Maltese is a rather small breed of dog. And small dog breeds are often said to be barkers. Especially if you are thinking about keeping a Maltese in an apartment, frequent barking could become a problem. But do Maltese bark that much at all?
Maltese usually don’t bark very much. While they are very watchful dogs, they can also be trained very well. However, without the necessary training, Maltese can become barkers. Therefore, it is important that you train your Maltese properly from puppyhood.
So Maltese generally don’t bark that much but can become yappers if you let them. So let’s take another look at whether Maltese bark a lot and in what situations they bark a lot.
We will also look at how to teach your Maltese not to bark so much and how to interrupt a barking situation in your Maltese.
Do Maltese Bark A Lot?
Maltese are no dogs that bark a lot. However, there are definitely situations that can tempt a Maltese to bark.
Before you get a Maltese, you should know that this breed needs a relatively large amount of activity. Maltese are very active and playful dogs and are quite affectionate towards their owners.
Think about whether you and your family can spend the time to care for a Maltese sufficiently. If you have children, this can be an advantage. Maltese are very fond of children and are happy to have active and lively playmates as well.
The most important thing with Maltese and barking is training. Maltese are relatively easy to train as they are very intelligent and inquisitive dogs. Learning simple commands is not a problem for Maltese puppies.
But it is also important to know in which situations Maltese sometimes bark. So you can adjust to it and actively prevent these situations.
In addition to training, it is also important to know ways to stop your Maltese’s barking if he ever has a barking attack. In addition to entertainment and exercise, distraction is an important tool here.
Which Situations Cause Maltese To Bark A Lot?
There are several situations in which Maltese may be prone to uncontrolled barking. But the good news is that you can control, prevent or interrupt these situations.
To do this, however, it is first important to know these situations. Only then will you know the trigger of a barking attack and be able to react accordingly.
Maltese are particularly prone to barking in the following situations:
- Boredom: A bored Maltese is a barking Maltese. Maltese are real little whirlwinds. They are extremely playful and lively. However, when they are bored, they may start barking.
- Frustration: Barking is a way for Maltese to communicate. If they want something, but it is not available for them, they can make themselves known by barking. Whether it’s a toy they can’t reach or the lunch they think is overdue.
- Anxiety or stress: When a Maltese feels stress, he will bark to relieve the tension. And also when a Maltese feels anxious, it is his natural reaction to bark.
- Lack of attention: Maltese are very affectionate dogs that want to interact a lot with their owners. If they don’t get the attention they want, they can make themselves known by barking intensely. It can also happen that your Maltese jumps on you.
- People: Maltese are very alert dogs despite their small size and cute appearance. They will warn you by barking if there is an intruder in your house. However, they can also start barking when the mailman comes or just your visitor is at the door.
These are all reasonable reasons to bark. At least from the point of view of your Maltese. For you as the owner, it can still be frustrating if your Maltese barks too often.
Fortunately, however, you are not helpless in the face of this. You can do something about the barking.
However, we must distinguish between short-term and long-term measures. Short-term measures serve to interrupt the current barking.
Long-term measures are intended to fundamentally change the barking behavior of your Maltese. The only long-term measure that makes sense is training.
Training, in this case, is not a two-hour evening course, after which the problem is solved for all time. To train your Maltese to stop barking means to guide him again and again in the right direction by positive reinforcement in the situations in which he barks.
We will take a closer look at what we mean by this now.
How To Teach Your Maltese Not To Bark
There are Maltese dogs that tend to bark. If your Maltese is always barking at the neighbors, for example, at the fence, this is not the circumstance in which you should confirm him for it.
Take a favorite toy of your Maltese and play hilariously with it without involving your Maltese. Entice him with it without the Maltese getting the toy.
Most Maltese dogs will bark out of frustration within a short time. Acknowledge the Maltese immediately and preferably with the toy, because that is what your Maltese wants most at the moment. While doing this, say the command “Speak!”.
Alternatively, take a treat and let your Maltese dog sit. The Maltese dog will also do a good “Sit” and of course, thinks that the food is actually due to him now.
However, you do not give it to the Maltese, but tell him “Speak!” several times in a row. Drive him really crazy. Eventually, the Maltese dog will bark and immediately get his treat.
If the Maltese still doesn’t understand what to do, ask a helper to ring the front doorbell. If the Maltese dog barks now tell him “Speak!” several times in a row. Then he immediately gets his treat.
While doing this, keep the dog on a leash! Do not rush to the front door, stay nicely where you are.
If this works at some point, you have successfully taught your Maltese the command “Speak!”. He will now bark on command.
In order not to train your Maltese to be a barker, you must stop any unwanted barking.
Making the Maltese understand that we expect him to stop barking can sometimes be done by teaching the Maltese to bark on command. This may sound surprising, but it makes sense.
If you practice this, after a few days already the signal word “Speak!” will be enough to make the Maltese bark.
Next, teach your Maltese the command “Quiet!”. Have the Maltese sit in front of you so that he has the treat in your hand in front of his nose. Tell him “Quiet!”
The Maltese will try to please you by barking. Just repeat calmly and persistently, “No! Quiet!”. Sometimes it helps if you whisper while doing this.
Your Maltese dog will soon start whimpering softly, simply to ask you “What do you want me to do?”. Great! Give him the treat right away.
Practice this diligently for a few days to solidify it. When your Maltese is already barking on command and then has mastered the “Quiet!” command, you can move on to the third step.
Here you use a combination of the commands your Maltese already knows. Tell him “Sit! Good boy… Speak!” Now your Maltese should bark, but doesn’t get a treat yet.
Now tell him “Quiet!” Give your Maltese the treat when he has done everything correctly. Now you only hear his smacking. Your Maltese learns that he can’t bark and eat treats at the same time. So he is quiet.
And now you have to keep practicing, practicing, and practicing! Practice until your Maltese finally understands what the command “Quiet!” means.
How To Calm Down Your Maltese In A Barking Situation
Even if you put a lot of effort into training your Maltese, there may still be situations when he barks. However, there are some methods you can use to stop barking in such situations.
In addition, there are also general behaviors that will help you prevent your Maltese from becoming a yapper. So how can you stop your Maltese from barking?
- Provide toys: Since the Maltese is a playful dog breed, introducing toys will get his attention. When your Maltese barks, you can quickly and easily distract him with his favorite toy.
- Introduce calming treats: Using Maltese dog food with some calming nutrients will help you control the dog’s barking. For example, NaturVet Quiet Moments* will make your Maltese less tense and more controllable. It will help your Maltese to calm down.
- Provide a cozy resting place: Just like us humans, Maltese love a warm and cozy place to rest. If your Maltese refuses to calm down, take him to his comfortable padded bed. You will see how he calms down.
- Use natural oils: When or after you bathe your Maltese, apply natural oils to him. Oils like lavender essential oil* will reduce your Maltese’s stress level. Just as you would love to smell good and apply calming oils to your body, so it is with your Maltese.
- Use training: We have already talked in detail about training. But since this is such an important point, it should not be missing from this list. Training is the key to a well-mannered and obedient Maltese. Be sure to teach him the commands “Sit!”, “Bark!” and “Quiet!”.
- Take your Maltese for a walk: Take your Maltese out for a walk early in the morning and in the evening. Walks generally help to dissipate your Maltese’s energy, making him tired and craving sleep or rest. They are also important to provide exercise for your Maltese.
- Stimulate your Maltese mentally: Since Maltese dogs are quite intelligent and mentally active, they need mental stimulation. For stimulation, you can take them for a walk where they can observe things along the way and refresh their minds. Another useful option is to spend a reasonable amount of time playing with your Maltese. This will calm his nerves and give him enough time to regenerate, so he won’t bark anymore.
Maltese is not a dog breed that barks a lot. At least as long as you train your Maltese puppy properly.
Maltese are very intelligent and learn new commands easily. You will not find it difficult to teach your Maltese when to bark and when not to bark.
Also, make sure that you avoid, if possible, situations where Maltese usually tend to bark. If possible, your Maltese should not be bored or experience frustrating or stressful situations.
It is also important that you socialize your Maltese well. This will help him learn to get along with strange people or other pets.
If you take the tips in this article to heart, you will have a well-behaved and decent Maltese that will bring you a lot of joy.