Do Bichon Frises Bark a Lot?

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Written By Thomas Smith

If you’re considering getting a Bichon Frise, you’re likely wondering whether Bichon Frises bark a lot. Especially if you have neighbors nearby, barking is an important thing to consider when choosing a dog breed.

Most Bichon Frises don’t bark a lot, and some Bichons rarely bark at all. Because they are companion dogs, though, Bichons often bark when a person arrives or leaves or when they want their owner’s attention.

Let’s take a closer look at Bichon Frises and their barking habits.

Bichons Bark for their People

Unlike hunting dogs who might bark at every passing bird, or hounds that are bread to bray, Bichon Frises rarely bark idly. They usually spend most of their time sleeping quietly. 

That said, Bichon Frises are companion dogs, and they love people. They’ll often bark excitedly when you arrive at the door, or even when a delivery person arrives with a package. When guests come over for dinner, my dogs mob them at the door as if they’re an arriving king or dignitary.

Bichons can also bark when you leave the house. Barking due to separation anxiety can be common with some Bichon Frises. My dog Jack barked a lot due to separation anxiety when he was a puppy. We eventually got a trainer who helped him with his anxiety. Having more than one Bichon can help with this, too.

Bichons will also bark:

  • To get your attention if you’re not focusing on them.
  • To ask for help with something, such as if they need more water in their bowl.
  • To get you to take them outside

Are Bichons known for barking?

In general, Bichon Frises aren’t known for barking. Most people think of them as a quiet breed that only barks for specific purposes, not as a dog breed that barks continuously or for no reason.

However, Bichons also have strong personalities, and every dog is different. Some individual Bichon Frises love to bark, and some Bichons only bring out their bark on special occasions.

My dog Max had a low, deep bark that was impressive, but he’d only bark in a few situations. It was also special to hear his voice!

Are Bichons yappy?

Bichon Frises are not yappy dogs. When they do bark, their barks can be surprisingly low for dogs of their size. They also bark with purpose and don’t tend to yap for no reason.

This makes Bichon Frises’ barking more tolerable for many people than the barking of other small dogs. Although Bichons can be loud when they want to, they usually bark for an actual purpose, and rarely bark out of boredom or to annoy their owners. If you solve their problem (by getting them more food, letting them outside, etc.) they’ll usually stop barking.

Why Does My Bichon Growl at Me?

Bichons are rarely aggressive and almost never growl. I’ve had Bichons for years, and I’ve only ever heard them growl at strange objects, like a balloon that has gone loose in the house or a vacuum cleaner. Aggressive growling almost never happens.

Your Bichon Frise might growl at a strange object

That said, if your Bichon is hurt or feeling sick, they might growl. Some Bichons also growl for affection or play. If your Bichon is growling but exhibiting signs of playfulness, they might just be inviting you to a game.

For example, see if they are :

  • Wagging their tail
  • Putting their front paws out and down in the “downward dog” position
  • Holding a ball or other toy

These behaviors are all suggestive of a Bichon who is growling as part of a game. Still, be careful around any animal who is growling, just in case it’s a sign of aggression.

How do I stop my Bichon Frise from barking?

Proper training is the best way to stop your Bichon Frise from barking.

First, identify the reason for their barking. If they are barking to go outside or because they are out of water, this is a good behavior that you should encourage. See if solving their immediate needs for food, water, or a potty break address the barking issue.

Remember, too, that Bichons are good guard dogs. They’ll probably never stop barking when a stranger comes to the door. My dogs Jack and Lance bark every time a family member returns home, as if they’ve never seen us before!

If your dog is barking as a nuisance or to get attention, though, you can try several approaches.

  • Teach them the Speak command as well as the Quiet command. They’ll love being told when they’re allowed to bark, and you can use the Quiet command to end the barking when you need to.
  • Take your Bichon to the vet to make sure they’re not in pain. Barking can be a sign of other health issues.
  • Many Bichons bark due to separation anxiety. Leaving them with a toy or trying a dog anxiety shirt can help. Having more than one Bichon helps a lot, too. My dog Jack used to bark a lot more before Max moved in with him.
  • Practice leaving and entering the house, and reward your Bichon when they’re quiet.

Again, Jack used to bark all the time when I would leave the house. With training and a lot of practice, the behavior stopped and he now primarily barks when someone arrives at the door or leaves.


Bichons aren’t noisy or yappy, but they will bark to get your attention or to indicate when they need something. If your Bichon’s barking is excessive, proper training can help to eliminate the barking problem.

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