that you use it on other dogs, such as aggressive dogs you might encounter on walks.  

How to Use The BarxBuddy

As soon as your dog stops the unwanted behavior, give him a common, “stop digging,” “quiet,” or whatever you choose. Be consistent. Dogs have simple minds, believe it or not. So, if you mix up your words, you’re going to mix up your dog.

If he starts barking or digging again, he’s testing you. Press and release the button. Repeat the command. Continue to do this until the dog understands the cause and effect and realizes, “Geez, every time I bark, I hear that noise and then you say ‘quiet.’ Maybe I’ll just be quiet.” The goal here is to teach the dog to listen to your command, so you no longer have to interrupt his behavior with an ultrasonic device. 

Many dog owners like to allow their dogs to bark. It is, after all, their job. If someone is at the door, your dog’s job is to let you know (and also to intimidate potentially unwanted or uninvited guests). Once your dog has alerted you of a threat, you assess the situation and quickly give the “quiet” command. 

Try not to bark back when your dog is barking. When you yell at a barking dog, he’s thinking you’re joining him. 

To use The BarxBuddy when your dog starts barking:

  1. Activate The BarxBuddy 
  2. Wait for the dog to stop barking 
  3. Give the quiet command
  4. Wait to ensure that your dog has followed your instructions and reward him or her with a treat 
  5. Repeat the steps as necessary, until your dog — and you — come to an understanding  

For more information on The BarxBuddy, learn about our train, treat, repeat approach to dog training, and explore our dog training guide.