How to Train chihuahua to Stop Barking

Chihuahuas are the commonly kept and most popular dogs that families have. The dogs are very adorable pets around our homes, to look at and to give us company. However, Chihuahuas can be very annoying, their barking behaviors are very unpleasant. From close observation of their behaviors, you will find out that they do bark at particular instances. Once you study them you will be able to get a suitable solution to stop chihuahua barking.

In this section we will cover:

  • Barking overview
  • The reasons why chihuahua barks
  • Why does a chihuahua bark at nothing?
  • Ways to stop chihuahua from barking

Chihuahua Barking overveiw

barking chihuahua

source: pexels

Barking is a trait that belongs to all dogs regardless of their breed or where they live and were raised. In other words, barking is not that bad, it’s a way of communication. Combined with growling, eye gazing, and body movements, barking is a way to help dogs communicate with each other and with their human friends.

Your chihuahua is no exception. There are a lot of acceptable reasons why your dog might bark, such as the need for food or water, going outside, alerting you, or when he suffers from a health issue, etc. You have to teach your dog that barking in these situations is allowed. For instance, if you discourage your chihuahua from growling when he is in danger, this may result in some damage as he may attack you or somebody else directly without alerting you.

However, there are some situations, when a chihuahua’s barking is awkward. For example, barking at other pets, neighbors, your friends, cars, pizza delivery agents, etc. This is where you have to establish some rules.

Barking for no reason will have a negative impact on your daily life. Inappropriate barking can make your neighbors angry especially if you are living in an apartment, it can also bother your sleep.  Furthermore, because of wrong and excessive barking, you may have some troubles with the law in certain states.

For the above reasons, you should teach your chihuahua times when he can’t bark.

What Makes chihuahua Bark?

source: pexels

Dogs barking behavior is always triggered by a certain circumstance or occurrence around them. Barking dogs besides being annoying are helpful because they do alert us of dangers or other events. The following are some of the triggers that make them bark:

1. Unpleasant Noises around the Home

Loud or just irritating noises make the chihuahua bark continuously. The dog finds it comfortable to live in quite an environment that is conducive to them, it helps them to relax. The unpleasant noises in our homes include washing machines, blenders, loud audio, and cleaning machines. These machines when in use produce irritating sounds that disturb the dog and they end up barking.

2. boredom

Like all other dogs, chihuahuas need to be stimulated on daily basis. Physical and mental stimulation is crucial to keep your dog super healthy and to avoid unwanted behaviors. “Boredom barking” is when your chihuahua bark because of boredom. Luck of stimulation can lead to behavioral issues like chewing things, scratching at the wall, and barking.

To stop barking caused by boredom, provide your dog with a lot of mental and physical stimulation regularly. To do so, playing fetch, doing outside, teaching new tricks, or playing tug-of-war are effective ways to stimulate your chihuahua’s brain.

3. Enthusiasm

Whenever a chihuahua is happy, they tend to bark as a way of expressing its joy. Whenever its owner arrives the chihuahua barks in excitement as it rolls its tail and jumps around. In addition, dogs’ excitement is a result of the presence of their favorite food, as you are offering them their best meal, they will start to bark excitedly. Others get excited when they meet other dogs.

4. Separation from the Owner

Chihuahuas are so social pets that they get so used to their owners. Their owner’s presence is the best company they ever enjoy. Separation from the owner makes the chihuahua be so anxious and also induces stress in them. They express their anxiety by barking whenever the owner leaves the house. You can make the chihuahua get used to the separation by training. Leave the house for a while then be back, repeat the same thing until the Dog understands that once you leave you will always come back.

YOU CAN ALSO CHECK: Leaving a chihuahua home and separation anxiety

5. Way of Communication

Barking is a way that a Dog alerts his or her owner, also they do communicate with each other this way. A Barking chihuahua is just like a baby when it is in need of something, for instance, food or water, it barks. Hunger makes the Dog bark miserably, the owner should be very keen in order to understand Dog’s needs.

6. Sense of Danger

A chihuahua exhibits certain postures such as holding its tail low as it barks. when dogs sense the danger of intruders around their territory they start barking. The potential threats prompt them to bark in order to send a signal for help from their owner or to counter the threat.

YOU CAN ALSO READ: Chihuahua Territorial Marking

7. Necessity

As we said before barking is a way of communication, so when your dog needs something he may bark to express his need. For instance, when your chihuahua needs some water, he may bark to get your attention to provide him water, or when he needs to go outside. Etc.

It is easy to recognize this type of barking, as t is always soft and short.

Why do Chihuahuas bark at nothing?

Sometimes you may think that your chihuahua is barking for no reason. However, it is almost impossible for that the happen, you should bear in mind that chihuahua’s senses are more developed than ours, so there is a good chance that there is a trigger behind their barking. Maybe it is something you can’t hear, see or smell.

Ways to Stop Chihuahua Barking

Do not let your Dog annoy you when you can train it to stop barking. There are a variety of methods that you can use to make your chihuahua go silent, these methods go hand in hand with consistency. Here are some of the ways to train your dog:

Teaching him the two essential commands “speak” and “quiet

The “speak” command may seem trivial, however, before teaching your chihuahua the “quiet” command to stop him from barking. You should teach him the “speak” command. To do so, you should follow the steps below:

  1. Get a family member involved in this training.
  2. Ask him to approach the door
  3. Before he/she rings the doorbell, order your dog to speak
  4. Reward your chihuahua
  5. Repeat

There are other ways to teach your chihuahua the “speak” command. However, this method is the most effective. You can also create your own trick, the idea here is to connect the command with a treat to encourage your dog to do it when you ask him.

After teaching your dog the “speak” command, it is time now to teach him the “quiet” command. To do so, firstly ask your dog to bark, and while he is barking put a small piece of treat in front of his nose. Then when your dog stops to check the treat, give it to him. Finally, repeat this method until your chihuahua stops barking on command.

Ensure that Your Chihuahua Gets Plenty of Exercises

Chihuahuas do bark because of boredom. By ensuring that you take your Dog for around 30 minutes walk daily, you will get peaceful times in your house. Exercise’s goal is to drain excess energy from your Dog, they will not bark unnecessarily when they are exhausted. This is the simplest and most convenient way of minimizing boring noises in your house.

Get Your chihuahua Plenty of Toys

Chihuahuas like playing with toys and other items in the house. Therefore ensure that you keep at least different types of toys for your Dog. This will break their boredom as they get something new to play with. Too much play will also consume their excess energies and thus become lazy to bark.

Avoid Rewarding Chihuahua for Barking

Rewarding the Dog is just the worst thing to do, this will only make them more excited to bark. Some owners may want to toss some toys to the Barking Dog in an attempt to stop them. This will only create a wrong impression to the dog that you are happy with their barking.

Avoid Punishing Chihuahua for Barking

The best way to train your chihuahua is by reinforcing it positively. Shouting at them when they are barking will make them bark even more loudly. It is only advisable to reward them whenever they are quiet, by giving them their favorite item or simply showing affection to them by allowing them to stay closer to you.

Don’t utilize a shock collar

chihuahua wearing a shock collar


There are two types of shock collars; manually operated shock collars and automatic ones.

The two have one battery-powered electrode to generate 4500 volts applied directly to the dog’s neck when he barks.

The sellers usually use fancy names to sell them such as “e-collars” and “collar-mounted electronic training aids”.

You should never use these collars as they have so many disadvantages. Firstly, automatic collars don’t recognize normal barking from inappropriate ones. Secondly, they cause huge pain and discomfort to your dog(can you imagine being shocked by 4500 volts?). Thirdly, the automatic collar will punish your dog when another dog barks( they were designed to detect barking to be activated regardless of the dog who wears them).

Some experts claim that shock collars are not effective at training dogs compared to traditional training.

Reference: The Welfare Consequences and Efficacy of Training Pet Dogs with Remote Electronic Training Collars in Comparison to Reward-Based Training

Avoid spray collar

spray collar for dogs

This type of collar sprays mildly irritating substances on the dog’s face whenever he barks. These collars are less dangerous compared to shock collars. But they are also a tool of punishment. Because the short bursts of the sprayed substances (which are always lemon juice or citronella) sting the dog’s eyes.

A spray collar is also a source of pain and discomfort to your chihuahua. So instead of using them try to take your time and train your dog not to bark using the tips described in this article and remember that consistency is the key.

Last word

It is important to study the barking behaviors of our lovely dogs so as to give them appropriate training. Take actions described in this article to correct your chihuahua’s barking, if his barking is excessive or inappropriate.


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