Best Dogs for First Time Owners

If you’re considering getting a dog for the first time, you have a lot to think about! Dogs come in all different shapes and sizes. While this allows you to choose the perfect first dog for your lifestyle, it also means that you have plenty of dog breeds to sort through before you find the perfect one for you.

Not all companion dog breeds are equally suitable for novice owners. Some breeds require near-constant training or might come with a high likelihood of health problems. Here are some of the best dog breeds every first-time dog owner should consider…

Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is a popular breed that is a good choice for new owners who are looking for a larger dog. They have a friendly, easy temperaments, don’t get into much mischief, and don’t require a strong trainer.

They are somewhat high-energy, so we only recommend them to those with active lifestyles. They require a lot of exercise. Expect to take them on at least a mile walk per day. Their larger size does mean that they’ll consume more food than a smaller dog, which can make them a more expensive option over time.

Poodles

These popular dogs can be suitable for some first-time owners. These lovable dogs take very easy to training and are not very stubborn. They’re loyal and pretty easy to handle for most owners.

With that said, they also require a lot of grooming and exercise. Expect to take them for a long walk each day and wear them out in a fenced-in yard. They are very active dogs. They will need daily brushing as well as regular trips to the groomers.

Labrador Retriever

Labs are known for being some of the friendliest dogs around. They’ve been the number one dog in the United States for the last several years, and for a good reason. They’re friendly, easy to train, dependable, and loyal. They are not stubborn and pretty much listen to whatever their owner says.

These mellow dogs do require a bit of exercise each day, so they are suitable for all dog owners. They shed and do need to be brushed regularly, especially during the changing seasons when they tend to shed particularly bad.

Papillon

This is one of the best little dogs for new owners who are in the market for something small. They only reach about 7 to 9 pounds when fully grown, making them perfect for apartment living. Furthermore, these small dogs do not have the negative health consequences that other small dogs tend to have.

These tiny dogs don’t require much exercise, though you should plan on taking them for walks or letting them romp around in a fenced-in area. They have low energy levels, so you definitely want to find the best dog food to keep them healthy.

They have decently easy-going personalities and are very low maintenance, though they can be a little yappy. They are not particularly shy or aggressive towards other dogs or people.

Bichon Frise

These tiny dogs are another great lap dog. They’re a little bigger than the Papillon, reaching about 15 pounds, but they love to cuddle. They require regular grooming as well and would probably benefit from a trip or two to the groomers. They do not have many health problems, especially when compared to other dogs. They do not shed very much, and they are not hypoallergenic.

They are not very active and many would prefer to spend the day on the couch. After a short 30 minutes of play time, many of these dogs are good for the rest of the day.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

These laid-back dogs make great companions and family dogs. They can easily become your best friend. They’re a little bit on the smaller size at around 15 pounds, which makes them suitable for those living in apartments. They are often considered gentle and playful. They have about the same activity level as the Bichon Frise, preferring to spend much of their day lounging around.

They do require regular brushing, with a daily brushing usually being necessary to keep their coats healthy.

Greyhound

While greyhounds are popularly known for their speed, they’re actually couch potatoes. They can run very fast, but don’t have the stamina to run for very long. It would be in your best interest to take them on daily walks, but they don’t need any more activity than any other big dogs. Despite their larger size, they are also one of the best dogs for apartments.

These dogs are not the easiest to train. Not because they’re stubborn, but because they just have a hard time paying attention.

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