The Bichon Frise is NOT a vocal dog, and dog lovers often prize it for being one of the quieter small breed dogs, but there are exceptions to the rule. When the Bichon does develop a yapping problem, however, it is almost always the result of human failure.
Human intervention is necessary for any domesticated dog to be well-adjusted. Without proper guidance, even the quiet Bichon can develop problem behaviors like yapping. Most often, troublesome behaviors result from poor socialization, inadequate exercise, a lack of mental stimulation, and unhealthy bonds.
Bichon Frise Vocalizations
Between two to three weeks old, the Bichon Frise begins vocalizing using a series of grunts and whines. As puppies experience more of the world, they begin to use different vocalizations and learn what these barks, yaps, and whines mean.
Causes of Yappy Behavior in the Bichon Frise
In some cases, the Bichon Frise can develop problem barking behavior – most often, this problem barking is due to human failure and relates to:
- Mental stimulation
Socialization exposes dogs to various stimuli, giving them a more diverse concept of the world around them.
Failing to socialize any dog properly can result in fear, anxiety, and even aggression responses when that dog faces unfamiliar stimuli. It is not uncommon in any of these reactions for even the quietest dog breed to respond with barking, and in the Bichon, that barking is more of a yap!
Exercise is crucial to the health of every dog, it provides a chance to interact with the world, but it also allows a dog to burn off excess energy and bond with its owner. Without regular exercise, energy can build up, bonds can be lacking, and frustration becomes a real problem.
Of course, any of these negative feelings can cause your Bichon to bark out of exasperation, and that barking can quickly turn into chronic yapping!
Physical exercise is not the only type of exercise a dog needs to be happy; they also require regular mental stimulation. Pet parents often address this need by putting their dogs in doggy daycare, hiring dog walkers, or investing in interactive toys.
Regular mental stimulation helps prevent frustration, loneliness, and boredom, but when you fail to provide mental stimulation, these negative feelings can build up and manifest in problem behaviors like barking!
Bonding is a crucial part of the pet-parent relationship. Sometimes the strength of that pet-parent bond can go too far, though, and cause separation anxiety when your dog must spend time away from you.
Dogs with separation anxiety often become problem barkers because they use their bark to call for their human and express their discomfort over being anxious and separated.
Conclusion / Summary
The Bichon Frise makes a great family pet and companion; however, it is crucial to provide this pup with plenty of exercises, regular socialization, frequent mental stimulation, and companionship, if you are to avoid problem behavior (like incessant barking!) in the future.