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What is the dog that does not bark?

My Dog Never Barks

My Dog Never Barks

Barking is an important feature of dogs. Canines are territorial animals, so they bark to ward off intruders. They use their bark to communicate with other dogs and also to gain their owner’s attention. Yet, sometimes there are reasons why a dog never barks.

We hear dogs bark all the time. In some cases, they can lose that ability through medical conditions, while others are simply born with soft barks. If you’re thinking, why doesn’t my dog bark? then you’re at the right place. Read this article to find out the reasons why some dogs never bark.

9 Reasons Why Dogs Never Bark

There’s no such thing as dogs that are mute. They have their barks, but sometimes they’re so soft that you can’t hear them. That’s the reason why some pups are referred to as “barkless dogs.” Yet, there are instances where dogs don’t bark due to congenital defects, stress, and even shyness.

There are also other reasons why canines suddenly lose their barks. Some dogs just prefer staying quiet, while others have no choice because of their strained vocals. If you want to know more, this article listed the top reasons why pups don’t bark.

Breed Disposition

All dogs bark, but some breeds are quieter than others. Although in some very rare cases, dogs can be born mute. Further, Reader’s Digest listed the top 10 dog breeds that naturally don’t bark often.

  • Great Dane
  • Basenji
  • Newfoundland
  • Bulldogs
  • Shar Pei
  • Mastiff
  • Malamute
  • Chow Chow
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • Shiba Inu


Training plays an important role in lessening a dog’s bark. Dogs bark when they’re bored, alarmed, or excited. For starters, an untrained dog that wants attention will bark at almost anyone at anytime. So, when you train your canine not to bark at people, they will most likely adapt that behavior even outside training sessions.


Like humans, some dogs are attention seekers while others are wallflowers. A withdrawn personality is one of the main reasons dogs won’t bark. Canines also become quiet, especially when they’re in new places. When dogs are quiet, it doesn’t mean they’re depressed; rather, they just prefer silence.

Stress and Anxiety

Changes in the body language of dogs can tell us whether they’re hurt, stressed, or feeling anxious. Dogs can be emotional too. Naturally, when they’re anxious, they bark, whine and pace non-stop. Anxiety and stress can also trigger sadness, leading to a dog not barking.

Too Shy

Dogs can also lose their confidence too. If they haven’t been around people for so long, they can develop an extreme shyness disorder. Timid dogs aren’t barking because they feel fearful all the time. Socialization can treat shyness. Yet, in some rare instances, it can be a lifelong tendency.

Vocal Stress

One reason why your dog never barks is due to vocal stress. When canines bark, they put pressure on their vocal cords, leading to laryngitis. Also, excessive barking causes an inflamed pharynx called pharyngitis. Well, pharyngitis is the medical term for sore throat, while laryngitis causes voice loss.

Medical Issues

A dog that doesn’t bark can be suffering from laryngeal paralysis all along. Vomiting and harsh breathing are the usual signs of laryngeal paralysis. This occurs due to a degenerative failure of the nerves and muscles that open the voice box. Also, this disease causes dysphonia or changes in a dog’s bark.

Past Experiences

Some dogs have very loud barks. So, in very rare cases, their owners have them undergo a debarking, also known as the devocalization procedure, that permanently lowers their vocal range. This surgical procedure involves damaging a dog’s vocal cords. Further, infection, bleeding, and voice loss are the common side effects.

Getting Older

Senior dogs are prone to health issues. There are two reasons why your senior dog never barks anymore. First, their vocal cords collapse due to old age, leading to voice loss. In worst cases, a cancerous tumor can grow in the larynx or trachea of your dog.

When Do Puppies start to Bark?

Puppies learn how to bark through their surroundings. When they hear older dogs bark, they too will try to do so. As a result, their first attempt at barking is known as vocalizing. Those vocalizations happen as early as 2 to 3 weeks old and sound like grunts or whines.

Young dogs emit sounds because they want to communicate. Also, they can finally create their first bark when puppies reach 6 weeks old. Yet, it’s not a perfect bark since their vocal cords are still growing. It’s more like a high-pitched yelp which people refer to as the puppy bark.

As puppies mature into adulthood, their barks also change. Their barks transition from the high-pitched sound at 5 months to an even deeper sound at 1 year. When dogs learn to bark properly, abilities such as growling and howling develop too.

When to Bring Your Dog to The Vet

Why does my dog never bark if you’re still curious about the thought? then you’re not alone. It’s alarming when dogs suddenly lose their voice. But, how will you know if it’s fatal or not? Take note of the following signs and symptoms listed below.

Chronic Vomiting

Chronic vomiting occurs due to a variety of reasons. For instance, it could be gastritis or pancreatitis and sometimes acid reflux. When dogs gag, they put pressure on their pharynx. As a result, too much gagging irritates the vocal cords. Hence, this results in hoarseness or loss of voice.

Breathing Difficulties

A few of the many reasons why dogs never bark is due to blockages, injuries to vocal cords, and laryngeal collapse. Symptoms like these require immediate medical treatment. Yet, dogs will still manage to live even with a collapsed larynx. Though, if not surgically treated, it can progress.

Respiratory Illnesses

Since vocal cords are found in the larynx, the main illness that causes voice loss refers to laryngitis. Also, laryngitis is caused by a spectrum of respiratory viruses such as parainfluenza virus, adenovirus, and rhinovirus. If not treated properly, this becomes acute and may cause your dog never to bark again.

Surgical Complications

Research in 1991 stated that in post laryngectomy, 28 dogs suffered from cough and 15 dogs from pneumonia. Also, 8 dogs underwent a second operation to ease the complications. If surgery fails, a voice may become temporarily hoarse or worse, dogs may never bark again.

Something must be wrong when suddenly a healthy dog doesn’t bark. If that’s the case, then your canine could be experiencing blockages or vocal strain. Worst case scenario, it could be tumors or upper respiratory infections. To be sure, it is advisable to visit the nearest veterinary center for an immediate check-up.

Dog Breeds That Don’t Bark (Much)

Dog Breeds That Don’t Bark (Much)

Dog people love their pets. We embrace all the little nuisances that come with them — the shedding, drool, paw prints on the floors…the list goes on! Barking is another signature canine trait that can be undesirable, especially if it happens a lot.

People who want a dog but live in an apartment building or any kind of close proximity to their neighbours might want to consider a breed with a low tendency to bark. While there is no such thing as a dog that doesn’t bark at all, the following 13 dog breeds are known for being relatively quiet and rarely barking…

Saint Bernard

Saint Bernards are one of the most easily recognizable breeds thanks to the hit ’90s film, Beethoven. A true gentle giant, these big dogs are extremely affectionate, loyal, and surprisingly quiet. They will only bark if they are trying to alert their owners to danger.

These dogs can make great family pets because they are eager to please. However, due to their size, owners should manage them with training. According to the Spruce Pets they are easily distracted so maintaining control is key.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

This is a big name for such a tiny little dog! Even though small dogs have a reputation for being yappy, Cavalier King Charles spaniels are fairly quiet. Now they aren’t silent. If they aren’t getting enough attention, left alone for long periods of time, or feeling neglected, they will bark. But this can be expected of any dog under those circumstances.

The amount of barking a Cavalier King Charles spaniel will do depends on their emotional state and what they are trying to say. The Spruce Pets notes this dog can also change their bark depending on these things. Usually a bark is for protection, alarm, fear, or due to separation anxiety.


One of the few or only hounds that are actually quiet, the greyhound is considered a quiet breed. This may be due to the fact that they were bred to chase their prey silently, explains Reader’s Digest. While they do need a moderate amount of exercise, they are known for being a bit of a couch potato as they enjoy lounging around. They also have a fairly easy going temperament.

The only time greyhounds become overly vocal is when they are left alone. This is because they can form very close bonds with their families and can develop a bit of separation anxiety. The best way to correct this is with some behavioral training.


Basenji’s are known as the “barkless dog.” One of the reasons they don’t bark is because of the shape of their larynx. Reader’s Digest explains that due to its unusual shape they virtually can’t bark. Instead, they yodel!

While to some this might seem even more annoying, don’t worry. The source assures that despite their affectionate yodel, they are still known for being a relatively quiet dog. They are very smart and energetic, so Basenji’s require lots of exercise and training. When properly cared for they make very happy companions.

Scottish Deerhound

Also sometimes referred to as simply Deerhound, the Scottish Deerhound is a large breed of sighthound bred to hunt red deer. They have a very similar appearance to the greyhound, but with a thicker, more coarse coat and larger heavy-boned stature.

These dogs make great family pets because their personality is quiet, dignified, and polite. While they certainly aren’t lap dogs, they don’t require a huge amount of exercise. Good Housekeeping describes them as having “middle-of-the-road” energy. They’ll enjoy a good run around outside, but then have a big nap at home.

Rhodesian Ridgeback

The name Ridgeback comes from the way their coat and color appears like a ridge on their back. This breed of dog originates in Africa and was bred to hunt and guard its homes, explains the Spruce Pets. Since then it’s become a popular choice among families in the U.S.

One of the reasons people love this dog is because they don’t generally bark a lot. They will bark the odd time to alert their owners to something or when they are bored, but overall these dogs are not known for being very vocal.


Borzoi’s have a very calm, agreeable temperament and are even described by the American Kennel Club as being “quiet and catlike.” This is likely because they don’t bark much. Another thing key characteristic that’s hard to ignore is their appearance. These dogs are very tall and skinny and can run like the wind at 40 miles per hour when sprinting.

While it’s fun to watch them run free with their graceful glide and long flowy hair, because they run so fast it’s not wise to let them off leash. Unless they are trained very well! Aside from this, Borzoi’s are affectionate, loyal, and rarely bark making them a great option for a family pet.

English and French Bulldog

Confined to a small space like an apartment but still want to own a dog? The French bulldog is the perfect option. They are happy apartment dwellers and don’t need a lot of exercise outside a small brisk walk. In fact, due to their squished noses they actually need to do a lot of lounging around and are happiest in temperate climates. Another bonus? They rarely bark.

The English bulldog is similar to the French bulldog in that they don’t bark a whole lot and are perfectly happy taking a long nap on the couch. In fact, you might find it difficult to get them roused enough for a big, long walk.

Irish Setter

The Irish Setter is a beautiful dog with a unique appearance. These dogs stand out in a crowd with their long silky red coat. Irish setters are hunting dogs, not guard dogs which is why they aren’t as vocal as other breeds. They tend to only vocalize when tracking down prey. So unless using them for that purpose, don’t expect much barking from them.

Since these dogs were originally bred to work, they aren’t the average family dog. Irish Setters require a lot of exercise. If that’s not a problem, they make really great companions thanks to their sweet nature.

Great Dane

Great Danes are known for being gentle giants. Despite their size (which certainly comes with its own set of struggles) they are a relatively low maintenance breed. Just make sure you’re okay with some drool here and there! They are protective of their home and loved ones, and surprisingly one of the quietest breeds.

These dogs rarely ever bark and if they do it’s only to alert and protect. They might bark if someone comes into their space or to greet someone, or if they are bored and being ignored for too long.

Chow Chow

You can certainly pick a chow chow out in a crowd. These dogs have a very unique appearance looking like soft, cuddly little teddy bears. They also have a signature bluish black tongue. The chow chow is a stoic, independent dog that rarely ever barks.

The only time they’ll make a noise is if they are alerting their owners to danger. But according to the Sprue Pets, even then they aren’t all that loud. Chow chows also have a reputation for being aggressive, but the source notes this is mainly as result of their protective nature.

Shiba Inu

Shiba Inu’s are so quiet they often come off as standoffish. They are usually described as being very reserved and shy around strangers. The Spruce Pets says they are stoic, but very loyal to their family. People love how low maintenance they are. Shiba Inu’s require very little grooming and their exercise needs are average.

Another big selling point is that they don’t bark very often. However, one downfall that can be a deal breaker is that they are very independent in nature which means they can be difficult to train. This might not make them a good choice for first time dog owners.


Similar to some of the other large dog breeds on this list, the Newfoundland breed is very quiet, gentle, and affectionate. They are extremely loyal to their humans and very rarely bark, if at all. The only time they will bark is if they feel the need to warn their owners about something. Other than that they remain silent and stoic.

You don’t see these dogs very often because they require a lot of care. Obviously their size plays a role in that as proper accommodation is necessary, but they also need a lot of exercise. Some plus’s of Newfoundlanders are that despite their long, thick coat, they don’t require a ton of grooming and according to the Spruce Pets most respond well to training.

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Katherine George

Senior Managing Editor

Katherine is the Senior Managing Editor of ActiveBeat and Childhood. She is constantly striving to live a more active and healthy life, from eating healthy, exercising, and just spending more time outdoors. She enjoys cooking (with wine), walking her dog, reading, and recently joined a yoga studio!


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