Do Saint Bernards Bark A Lot? (Solved!)

Do Saint Bernards bark a lot? This is a general question that most dog enthusiasts ask once they see this phenomenal dog breed.

Given its height of 32-37 inches long and a weight of around 54-82 kgs is understandable why one would ask such a question.

So, if you are also wondering if these large-sized compassionate dogs are very vocal when it comes to barking, then read on as I got you covered through this article.

I will give you an accurate answer as to whether this dog barks a lot.

I will also walk you through the most common reasons that may make your Saint Bernard to bark a lot and things you can do to control this unwanted and ‘possibly’ learned behavior.


Do Saint Bernards Bark A Lot?

Do Saint Bernards bark a lot? No, Saint Bernards do NOT bark a lot.

This alert, watchful and large-sized dog breed will only bark when there is a cause. Saint Bernards will mostly bark when they are;

In pain, bored, hungry, threatened, defending/protecting you or their territory, alerting you of something unusual, or experiencing anxiety-related disorders like separation anxiety.

Sometimes barking can be triggered by an underlying medical condition which mostly occur in senior Saint Bernards.

Why Do Saint Bernards Bark?

Below I will explain some of the reasons that may make your dog to bark;

#Out Of Hunger

When your Saint Bernard is hungry, it will bark and howl simultaneously. The barking will also be associated with lip licking.

#Due To Boredom Or When Trying To Get Your Attention

Saint Bernards will bark at anything or at nothing at all when bored.

This type of barking is usually persistent, low-pitched and singleton in character. Usually, this type of bark is associated with a play bow posture.

The play bow posture simply means;

The dog has its chest on the ground, both of its legs stretched to the front and resting on its elbows, ready to play!

#As A Way Of Alarming Or Alerting You

Given their watchful and protective temperament, a Saint Bernard will bark to alarm or alert you that something unusual is happening, and you need to come and check it out.

This type of barking is usually short and low-pitched.

#Due To Territorial Boundaries

Saint Bernard’s are instinctually territorial and will constantly bark if they feel like someone or something is trespassing into their territories.

This type of barking is usually deep and low range, continuous, and is most often accompanied by a growling sound.

Usually, your Saint Bernard will assume an aggressive dog posture which is;

A hard cold stare usually lasts for a few seconds, tail held in a straight position or wagging from side to side, snapping, slightly lifting one of its front paws, and standing with its head held above its shoulders.

If you notice any of these postures in your dog, stay still and quiet, steadily calm your Saint Bernard by stroking it gently on its back.

Immediately your hound calms down put on a leash on it and gently walk it away from what’s causing it to act up.

This will help reduce any risk of a nasty confrontation occurring between your dog and the perceived intruder/aggressor.

#Out Of Fear Or Anxiety

Despite Saint Bernards being fearless when it comes to protecting who or what they hold dear, this dog breed can be pretty shy or reserved around people when not properly socialized or detached from their owner at a young age.

Their reservedness or ‘timidness’ which may cause them to fear or become anxious around people or other animals is usually manifested through persistent barking.

You may notice that your dog yawns excessively while barking. Most dog parents assume that a yawning dog is a bored dog.

However, this is not true as dogs, especially Saint Bernards, will yawn to calm themselves down when experiencing fear or anxiety.

#To Protect You Or Those Around You

Saint Bernard’s ace at protecting those they love. Their loyalty and affectionate nature make them be good guards in a loving family.

So don’t be surprised if your hound barks at anyone or anything that it feels poses a threat to you or those around you.

#Underlying Medical Conditions

Just like any other dog breed, Saint Bernards are predisposed to health issues that may predispose them to become habitual and excessive barkers.

One medical condition that makes a Saint Bernard bark a lot, especially during the night, is Canine Dementia.

Canine Dementia is a progressive degenerative disease that occurs most in senior Saint Bernards.

It’s characterized by; excessive barking, disturbances in sleep patterns, disorientation, and repetitive staring on the walls by your dog.

This disease is not treatable; however, Anipryl a prescription medication is used to manage and keep these symptoms in check.

#When In Pain

A Saint Bernard will bark more when in pain. This type of barking is usually high-pitched and fast, followed by a whining or yelping sound.

If your Saint Bernard barks when you touch it, consider taking it for a vet check-up, as a much more severe underlying condition may be causing the pain.

Extra tip; Other signs that are associated with this type of barking include;

Swelling on the ears, eyes, or paws, increased aggressive behaviors, loss of appetite, and excessive licking, scratching, or guarding the part(s) of its body that is in pain.

How Do I Stop My Saint Bernard From Barking?

#Find Out What’s Triggering Your Hound To Bark

Get to know the triggers that cause your Saint Bernard to bark excessively.

#Create An Environment Free From The Barking Stimulus

Try and create an environment that is ideally free from all the triggers and stimuli causing your dog to bark.

For instance, if your dog barks when it sees strangers on the street, have a pro install a fence that is not see-through around your property.

And if your Saint Berner barks due to pain or an underlying medical condition, then schedule an appointment with your Vet.

And let them help alleviate or treat the symptoms that may be causing your dog to become a ‘nagging’ barker.

#Gradually Desensitize Your Saint Bernard From Its Barking Stimulus

Help your dog fight its fears by desensitizing it from the triggers that causes it to bark.

Pro-tip; start slow and then gradually increase the intensity and the magnitude of its desensitization stimulus.

NOTE! Desensitization is quite a sensitive process that may lead to irreversible and undesired results when wrongly approached.

So, I strongly recommend hiring a guru and letting them handle your dog’s desensitization process more professionally.

#Train It The ‘Quiet’ Command And Proof Its Training

Let your dog know when it’s not time to bark by teaching it the ‘Quiet’ command. Use treats to fasten the training period and also reinforce the training.

Ensure that you prove your dog’s obedience training command by exposing it to different stimuli and locations while giving it the same command.

#Adequtely Socialize It

Inadequately socialized Saint Bernards tend to adapt unwanted behaviors, with one of the behaviors being barking unnecessarily.

So, to avoid such barking temperaments from developing from your otherwise quiet and calm dog, ensure that you adequately socialize it at a young age.

You can do this by; regularly taking it out to dog parks, walking it on a road that has moderate traffic (both people and vehicles), and arranging for it a playdate(s) with a thoroughly socialized dog(s).

#Get It A Companion Who Matches Its Temperament

Getting your st. bernard a companion may act to reduce its barking tendency, mainly if the barking is triggered due to boredom or anxiety.

Be sure to properly introduce your Saint Bernard to its new companion by;

Letting the 2 get used to each other’s scent, organizing a physical meetup without touching, and then letting the 2 meet and have physical contact.

Exercise patience and caution during the introduction process.

Please don’t do it alone. Have a friend or your family member help you out.

Ensure that the 2 hounds always have their leashes on when meeting for the first time and until they get used to each other’s presence.

#Keep Your Dog Preoccupied

Always ensure that your dog is not under stimulated either physically or mentally.

Place dog-safe toys in different locations and let your dog find them. Use treats to motivate your dog.

Pro-tip; If you are always busy, please consider hiring a dog sitter who can safely take your dog out for a walk, a run, or swimming in a dog-safe swimming pool.

Do Saint Bernards Howl?

Yes, Saint Bernards do howl.

This type of sound can be described as a long, more musical, or mournful sound, which is usually monotonous in pitch.

Why Do Saint Bernards Howl?

Howling is an innate behavior in the Saint Bernard dog breed.

So don’t be alarmed if you hear your doggy making the prolonged ‘Awooooo’ sound in the day or in the middle of the night.

Most of the time, the Saint will howl if it’s bored, lonely, or is responding to a high-pitched sound that may be coming from a fire truck siren or a musical instrument.

However, suppose your dog engages in excessive howling without an explanatory trigger or cause.

In that case, it’s safe to assume that it has an underlying medical condition that needs to be addressed promptly by a certified Vet.


No, Saint Bernards do NOT bark a lot. In fact, this watchful, loyal, protective, kid and pet-friendly dog breed will only bark when it’s necessary.

In order to stop your Saint Bernard dog from barking excessively or unnecessarily, please;

Train it the ‘quiet’ command and proof its training when it is still a pup, adequately socialize it, and desensitize it to different stimuli that may be causing it to bark.

If you are unable to manage your dog’s barking behavior, please consider hiring the services of an animal behaviorist specialist.

Don’t delay calling in a pro to help you out, as you risk having a Saint Bernard who is a permanently habitual barker!

Authored By

Madeline Wright

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