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How To Train A Chihuahua To Stop Barking? 13 Best Tips

How To Stop A Chihuahua From Barking

Your Chihuahua is barking nonstop.

It’s getting noisy and disturbing.

You desperately want to stop them from barking.

But you don’t know how.

No worries. We got your back.

Keep reading to find out:

  • How to train them to bark on command.
  • What triggers your Chihuahua to bark nonstop.
  • 13 tips to stop your Chihuahua from barking too much.
  • And this is just the beginning…

Why do Chihuahuas bark so much?

Chihuahuas bark so much because of triggers in the environment. It could be loud noises, bigger dogs, or other people. They will also bark a lot out of boredom because of a lack of play and exercise. It’s also a way to show their dominance. 

13 best tips to train a Chihuahua to stop barking (at night)

#1: Ask your dog to do the opposite 

It may sound a bit weird but asking your dog to the opposite is a way to train them to stop barking.

How? It’s a form of distraction.

Your Chihuahua is barking too much. Instead of telling them to stop, ask your doggie to roll over, lie down, or fetch a toy.

The idea is to let them do something that distracts them from barking.

Your Chihuahua will forget about barking once you ask them to do something else.

Do you want to make it extra challenging?

When someone rings the doorbell, ask them to stay in place or do something else.

Did your dog follow? It’s time to give them treats. Shower your Chihuahua with praises.

In this way, they understand that you are happy with their good behavior.

#2: Identify triggers

Barking isn’t always a sign of dominance. 

Your Chihuahua may bark non-stop due to triggers.

It could be something in the environment or what they’re feeling.

There can be a hundred reasons why your Chihuahua is barking.

You have to be observant to identify the trigger.

If you have given your Chihuahua their needs, there can be other reasons why they’re barking.

Are there bigger dogs in sight?

Chihuahuas are usually fearful of bigger dogs. They bark to protect themselves.

Do they bark when they hear machines running like the lawnmower or vacuum?

Most dogs don’t like the sound of machinery.

Are they barking out of boredom? Maybe your pup wants to play with you.

Chihuahuas have high energy. They like to play and exercise. 

They need to release their stored energy.

Expose them to different suspected triggers at first.

Observe where they bark the most.

Is it when the doorbell rings? Or when the children are noisy?

Identifying the trigger is the first step to training your furry pal.

#3: Train them to bark on command

You can train your Chihuahua to bark on command. It helps eliminate excessive barking.

It’s a fun thing to do with your lovely canine. 

What are the things that usually trigger dogs to bark?

It can be a doorbell, a knock on the door, or the bark of other dogs.

You can start with a simple scenario such as someone ringing the doorbell.

Before someone rings the doorbell, tell your dog to “speak.”

Once your Chihuahua barks, give them a treat.

Don’t forget to praise them as well.

Repeat the training until you can teach them the “quiet” command.

Barking on command is beneficial. Your Chihuahua will bark only when there is a stimulus.

When you can move on from simple scenarios, your Chihuahua can eventually learn to bark on command when they need to pee or poop.

Do you need more inspiration?

Watch this video and learn more about how to train your dog to bark on command.

#4: Train them to keep quiet on command

What’s the opposite of speak? It’s quiet. 

Your Chihuahua is now able to bark on command. It’s time to teach them to keep quiet when you say the word.

How do you train them to keep quiet on command?

First, bring them to a quiet area with no noise and distractions.

Since your doggie is now trained to bark on command, say “speak.”

Once your Chihuahua starts barking, say “quiet.”

Let them sniff a treat. If your Chihuahua is obedient, give them a treat.

Shower them with praises as a reward.

Make use of this training in actual scenarios. 

When someone comes by to visit and your dog barks, tell them “quiet”.

Give a reward when they follow you.

It can be challenging at first but it’s definitely worth it.

#5: Train by ignoring

Another way to train your Chihuahua is by ignoring it.

Does it sound easier? 

Not really if you aren’t patient enough.

The neighbors may also find it noisy.

But it’s worth a try especially if your pup responds well.

This kind of training is to ignore them until they stop barking.

Let’s say your Chihuahua is in a crate and they start barking.

Ignore them by turning your back.

Don’t turn or touch them until they stop barking.

Once they do, turn around and give them a treat.

Don’t forget to praise your Chihuahua for good behavior.

Do you want to make it more exciting?

Wait a bit of time before giving them a treat.

First, you can give it after 5 seconds, then 10 seconds, and so on.

Make it a fun experience for both of you.

The key is patience while your dog is still learning.

#6: Avoid yelling

Your Chihuahua is barking nonstop.

You don’t know the reason why.

Yelling might be a good idea to silence them off but it can encourage them more.

It sounds like barking for them.

They may think you’re joining in the fun.

A calm voice is always better.

Rather than yelling to make them stop barking.

Speak in a low and relaxed tone of voice when you ask them to stop.

Aside from that, your doggo will sense that you’re frustrated.

Our furry friends can sense our feelings. 

They’ll also get frustrated when we’re frustrated.

It may cause them to bark too much.

You might also like: Why Does My Dog Howl When I Howl? 7 Surprising Reasons

#7: Give rewards

It’s challenging to let your dog understand why you don’t like excessive barking.

But you can clearly explain it by giving rewards such as treats.

Why do our furry friends like treats a lot?

Treats are made for doggies. They’re meant to like it.

The smell and the taste are inviting for them.

It’s made of their favorite ingredients such as lamb, beef, and chicken.

Your dog’s sense of smell is powerful.

They can smell treats from miles away.

There are a lot of treats available in the market nowadays.

Always check the label for real ingredients when you buy one.

Keep in mind as well that treats aren’t meant to be the main food of your canine.

Your Chihuahua may love it so much, but too much treats aren’t good for them.

Do you want to go on a healthier route?

You can make homemade treats for your pup. Try these healthy options as treats:

  • Apple.
  • Berries.
  • Carrots.
  • Bananas.
  • Watermelon.
  • Green Peas.
  • Cooked Squash.
  • Cooked Sweet Potatoes.

It can be something new for your pup but introduce it to them little by little.

#8: Play with them more

Chihuahuas are energetic dogs. Non Stop barking can be a result of a lack of exercise or activity. 

Your pup wants to release its stored energy. They need at least 30 minutes a day of play and exercise.

Take them for a walk in the morning or afternoon. A nice visit to the park or a tour around the neighborhood is something they’ll enjoy.

Do you prefer to play with them indoors?

There are a lot of activities you can do with your Chihuahua inside your home.

Try these fun-filled games with your furry friend:

  • Tug-of-war.
  • Puzzle toys.
  • Find the treat.
  • Hide and seek.
  • Blowing bubbles.
  • Climbing the stairs.

If your Chihuahua gets enough exercise or play each day, they’ll feel fulfilled.

A happy Chihuahua won’t be barking inappropriately.

Study says that play doesn’t only improve your furry friend’s well-being but your relationship with them as well.

Reading tip: Top 10 Reasons Why Chihuahuas Burrow (Under Blankets)

#9: Consistency is the key

How to succeed in training your Chihuahua to stop barking?

Be consistent. 

Inconsistency is the enemy of successful training.

Don’t give treats when they’re disobedient.

Giving treats should be consistent to avoid confusion.

Every time they obey your command to keep quiet, make sure to follow through with a treat.

Avoid mixing your commands as well. Don’t say stop when you mean to say “quiet.”

Being consistent also means that you use the same tone of voice.

You can’t be yelling today then be calm and soothing tomorrow.

Your Chihuahua may get mixed signals.

It’s pretty challenging but you can do it, fur parents!

#10: Involve the family

You’re doing your best to train your Chihuahua.

Treats when they obey. No treats when they don’t follow.

But if a family member is doing the opposite, your pup may misunderstand. 

Training will be unsuccessful. So what’s the best thing to do?

Talk about it as a family. If the main responsibility for training the family dog is yours, let the others know.

Ask them to participate. All family members should stick to the rules.

The success of your training is beneficial for the whole family.

Let them join in the fun!

#11: Desensitization

What is desensitization?

It’s safely and slowly exposing your doggo to their barking triggers.

If you’re able to identify what triggers their excessive barking, you’re on the first step of your journey.

Take note of the words, safely and slowly.

Desensitizing your dog shouldn’t be a sudden and forceful event. 

It can get worse if you don’t do it gradually.

So, how do you proceed with desensitization?

Start with your pup’s triggers. Let’s say the trigger is bigger dogs.

Ask a friend to bring their dog with them. You and your Chihuahua can stand far away.

When your pup sees the other dog from afar, give them treats.

As soon as your friend and their dog are out of sight, stop the treat giving.

Do this again the next day and in the coming days. Slowly get near to the other dog.

Until your Chihuahua gets used to the presence of the bigger dog.

You can also try this with other triggers such as visitors, children in the park, or people riding bikes.

The first step is always to expose them at a far distance. Prepare your treats so they’ll associate it as a positive experience.

Through patience and consistency, your Chihuahua will refrain from barking in no time.

#12: Be positive

Do you feel happy when you get an incentive from work for a good performance?

Or do you remember getting a star in kindergarten for completing an activity?

Whatever it is, positive reinforcement encourages us to do better.

It’s the same for our canine friends. If you want to end excessive barking, positivity is a must.

Negative words can only encourage them to bark more.

Avoid hurling words such as, “Bad dog!” They may think you’re barking with them.

The best thing to do is encourage positive behavior with treats and praises.

Your calm and quiet response is also a way to stay positive.

Yelling, “Stop it!” will only make the barking worse. 

When they see you calm and collected, they’ll eventually follow.

In challenges like training your dog to stop barking, positivity is the answer.

Research says positive reinforcement is the most popular and effective type of training.

#13: Tap a professional trainer

When all else fails, dial a professional trainer.

The learning abilities of our furry friends are much like small children.

Obedience classes are common nowadays. Try enrolling your Chihuahua if the barking persists.

A dog trainer is also equipped with knowledge and skills on how to handle your furry pal properly.

There are a lot of fur parents in dog obedience classes. You can exchange tips and share stories to encourage one another.

It’s also a great way for your Chihuahua to meet other dogs.

Dog classes usually take 1-2 weeks depending on your pup’s response.

Other fur parents allow their dogs to take regular classes for obedience and socialization.

When training is done, your dog trainer will give you tips and instructions on how to continue it at home.

Make sure to follow through with what your Chihuahua has learned. 

As we always say, consistency is key!