The Best Family Dog Breeds for Your Home

Whether you feel it is time to add a dog to the family, or you have finally caved in to your children’s pestering, you have finally decided to get a dog. The question now is, what are the best family dog breeds, and what characteristics should you look for in your new family member?

Children are often unaware of their own strength and can unintentionally play a little rough. It is the responsibility of the parents to supervise any interaction between pets and children and to teach the children to play gently. There are, however, times when a clumsy child may tumble near the family dog and latch on in an attempt to stop a fall. Or, the child may pet the dog a little too rough as she is learning how to be gentle.

For these reasons, any family dog should be tolerant enough to allow some hard patting or tail and ear tugging. He might also have to be patient enough to sit through a “dress-up” session or tea party and even periodically allow his nails to be painted. Dogs living with children need to have enough energy to withstand hours of play and yet not be so rambunctious that injury could occur.

Many breeds work well with children, but always remember: there are good dogs and bad dogs in every breed. It’s important to know that individual dogs within breeds can demonstrate their own, unique personality traits. No matter what breed you choose, you shouldn’t leave dogs and young children together unsupervised — for the safety of both.

Watching the Family

For centuries, dogs have been employed as living alarms and watchful guards. Their protective nature made them ideal to alert humans when something strange was amiss. Along with being companions, some of the best family dog breeds can — and still do — perform watch dog roles.

Watch dogs are not the same as guard dogs, though. A watch dog alerts their owners when strangers approach, but they do not usually attack. A good watch dog doesn’t have to be big or aggressive; he or she just has to possess a strong bark that lets the family know someone is approaching the house.

Often, just hearing the bark deters would-be intruders. A guard dog can do the same, but is also large enough to intimidate and, if necessary, attack the intruder.

Almost any dog that barks when something unusual happens can serve as a watch dog, but some breeds are better known for their natural watch dog abilities.

The Best Family Dog Breeds Teach Children

Poet William Blake once wrote, “Everyone that lives, lives not alone nor for itself.” This is especially true when it comes to our pets. And, according to researchers and counselors, it may be one of the most important lessons dogs teach children.

Parents often bring a dog into the family to teach their kids a sense of responsibility, but children often learn so much more — fundamental things about themselves and the world, such as how to empathize with others, how to understand subtle feelings, and how to look at the world from a vastly different perspective.Dogs can also teach children how to interact with others, empathy, nurturing skills, confidence, and resilience to change.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that all children are ready for pet ownership. Parents should first make sure their child desires a pet before rushing out to get one. Together, they should decide what type of pet is best. Moreover, don’t assume your child will take care of the dog. The ultimate responsibility usually falls on the parent, not the kid, to make sure the pet is healthy.

Kids and Dogs — A Match Made in Heaven

The bond between dogs and humans is strongest and most precious in childhood, when playfulness, imagination, and emotions rule.

Studies have shown that kids benefit just as much from dog ownership as adults do. The unconditional love that a dog gives relieves stress and loneliness. Enjoying the company of a pet raises self-esteem and teaches empathy in youngsters. Dogs also help children become more aware of non-verbal communication. At least one study has shown that family members interact more once they bring home a pet.

Ideally, animal professionals advise you to wait until your children are between seven and nine before you adopt a dog. But the reality is that your oldest child is 10 and your youngest is two. Or maybe you’ve owned your dog for many years before the baby was born. Is this a recipe for disaster?

Finding Fido: The Keys to Selecting a Dog

Whether it’s your first dog or your third (or fourth, or fifth …), selecting a dog is a big deal for you and your family.

The options are nearly endless — dogs come in several shapes, sizes, colors, personalities, and breeds — and no matter what pup you end up with, your life will be forever changed. Therefore, you must be prepared before, during, and, of course, after you bring home your new best friend.

Make sure you know what you want from the dog, and that the dog is prepared for the environmental change they’re about to enter. The process of selecting a dog can be easy and fun, just make sure you’re aware of what you’re getting yourself — and your canine companion — into.

Make the Right Choice

There are around 340 dog breeds in the world, so how do you know which one is right for you? Choosing the right dog — the breed, the size, the temperament, the cost — is the key first step to building a loving, healthy, and happy relationship with a dog. Get it right and you’re likely to have a deeply rewarding experience. Get it wrong and you’re facing a potential nightmare.

So what should you do? First, recognize that there are two parties to this relationship — you (and the fellow humans in your household) and the dog. Both sides of the equation have to be compatible, which means that you have to understand as much about yourself as you do about the dog you’re adopting.

Your lifestyle, habits, and personality will guide the type of dog that’s right for you. So before taking a dog in, it’s crucial that you take a personal inventory. Do you live in a small apartment in a city, in a suburban home with a backyard, or in the wide-open spaces? Are you an active person or are you a couch potato? Are you looking for a dog for security, as a companion for children, or as an exercise partner? Are you a Type-A workaholic with little attention to spare, or do you have more leisure time? Are you away from home a great deal or is the house your base of operation? Are you prepared for the expense? Honestly answering these questions will help ensure you and your pup will be compatible.

Working With Breeders

Many dog lovers will choose to get their new friend from a breeder. After the new puppy is chosen, a good breeder will have you sign a contract before the puppy is purchased. The contract that you sign when you buy your dog from a breeder is much more than a simple bill of sale. It guarantees your rights and the seller’s rights in the transaction, sometimes for the life of your pet. It is also a meaningful document in the history of generations in your dog’s family line.

A written breeder’s contract can take many forms, and its stipulations can be negotiated between you and the breeder. Many factors come into play — whether you intend to show your dog, for example, or past experiences either of you has had in owning a purebred dog.

A responsible breeder is more than happy to discuss every aspect of your dog’s future with you, to ensure that he’s putting the dog into a good home. But even if the two parties are best of friends, a comprehensive contract helps guarantee they will remain so.

Know What to Ask

Choosing a breeder can be difficult. When you’re trying to decide on a breeder to purchase a puppy from, it’s important to make sure that they’re making good and ethical choices in the way that they’re raising their dogs. A dog is a big responsibility, and you don’t want your dog to have any issues because the breeder didn’t perform their job to the best of their abilities. Know what the red flags are and be sure to follow your gut when you’re talking with breeders.

To help you get the best possible dog from the best possible breeder, be prepared to ask some questions. The answers you receive will help you select the best and healthiest puppy.

Mixed With Love

If you’re not looking for a specific breed, mixed breed dogs could be the right option for you. The mutt is the all-American dog. Call him a random-breed, a mixed-breed or a mongrel, at his best he’s loyal, healthy, smart, and friendly — a virtual melting pot of positive canine characteristics.

Are You Ready? 5 Things to Know Before Adopting a Dog

Whether you’re adopting for the first time or a seasoned puppy parent, there are things to know before adopting a dog — things that will make or break that dog’s transition into his new home and life.

To raise a well-trained dog, you need a great plan. The best ones include communicating with everyone in your family about the basic expectations you have of your dog, the goals you hope to achieve, and the strategies you’re ready to use to get there.

In short, you need to talk honestly and openly about what to expect from your dog and how you are going to train him — all BEFORE you bring him home.

Having a dog is a lifetime commitment. That’s why it is important to understand what’s really involved with having one before you make that choice. Take a few minutes to consider what you want from your new dog and how you are going to introduce the dog in your home.

Here are five things to know before adopting a dog.

Adopting vs. Purchasing

While you are saving a life when you adopt from a shelter, what you see is not necessarily what you get. In the case of puppies, you won’t see the animal’s parents, so you won’t get a clear picture of an adult dog’s psyche (i.e. emotional baggage). What happened to him with his previous family? Why is he afraid of men? Why does he cringe when small children are around him? These are important things to know before adopting a dog.

When you purchase a purebred, chances are he will be from a breeder and will be a puppy. At least one of the parents should be nearby so you can check for size, temperament, and condition. The cleanliness of the facility, the breeders’ knowledge of the breed, the point at which they are willing to let the puppies go (it should never be before eight weeks of age) and the puppies’ socialization skills should be tip-offs to the quality of the kennel.

Those who adopt from a shelter tend to be much more open-minded in their expectations. Conversely, if you are dealing with a breeder, you most likely have done some homework and decided this is the breed for you.

Puppy vs. Adult Dog

If you’re a potential puppy owner, there are certain questions you should ask yourself before considering adoption. Do you want puppies that are lovers or loners? Will your puppies spend their lives outdoors or indoors? Will your puppies be massive or miniature when full-grown? Do you need to be cautious of puppies that set off allergies or not? Do you want puppies that will be solo or sociable? The answer to those questions will vary by breed, so always know what you’re getting into.

When bringing home an adult dog, you should first work with the breeder or shelter to evaluate the dog’s temperament and behavior. Again, breed matters, but whether they can determine the dog’s breed or not, breeders and shelter personnel can interact with him and walk him to determine his energy level and interests. And, they’ll expose him to different situations. Does he need to run and jump? Is he happy to saunter along and curl up at a person’s feet? Does he beg and charm to get human attention? Would he rather chase squirrels? How does he relate to men and women? To children? To other dogs? To cats? Once you know all of that, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision.

Are Your Home and Family Ready?

While breed is vitally important when picking the right dog for you, you also need to make sure you have the right environment for your new family member. Looking for the right pooch to fit an apartment-living lifestyle? Dogs that do well in apartments, condos, and flats tend to be lower-energy, small- to medium-sized, enjoy human company, and are less prone to behaviors such as herding.

Got a big yard and a big family? Selecting the right dog for your family is an important decision. But, there is no single breed that is best suited for the job of “family dog.” Again, the temperament and personality of the dog must be considered. A family dog should be social and outgoing, have moderate energy levels that meld with the family, enjoy people (especially children), and not exhibit aggressive behavior around food, toys, or other valued possessions. For assistance, check out this list of breeds that are good with children, and this list of breeds that are NOT good with children.

Picking a Male German Shepherd for your Family

German Shepherds are one of the 10 most popular dog breeds in the U.S. for a reason – they are loyal, courageous and extremely intelligent.

More than just about any other breed, both male and female German Shepherds can take on tasks that improve people’s lives and make families happy.

So if you’re sure a German Shepherd is the right dog for you, you may be wondering which gender will be a fit for your family.

Both males and females can exhibit the best qualities of German Shepherds. They can be equally loving and devoted, and both can be tough, helpful and brave.

There are some traits specific to each gender that are fairly common. For example, males tend to be more territorial and dominant. They often mark their territory at every opportunity. They can be very independent and sometimes seem a bit standoffish. Females, on the other hand, are a bit more family oriented. They tend to protect their tribe and are often more affectionate. But females may be less patient than males when it comes to tolerating behavior like jumping or fur pulling from young children.

Male German Shepherds are usually a bit bigger than their female counterparts, and they reach maturity a bit slower. It’s generally easy to tell males and females apart, as females tend to look slightly more refined. When it comes to training, the male German Shepherd’s slower path to maturity and strong sense of independence will create some issues. While they can still be trained better than almost any other breed, it will take extra patience to train a male.

Sexual Maturity in a Male German Shepherd

Male German Shepherds who have not been neutered tend to be more dominant and high-spirited. Once they get to their ‘teenage’ stage of six months and beyond, they will attempt to dominate other dogs, and will often try to dominate you. You need to be prepared to be the leader in your household, because if you aren’t, a male German Shepherd will happily take the role from you.

When a male who is not neutered smells a female in heat, look out. They can misbehave wildly in an attempt to go meet their potential mate.

While neutering should be discussed with your veterinarian, if you do not plan to breed your male German Shepherd, it is probably a good idea to have him neutered while he is young. This has been proven to improve behavior and make training slightly easier. It should also make him less aggressive overall and less likely to roam.


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Picking your German Shepherd

So is a male German Shepherd the best dog for your family? In a lot of ways, it comes down to the individual puppy or dog and your needs. Unless you have your heart set on a male or female, keep an open mind. German Shepherds are loyal dogs and, based on what you’re looking for, a puppy or adult rescue might be right for you. The same goes with either gender. Spend time with the dog you’re thinking of bringing home before making a final decision and try to get a feel for how she or he might fit in with your family.

The only big caveat to that is if you already have a dog in your house. In general, dogs of opposite sex pairings get along better than couples of the same sex.

When you’re ready to bring your new German Shepherd home, take a look at our long list of dog names for this breed.


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5 Signs You Should Have Pets Instead of Children

Parenthood is not for everyone. At least not in the traditional sense.

As the global population balloons well beyond 7.3 billion and counting, some young adults in the U.S. are rethinking – or at least putting off – having children. Birthrates among American twentysomethings have declined steadily in recent years, with rising student loan debt and child-rearing costs considered primary catalysts of this trend.

In some respects, though, these young folks have simply traded in or delayed traditional parenthood in favor of pet parenthood. Ownership of dogs and cats among members of the Millennial Generation – those born between 1980 and 2000 – continues to rise, as more than one-in-three young adults now sports a four-legged friend, making Millennials among the largest U.S. pet-owning populations.

Clearly, some young adults prefer walk time and cleaning litter boxes to tummy time and changing diapers – at least for now. But how can you tell if you’re better suited to raise fur babies rather than human babies at this juncture of your life? Here’s our five signs that you should have pets instead of children:

1. You Aspire to Help Animals in Need

The need to find homes for sheltered dogs and cats has reached a crisis level. It’s estimated that approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide each year – of which more than 35 percent ultimately succumb to a fate of euthanasia. If you believe you have a calling in life to aid homeless pets, then perhaps you should focus your efforts on sharing your home with rescued animals (whether via adoption or fostering) and volunteering with rescue organizations, leaving others to repopulate our planet. Few satisfactions compare with completely altering the trajectory of an animal’s existence from one of despair to one of delight.

2. You Have Serious Financial Concerns About Parenthood

No matter how you slice it, raising children is astonishingly expensive. It’s an investment to the tune of approximately $250,000 per child through age 18 for middle-income families. And that’s a cost that many Millennials – struggling with student loan debt – aren’t willing to assume at this point in their lives. While certainly a sizable investment in its own right, the estimated lifetime costs associated with dog and cat ownership pales in comparison. Consequently, young adults with the desire to care for another living thing, but without the financial means to raise a child, should strongly consider pursuing pet ownership.

3. You Are Consumed by Your Career

Young professionals often find their lives dominated by their budding careers. It’s not unusual for younger members of the workforce to put in 60-hour work weeks. Combine this with the growing prevalence of dual-career couples and oftentimes the time availability necessary to raise children simply doesn’t exist. Pet ownership – though certainly time-consuming to an extent – represents a viable alternative for young professionals, particularly when they capitalize on pet daycare and other modern pet service offerings.


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4. Your Living Arrangement Proves More Conducive to Pets

Pet-friendly and child-friendly can have starkly different meanings, and some living arrangements simply lend themselves better to raising furry children. Young people who share a residence with roommates or live at home with their parents often fare better with pets. The same, of course, can prove true when you occupy an apartment that’s roughly the size of a walk-in closet. If you can’t alter your living environment to achieve one more preferable for child-rearing, then perhaps you should reimagine your parenting ambitions toward pets.

5. You Want to Travel the World

Millennials have caught the travel bug, and it’s anticipated that young people representing this coming-of-age generation will seek to experience international destinations at a rate far exceeding that of their predecessors. Although the arrival of children can severely complicate your ability to travel abroad – at least for a baby’s first several years – the same is not necessarily true of dogs and cats. With the growth of both pet boarding options and airline/hotel pet-friendliness in recent years, travelers now have more options than ever before when considering how to care for their beloved companions during an upcoming trip. So obtain a pet, hold off on children, and get out there to explore the world.

Big Pooch on Campus: Can You Have a Dog While in College?

For many young people, college ushers in an unrivaled flurry of change.

New city, new residence, new studies, and new friends – one’s arrival on campus often beckons each of these experiences. Newfound freedom prompts an onslaught of opportunities for personal growth. It’s a time of transition in most every sense.

Is it reasonable, then, for a college student to take on another new challenge while pursuing higher education – that of dog ownership? It’s a question many young people seek to answer.

While there are many factors to consider when pondering collegiate dog ownership, one of the most important involves evaluating a prospective dog’s well-being. Will Fido flourish while living in a college house and going on walks through a college town?

Reasons to Have a Dog While in College

1. Dog Ownership Promotes Responsibility

Absent of parents for the first time, some college students abuse the privilege of freedom and pursue a party-centric lifestyle. Having a dog to care for, however, can accelerate maturation and induce responsibility. You have something to care for other than yourself.

Dogs can instill the value of routine within college students by requiring regular feeding, play, and exercise. Once a dog enters the picture, the temptation to sleep-in until noon is no longer realistic.

2. Dog Ownership Can Reduce Stress

Between the myriad new experiences and the challenging coursework, the collegiate environment can be stressful. Thankfully, research indicates that dogs can actually assist with relieving anxiety.

Dogs have a knack for recognizing when their owners are upset. By simply being themselves and showcasing their goofy personality, dogs spark laughter and ease worried minds. A stress ball may be cheaper, but few joys in life compare to what a canine can bring.

3. Dog Ownership Can Induce Exercise

Worried about the dreaded “freshman 15” whereby you gain weight during your first year in college? A canine companion will diminish this risk.

Not only will having a dog motivate you to leave the party early, but it also will force you to walk your pooch across campus on a leash. Exercise for your dog equates to exercise for you too.

4. Dog Ownership Builds Upon Lifelong Skills

If you’re interested in obtaining a dog during college, chances are you grew up in a household with dogs. You may be new to dog ownership, but you’re a seasoned veteran at helping care for your family’s dog.

Furthermore, you likely have a built-in support network in the form of roommates. Provided these fellow students are responsible, they can provide valuable assistance as secondary caretakers. Got stuck at the library? No problem, just ask your reliable roommate to feed your dog.

5. Dog Ownership Provides a Constant Companion

The college experience typically includes its share of ups and downs. You’re trying to find yourself. You could endure failed classes and failed relationships.

Through it all, your dog will be there offering unconditional love. You’ll enter the post-college phase of your life knowing you shared the collegiate experience together.

Reasons to Forgo a Dog While in College

1. Dog Ownership Requires Financial Resources

A dog is a major investment. By some estimates, raising a puppy costs anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000 over a 12-year lifespan, with more expenses arising in the first year than at any other time.

Many college students lack the necessary funds to pursue dog ownership. Even those students who carry a part-time job likely need parental assistance in order to make owning a dog financially feasible.

2. The College Lifestyle May Not Be Conducive to Dog Ownership

Many college students burn the candle at both ends. They take classes during the day and have fun at night. They cram for midterms and close down bars. Does this leave time for giving your dog the care and attention he needs?

While the answer may vary on a case-by-case basis, unless you can answer unequivocally that your college lifestyle affords ample time for a pooch, you should postpone dog ownership for the next stage of your life.

3. A College Living Arrangement May Not be Ideal for Dog Ownership

A college living arrangement typically includes many of the following elements: Roommates, a messy off-campus house or fraternity/sorority house, a non-fenced-in property, and a non-dog-proofed interior.

Should your living arrangement include these characteristics, you should think long and hard before securing a dog. At the very least, you need to make sure your roommates and landlord consent to the notion.

Dog Breeds Good for Apartment Living

Looking for the right pooch to fit an apartment-living lifestyle? You've come to the right place. Canine needs vary between breeds, so for the best dogs good for apartment living, you'll need to find one with traits that ensure the'll be happy in their environment: your home. Dogs that do well in apartments, condos, and flats tend to be lower-energy, small- to medium-sized, enjoy human company, and are less prone to behaviors such as herding. Below, you'll find some examples of breeds that do great in close quarters.

We also have a great general guide on picking the right breed for you. Choose your dog by size, activity level, trainability, shedding amount, and more. Go to The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed for your perfect match.

I hope this list of best dog breeds for apartment living is helpful to you.

Dog Breeds Good in Apartments

  • American Bulldog
  • American Staffordshire Terriers
  • Basenji
  • Bichon Frise
  • Border Terriers
  • Bullmastiffs
  • Cane Corso
  • Chinese Crested
  • Havanese
  • Italian Greyhounds
  • Lhasa Apsos
  • Maltese
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Norfolk Terriers
  • Portuguese Water Dog
  • Rat Terrier
  • Scottish Terriers
  • Shih Tzu
  • Silky Terrier
  • Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers
  • Staffordshire Bull Terriers
  • Toy Fox Terrier
  • Toy Poodle
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Yorkshire Terrier

Choosing the right dog can be really difficult. We hope this list helps you pick the best dog breed for your lifestyle. If you didn't see the perfect one for you, check out The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed. This guide will help you choose a dog based on size, activity level, trainability, and more.


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Dog Breeds Not Good With Children

When choosing a dog, it is absolutely crucial to do research into which ones are a good fit for your family. This is especially true if you have children or are around them frequently. Some dogs simply don’t do well with kids and react poorly to them, becoming jealous or even snapping and growling at them. Certain breeds, such as those listed below, are generally known not to do well around kids. You don’t want to take a chance and risk a dangerous situation occurring, so be sure to check and see if your favorite breeds show up on this list of dog breeds not good with children. Paying attention to this one canine characteristic can make a huge difference and potentially prevent a real problem.

If children are or will be part of your lifestyle, consider dog breeds good with children such as the ones listed in our database.

We also have a great general guide on picking the right breed for you. Choose your dog by size, activity level, trainability, shedding amount, and more. Go to The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed to find your perfect match.

I hope this list of dog breeds that aren’t good with kids helps you pick the right breed for you.

Dog Breeds Not Good with Children

  • Akitas
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Black and Tan Coonhounds
  • Brussels Griffons
  • Bull Terriers (note that these are different from so-called “pit bulls”)
  • Chihuahuas
  • Dalmatians
  • Japanese Chin
  • Lhasa Apsos
  • Maltese
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Norfolk Terriers
  • Papillons
  • Pekingese
  • Pomeranians
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • Scottish Terriers
  • Shetland Sheepdog
  • Shih Tzu

Choosing the right dog can be really difficult. We hope this list helps you pick the best dog breed for your home and your family. If you didn’t see the perfect one for you, check out The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed. This guide will help you choose a dog based on size, activity level, trainability, and more.


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Dog Breeds Good with Children

Pets are part of the family, and the best dog breeds that are good with children are ones that are patient, gentle, easily trained, and affectionate. When looking for the best dog for families with kids, you’ll want to look for certain canine traits. The following list includes dogs that are able to handle the excitement, stress, and love of growing up around young humans. With the right preparation, you can pick a great dog to add to your family and life.

On the other hand, some dogs are not well-suited to be around kids at all. These include dogs who are known to show behaviors including nipping and herding, such as Australian Cattle Dogs and Dalmatians. See our list of dog breeds NOT good with children and steer clear of these pooches in general to avoid a potentially distressing situation.

We also have a great general guide on picking the right breed for you. Choose your dog by size, activity level, trainability, shedding amount, and more. Go to The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed for more.

I hope this list of the best dog breeds for families with children is helpful to you.

Dog Breeds Good with Children

  • Afghan Hounds
  • Airedale Terrier
  • American Bulldog
  • American Eskimo Dog
  • Australian Shepherds
  • Basset Hound
  • Beagle
  • Bearded Collies
  • Belgian Sheepdogs
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Bichon Frise
  • Bloodhound
  • Border Collie
  • Border Terriers
  • Boston Terriers
  • Boxer
  • Brittany
  • Bullmastiffs
  • Cardigan Welsh Corgis
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Chesapeake Bay Retrievers
  • Chinese Crested
  • Chinese Shar-Pei
  • Cocker Spaniels
  • Dachshund
  • Doberman Pinschers
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • English Bulldog
  • English Mastiff
  • English Setter
  • English Springer Spaniel
  • Flat-Coated Retrievers
  • French Bulldog
  • German Shepherd Dog
  • German Shorthaired Pointers
  • German Wirehaired Pointers
  • Giant Schnauzers
  • Golden Retriever
  • Great Dane
  • Great Pyrenees
  • Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs
  • Greyhound
  • Havanese
  • Irish Setters
  • Irish Wolfhound
  • Italian Greyhounds
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Leonbergers
  • Miniature Dachshund
  • Miniature Pinschers
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Neapolitan Mastiffs
  • Newfoundlands
  • Old English Sheepdogs
  • Parson Russell Terrier
  • Pembroke Welsh Corgis
  • Portuguese Water Dog
  • Pugs
  • Rottweilers
  • Saint Bernard
  • Samoyed
  • Siberian Huskies
  • Silky Terrier
  • Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers
  • Staffordshire Bull Terriers
  • Standard Poodle
  • Toy Fox Terrier
  • Toy Poodle
  • Vizslas
  • Weimaraners
  • Welsh Springer Spaniel
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Whippets
  • Wirehaired Pointing Griffons
  • Yorkshire Terrier

Choosing the right dog can be really difficult. We hope this list helps you pick the best dog breed for your home and your family. If you didn’t see the perfect one for you, check out The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Dog Breed. This guide will help you choose a dog based on size, activity level, trainability, and more.


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The Best Pets for New Millennial Families

Ah, love is in the air… and what better way to share it than by getting a “fur child” of your very own? For those of us who have just embarked upon the adventure of life with a long-term sweetheart, adding a pet to the family can seem like the perfect way to form an even closer bond with your mate. If you are like many Millennial couples, you may even already have a little one of your own and are considering adding a pet to make the family complete. In this article, we’ll tell you some important things to know about choosing the right pets for millennial families.

Every family is different, and the addition of a pet can be beneficial in a number of ways. Raising pets and children together is a long tradition and one which many Millennials look forward to continuing with their families. In addition, bringing up a pet together is a great way for couples to “try out” the process of splitting responsibilities, setting boundaries, and practicing techniques that may later come in very handy when parenting. Caring for animals can help you feel connected with your partner and like you’re on the same team. For those married or partnered couples who choose not to have children, pets can be an important way for couples to express their love and commitment to each other (and nothing says “I appreciate you” like taking an extra round of poop scooper duty).

First things first: consider what kind of family you’ll be making, and you’ll find out what kind of pet you’ll do best with. Think about whether you and your mate tend to be outgoing or shy, energetic or laid-back, outdoorsy or homebodies. You will want a pet that you both can enjoy being around and who has a personality that adds to, not detracts from, your connection with your partner. Be honest; you might be tempted to get a high-energy dog that can keep you both off the couch and out on a hike, but it’s better to look for a pet that fits the lifestyle you have rather than the one you wish you had.

Next, make sure you and your sweetie have comparable goals in getting a pet. Bear in mind that many dogs and cats can live up to 20 years or more with proper care, so bringing one into your family is a decision that will affect everyone in it for decades. If your family includes a child, remember to bring them into the decision-making process too!

The following are some of the best pets for millennial families based on their personalities, behavioral needs, general health, and more. These pets are a great way to start the search for the right pet for your new family.

Cats: Sure, these are the quintessential “newlywed pets,” but it’s with good reason. Many cats are typically independent and deal well with the changes in scenery and routine that come with the start of a committed relationship. On top of that, cats are simply fun to be around for many people, and their needs are relatively low. A large number of cat breeds do well with minimal grooming and require less human interaction than most dogs, so they’re a great option for couples with a busy lifestyle who still want the comfort and affection of a pet. (Remember that many doctors discourage the handling of cat litter during pregnancy, so consider this before getting a feline friend of your own.)

Golden and Labrador Retrievers: These have long been considered great family dogs, but they’re especially well suited for making great pets for Millennial families. Both breeds are friendly and personable, so they’re comfortable with meeting lots of their owners’ friends. They love a good romp in the dog park or walk around the block (which is a great activity to share with your sweetheart); in their down time they are affectionate and gentle, qualities which are loved by couples and children alike. They also tend to be obedient and easy to train, making them an excellent option for novice owners.

French Bulldogs: If the two of you are looking to devote your heart to a furry pal, these stubborn, sweet, and unique little dogs are a great fit. Many couples have fallen head-over-heels with Frenchies and take great pride in raising them together; these personable and affectionate dogs love people and adjust well to new situations such as a post-wedding move. Like many bulldogs, they can develop health conditions that require lots of time and money to resolve, so they require a family that can afford their care.