Barking! Which Dogs Bark the Most?

Which Dogs Bark?

All dogs bark at one time or another. Even the bark-less Basenji makes a noise (it’s not a bark… it’s called a “barroo!”) Barking is something New York City apartment dog owners need to be particularly sensitive about. No one wants to listen to a dog yap all day, especially in the close quarters that New Yorkers find themselves in. And if a dog barks too much, the city could step in!

The [New York City] Noise Code holds pet owners accountable for their animals’ noises, and owners must do their best to limit noises so that their pets do not disturb their neighbors… When complaints persist, further action can be taken. Animal noise that is unreasonable and plainly audible from within nearby residential property may call for enforcement action if the noise occurs after 7:00 am and before 10:00 pm for a continuous period of 10 minutes or more… or… After 10:00 pm and before 7:00 am for a continuous period of five minutes or more.

I tried to find out which dogs bark the most, but what I learned is that there does not seem to be much of a consensus. Webvet.com published this list:

  • Chihuahua
  • Cairn Terrier
  • German Shepherd
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Scottish Terrier
  • Rottweiler
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Yorkshire Terrier
Westies Tend to be Barkers
Westies Tend to be Barkers

The ilovedogssite says these are the barkiest dogs:

  • Beagle
  • Bassett Hound
  • Jack Russell Terrier
  • Keeshound
  • Maltese
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Boston Terrier
  • Miniature Pinscher
  • Samoyed
  • West Highland White Terrier

As you can see only one dog makes both lists: the West Highland White Terrier. And the other dozen or so lists I looked at did not give much more guidance, unfortunately. There was overlap among them, but nothing you could call a “master list.”

Which Dogs Are “Good Barkers?” And Which Dogs are “Bad Barkers?”

The closest I could get to a scientific approach to which dogs bark the most was a list compiled by UC Davis researchers Benjamin and Lynette Hart. They devised a chart that ranks dogs by the likelihood of barking at appropriate or inappropriate times. For example, a guard dog should bark when danger’s afoot, but shouldn’t bark at its own shadow. One is appropriate barking, the other is nuisance barking.

which dogs bark the most

 

Reviewing the list closely – looking at all breeds ranked from one to ten — it seems to me that “appropriate barking” is linked to the behavior a dog was bred for. For example, Rottweilers were bred as guard dogs; it makes sense that they would bark when intruders are present. And we’ve all seen TV shows and movies with Bloodhounds barking madly while chasing a fugitive.

Also looking at the list, it seems – GENERALLY – that smaller dogs bark at inappropriate times more frequently than larger dogs. But that’s definitely a generalization. Weimaraners come in at number seven – pretty barky in my opinion – but our two Weims hardly ever barked.

Which Dogs Bark the Least?

At the other end of the spectrum, here’s a list of the “quietest dogs.”

The Vetstreet website surveyed 218 veterinary professionals to get their take on the quietest dog breeds around.  This is what they found.

  • Newfoundland
  • Great Dane
  • Italian Greyhound
  • Whippet
  • Mastiff
  • Bernese Mouintain Dog
  • Bullmastiff
  • Saint Bernard
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Golden Retriever 

The folks at Vetstreet admit the list is subjective and has some surprises. (For example: why isn’t the barkless Basenji on the list?) For more click here.

Great Dane (Photo: Natalie Siebers)
Great Danes are not Big Barkers  (Photo: Natalie Siebers)

Bottom Line:  the Internet isn’t the place to find conclusive guidance on which dogs are the noisiest. These lists are good places to start, but you’re going to have to do more research by asking vets, breeders, trainers, dog owners, and other people owners to get a comprehensive understanding of which dogs bark the most.

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