Want a dog that’s not constantly barking or howling? Whether you live in an apartment or are part of a community with strict noise ordinances, there are plenty of reasons to seek quieter breeds. But you’ll quickly find that finding a dog that doesn’t make a ton of noise isn’t easy.
These animals are naturally vocal, using everything from whines to yips to communicate their needs. But of course, vocalization habits can vary wildly from breed to breed. Some dogs will howl into the night, while others prefer to communicate in other ways. The dogs that fit into the latter category are the ones you want.
Ready to learn more about the pups? Here’s a collection of some of the quietest dog breeds around.
Basenjis are a special kind of dog. They’re part of the hound family and helm from Central Africa. Originally bred to hunt lions, these dogs are surprisingly intelligent.
But they lack one traditional canine ability: Barking! It’s not that Basenjis don’t ever vocalize. They do–it’s just rare!
Rather than barking, Basenjis typically make a yodel-like noise. Even then, that vocalization is rare. They’re the perfect apartment for apart-dwellers. Not only are they quiet, but these dogs are pretty small, too. Most weigh around 25 pounds and get up to 17 inches tall at most.
2. French Bulldog
These pups are small, feisty, and full of personality. They have that signature Bulldog face, but their stature is much smaller, removing any ounce of intimidation. The breed is quite popular among families, and they’re renowned for their playfulness. There are many different variations of the french bulldog breed, all of which are quiet dogs.
French Bulldogs are excellent family dogs and do well in apartments and small spaces. They don’t require a ton of exercise. Even at their most excited, barks and whines are a rarity.
3. Bouvier des Flandres
Here’s a lesser-known dog breed worth considering. The Bouviers des Flandres is a herding dog that initially comes from Belgium. It’s a large breed that can weigh up to 96 pounds and stand tall at 27 inches. So, they’re not for the faint of heart.
But the most appealing characteristic of this fluffy dog is its unlikeliness to bark. Unfortunately, some dogs suffer from a genetic condition that paralyzes the larynx. That may be why these dogs bark so infrequently, but they’re a joy to have nonetheless.
Believe it or not, Greyhounds are relatively quiet! These dogs are super athletic and require a significant amount of exercise. A well-trained Greyhound can run at top speeds of around 45 miles per hour. It’s no wonder they use them for dog races!
At home, a Greyhound can be a loving member of the family. A Greyhound can do well in most environments as long as it fulfills its exercise needs.
The Whippet is a medium-sized dog breed known for its impressive discipline. With proper training, Whippets can be some of the most well-mannered dogs around. They don’t require much attention and can spend most of their days lounging around and finding ways to stay entertained.
They’re also very docile. The trainability and even-tempered attitude make these dogs ideal for quiet environments. Barking is rare; you can efficiently train it out of the dog for an even more peaceful living arrangement.
6. Shiba Inu
The Internet’s most popular dog breed is a surprising delight to be around. They’re spitz-type dogs that fare well in most living arrangements. They’re natural hunters, so exercise is a must.
But high intelligence makes the breed easy to train. Pair that with fun personalities, and you have an excellent canine companion. For the most part, Shiba Inus are quiet. They occasionally do a scream-like howl, but those instances are few and far between.
Don’t let these behemoths fool you. Akitas are more intelligent than their somewhat goofy appearance leads many to believe. They have high intelligence levels, making them a challenge for novice dog owners. Akitas require strict training to keep in line. Otherwise, their independent streak can lead to some problems.
The good news is that these dogs are quiet. Known as “Silent Hunters” in Japan, they rarely make noise.
8. Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier
Like other Terriers, the Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier was originally a farm dog. It’s an intelligent breed with a long history of working. While modern Soft-Coated Wheaten Terriers are usually nothing more than family companions, much of those old mental and physical needs remain.
These dogs are bundles of energy, and there’s no better way to see that than with a greeting. Instead of barking at strangers and visitors, the Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier will enthusiastically jump onto people to make them feel welcome!
9. Irish Setter
Talk about gorgeous! The Irish Setter is a beautiful dog breed covered in wavy red hair. The animals can be a bit high maintenance. That coat doesn’t take care of itself. Failure to keep grooming up can result in some painful mats and tangles.
But Irish Setters are a joy to care for if you put in the work. Not only are they quiet, but these dogs are as sweet as can be.
10. Bernese Mountain Dog
Here’s another monster of a dog breed. The Bernese Mountain Dog can tip the scales at more than 100 pounds. But even with their enormous size, these dogs are nothing more than gentle giants. They’re loving, loyal, and fun to play with regularly. Most importantly, they’re quiet.
While even-keeled with everyone in the family, Bernese Mountain Dogs tend to form super-strong bonds with a single person. As a result, you can develop a relationship that keeps you attached at the hip!
11. English Bulldog
The English Bulldog has a unique reputation. The dogs aren’t very active, don’t do much beyond laying around, and are lovable goofballs! One of the reasons why they are so quiet is because they can’t be bothered to start barking. It happens occasionally, but most would instead observe in silence.
The English Bulldog may be the perfect couch companion if you’re not keen on exercising several hours a day. They still need some exercise, but this dog is the epitome of low maintenance.
12. Shih Tzu
Prefer a small lap dog? Small breeds are known for being constant barkers and ankle biters. But not all breeds are that way.
Take, for example, the Shih Tzu. This dog initially belonged to Chinese royalty. They are surprisingly calm and don’t spend a lot of time barking. The breed can be playful and fun, but they’re also ideal for those wanting a chill pet that can easily rest in their bag or arm.
13. Great Dane
Great Danes are massive dogs with a heart of gold. They can weigh well over 100 pounds and stand almost three feet tall at the whithers. But once again, appearances can be deceiving.
Despite how intimidating Great Danes look, they’re pretty relaxed and loving. Barking is a rare occurrence. If they do bark, it’s loud and strong–perfect for intimidating would-be intruders. Fortunately, Great Danes don’t resort to barking unless necessary.
14. Australian Cattle Dog
This medium-sized dog breed is a natural-born livestock herder. Even today, many farmers use these dogs to keep cattle in check.
When working, you might hear some high-pitched barks here and there. Those sounds are strategic and can help make herding a ton of livestock much easier.
Fortunately, the Australian Cattle Dog only barks when it needs to. At home, it’s a quiet breed that wants nothing more than to play, relax, and cuddle!
15. Shar Pei
The Shar Pei is another dog that belonged to Chinese royalty. It’s a beautiful breed known for its sagging skin and intense folds.
The breed is an excellent companion. While they don’t look super intimidating, they’re surprisingly good guard dogs. They stand watch and use their vocalizations as a warning. Barks are rare, so you know something is up when they occur!
Outside of the protective behavior, Shar Peis are relaxed and easygoing. Loyal to a fault, these dogs make fantastic companions in any environment.
The Borzoi looks like a long-haired Greyhound and has the physical prowess to match. These dogs are powerful runners that can sprint at breakneck speeds. As you can imagine, they require a lot of exercise time.
If you have the exercise habits to match, it can be a match made in heaven. Borzoi dogs are some of the most peaceful around. They’re docile around strangers, don’t make a ton of noise, and can be just as loving as the best lapdogs!
Also known as the Persian Greyhound, the Saluki is a natural beauty. It has silky smooth hair, a lean body, and a couple of tuffs of long hair on the ears for a distinct look.
Overall, Saluki dogs can be reserved. They’re not keen on being around strangers and prefer to sit quietly on their own. Barking is rare, but it can occur. Training is vital if quietness is a top priority.
Teaching a Saluki not to bark for no reason at a young age is key to a low-key existence as an adult.
These quiet dogs can be an excellent choice no matter your living situation. These dogs can fit the bill for apartment-dwellers and people who can’t stand incessant barking.
While these breeds have a reputation for being quiet, there are no guarantees. Every canine is different, and their personality is largely a product of their environment and upbringing. Fortunately, training can keep barking to a minimum, allowing you to peacefully coexist with your canine companion.