You may have considered adding a canine companion to your young family but what dog should you get? Here, our Westfield vets suggest some of the best dog breeds for a family with small children.
What Breed of Dog is Right for Your Family?
When trying to decide on the right breed of dog for your family, it's important to look beyond the cuteness factor and consider more important factors such as how much space the breed needs, how much exercise the breed requires, and the overall temperament of the breed. Take your time to find a dog that suits the space you live in, as well as the energy level of your family, and how much time each family member is willing to commit to training your new fur baby. To get you off to a good start picking the dog breed that is best for kids here are a few of our favorites:
If you've got a large home and want a dog to help you fill it, the huge Newfoundland might be right for your family. Nicknamed 'Nature's babysitter', these sweet-natured, intelligent dogs love to be around kids. Water-loving and friendly Newfoundlands can make excellent family pets.
Weighing around 65 lbs, this breed is more than just strikingly beautiful! These dogs are lively, intelligent and have a great sense of mischief. Irish Setters love to chase balls, and go for long runs, but also enjoy playing in the backyard with kids. High-energy kids will love spending time with this breed.
If you have kids that will love throwing a ball and playing with the family pup, or taking the time to teach the dog new tricks, this could be the breed for you. Ranging in weight from 55-75 lbs Golden Retrievers are confident, friendly, smart, kind, and loyal, making them perfect for family life.
Less energetic, this breed weighs in at about 50-55 lbs, making it suitable for smaller homes and apartments. These dogs seek out social interactions with their people and will love cuddling up with the family to watch a movie and relax. English bulldogs make sweet, gentle and dependable family pets.
At between 18-30 lbs this medium-sized breed craves spending time with its people, playing games, and going for walks. These smart dogs can make very loving family pets when provided with plenty of family interaction and exercise. This is not the best breed for many families who are out of the house.
Checking in at just under 25 pounds, these people-loving dogs come with their own easy-to-care-for "tuxedo" coats. Content to play with the kids and go for short walks this charming dog breed adapts well to apartment living and makes a great companion for children. Boston terriers are full of personality your kids will love.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
At between 10-18 lbs, the portable size of this lively but gentle breed makes it ideal for smaller homes or apartments. Cavaliers get along well with kids as well as other dogs, loving to play and snuggle in equal measure. These sweet-natured dogs can be great pets for kids of many energy levels and ages.
These adorable little characters love to eat and sleep. If your kids are small, or lower energy and would appreciate a dog that will play indoors then curl up with them and watch tv, a pug may be the right breed for your family. At around 15 lbs, this is a breed that doesn't need much space just a couple of short walks each day.
Mutts are mixed-breed dogs that can be fantastic family dogs! These dogs often come equipped with the best traits of many kid-friendly breeds such as a gentle loving nature and loyalty. These dogs can be as good with children as purebred dogs, tend to be less susceptible to genetic diseases, and are less expensive. The perfect breed for your child may be waiting for you at your local animal shelter.