How to Train a Westie Not to Bark: Our Tried and Tested Ways

Can’t figure out how to train a westie not to bark? 

Well, it’s safe to say that you’re not the only one since these adorable little furry companions aren’t exactly known for being quiet. 

Westies are as vocal as terriers come and will bark when they’re mad, happy, or bored.

So, how do you manage this aspect of the westie personality?

How to Train a Westie Not to Bark

Of course, we don’t want our westies to stop barking completely! 

We love them as they are and simply want to manage the nuisance barking to get some rest. 

Here are some of the things we did to train Sami not to bark excessively:

1. Find out the Reason Behind the Barking 

There are plenty of reasons for your westie’s excessive barking, and, in almost all of those situations, he or she is trying to tell you something. 

You likely know your animals enough to have a hunch about what they’re trying to tell you. 

Make sure to address the situation quickly so that you can get them to calm down.

Terriers are generally active breeds, and the West Highland White Terrier is no different. 

They usually have fairly high exercise requirements and will need to be taken out for walks a couple of times a week. 

Giving these pooches a regular dose of physical activity is a great way to get them to calm down.

2. Stay Calm

Making noise or yelling is not a great way to get your westies to stop barking. 

We understand that some pet owners have the natural tendency to scold or get angry at their pets whenever they make too much noise, but that is never the right way to approach the situation. 

Instead, what you want to do is stay calm.

Remember that your terrier has amplified hearing, so when you raise your voice at them, they’re going to bark even more in a desperate attempt to get you to stop being angry. 

You want to react to the excessive barking in a non-aggressive verbal and physical manner. 

In this way, you should be able to get your dogs to dial down on the barking.

3. Drain Their Energy

Westies usually have a lot of energy to spare—why else would they be playing with you and your other pets all the time? 

Sometimes, when your dogs bark a lot, the only way to get them to quiet down is to make them tired.

The great thing about making westies tired is that it’s always a good solution. 

Take note that westies are a fairly active breed that requires regular exercise, so taking them on an afternoon run around the park or the neighborhood is always a good decision. 

In this way, not only will you get them to stop barking, but you can also provide their exercise needs.

4. Never Use Force

It goes without saying that you should never lay a hand on your dog to get them to keep quiet. 

Not only could this end up potentially traumatizing your pet, but it could also end with you needing to go to the emergency room. 

Remember that your pets are still animals that can respond like their undomesticated selves when hurt or threatened.

We could never imagine laying a hand on our dear Sami. 

Plus, all the methods we’ve mentioned so far have worked great for getting our little westie to calm down. 

We’re pretty sure these steps will work on your furry friend, too. 

5. Train Your Westie

All dogs need a fair amount of training, some more than others. 

Luckily for us westie parents, this beautiful breed is easy to train. 

Whenever your westies bark too much, which is going to happen more times than you can count throughout their lifetime, a firm “no” or “stop” should be able to get them to halt that barking.

Make sure all the basic commands are incorporated during training. 

The usual stop, stay, no, and walk should all be part of the process to help manage your westie’s behavior.

Training a very vocal dog not to bark can be difficult, but it is doable. 

If we were able to do it, then so can you.

6. Distract Them

Distracting your pets may or may not work, but if you’re desperate, it’s always worth a try. 

If you figured out what’s got your pet agitated or excited that it’s no longer holding back on the barking, you can try and distract it with its favorite toy or maybe take it out for a walk so that it calms down.

Sami loves walks, and we found that it’s an excellent solution for getting him to calm down. 

Being awesome pet parents yourself, you probably know what’ll get your dog’s attention. 

Don’t hesitate to use that knowledge to your advantage and keep those noise levels at a minimum.

7. Use Toys and Treats

If your westie’s calling for your attention and you can’t give it to them yet, simply hand them their favorite toy. 

Toys and treats for training are great ways to get your pint-sized companions to calm down. 

Westies don’t deal with boredom too well and will, as a result, be constantly barking for your attention.

If you can’t take your dogs outside for a walk just yet, you can always give them their toys to keep them busy. 

In this way, you’ll get yourself some quiet time to rest or finish up on some work.

Final Thoughts

Westies are noisy dogs, and that’s just part of their charm. 

If the barking gets too excessive, then you can handle it by staying calm and applying any of our tips above for calming down your little one.

Sometimes your pups could simply be asking you to take them for a walk and, other times, they could be alerting you to a person’s presence. 

Whatever the case, you shouldn’t have any trouble getting them to ease up on the barking with our effective techniques on how to train a westie not to bark.

2 Comments on “How to Train a Westie Not to Bark: Our Tried and Tested Ways”

  1. My 8 month old Westie puppy has decided to become a demon. He barks and bites our feet and then does the zoomies. It’s funny, but driving us nuts. Is he just acting out or should we worry. We decided he probably needs a nap in his crate. We don’t punish him, just give a treat and he goes and takes a nap. We sure don’t remember this stage with our last Westie.

    1. Hi Joy! I think it’s up to each Westie’s personality. Maybe he doesn’t have enough play time?

      By the way, giving him a treat when he becomes “crazy” may teach him to do that constantly (because you basically reinforce his bad behavior).

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