Do Chihuahuas Bark a Lot? (Stop Chi Barking Guide)

Do Chihuahuas bark a lot? The answer to this question is yes. It’s not a secret that most Chihuahuas are yappy dogs.

Although dog barking is perfectly normal for all breeds of dogs, excessive non-stop barking can become an annoying nuisance and a bad habit that needs breaking.

do Chihuahuas bark a lot
Do Chihuahuas bark a lot? (Stop Chi Barking Guide)

Keep reading to discover tips and tricks on the best ways to train your Chihuahuas to stop barking. 

What Makes Chihuahuas Bark?

Now that you know the answer to “do Chihuahuas bark a lot?” you may wonder what makes them bark in the first place. 

Chihuahuas are a small breed of dog, and they often bark as a defense mechanism when frightened or intimidated by other pets, strangers or noises. 

This small breed dog also has exceptional hearing and may even bark at sounds the human ear can’t pick up.

Chihuahuas love to bark often for several reasons, including the following:


When Chihuahuas are feeling excited, they will often bark. Some examples of excitement include playing with a toy, seeing their owner come home, or seeing another dog.

Chihuahua open mouth
Chihuahua mouth wide opened.


Chihuahuas often bark because they are bored. If you are a lucky neighbor to a Chihuahua, you may often have the pleasure of hearing the dog bark when its owner is away and left at home alone.


Sometimes, a Chihuahua barks when it is feeling vulnerable and seeking protection from something unknown to them or scary, such as the sound of thunderstorms or approaching strangers.

Chihuahua barking and whining
A Chihuahua puppy barking and whining alone in a room.

Attention Seeking

Other times, your Chihuahua barks because they seek attention and want something, such as a treat, a toy, or affection.

Being Over-Protective

Another reason Chihuahuas bark is because they are protecting their owner from harm. They might be small in size. But, to them, they are never too small to protect their loved ones.

Chihuahua rubbing legs
Chihuahua rubbing owner’s legs.

Guarding Their Belongings

Sometimes, Chihuahuas bark because they want to protect their possessions, such as their food bowl or favorite toy, and they will surely let you know all about it.

They Can Hear Other Dogs

Chihuahuas will often bark when they hear other dogs barking in the distance. Again, Chihuahuas have an extra-sensitive hearing ability. So, they might be able to hear another dog barking, even if their owners cannot.

a long haired chihuahua
A long haired Chihuahua living its best life outdoors

Want Out Of Their Kennel

Chihuahuas will also bark when they have been in their kennel too long and want to be let out. In fact, they may even bark immediately after being put in their kennel.

They Have To Use the Bathroom

Chihuahuas who are potty-trained will often bark when they need to use the bathroom outdoors.

Chihuahua tongue is out
Chihuahua with a rolled tongue.

The Best Method of Teaching Your Chihuahua To Stop Barking

Chihuahuas are a breed of dog that barks quite often. However, if you are a Chihuahua owner, there are several tips and tricks you can try to stop the annoying barking behavior.

Never Yell at Your Dog

Yelling at your Chihuahua to quit barking never works. If anything, it only makes them bark even louder. Instead, try speaking in a calm and rational voice and move the dog from the situation that is causing it to bark

Chihuahua licks owner's face
Chihuahua licks the owner’s face to show their love and affection.

Never Give Treats for Barking

Never offer rewards for bad behavior, even after the dog has quit barking. This only encourages them to continue barking because they associate the bad behavior with getting a treat.

What To Do if Your Dog Is Barking Because It’s Scared?

Because Chihuahuas are such a small breed of animal, they are often intimidated by other people or dogs. If it is scared, pick it up and reassure it that everything is okay and that they are not in danger.

If you are out in public and your dog is scared of a larger dog, kindly ask the owner to keep them away from your dog. 

As your dog starts to feel less frightened, it will generally quit barking. Strangers should never attempt to pet a barking Chihuahua. It will only make the dog more scared.

The best solution is to keep a safe distance and try not to make eye contact with the dog until it stops barking.

Chihuahua stays owner's lap
A Chihuahua stays on her owner’s lap.

Barking To Guard Its Territory

When your Chihuahua barks to protect its territory, immediately remove it from the source. For example, if it is barking to protect a toy, take the toy away.

After a few times of taking away a favorite toy for barking, your Chihuahua should start to learn that barking is not the solution. 

When the Chihuahua stops barking, try giving back the toy. If the dog remains quiet, they can keep the toy.

Barking Due to Excitement

If you are expecting company, try taking your pooch for a walk beforehand or play with it and tiring it out before they arrive. This will hopefully tire your dog out so that it is not overly exciting when your company arrives.

If your Chihuahua continues to bark when your company arrives, remove it from the room until it quiets down. Try bringing it back out to see if it remains quiet. If it is quiet, it can stay out with company. 

However, if it barks, remove it from the room again to teach it that it cannot bark when someone comes to visit.

short hair chihuahua outdoors
A short haired Chihuahua

Barking During the Night

Chihuahuas are a very social breed and would love to sleep with you all night. However, if they must sleep in a crate, ensure you provide plenty of toys to amuse your Chihuahua throughout the night. Some toys that Chihuahuas love includes:

Take your dog to the bathroom before locking it in its crate. After that, the most important thing to do at night when your Chihuahuas are whining, barking, or crying is to ignore it.

Never check on your pup when it is barking because it will encourage the behavior. Instead, wait until the barking has subsided, and then let them out of the crate for bathroom breaks if you feel it is necessary

Reward Good Behavior

Remember to reward good behavior. When your Chihuahua is behaving well and not barking, offer them treats to reward their good behavior. In no time at all, you will notice a decrease in barking.

dog treats
Dog treats from a paper bag.

Provide Adequate Exercise

Making sure that your Chihuahua gets plenty of exercise is crucial for training it to stop barking. One of the main reasons your dog barks is because it may be bored. By providing it with an active lifestyle, you may be able to decrease its barking.

Be Consistent

Consistency is key to reducing barking in your Chihuahua. Rewarding your dog for being quiet every time will teach it that when it is quiet, it will be rewarded with treats. Ensure that all family members follow the same rule so as not to confuse your pet.

Chihuahua glance
Chihuahua glances for a photo.

Teaching Your Chihuahua the Speak-on-Command Approach

Another method used to train Chihuahuas to stop barking is rewarding them for barking. Then, when they have this method down pat, you can teach them the opposite and reward them for being quiet.

To teach your Chihuahua the speak-on-command approach, follow these easy steps:

  1. Have someone you know come to your front door.
  2. Before the person knocks on the door or rings the doorbell, tell your dog to “speak.”
  3. Immediately reward your pup with a treat when they bark.
  4. Repeat these steps often until your Chihuahua learns to bark on command. 

Once your dog has learned the speak-on-command approach, you can then teach it the quiet command approach, following these simple steps:

  1. Use the previously taught method to get your pup to speak on demand.
  2. When your Chihuahua barks, place a treat in front of it.
  3. When the dog stops barking to sniff the treat, reward him by giving the treat and verbal praise.
  4. Repeat this process until your dog learns to stop barking when commanded. 
owner trains Chihuahua outside
The owner trains her Chihuahua outdoors.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Training Your Chihuahua Not to Bark

Training a Chihuahua to stop barking can be challenging. Here is a chart of the do’s and don’ts when training your Chihuahua to stop barking:

Do’s Don’ts
Be consistent with your training methods.Never reward your dog for bad behavior.
Ignore your Chihuahua when he barks at inappropriate times.Never use a muzzle on your dog.
Always reward your Chihuahua for good behavior.Never use a shock or a spray collar to teach your dog to stop barking.
Remove the stimuli that cause the barking. Never scare your dog to stop barking because it will only make it bark more.

The Bottom Line on Chihuahua Barking

So, do Chihuahuas bark a lot? There is no doubt that Chihuahuas are a loyal dog breed that loves to bark. Although barking is a method of communication between humans and dogs, sometimes it can become annoying when your Chihuahua barks non-stop.

The good news is there are several tips and tricks you can use to correct this bad behavior, reduce annoying barking in your Chihuahua, and help you to regain control of a peaceful home.