Having a dog is rewarding in so many ways. You get to spend days with someone, there is always a living being waiting for you, and you get to share your good and sad moments with someone.
Plus, you will learn to appreciate more non-verbal communication.
Before you get to enjoy all perks of having a dog, you need to be sure that you are willing and capable of caring for another living being. Having a dog means responsibility.
Your canine will be next to you in your most challenging moments, and you don’t get to leave him when things become rough.
Sure, life happens, but you should always first try your best to keep your canine by your side no matter what.
The dog is 10+ years-long commitment. You will have to raise him to be a good canine-citizen, well-behaved dog, and a loyal friend.
Plus, having a dog will affect your time-management at first because you will have to prioritize things.
Don’t forget that a dog needs to eat, that he needs proper and regular vaccination, and regular veterinarian check-ups. And, just like with humans, dogs get sick, so questions like – Should I have pet insurance, will become your everyday thing.
So, if you are comfortable with responsibility and you are willing to care for your dog until the very end, and you promise to be a responsible dog owner, you are ready to choose a dog that fits your lifestyle.
Choose a Dog That Fits Your Lifestyle
You are probably careful when it comes to choosing your friends, right? If you are into running, you will want to spend time with someone who thinks that running is great, right?
Or, if you love hiking, you are more likely to expend your friend’s circle with other hiking enthusiasts, right? Because they are a better match for your preferences and lifestyle.
The same philosophy should apply when it comes to choosing the perfect dog breed for you. Make sure that your dog matches your lifestyle.
If a dog doesn’t get enough exercise, he will show destructive behavior, because you don’t provide enough care.
On the other hand, if you want a dog that can hike for hours with you, or can go running with you, you should choose an athletic dog with endurance, like Rhodesian Ridgeback or Terriers.
Dog Breeds for New Owners
There are hundreds of dog breeds out there, and finding the perfect dog won’t be a quick task if you’re not sure what you are looking for.
Make sure that you are honest about your lifestyle, and have these dog’s treats on mind while searching for perfect canine:
- Think about the dog’s size
- Grooming needs
- Energy level
Each dog is different, but you can predict which breed is suitable for you, thanks to general traits. These traits will help you choose your dog more easily.
Here are the best dogs for first time dog owners.
1. Bichon Frise
The Bichon Frise is a small size, happy dog that looks a bit like a cotton ball. This breed is known for being a great companion. Bichons are known for being highly intelligent, and as such, they are easy to train.
They will adapt quickly to any lifestyle, as long as you take time to introduce your Bichon Frise carefully to changes.
Ensure that you double-check how much it will cost you to take your Bichon Frise for regular groomer visits.
Since this breed has a curly coat, it must be trimmed regularly and brushed carefully.
This breed is excellent for families with children, educate your children how to behave around dogs and apartment living.
The daily basic exercise is enough to keep this breed happy and healthy.
Don’t let the size scare you, because this large dog is a real sweetheart. This breed is great for new owners and for those searching for a medium-large high energy dog.
This loyal dog loves his humans and is known for creating a firm bond with his family.
If you prefer an active life, this breed could be perfect for you. Yet, the dog of this size will need plenty of exercises and a strong foundation of training.
When it comes to grooming, it will be easy and not at all time-consuming. Make sure that you check Boxer’s teeth weekly.
Puppies tend to be a little hyperactive, but luckily they aren’t difficult to train because they will enjoy the attention during training.
They tend to get along well with kids, and they tend to be protective over their family members because they are naturally protective of their families.
3. Golden Retriever
The Golden Retriever is one of the most popular and most beloved dogs in the world. This breed is continuously among the top three most popular dogs.
This medium-large dogi loyal, happy, active, and above all, extremely affectionate. Goldens and playful and smart, and as such, they are highly adaptable.
Since they have longer coats, it’s mandatory to regularly brush your Golden Retriever, to keep his coat free of tangles and mats.
Golden Retriever needs a fair amount of exercise to keep them in good shape. They are highly trainable, and as such, they will learn various tricks as long as you provide interesting training and positive reinforcement.
Goldens love to learn, and they are excellent with children of all ages. It’s no surprise that Golden Retriever is one of the world’s most popular dogs.
4. Mixed Breed Dogs
Never forget wonderful mixed breeds! These dogs are one-of-a-kind, and they are perfect companions. If you choose to adopt a mixed-breed dog, you will help reduce pet overpopulation in shelters.
If you aren’t sure which breed is right for you, or you want a combination of breeds, go to the animal shelter, meet some adorable dogs and talk with shelter employees about your lifestyle, and they might help you find your perfect match faster.
Exercise, training, and grooming are mandatory for all dogs, but the needs of a mixed-breed dog may vary based on its unique makeup.
5. King Charles Spaniel
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a loyal dog with a puppy-like appearance. This is one of the oldest dog breeds alive. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is known for having a gentle demeanor.
Cavalier’s moderate energy level means basic daily exercise to maintain health. This breed has a medium-length coat, but the brushing needs are basic.
Regular brushing is essential to avoid tangles in the hair. This breed can be easily trained. This breed isn’t prone to barking, and they re highly elegant and attentive. They can thrive in all kinds of households, and they tend to get along well with children of all ages.
Worst Dog Breeds for New Dog Owners
As a new dog owner, you should know that responsibility comes first. Don’t get a dog if you aren’t ready for that year’s long commitment, or if you can’t (yet!) financially handle it, because unexpected things will happen.
Avoid large dog breeds that are described as ‘aloof’, ‘reserved with strangers’, ‘independent’, ‘strong-willed’ or ‘primitive.’
Words are important, and how someone described a dog is crucial, so mind the wording and be at alert when you hear any euphemism for unfriendly.
Another tip is that new dog owners should avoid dogs with unusual names unless they’ve got a good reason for choosing Basenji pr Dogue de Bordeaux.
If you can’t pronounce the breed’s name, you probably haven’t gone through enough research, and you aren’t ready for welcoming that breed.
Just to be clear – these breeds are not bad breeds, but they are challenging, and they need experienced dog owners.
Since dogs are so individual, you can even find couch potato Border Collies and even friendly Chou Chow, but in general, these breeds will be a challenge to a first-time home and aren’t recommended for new dog owners.
Here are the breeds that you can welcome to your home once you gain some experience as a dog owner:
Sometimes it’s much easier to ask yourself specific questions to get to the perfect dog breed faster.
Ask yourself the following questions to have a more smooth process:
- How active your dog should be? If you are planning to hike with your dog, ask yourself: In a case of a mountain emergency, could I pick up my dog and carry him to the nearest safe point?
- How much weight your dog can have? Larger dogs eat more and they often need specific diet.
- Can you afford professional grooming?
- What dog breeds are allowed in your area?
- Are you ok with barking?
- Some dogs are prone to separation anxiety. So, can you afford dog daycare?
- Can you handle a dog with strong hunting drive?
This should be enough to help you cross some breeds based on size, breed band, maintenance difficulties, and coat type.
If you cross off breeds that are expensive or really rare, you will have a list of only a few breeds.
Next, make sure that you do proper research. Please get familiar with breeds’ characteristics, their need, and their temper.
Talk to your friends and see how they found their furry friends. Don’t forget to visit local animal shelters.
Coming to a Conclusion on Your First Dog Breed
After you do your research, you will have, probably, kind of a shortlist. That list may induce some herding dogs and a few retriever types. Your next step is to narrow your list down to under ten breeds.
Good to know: If you get a brachycephalic breed, know that they are prone to breathing issues, and it won’t hurt to learn when a puppy breathing fast while sleeping is a normal occurrence, and when it is something to be worried about.
Once you do that, you’re ready to start talking to owners, and you can meet dogs.
Visit local shelters, meet responsible breeders, and hang out with dog owners at the dog park to have your breed finalists list.
Interact with dogs and talk with their owners to learn about the dog’s traits and all about both the ups and downs. This will give you a better idea of the day-to-day life of owning a specific breed.