Millennials, Generation Y, Echo Boomers… no matter what you call them, those of us born between the early 1980s and late 2000s are well on their way to being all grown up. Also called the "Boomerang Generation," many in their early 20s and 30s experienced lots of changes resulting from the economic slump of the century’s first decade. This educated and tech-savvy generation works hard and plays hard (and then shares it all on social media). Although they experienced slow starts or setbacks in hitting some of the traditional life milestones, many have found themselves gaining a foothold in the professional world, buying their first homes, and committing to long-term relationships or even a family. All of these situations pose some unique challenges that make finding the perfect Millennial pet trickier than simply adopting the first cute puppy you see.
To find the best pet for your lifestyle, it’s important to consider not only the dog’s needs but what resources you’re able to provide. You’ll want to just the right dog to complement your attitude on life, whether you’re always on the go or live for relaxing on the couch. We’ve selected dog breeds popular with Millennials based on energy levels, grooming requirements, and more. Remember, however, that these are general breed characteristics; every dog is unique and their personality might differ. Here are the 10 best dog breeds for Millennials:
The Adoring Fan
One of the best things about dogs is their capacity to love and be loved. Nothing takes the edge off a stressful day quite like seeing your dog’s happy face waiting for you when you get home. Some dogs millennials love include Chihuahuas, who are well-known for their playful affection and attachment to their owners. Italian Greyhounds, another great option, are so devoted that many will follow their humans from room to room! Both of these breeds are small enough to live comfortably in apartments, are typically easy to groom, have low to moderate exercise needs, and make great constant companions.
The Couch Potato
If you prefer grabbing the remote or video game controller and kicking back on your free time, veg out with a slow-going breed like a Basset Hound. These laid-back pooches need little exercise and are typically content to laze around (just be mindful of their famous howls, which can become quite loud if they are distressed). If your tastes run toward larger breeds, you’ll love Bullmastiffs. These gentle giants do surprisingly well in apartments and small houses despite their size, which can approach a whopping 130 pounds. Another great option is the affectionate and good-natured Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, who can hike and nap with equal enthusiasm and is frequently trained as a therapy dog. Bonus: they take super cute selfies.
The Free Spirit
Many Millennials have a strong sense of who they are and what they want, and they need a dog who is just as unique as they are. Pooches with strong personalities, such as the Pug, make great companions for owners who love a playful dog that’s the life of the party and the star of the show. If you love a sense of community, you might find kindred spirits in the owners of Pit Bulls and related breeds. These formerly-maligned pups are often gentle, affectionate, and have inspired fan clubs around the world who just can’t get enough of these strong but sweet dogs. The playful and charismatic Boston Terrier makes a great pet for Millennials who are a little more established. Their higher energy levels benefit from a larger apartment or house with a yard, and they can occasionally develop health problems that can be expensive to treat, so they’re a good dog for Millennials with some room and cash to spare.