The Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen is a small scent hound popular among dog lovers for its friendly nature and distinctive appearance.
Thinking about adopting a dog? Feeling overwhelmed by all the choices with so many dog breeds?
There are more than 150 dog breeds, and each has unique characteristics.
Choosing a dog for you and your family out of all the available dog breeds is quite an overwhelming process. The best breeds of dogs come in all shapes and sizes.
Even if you like a particular dog breed, remember to consider that breed's natural habitat; for example, a Tibetan mastiff cannot survive in a sub-tropical climate.
While some are better suited to live on a farm, others make great apartment dogs. Some are docile and friendly, while others bark or howl a lot. Some may be aggressive and ferocious at times.
Most can adjust to various climate types, while others can survive only in a specific environment.
If you're considering getting a dog, check out their characteristics and match them to your personality and lifestyle.
Decide whether you want a purebred or a mutt, which will exhibit many of the parents' best traits while having fewer health issues.
And decide whether you want a big dog or a small one.
Do you want an independent dog? Or one that sticks to your side?
What's your energy level? Do you want a dog who needs a lot of exercise or one that is happy snuggling with you on the couch?
The laziest dog breeds steal your heart by doing nothing.
Or, if you are active and athletic, you might consider dogs with high energy levels. Just be prepared to help them burn it off without indulging in problem behaviors like excessive barking, scratching, or digging.
When you choose one of the longest-living dog breeds, do your part and give them the proper care to help them live happy and healthy lives.
Although grooming requirements may not top the list when considering what kind of dog to adopt, low-maintenance dogs will make your life easier while saving you time and money.
Just like Goldilocks, you may want to choose your dog based on size.
From Beagles to Yorkies, small dog breeds are perfect for city living and make great lap dogs. Check out our list of the 15 most popular small dog breeds and find the ideal match for you.
Small dog options include:
The smallest of the pinscher breed, the Affenpinscher, is one of the oldest dog breeds.
Lhasa Apsos are loyal and intelligent but are high-maintenance dogs that can be hard to train.
Pekinese dogs have silky coats that look like a lion's mane. The dogs need short daily walks and a high-protein diet.
Mid-size dogs don't eat as much as big dogs and aren't as fragile as small dogs. And they make great companions for active families.
Mid-sized dog options include:
The Golden Retrievers are intelligent, loyal, and eager to please. They are easy to train and make good dogs for first-time owners.
Labrador Retrievers are among the most popular dogs and make wonderful family pets.
German Shepherds are brave and intelligent. Although they often are used as police dogs, they also make great family dogs.
Large dog breeds can be easy to take care of — and they offer so much love. They're typically loyal and protective, making them perfect family pets.
If you want to go big, consider choosing one of the dogs on this list of 11 magnificent mastiff dog breeds.
Large dog options include:
Alaskan Malamutes can be needy and sensitive. They aren't a good choice for first-time owners.
Bernese Mountain Dogs are even-tempered and friendly. They rarely bark and are good with children.
Komondors are muscular dogs with distinctive, chord-like curls.
Saint Bernards can weigh up to 180 pounds. The dogs are intelligent, gentle giants who stay playful.
A Belgian Malinois is a loyal, loving companion who needs training and every opportunity to stay physically active and intellectually engaged.
The Weimaraner is a loyal, intelligent dog that is easy to train and groom but needs more exercise than some other breeds.
The Pitbull Lab mix is a cross between a Labrador Retriever and an American Pitbull Terrier. They are intelligent, obedient, and courageous.
The poodle is easy to train and energetic. They like to be with people most of the time and hate being in a kennel.
The Cocker Spaniel is a friendly, happy dog. Just be prepared to spend time and money on grooming to keep your dog's coat beautiful and healthy.
The Mudi dog breed is a spunky little farm dog praised for its intelligence, eagerness, loyalty, and versatility.
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is an excellent choice for families looking for a smart, eager-to-please dog that loves to learn and excels in sports such as flyball, dock diving, obedience, and agility. However, early socialization and training are necessary to prevent vocalization and separation anxiety.
The Catahoula Leopard Dog is courageous with a strong, muscular build, making it ideal for families who want a loyal, protective companion.
Boston Terriers are bright, amusing, and friendly, with a characteristic "tuxedo" coat.
The Golden retriever is a friendly, intelligent dog whose willingness to please makes it ideal for families and first-time owners.
The German Shepherd Dog is energetic, lively, courageous, and intelligent. They train easily and routinely work as police and military dogs.
The Shetland Sheepdog or sheltie is an energetic small herding dog bred to herd sheep, ponies, and poultry. They excel at agility.
Despite their small size, Yorkshire terriers have big dog attitudes.
Doberman Pinschers are commonly trained as guard dogs. They protect their owners and can be hostile to other dogs.
The French bulldog is an intelligent, playful dog that perfectly adapts to the indoors and is not overly demanding in terms of grooming.
The Border collie is a high-energy dog that does best with people who have time and energy to spend with them. They are not good with young children.
Brachycephalic dog breeds experience health issues: breathing disorders, exercise-induced problems, and trouble tolerating heat and cold.
Meet the 9 most popular large dog breeds that make great pets
Now that you know more about the most popular large dog breeds, it’s time to consider their merits and choose the right one.
Want to adopt? Use Petfinder.com to find your next pup
PetFinder.com compiles pet info from rescue websites across the country into one spot for an easy search by breed, location, and more.
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