Dog Breeds That Don’t Bark a Lot

February 17, 2014

By Linda Cole

One nice thing about cats is that no matter how insistent they meow for their supper, it usually won’t annoy the neighbors. A barking dog can, on the other hand. Some breeds use their voice more than others, and others will bark just for attention. Thankfully, there are some dogs that typically don’t bark a lot.

Chinese Shar-Pei – Bred in southern China as an all purpose farm dog, the wrinkly Shar-Pei dates back to at least the 1200s. The breed was highly prized as a herder, hunter, tracker, and guard dog for property and livestock. He shares his distinct blue-black tongue with only one other dog breed, the ancient Chow Chow, also from China. Shar-Pei means “sand skin” in Chinese. This breed is intelligent, devoted to his family, an independent thinker with a stubborn streak, wary of people and dogs he doesn’t know, and a good watchdog. As a general rule, the Shar-Pei only barks when he’s worried about something or during play.

Rhodesian Ridgeback – This is an ancient breed native to South Africa, developed by farmers who needed an intelligent, athletic and courageous dog for hunting, herding, and guarding livestock and the home from large predators. Also known as the African Lion Hound, the Ridgeback was used to hunt lions and leopards, holding them at bay until a hunter came. A distinctive ridge of hair along the spine, growing in the opposite direction from the rest of the coat, is how the breed got its name. The Ridgeback is extremely devoted to his family and will do what’s necessary to defend them.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel – This tail wagging breed was a favorite of England’s King Charles I and II, and is named after them. Bred as a companion pet, the Cavalier has the heart of a spaniel and can be trained to hunt small game. This family-friendly pet gets along well with people and other pets. He loves his family and wants to be with them, so this isn’t a dog to be left home alone for long periods of time. Outgoing, intelligent, playful and energetic, the Cavalier is one of the largest in the Toy Group. They are generally easy to train, and eager to do anything you ask for a yummy treat like CANIDAE Pure Heaven biscuits.

Saint Bernard – Developed by monks in the Swiss Alps, the Saint Bernard was used to guard the grounds of the hospice and monastery that was nestled 8,000 feet above sea level in the Great Saint Bernard Pass connecting Switzerland and Italy. They also searched for and rescued travelers who got lost crossing the treacherous pass. The Saint Bernard is intelligent, calm, patient, friendly and easy going. They can be stubborn and shy, but are eager to please and enjoy playing with kids and in snow.

Bernese Mountain Dog – One of four Swiss mountain dogs, the Bernese is the only one with a long, silky coat. Originating in Switzerland, the breed was developed from crosses of Mastiff-type dogs brought in by invading Romans, and farm dogs already in the Swiss Alps some 2,000 years ago. The Bernese drove cattle to market, pulled carts and acted as watchdogs for the home, mainly in the Canton of Berne, which is where the breed gets its name. This is an affectionate, calm, confident, sensitive, gentle, alert, cautious and intelligent breed. He’s protective of his family, gentle with kids and forms a close bond with his owner.

Great Dane – Called the Apollo of Dogs, the Great Dane originated in Germany to hunt the European wild boar, which was one of the most powerful, quick and savage beasts around at the time. A dog was needed that had an equal amount of tenacity, power, speed and intelligence to hunt the boars. German noblemen were so impressed with the breed, they decided to turn them into estate guard dogs and prized pets. The Great Dane is affectionate, gentle, playful, good-natured and enjoys being around people, including children.

Other quiet dog breeds include the Golden Retriever, Mastiff, Whippet, Bullmastiff, Irish Setter, Collie, Italian Greyhound and Newfoundland.

Top photo (Shar-Pei) by ruscca
Middle photo (Cavelier) by Angelique Hayne
Bottom photo (Pyrenees) by  Mike Baird

Read more articles by Linda Cole

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  1. I’m not sure where you got your information but Pyrs are one of the louder and more proliffic barkers out there. They are a Livestock Guardian Breed and their first line fo defense is barking. The joke is that Pyrs only bark at things that bother them, like passing butterflies and jets at 30,000 feet! Barking is one of the major complaints about the breed and a major reason we see them in rescue. Please correct this “list”.

  2. Stone says:

    Really surprised you didn’t mention basenji the famous “bark less” dog.

  3. Nicole says:

    Sorry, I saw Pyr on this list and thought I accidentally clicked on the list of dogs that bark too much.

  4. carol kapusinsky says:

    Having had many corgis, they are a barking challenge. Our Cardigan Welsh Corgi is the worse, and our Pembroke Welsh Corgis have all been vocal and
    non of the training commands worked. The female was such a barker we taught her by saying “use your indoor voice” .

  5. The OP Pack says:

    Lightning is the first of Mom’s five sibes that is a barker. The other four are mainly into “wooing”. The neighbors always compliment us for not being barkers:) But Mom says Lightning makes up for all the rest.

    Woos – Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning

  6. Chelsea says:

    Actually, collies are one of the noisiest breeds . . . they like to not only “talk” (assorted growls, yips, and whines), but also bark a lot. Many of them will use their bark to control sheep while herding.