Quiet Small Dog Breeds – Yes They Exist!

by Sarah | Last Updated: October 1, 2018

Quiet small dog breeds? For most of us, it’s hard to imagine those words in the same sentence, let alone actually finding a dog that fits the bill. They do exist, though!Quiet Small Dog Breeds

If you’re looking for a dog that never barks, you’re likely going to be disappointed. Dogs naturally bark for many reasons. Whether it’s alerting us to danger, out of fear, letting us know they need to go out or come in – even just in play, dogs are known for vocalizing. Truth be told, we wouldn’t want dogs to stop barking completely. Barking is part of what makes dogs, well, dogs.

I’m sure we’ve all heard stories about how small dogs are the worst culprits of excessive barking. That isn’t necessarily so. Sure, there are some small breeds that are more “talkative” than others, but there are others that are actually known for having a laid back temperament and being quiet small dog breeds.

If you’re looking for a quiet small dog breed, this list should give you several good choices.

Basenji – Quietest of the Small Dogs that Don’t Bark

Basenji – Quietest of the Small Dogs that Don’t Bark

The Basenji is likely to makes everyone’s top choice for a quiet small dog breed. Basenji’s are a type of hunting dog that originally hailed from Africa.

They aren’t lap dogs, but you can expect a Basenji to only get to about 24 pounds, on average, once full grown.

Basenjis are so quiet, they are actually known as “barkless” dogs. Like I said before, a dog that doesn’t bark doesn’t truly exist, but when Basenjis bark they tend to let out a single yip and leave it at that.


Bichon Frise - Lap dogs that don't bark

Bichon Frise – Small Dogs that are Quiet

Bichon Frises are pretty low key dogs for the most part and, typically, only bark to alert you of something.

My Toby is half Bichon and while I can’t say he’s perfectly quiet, he is a really mellow little guy and only really barks at strange noises (which unfortunately does include the doorbell ringing!). Overall, though, I was pleasantly surprised at the lack of barkiness.  When I got a small dog, excessive barking was something I worried about.

Bichon Frises are very small, usually only 10 or 11 pounds as adults. Certainly lap dog material. They’re friendly, smart and playful dogs that can live up to 15 years.

Japanese Chin - lap dogs that don't bark

Japanese Chins – Lap Dogs that Don’t Bark

Japanese Chins are another relatively quiet dog. Chins tend to have a laid back and calm nature about them.

As adults, average weight can vary from just a few pounds to around 15.  Generally speaking, they are small enough to be considered toy dogs or lap dogs.

Chins are incredibly smart little canines and make great apartment pets due to their small size and medium activity level. Does that mean they don’t need exercise? No. They love a good romp in the park as much as the next dog, a daily walk and some playtime is always in order.

Photo By Tom Mooring via Wikimedia Commons (Flickr: Anxious.) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)],

French Bulldog - calm small dog breeds

French Bulldog – Calm Small Dog Breeds

French bulldogs are a little bit bigger than the other dogs so far on our list, but at a max of around 28 pounds, they’re still quiet small by most standards.

Generally quiet and calm by nature, french bulldogs love their people time and it’s important to note that this breed can suffer easily from separation anxiety.

These dogs tend to captivate their owners with their silly, mischievous behavior. Overall they’re good natured and relatively easy to train.

One interesting thing to note about these furry friends is that they can’t swim. So, if diving with your doggie is on your to-do list, the Frenchie may not be the best choice for you.

Havanese - Small quiet dogs

Havanese – Quiet Small Dog Breeds

With their beautiful, silky hair and playful, friendly temperament, Havanese are a popular dog among many. They are quiet small dogs that are super easy to love and care for.

Havanese are relatively quiet dogs and don’t require a ton of exercise. They prefer playtime with their people (don’t tell them it’s a great way to get them some exercise).

This breed is also a true lap dog, topping out at about 11 or 12 pounds at adulthood.  If you have kids or are a first time dog owner, this breed will make a perfect pet for you; they are easy to handle and train and incredibly friendly.

Which of the Quiet Small Dog Breeds is Best for You?

You’ll want to consider this question very carefully, as choosing a dog has to be about more than their bark. Consider the time you have to devote to a dog. How large of an area do you have? Even with a small dog, some breeds are incredibly energetic and need lots of exercise to be happy. Do you need a non-shedding or hypoallergenic dog?

These are just some of the many, many questions you’ll want to ask yourself when you’re looking for the perfect quiet small dog breed for you.