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The 15 Best Dog Breeds For Families with Kids
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The 15 Best Dog Breeds For Families with Kids

Critter Culture Staff

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Choosing the right dog breed for families with children is a decision that requires careful consideration. The temperament, size, energy level, and grooming needs of the breed play a significant role in ensuring a harmonious relationship between the pet and the kids. The right dog can become a child's best friend, protector, and playmate.

1

Labrador Retriever: the all-American family dog

Father Reading Book With Son And Daughter And Pet Dog At Home monkeybusinessimages / Getty Images

Labrador Retrievers are renowned for their friendly and patient nature, making them a top choice for families. Their love for play and water activities ensures endless fun for kids. Regular exercise is essential for this energetic breed. Additionally, their short coat requires minimal grooming, making maintenance relatively easy.

2

Golden Retriever: a gentle and loyal companion

Happy mother and son at home petting their dog andresr / Getty Images

Golden Retrievers are known for their affectionate nature and intelligence. Their gentle temperament makes them great companions for children of all ages. Regular exercise and mental stimulation are crucial for this active breed. Their long, luscious coat requires regular grooming to keep it in top condition.

3

Beagle: the curious and friendly hound

Family gathering with dog in a park urbazon / Getty Images

Beagles, with their friendly demeanor, are excellent companions for kids. Their curious nature can lead to exciting adventures in the backyard. However, they are also known to be quite vocal, often expressing themselves with barks and howls. Regular exercise and playtime are essential to keep them happy and healthy.

4

Boxer: energetic and protective

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Boxers are playful and loyal, making them great family pets. Their protective nature ensures that they'll always look out for the youngest family members. Regular training sessions are essential to channel their energy positively. While they are generally healthy, it's essential to be aware of certain breed-specific health issues.

5

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: the lap-loving friend

Puppy spaniel Tempura / Getty Images

These small dogs are known for their gentle temperament and adaptability. Their affectionate nature makes them perfect lap dogs for kids to cuddle with. Regular grooming is essential to maintain their beautiful coat. However, potential owners should be aware of specific health concerns associated with the breed.

6

Bichon Frise: the cheerful and hypoallergenic choice

Enjoying sunset with my dog MilanEXPO / Getty Images

For families with allergy concerns, the Bichon Frise is a fantastic choice. Their curly coat is hypoallergenic, and their cheerful disposition makes them great playmates for kids. Regular grooming sessions are essential to prevent matting. Training is relatively easy, given their eager-to-please nature.

7

Poodle (and Poodle mixes): smart and versatile companions

Cute white male poodle puppy tsik / Getty Images

Poodles come in various sizes, suitable for different family needs. Known for their intelligence and hypoallergenic coats, they are great for families with allergy concerns. Regular grooming is essential, especially if the coat is kept long. Their smart nature means they pick up on training quickly, making them adaptable to various family activities.

8

Bulldog: the calm and affectionate pal

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Bulldogs, with their easy-going nature, are perfect for families looking for a low-energy companion. Their love for lounging makes them great buddies for relaxed afternoons. Regular check-ups are essential due to some breed-specific health concerns. Their short snout requires special attention during hot weather.

9

Shetland Sheepdog: the intelligent and watchful friend

Purebred Shetland Sheepdog outdoors on grass meadow yanjf / Getty Images

Shetland Sheepdogs, or Shelties, are known for their intelligence and protective nature. Their herding instincts make them watchful guardians for kids. Regular grooming is essential due to their long, thick coat. Training sessions are a joy, given their eagerness to learn and please their owners.

10

Cocker Spaniel: the gentle and happy-go-lucky companion

Funny cocker spaniel puppy smiling during a photo shoot. Emotional portrait of a dog. Ekaterina savyolova / Getty Images

Cocker Spaniels are affectionate and adaptable, making them great family pets. Their playful nature ensures endless fun for kids. Regular grooming sessions are essential to maintain their beautiful coat. Exercise and playtime are crucial for this active breed.

11

Newfoundland: the gentle giant

Portrait of a Newfoundland dog Anita Kot / Getty Images

Newfoundlands are known for their protective instincts and immense love for children. Often referred to as "nanny dogs," their gentle nature makes them perfect companions for kids. Regular exercise and grooming are essential for this large breed. Their thick coat requires special attention, especially during shedding seasons.

12

Border Collie: the energetic and smart playmate

Happy border collie dog outdoors Purple Collar Pet Photography / Getty Images

Border Collies are incredibly intelligent and active, requiring regular mental and physical stimulation. Their herding instincts make them attentive companions for kids. Training sessions are a joy, given their quick learning abilities. Regular exercise is crucial to keep them happy and healthy.

13

Australian Shepherd: the active and loyal buddy

happy dog LittleCityLifestylePhotography / Getty Images

Australian Shepherds are known for their herding instincts and playful nature. Their energy and intelligence make them great playmates for active kids. Regular training and exercise are essential for this breed. Their beautiful coat requires regular grooming to keep it in top condition.

14

Vizsla: the affectionate and energetic partner

Majestic vizsla dog posing on a tree stump in the forest Ivar Østby Simonsen / Getty Images

Vizslas are known for their love for human companionship and play. Their affectionate nature makes them great cuddle buddies for kids. Regular exercise and training sessions are essential for this active breed. Being aware of certain breed-specific health issues is crucial for potential owners.

15

Dalmatian: the alert and playful guardian

Kissing Pet Dalmatian Dog SolStock / Getty Images

Dalmatians, with their distinctive spots, are not only attractive but also great family pets. Their history with firehouses showcases their alertness and protective nature. Regular exercise is essential for this active breed. Potential owners should be aware of specific health concerns, including deafness, which is relatively common in the breed.

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