DO SHIH TZU BARK A LOT- Common causes & training


Do Shih Tzu bark a lot? Well, yes they do. The Shih Tzu is a little, well-built dog with a sturdy physique. In size, it is 8 and 12 inches tall and weighs 10 to 17 pounds. Its body length is mostly longer than the dogs’ height and is physically equal, not very short nor too big in size, but still, it remains a cute small dog. It walks with easy, fluent steps, exhibiting good drive and reach, and holding its head and tail high, revealing its old royal bloodlines.

If you are looking for a cute and friendly pet, a Shih Tzu is a wonderful choice. They are energetic and smart, but they occasionally feel that they are in charge of humans, which can result in aggressive shouting. You might be wondering do Shih Tzus bark a lot? To be honest, it is dependent on the dog.


Do Shih Tzus Dogs bark a lot? 

When talking about Barking, the Shih Tzu, like other breeds, does not have many problematic behaviors, although their barking can sound out of control. The Shih Tzu is a species of dog that growls a lot. When walking, they seem to bark at people and other dogs passing by the window or out in the distance.

Why do Maltese Shih Tzu bark a lot?

Shih Tzus are energetic, attentive guard dogs. The majority of them believe it is their sworn responsibility to maintain the property secured from invaders. When your dog barks, it is usually to warn you of perceived danger or threat. Barking is a way by which it talks, so you can’t stop them because it’s their thing. In fact, you should not expect them to fully abandon it, even if you can persuade them to reduce it. Ideally, it would be best if you began educating your Shih Tzu to stop barking excessively as soon as they enter the house. Don’t worry if you’ve had your furry pet for a while. There is still a reason for hope.

Are Shih Tzus really barkers?

Shih Tzu- do they bark a lot? Well, Shih Tzus are known for barking at strangers. They may bark loudly, but they are still very kind and loyal. If you have had a Shih Tzu for a while, you will probably be aware of how loud and violent they can be at times. Aside from it, they do not normally bark with any hate in their heart. Shih Tzus are active dogs who howl at little toys and other things. If you are wondering if these dogs make decent pets, then the answer is yes, why not. Shih Tzus can be one of the most loyal and friendly dogs you will ever see once you get one for yourself. They return the favor by being responsible and committed to you after proper training and some practice.

Most common causes a Shih Tzu dog Barks

While there are numerous causes and barking can happen at any moment of day or night, there are four main reasons why a Shih Tzu puppy or adult dog would bark obnoxiously:

  • To attract your attention (Look at them or play with them)
  • As a warning (If they sense danger, i.e when someone rings a doorbell and runs away)
  • As a precaution (Keep away if they sense any danger)
  • Mild to extreme discomfort (If they are feeling bored, lonely, or having emotional or physical issues)

Learn about your Shih Tzus barking habits

Take some effort to get to know your Shih Tzu’s barking patterns, such as when they bark and when they do not really so that you can educate them to stop. If you notice your Shih Tzu is barking at people or even other animals, they are likely possessive.

Background sounds might also provoke barking. It can also be triggered by several reasons like other dogs barking, babies screaming or crying, or people who walk by your house.

Your Shih Tzu might even bark due to health problems. If they are not feeling well, they may become violent if someone tries to pet or pick them up, specifically a young child. They bark as a sign of warning to the person in front of them to head back. So, if your Shih Tzu was never a yeller but has unexpectedly begun to bark, especially when random people come in contact with them, you should take them to your doctor to make sure that they are well and that a medical issue was not the cause of the issue.

Separation anxiety is also a challenge for Shih Tzus. This can cause your dog to bark when both you are away and when you are at home. Separation anxiety is a major problem that deserves attention.

If you cannot understand, your dog might become so irritated and upset that they cause damage to the property and, in one of the worst scenarios, harm themselves. Your Shih Tzu sometimes would bark to have your attention at times. They know that barking is the only way that will get them anything. Take into account that dogs bark for a particular reason or purpose, and people must be aware of that issue.


Training Shih Tzu for barking while going on a walk

Shih Tzu dogs mostly growl at other dogs when they see them during a walk or closer to them. While it may seem aggressive, some Shih Tzu behave in such a manner around significantly larger dogs. Squirrels, birds, passing cars, and other outdoor factors may trigger them to bark.

After all, it’s uncommon for a dog to ignore other animals or large moving objects completely. However, issues come up when a Shih Tzu overreacts by moving for the triggers or by barking violently as if threatening them. The aim is not just to teach your Shih Tzu to avoid reacting entirely because this is unrealistic, but to train him to preserve some self-control.

You will need the following items:

  • The benefits of training are numerous.
  • Treat pouch for training (optional)
  • The use of a harness
  • A leash that can be extended


  1. Put your Shih Tzu in a heeling posture with a harness and extendable leash. You will keep your tiny one to your immediate left, no further than the length of your foot in front of you.
  2. Connect the harnesses to the leash. Hold the leash handle in your right hand, cross your body with the rope, and grip it at your left hip. And the harness makes it possible to do so without putting any pressure or stress on your dog’s neck.
  3. To begin, pick a walking route that is free from distractions. It will be tough for your Shih Tzu to understand the new rules if there are too many distractions at first. You can proceed to a crowded road if they have perfected not barking at a few dogs or other outdoor distractions.
  4. Do not react when your Shih Tzu growls. It is natural to seize up or stop functioning. However, the idea is to demonstrate to your Shih Tzu that barking has no result. The cause is so tiny that you, their alpha boss, are immune to it. You will be able to keep your dog moving at a faster pace because of the harness and heeling position.
  5. Dogs will stop Barking naturally as soon as you move away from the cause. The idea is to reward them for being calm, irrespective of whether they put out any effort. Slow down your pace as soon as the barking ends and show appreciation while palming a bonus snack.
  6. When your Shih Tzu isn’t barking, praise and reward him at random intervals, just as you did in the previous step. With barking disregarded and periods of no barking rewarded over time, a dog learns to choose the more advantageous of the two possibilities.
  7. When you think your Shih Tzu has figured it out, it’s time to move on to a busier path. Just remember that every dog has their own set of restrictions, and a walking path with a lot of cars, dogs, and other triggers may be too much for them; choose another spot.

Training for barking at guests:

Aggressive activity, which is a strong doggy instinct, is nearly always to fault. When someone outside the family comes or enters the house, it’s foolish to expect a dog that feels the instinct to protect its home to remain completely quiet.

however, you can teach your Shih Tzu that less barking is acceptable. constant barking on guests is not necessary.

You’ll need the following items:

  • Training treats or snacks
  • Treat pouch for training
  • The use of a harness
  • An extendable rope or a short six-foot leash
  • Assistants (friends and close family members who can act as guests)
  • A device that rectifies bad behaviors
  • your Shih Tzu should understand the command ‘sit.’


  1. Assign a helper to act as the visitor, following your instructions for entering the house and interacting with your Shih Tzu.
  2. Make sure to keep your Shih Tzu in harness 10 to 17 feet away from the main door. Keep the door unlocked and training treats with you. Bring your dog near you before the doorbell will ring. Make it sit, connect the rope and order it to keep sitting.
  3. Say ‘Come in’ and let the assistant enter the house.
  4. Your Shih Tzu will definitely bark. Speak ‘Okay’ strongly after it barks and pass a training goodie as a treat. This shows that you appreciate their alarming behavior as the leader.
  5. Allow your assistant to take it step by step ahead. If your Shih Tzu barks, say a loud ‘No’ following a strong and long ‘Shhhhh.’ If they still refuse to follow, use the Behavior corrector device by pressing the button for a short second. Appreciate and give training reward goodie when he stops the barking temporarily. Your assistant is now completely inside the house while you are doing this. Make them sit with as it is a calm gesture. It will make your dog feel calm and relaxed in the presence of the outsider.
  6. Each bark is met because of a certain reason so a training treat can be the best thing to calm him down.
  7. Any jumping or other violent and aggressive attitudes can be avoided when your dog sees you for a short time. This should last for 5 minutes after they exhibit signs of being irritated by it. They are then given a chance to prove themselves—another time-out for aggressive barking.
  8. If your Shih Tzu gets friendly with your guests, you can help them interact by tossing a small ball to play a little game to show that they can easily get along with your guests or visitors.

Training for strange and sudden Barking at Home 

Continuous barking at home can be caused by certain factors, some of which will make you amazed yet shocked at the same time. Barking can also be caused by human activity passing by the house or internal noises such as the TV or kids running around, among many other things.

For this training, you will need these things:

  • Training treats
  • Treat training pouch (optional)
  • Behavior correcting device for your dog
  • A time-out area ( a small gated-off area)
  • Your Shih Tzu should understand the command ‘sit’.


  1. Prepare training treats in a training treat pouch that you can clip to your belt or carry in your purse. Keep the behavior controlling device nearby (if your house is very big, you will need more than one device technically placed).
  2. The idea will be to answer excessive barking when you see it (since dogs have to be vocal to some degree). This will be a series of fast, repeated barks lasting between 20 and 40 seconds. Interrupt and refocus.
  3. How to interrupt: A loud and strong clap will help you for this purpose. If it doesn’t work, try using the behavior corrector device.
  4. How to refocus: Once the dog stops barking and it becomes attentive towards you you can follow some special instructions. play a simple game with a ball or some entertaining toy with them.
  5. If your Shih Tzu stays silent after 30 to 60 seconds, no matter what you select as the new focus, applaud him and give him a learning treat.

At Which Age Does a Shih Tzu dog Starts Barking?

A Shih Tzu will normally start to bark at the age of three to four weeks. There was some grunting before that, but no barking.

Barking issues can be avoided with proper training from the start, even when your Shih Tzu is a puppy. You should contact your doctor to see which training plan is suitable for the situation.

Some pre-training advice: 

Here are some of the training tips you need to know about to avoid questions like do Shih Tzu dogs bark a lot?. Let’s dive into the following tips and advice.

  • Make sure the energy is released in a healthier way.

Arrange a daily exercise routine for your Shih Tzu, including a 20-50 minute walk daily. It is also preferred to play a simple ball-throwing game for a healthy cardiac exercise.

  • Make sure there is ample mental stimulation.

Puzzle games, hide-and-seek, going out to explore new locations, and command training are all examples of activities you may do with your dog. This includes things like playing with treat-release toys and interactive toys that a dog can perform independently.

  • Keep the house quiet and relaxed.

Blaring TVs or music, children mocking a dog, plenty of foot traffic, or other chaotic sensations will make a dog revved up and bark. If you want your Shih Tzu to stay quiet, you’ll need to keep the house peaceful as well.

  • Create an identity for yourself as his owner.

dogs listen to their owners as they are very loyal. if your Shih Tzu does not obey you, you need to work on yourself. Ordering a ‘sit’ before any food is served, including meals and snacks, is one of the most effective ways to take your place as a leader. Put the dog’s bowl down and offer the treat.


The final words:

It is no doubt that Shih Tzus are very cute little dogs. Well, the question here is do Shih Tzu- bark a lot? At first sight, you won’t believe that they are so noisy and loud. But in reality, Shih Tzus bark a lot and very aggressively and loudly. They continue barking at a specific thing for quite a long time if they feel the need for it.

Barking can be both negative and positive based on a person’s perspective. Some people get used to loud barks, while some quickly get irritated by them. Dogs bark because it is the only way by which they can communicate, and they can be trained to bark less as well. So if you are wishing to buy yourself a Shih Tzu dog, then get ready for some loud and continuous barks for the rest of your life.

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