Imagine that you have a beautiful family with a couple of kids, and now you’re ready to welcome a canine friend to your pack. You can’t just get any dog, you have to get the right breed that will get along with your kids. Even though all the dogs originate from the wolf species, every breed acts different.
Luckily, we have information about what to look for in a family dog so you can choose the right one.
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What to Look for in a Family Dog?
When it comes to looking for the perfect dog, there are a couple of factors to look into:
Temperament is basically the dog's personality. You want to find a dog with gentle and agreeable characteristics. For example, a more calm and relaxed dog can quickly form a strong bond with your child.
Size usually matters depending on the type of home that you own. For example, if you have a small apartment, then it’s best to get a smaller breed. If you have a house and a backyard, you can think about large or medium sized breed.
Depending on the activity levels in your household, it will affect which type of dog breed you should get. If your kids are extremely active and love to wrestle, then definitely go for a larger docile breed. However, if your family members are more relaxed and like to watch TV, then a calmer dog breed would be ideal.
This really depends on your family's preference. If a family member has asthma or allergies, then it’s best to go for a hypoallergenic dog like a poodle or a short haired breed. If you want something more therapeutic or a dog that cuddles like a teddy bear, then a breed with longer and softer fur would be the best option.
If you have children in the house, it’s always best to start with a puppy. That way, he or she can grow with the children and form a stronger bond. Starting with an adult dog is OK, but only if the dog is gentle and has a good temperament. You may want to know the history of the older dog before adopting him. Some older dogs were subject to abuse in the past, and that can lead to PTSD, which could be dangerous for your family members. If you decide to go with an older dog, make sure you know all their triggers.
15 Best Dogs for Kids and Families
Bulldogs are a very relaxed and affectionate breed. This type of dog is built very sturdy, so it’s perfect for kids who like to wrestle and roughhouse. However, Bulldogs are not very energetic; they are more like couch potatoes. Because they are friendly and loyal, they often get along well with other pets in the house. These dogs can live in a home or apartment. They are also friendly to guests, other pets, and family members, which makes them a perfect fit for a sociable household.
If you were thinking about getting a bulldog, then you must consider the way their jaws are created. They will need some care in teeth cleaning. These dogs are known for drooling, wheezing, and snoring. And always remember to wipe their facial wrinkles to prevent dirt and buildup.
Beagles are small dogs with calm temperaments. They love the outdoors and enjoy exploring new territories. Beagles were originally bred for hunting, which means that they can also live in a household with energetic kids. They are smart and friendly and can get along well with other pets.
3. Bull Terriers
The Bull Terrier was given a bad reputation and was unfairly branded as an aggressive breed. However, this is actually a companion dog and is known to do very well with kids and family members. They’re well-built and have a high threshold for pain, which makes it perfect for energetic kids who love to roughhouse. However, this dog must be kept physically and mentally active every day to avoid mischievous behaviors. If they are not properly exercised, they can destroy your house.
If you remember Lassie, you will know that Collie‘s are an excellent breed for a household filled with kids. They are easy to train and great to help with energetic children. They are gentle and predictable but require daily exercise, or else they can destroy your house. They get along with other dogs and are very pleasant with new guests in the house. The Collie was originally bred to herd sheep, so they may try to herd your children. Because the Collie has long hair, it’s vital to groom them on a daily basis. There are times where the fur can get matted or tangled up, and when this happens, it’s best to bring them to the groomers.
They are often called nature's babysitters and are considered the most gentle and intelligent dog breeds in the world. They work very well with children and can act as a protector. They are kind, gentle, and patient, which makes them the Mother Theresa of all dogs. The Newfoundland is suitable for a family that lives in a large house with an open space. This is mainly because they are an energetic breed that is known for excessive drooling and shedding. They are easily trained, but will require daily exercise to prevent them from getting into trouble.
Related: 10 Easy Dog Breeds to Own
This isn’t exactly a common breed, but they are fast, energetic, and gentle. However, they thrive better with older kids than younger ones. They are loyal, affectionate, confident, obedient, and smart. They are capable of forming a close bond with family members and do wonders with an outgoing and social environment. They are a family-friendly dog breed but require daily exercise.
7. Irish Settlers
Irish settlers are known for their luscious red coat. They are an energetic and playful breed that go very well with children in the household. This is a loyal dog and loves being around family members, mainly because they hate being alone. This type of dog needs a lot of exercise and pairs well with athletic and energetic kids. They are a smart breed that are easy to train and is perfect for families with a big backyard.
Poodles are one of the smartest breeds. They are gentle and do very well with kids in the household. Poodles come in various sizes, such as miniature, standard, and large. If your kids have allergies or asthma, then the poodle is the perfect breed because they are a hypoallergenic breed.
Related: 9 Large Dog Breeds That Don’t Shed
Labradors are the most popular breed mainly for their patience, playfulness, love, reliability, and protective nature. They are highly intelligent dogs and are easy to train. However, they require a lot of exercise and are perfect for an energetic household. They come in various colors such as black, chocolate, or yellow. They have excellent strength and stamina, which makes them good hunters. The best part about Labradors is that they have a short coat, so they don't require frequent grooming.
10. Golden Retrievers
Golden retrievers are a smart, kind, confident, and loyal breed. They are very patient, which makes them a perfect match for young kids. However, this breed needs a lot of exercise, and they love to play fetch. They are the type of dogs that kids can easily fall in love with. However, their beautiful golden coat requires daily brushing and maintenance. This breed is adapted to live outdoors, but they prefer to be indoors with humans at all times.
The pug is a little dog that enjoys being around the company of good people. He can live comfortably in a small apartment or country home, making him the most adaptable creature. He has a charming, loving, and mischievous personality. The pug is somewhat active, but not quite an athlete, but they do have a strong sense of curiosity. These adorable little dogs are good with children and other dogs. Even though they have short coats, but they do shed regularly, so weekly brushing is a must. They can be easily trained and only barks when necessary. These dogs have a height of 10 to 13 inches and weigh around 14 to 18 pounds. They have a life expectancy of about 13 to 15 years.
12. Brussels Griffon
Brussel griffins are active little dogs that make an excellent companion. They thrive on mental stimulation and companionship with their owner. Their small size makes them an excellent apartment dweller as long as you give them enough attention and playtime. This little dog is somewhat active and loves to play and share daily walks with their owner. They are great with children and other dogs but are seasonal shedders, which is why it’s best to groom them every week. They respond well to training, and barks if there are intruders. They weigh about 8 to 10 pounds and have a height of 7 to 10 inches. Their life expectancy is around 12 to 15 years.
13. French Bulldog
The French bulldog is a popular small dog breed for apartments and city dwellers. This adorable little pup makes a great addition to the family. They are smart, playful, irresistible, and adaptable. They aren’t very active, so they make an excellent couch companion, especially if you decided to spend the whole day watching Netflix. Frenchy’s are an easy-going, non-athletic dog that enjoys a brisk walk around the park. They are great with kids and other dogs, but tend to be seasonal shedders, so occasional grooming is highly recommended. They respond well to training and are generally quiet, so you won’t have to worry about the neighbors complaining. They usually weight under 28 pounds and have a height of 11 to 13 inches as well as a life expectancy of around 10 to 12 years.
These adorable spotted creatures have become famous because of the Disney movie "101 Dalmations." They are known for their colored spots on sparkling white coats, and the best part is that it doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. They only need occasional baths and weekly brushing with their nails trimmed. However, these active dogs require regular exercise to stay happy. They enjoy chasing a ball, running alongside a jogging or biking owner, hiking, or a nice walk around the park. Since these are highly energetic dogs, they can easily get bored and mischievous if they don’t get the proper amount of mental and physical activity. Since Dalmations does well with positive reinforcement and responds positively to reward-based training, it’s best to start early with puppy training classes to ensure that your spotted friend grows up to be a well-mannered companion. They enjoy the company of other dogs and family members, which makes them an excellent family pet.
15. Australian Shepherds
The Australian Shepherd is a friendly family dog that requires a lot of exercise and grooming. This dog is bred for herding, so they thrive well with a family living in a big house with a backyard with an ample amount of space. These dogs are prone to getting overweight, so it’s essential to give them high-quality dog food with lots of exercise such as jogging, playing fetch, or just running around to get excess energy out of their system. They are easy to train and can form a strong bond with their family. However, they tend to be overprotective and territorial of their owner's property, which makes them an excellent guard dog to keep the family safe.
What Type of Dogs to Avoid?
If you have a family with young children, it’s best to avoid dogs with aggressive tendencies. Some breeds have high levels of aggression and are difficult to train. Some breeds are very pack-oriented, where the alpha-beta status makes it difficult to train them. This is mainly because these breeds will fight you for their alpha status.
One of the toughest breeds to train is the Husky, which often stands by the status quo. A lot of people often find that hybrid dogs which are half canine and half wolf are very majestic and exotic dogs to own. However, because of their wolf instinct, they tend to have higher levels of aggression and could be harder to tame and train. They may see young children as prey and that could lead to some issues down the road.
Finding the perfect dog breed can be challenging, especially if you have small children in the family. You want a dog that is easy to train, loyal, and gentle. Fortunately, with the breeds listed above, you won’t have to do much research. Rest assured that we are here to provide you with all the information that you need to pick the dog of your dreams.
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