The Best Dog Breeds for First Time Owners

Getting your first dog is a big and exciting step! Once you make the big decision, one of the big questions you’ll face is, “What kind of dog should I choose?”

We fully believe that all dogs are wonderful. Each breed has unique personalities and it’s always important to make sure that your pup will be the right fit for you.

That’s why we put together a list of dog breeds that are perfect for first-time owners. Read through the list to find your ideal pooch!  

Golden Retrievers

Are you looking for a high-energy pal? If so then this is the breed for you. Golden Retrievers are great for someone who wants a dog to go on hikes and visit parks for some fun time. 

Goldens are also incredibly smart and great family dogs. They are not only excellent playmates, but they are good protectors as well, so if you have kids or plan to in the future this might be a good option. 

However, they do require a lot of space, and need exercise including walks and ways to get their energy out!. If you can’t dedicate that time, they’re likely to start chewing to release that pent-up energy. So only choose a Golden if you know you have the time and space to give them a happy life.


If you’re looking for a real character, get a weenie dog! Dachshunds are like tiny people with giant personalities. They are lovers and snugglers and make the best movie night partners out there, and they tend to live 16 to 18 years, which is much longer than most breeds.

Dachshunds can be pretty stubborn and hard to train. If you’re going this route, make sure you have plenty of patience and commitment to reach the goals necessary to keep you and your pup happy. 


These dogs are some of the sweetest little hounds out there! Beagles are excellent at being outdoor dogs but also don’t need as much exercise as retrievers. They are great dogs to have with children and are loyal to a fault. 

Beagles do however have a signature howl—a trademark for this breed. Otherwise, they are an excellent choice if you’re looking for a great mid-sized pup.

Labrador Retrievers

If you’re the outdoorsy type, labs are a good choice for you. Labs make great camping and hunting pals. And if you are someone who loves to run, they can definitely keep up! 

Labs are also excellent with kids. They are lovable, playful, and energetic giants. 

Like most large dogs, this breed is also one that needs a lot of attention. Labs have plenty of energy to expend and need frequent outings to stretch their legs and run around. So if you are someone that can’t fit walks into your schedule this may not be your ideal fit. 

Border Collies

Border Collies are one of the smartest breeds out there. They are great indoors and outdoors and are easy to train. They are small enough that they don’t need a giant yard, but they do require plenty of physical and mental stimulation. Border Collies are excellent at learning tricks, so if you are looking for a fun companion they are a good choice. 

Border Collies have a beautiful coat that often takes a little more work than some other breeds, but as long as you are willing to brush and care for their fur, they are a great choice.  

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

Don’t let the big-name fool you— Cavalier King Charles Spaniels tend to be easy dogs to take care of. Their long hair may seem intimidating, but it’s easy to maintain with some basic daily brushing. 

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels have a very gentle demeanor. They like walks but don’t require a lot of strenuous exercise as some other larger breeds do. They are sweet and great with children of all ages.


If you’re looking for a dog on the smaller side, Pomeranians might be the perfect fit. These little guys are playful lap dogs with giant personalities. 

Pomeranians are great for single or coupled owners, or for families with older children. Their coats only require some gentle brushing to get tangles out and are otherwise fairly effortless. 

This breed does need some basic training initially as they tend to have sassy and stubborn personalities. Overall though, this dog is an easy breed for a smaller household.


Despite some of their silly haircuts, Poodles are one of the most intelligent dogs. They come in three sizes—standard, toy, and miniature. They are great in most households and are easy to train. 

Another great perk to this breed is they don’t shed and are hypoallergenic. However, because of this, they do require more maintenance on their coat than some other breeds. 

Mixed Breeds

Oftentimes some of the best dogs are a combination of breeds. As pet stores start to dwindle away, and pet adoption gains popularity, fewer people are looking for purebreds and more are looking into mixed breeds. 

When shopping for a mixed breed dog, make sure you do your research and get as much information as you can about the dog’s background.  It’s always better to be prepared when adopting a new dog. 

There Is No Bad Choice

When it comes to dogs, there’s no one perfect breed. It all depends on what fits your personality and lifestyle.

You might just fall in love with a certain breed or even a certain dog at a shelter. It’s the feeling and connection you and the dog have for each other that counts. All breeds have their benefits, and they all deserve love. 

Just make sure that you are ready to put in the work for your special new friend, and the two of you will be ready for a lifetime of happiness!  

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