banjo has come a long ways in the last few months (he's 19mos old now) and can be very behaved most of the time, he is showing some of the pug laziness that we loved about our first pug, but he can still be a wild man too. My wife is working from home full time now and he is very good most of the time, but any time she is on a call of any kind he acts up, he barks and whines at her and definitely makes his presence known. She sometimes bribes him before the calls with a bone or some long lasting treat, but if the call is very long he makes sure he is heard. even crating him, if she's not on a call and puts him in the crate he chills out and falls asleep, as soon as the call starts he gets upset. He does the same thing when we face time our friends. Not sure what to try next?
Really I think the only thing you can do is crate him with a long lasting treat (ideally in another room) and ignore any barking. If you give him any attention while he's acting up, even if it's negative attention such as telling him "no" then he learns that acting up gets attention.
Another thing you might try is speaking out loud on occasions when not on a call, but NOT speaking to him or paying attention to him. No eye contact whatsoever. He may well be used to feeling included in pretty much any vocal interaction in your house, so the calls are puzzling him. Maybe do a running commentary when putting away groceries, for example. You will feel like a fool but it could help.
Mine go bonkers if my phone rings (mainly because it only ever rings when my friend is calling to arrange a dog walk), but they also went mental when my son tried to FaceTime call me a few times. This caused me some anxiety about having to teach online on Zoom last term, but I decided to try and treat it as a perfectly normal situation and have them all in the room with me. Amazingly they were all as good as gold and just settled down to sleep on the sofa. So they accept the Zoom sessions no problem - but the phone does cause issues. I think it’s the ringing noise that sets them off more than anything else. They’re generally ok when I make a call, provided I don’t attempt to sit down?!?!
I love Bella's idea of speaking out loud when not on the phone and getting him accustomed to talking that doesn't include him. He would (hopefully) realize fairly quickly that just because a human is talking, doesn't mean it's anything to get excited about.
I hope you find a solution that works well!
Mom to Miss Jelly Bean "Beanie" Licorice Pug
Forever in our hearts: Miss Nilla Sassafras Pug August 17, 2002 to April 19, 2018
And my Heart-Dog... Wonka the Dancing Pug, CGC, W-FD, W-TFD.
Februrary 11, 2005 to May 10, 2020. Miss you, sweet boy!