Do Golden Retrievers Bark A Lot?

Two golden retrievers

Do Golden Retrievers bark a lot as compared to other dog breeds? Read on to know when do they bark excessively and what you can do about it?

Do golden retrievers bark a lot

Has your Golden started to bark more than usual? Is it normal or you should be concerned about it? This post contains everything you need to know.

So, do Golden Retrievers bark a lot?

The answer is NO! Golden Retrievers don’t usually bark a lot. They are smart and quiet. Compared to other breeds, they bark a lot less.

They are extremely smart. They don’t bark for no reason. And, they don’t usually bark for long. If your Goldie is barking so much, there must be a good reason behind it.

Possible Reasons Why Your Golden Retriever Barks A Lot

Here are some possible reasons why your Golden Retriever is barking a lot:


Dogs bark to communicate with other dogs as well as humans. As we have seen, Goldens don’t bark for no reason If your pup is barking, he/she is trying to communicate. The reason could be pain, stress, excitement, aggression, or any other.

Dogs communicate verbally and non-verbally. Verbal communication includes barking, while non-verbal communication includes the use of body language (e.g. tail wagging, facial expressions, body movement, etc.). Each Golden Retriever is different. To communicate, some dogs use body language, while others prefer barking.


Golden Retrievers are very intelligent. They remember when their behavior gets a reaction. In the past, your pup’s barking must have helped him get your attention. This is what made him repeat this behavior.

Or, the chances are your canine isn’t getting as much attention as he/she should be. Golden Retrievers are friendly and affectionate. They love it when they get attention from their favorite people. After they are left alone for long periods and see their favorite owner, they bark in a friendly tone. This isn’t bad barking.


Your Golden Retriever might be barking out of happiness and excitement. Like we humans, dogs also express their excitement with a loud noise. You might notice this behavior in your dog when he meets a strange dog, in new places, during playtime, or when you are about to give him a treat. Goldens express their excitement with an energetic, but friendly bark.

Trying to protect you

Goldens are very loyal; they will do anything to protect their loved ones. So, it could be your Goldie trying to protect you from potential threats. You may notice this behavior when a stranger approaches you, a car passing nearby, etc. Your canine barks to alert you.

Excess energy

Golden Retrievers are highly energetic. They require regular physical activities to utilize their excess energy the right way. When they don’t get adequate exercise, they find other ways to release their energy, like barking, destructive behavior, etc. Not providing sufficient exercise can also lead to other problems like obesity and boredom.


Just like physical exercise, Goldens require mental stimulation and socialization as well. They don’t like being left alone; they need someone to play, interact with, and spend time with. When a social dog like Golden Retriever is left alone for long periods and doesn’t get enough mental stimulation, it’s likely to suffer from boredom. Boredom can result in excess barking and destructive behavior.


Though Golden Retrievers are peaceful and gentle, they can be aggressive sometimes. It could be aggression due to fear, neglect, illness, pain, lack of socialization, protecting loved ones, protecting territory, and physical or mental abuse in the past.

Also Read: Do Labrador Retrievers Bark At Strangers?

What Can You Do About Your Golden Retriever Barking Excessively?

Now that you know various reasons behind the excessive barking, the question is – what’s the solution? Here are some ways you can make a Golden Retriever dog stop barking:

Golden retriever puppy

Understand reason

First of all, you need to understand what’s the reason behind your Golden Retriever barking a lot. Is your pup bored? Is your pup filled with excess energy? Was he left alone for long period? Is he suffering from any illness or physical pain? Does he need your attention? Answering these questions will help you figure out the main reason.

Get toys & play with your pup

It’s not advisable to leave a Golden Retriever alone for a longer period, without any interaction. And, if that’s the last option you have, just make sure your canine has some toys to play with. Goldens get bored when left alone for long. Dog toys would keep your pup busy and also release some excess energy when you are away.

And providing some toys doesn’t mean your job is done. Your canine needs your love and attention. After leaving him alone for so long, spend some time playing and interacting with him.

Provide training

Goldens are usually quiet and calm; they rarely bark. The problem arises when this quiet pup builds the habit of barking excessively. Training can help minimize too much barking.

You can use reward-based training. Start training by teaching commands like, “quiet,” “stop,” etc. Firstly, create a situation that makes your Goldie bark (it could be a stranger visiting your house). When your canine starts to bark, hold a treat in front of his nose and say your command word. When he stops barking, encourage that behavior with a treat.

Keep in mind that barking is the way Golden Retrievers (and other dogs) communicate. No training method can stop them from barking completely.

Provide exercise

Excess energy could be the possible reason why your dog is barking a lot. Highly active dog breeds like Golden Retriever need daily exercise. Lack of regular exercise builds up energy.

When your dog doesn’t get enough physical exercise, he will find other ways (barking, being destructive, etc.) to release his excess energy. It is advisable to provide at least 1-2 hours of exercise on a daily basis.

Socialize with other dogs and humans

If your canine barks so much at other dogs and humans, that’s probably due to a lack of socialization. It can make the dog afraid of new places, people, and animals. You can introduce your Golden Retriever to new people during daily walks, in the park (when you take him for exercise), or in dog classes. It’s advisable to start socializing early (around 2 to 10 weeks of age).

Provide mental stimulation

The lack of mental stimulation can lead to unwanted behaviors like excess barking, howling, destructive chewing, etc. You might be taking your dog for daily walks, but it’s not enough for this highly energetic dog.

In addition to daily walks or physical exercise, Goldies require mental stimulation. Golden Retrievers are happy when they have something to do. You can involve your canine in various mental stimulation activities like puzzle toys, agility courses, teaching new skills, food-motivated games, shell games, etc.

Visit a vet

If you already provide adequate daily exercise, mental stimulation, training, etc., and still your pup barks a lot, it’s time to visit your veterinarian. The chances are your dog might be in pain or distress and trying to communicate about it.

Final Thoughts

Golden Retrievers aren’t excessive barkers. They bark rarely; when they want to communicate something. As an owner, the concern arises when this quiet pup starts barking excessively.

First, you need to find out the reason for excessive barking. It could be due to excitement, boredom, aggression, distress, attention, or any other. Then, you can start working on the solution.

Also Read:

How Fast Can Golden Retrievers Run?

What Temperature is Too Cold For A Golden Retriever?

Are Golden Retrievers Good Hikers?


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Brandon Dickinson

Brandon Dickinson

I love playing and spending time with pups. On RetrieverPaws, I share tips, guides, and my experiences with retriever dogs (Labrador and Golden Retrievers mainly).

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