Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners

Looking for your perfect companion can be a daunting experience, especially when it’s your first time.

Fear not, The Pet Embassy are here to provide you with a list of our best dog breeds for beginners to ensure that you have an idea of what to expect from your new companion.

Understanding which dog breeds are good for beginners will help develop the deepest of bonds and fill both of your lives with happiness.

Please note that like any breed round up, all the following choices are subjective and are far from being exhaustive. We know there are many other wonderful dog breeds that could have made the list and the list is in no particular order!

If you have a dog whose breed appears on our “Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners” list or if you think your dog breed should have been on here, please let us know in the comments section below!

The Pet Embassy’s “Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners”

Golden Retriever

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A beautiful Golden Retriever sitting on the grass. Photo by Mithul Varshan from Pexels

Size: Large

Temperament: Confident, Gentle and Intelligent

Golden Retrievers are one of the most popular dogs breeds in the world right now. They offer affection, companionship and energy whilst also being easy to train and incredibly gentle. Golden Retrievers also need a good amount of exercise to keep them healthy and prevent them from becoming bored. They are one of the most loyal dog breeds in the world and they will go above and beyond for their owners!

The Golden Retriever is a family dog breed and they are one of the most intelligent dog breeds in the world. They are so intelligent and easy to train that the first three dogs ever to win the AKC obedience championship were Golden Retrievers.

Golden Retrievers are known for being great around kids and families as well as other dogs due to their gentle and kind nature. Golden Retrievers have an instinct for protecting their pack from anything dangerous so they are great to take to the park with your children as they are another pair of watchful eyes! All of these traits mean the Golden Retriever is a great dog breed for beginners and first time dog owners.

The Golden Retriever is one of our favorite large dog breeds and one of the best working dog breeds.

Labrador Retriever

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
Close up of a lovely Yellow Labrador Retriever. Photo by Bruno Cervera from Pexels

Size: Large

Temperament: Gentle, Kind and Trusting

Like the Golden Retriever, Labrador Retrievers are another extremely popular breed and for good reason. Labrador Retrievers make great pets for first-time dog owners due to their affectionate and loyal natures. The Labrador is one of the most intelligent dog breeds in the world and they are frequently trained to aid those with blindness or autism. They are known for being calm and gentle, meaning they are a great family dog as well as a great companion to share the home with as well as being one of the best dog breed for kids and families. In addition, Labrador Retrievers are one of the best dog breeds for seniors.

Labrador Retrievers thrive in active environments, where they can be mentally and physically stimulated. If Labrador Retrievers do not get plenty of exercise as they as the Labrador Retriever is one of the most energetic dog breeds in the world and they also require lots of mental stimulation as they may become bored, therefore, if you live an active lifestyle and want a dog breed that will fit into your lifestyle, Labrador Retrievers could be for you!

Labrador Retrievers are a double-coated dog breed therefore they require regular grooming to keep their coats nice and healthy. Their coat should be brushed regularly as this can alert you to health and skin problems such as hot spots, hair loss or dry skin.

Like the Golden Retriever, the Labrador Retrievers are one of our favorite large dog breeds as well as one of our top working dog breeds.

Pug

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A Beautiful Brown pug basking in the sunlight. Photo by Burst from Pexels

Size: Small

Temperament: Charming, Playful and Sociable 

The Pug’s face, with deep wrinkles around big, dark eyes and a flat round face, can’t help but make you smile. It is thought that the Pug’s name stems from the Latin word for “fist” as their face resembles a human fist. The Pug is a lazy dog for a lazy person, infact, they are so lazy they are one of our least active dog breeds, they are happy to remain snuggled on the couch for hours as long as they are getting their attention, which is why they are a great dog breed for seniors. Pugs are a sweet dog breed and generally get along with everyone and everything, meaning they are one of the best dog breeds for kids and families and they also get along with other dogs. 

The Pug is one of our least active dog breeds which makes them a perfect dog breed for lazy people and an even better dog breed for beginners and first time dog owners who live a less active lifestyle.

Even though the coats are short, Pugs are a double-coated breed. Pugs are typically fawn-coloured or black. The coat is short and smooth, however, pugs still shed a lot. Additionally, the Pug’s bulging eyes need special attention. Because they protrude, the eyes are vulnerable to injury and irritation from soaps and chemicals.

In addition, the Pug is one of our favorite small dog breeds.

Bichon Frise

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
Even a Bichon Frise is tempted by a hot tub! Image by Bill Kasman from Pixabay

Size: Small

Temperament: Affectionate, Cheerful and Sensitive

Bichon Frise were actually originally bred to be a companion dog. Therefore, they are naturally a great dog breed for beginners and first time dog owners. They are a curious breed who like to discover new things and their size makes them the companion to take anywhere. The Bichon Frise have been known to suffer from separation anxiety, therefore, you should not leave your Bichon alone for long periods of time.

Due to their small size, the Bichon Frise adapt well to living in small spaces. They are one of the best dog breeds for apartments. However, they do have a lot of energy so should be taken for daily walks and have regular exercise. 

This dog breed is great with kids and families and other household pets, they are also one of favorite dog breeds with a hypoallergenic coat which makes them the perfect choice for someone with allergies. However, this is something that you should discuss with your allergist as not everyone reacts the same way to the Bichon Frise. 

Pomeranian

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A perfect Pomeranian smiling into the camera. Image by 관성 정 from Pixabay

Size: Small

Temperament: Cute, Extroverted and Intelligent

Pomeranians are the definition of cute. Their large eyes on their tiny faces surrounded by their puffy fur make them exceptional show dogs. Pomeranians are alert and curious about the world around them and they sometimes forget their size! Pomeranians have a loud bark and make excellent watchdogs.

Pomeranians are not an overly dependent dog breed therefore make an excellent choice for older people or those who are busy most of the day. They are one of our least active dog breeds in the world but like all dogs they do enjoy going for walks. They are quite a laid back dog breed but they do however enjoy going for walks, which is why they make good companions for seniors.

Fortunately, their coat is not as high-maintenance as it looks. Regular brushing and daily exercise is all you need to keep your Pomeranian happy. They are highly adaptable and once socialised can live in harmony with other pets.

All these traits make them one of our favourite small dog breeds!

Brittany

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A bold Brittany looking into the distance. Image by 272447 from Pixabay

Size: Large

Temperament: Attentive, Elegant and Happy

Brittany is an elegant dog breed who is well behaved and their main mission is to please their master. They are highly independent therefore making the dogs pretty easy to manage and train. Brittanys have a high level of enthusiasm for everything they do, whether it is playing in the yard, with kids or enjoying a run. Due to this enthusiasm, it is important to provide this dog breed with plenty of exercise. Because of their happy, friendly nature, Brittanys are good dog breed with children and other pets. 

Brittany’s are fairly easy to groom. Ensure you keep their coasts in good condition by weekly brushing and bathe them when necessary. The Brittany is a dog breed that does not shed much.

Poodle

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A lovely Poodle puppy plays on the grass. Image by carah_ from Pixabay

Size: Medium

Temperament: Active, Instinctual and Intelligent 

The Poodle is a well-known and versatile breed that can come in miniature, toy or standard size. Poodles are one of the most active dog breeds as well as a family dog that responds well to training and are able to thrive in a number of households, they are one of the best dog breeds for kids and families. The Poodle is protective of his home and family, and if strangers approach your house, they are known to sound a warning bark to let you know. Their easy going nature and ability to learn makes them one of the best dog breeds for beginners as well as one of the best dog breeds for seniors.

The Poodle is one of the smartest dog breeds in the world. Their intelligence, playful nature and the fact that they are one of the most energetic dog breeds means that obedience training is essential in keeping your Poodle mentally and physically stimulated. In addition, they also should be taken for exercise daily and they enjoy and excel at dog games due to their intelligent nature. Poodles are energetic dogs that need plenty of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy. The Poodle is one of our favorite medium dog breeds.

The Poodle is one of the longest living dog breeds and they can live for about 12 to 15 years, but note that toy and miniature varieties usually outlast standard poodles. All variations of the Poodle are amongst the longest living dog breeds.

Poodles are hypoallergenic and the Toy Poodle features on our favorite small hypoallergenic dog breeds.

Yorkshire Terrier

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A lovely Yorkshire terrier looking towards its next adventure. Photo by Pezibear from Pixabay

Size: Small

Temperament: Bold, Confident and Courageous

Yorkshire Terriers are a family dog and they make great companions for first-time dog owners, although they are mischievous, they provide you with the love and companionship you need. They have a moderate amount of energy and only need basic exercise, which makes the Yorkshire Terrier one of the best dog breeds for apartments. They sometimes forget that they are such a small dog and are willing to take on any challenge!

Yorkshire Terriers are one of the most loyal dog breeds to their owners and they are an intelligent dog breed as well as a great companion on any adventure.  All these traits make them one of our favorite small dogs!

Yorkshire Terriers long hair means that some grooming is essential. The Yorkshire Terrier’s coat needs to be combed or brushed regularly and they need to wash after one of their adventures as the dirt can easily get trapped within the hairs! The Yorkshire Terrier is one of our favorite small hypoallergenic dog breeds. An important point to note is that the hair on the top of the head gets very long, so many owners pull the hair back into a distinctive ponytail to keep the hair out of the dogs face! 

Additionally, the Yorkshire Terrier is one of the longest living dog breeds, living up to 15 years!

Greyhound

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A smiling Greyhound Image by Akiko Campbell from Pixabay

Greyhounds

Size: Large

Temperament: Affectionate, Athletic and Gentle

Greyhounds are low-maintenance dogs that thrive on the attention of their master. Due to their short coats they also need little grooming. Greyhounds are loyal and affectionate with their family and they are not aggressive towards strangers, however, they will let you know if a stranger approaches with a bark or a subtle pricking of their small ears.

Believe it or not, although Greyhounds are known for their sprinting, their favourite past time is actually napping. Believe it or not, they this lazy dog breeds is one of our least active dog breeds. They are extremely well behaved when indoors and our a great dog breed for apartments or in a house with a small yard. However, they are also up for any adventure with their family. Please keep the greyhound on a leash until it is properly trained as they have a strong prey drive and will take off after a rabbit before you even see it!

Due to their thin coats, it is important to note that Greyhounds can get the shivers, therefore we recommend buying a warm coat for your dog if you live in a cold climate.

Papillon

Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners
A brown Papillon dog on a walk. Image by sterou70 from Pixabay

Size: Small

Temperament: Alert, Energetic and Friendly

Don’t let this small frame fool you. The Papillon is a sturdy little dog that enjoys a moderately active lifestyle. They are a happy and friendly dog breed that will thrive in a variety of households. The Papillion is one of the most intelligent dog breeds as well as being outgoing and energetic dog breed that loves to be with people and give kisses to anyone who comes close enough, therefore, they are great dog breed for kids and families.

Their energy level and their desire to please makes them an easy dog to train. However, Papillons can become a bit stubborn if they are allowed to show that behaviour early in their development, therefore, early training is recommended.

While their high energy level and inquisitive nature means they need a lot of exercise, they can amuse themselves with balls and other toys easily. Despite their fluffy coat, they have minimal shedding.

In addition, the Papillon is one of the longest living dog breeds. Papillons live up to 15 years old, although some are known to have lived for 18 years. Unfortunately, and despite their relatively long lifespans, Papillons are vulnerable to a number of different health problems, so be sure to work closely with your vet as your Papillon ages.

Is your dog breed featured in our “Top 10 Best Dogs for Beginners and First Time Dog Owners” list? Let us know in the comment section below.

Many of these dogs also feature in our other posts so why not read them below!

Top 10 Most Loyal Dog Breeds for Your Home

Top 10 Most Energetic Dog Breeds for Active People

Top 10 Dog Breeds for Kids and Families

Top 10 Smartest Dog Breeds (Intelligent Dog Rankings)

Is My Dog Depressed? – What To Do If Your Dog Seems Sad and Tired

Top 10 Favorite Small Dog Breeds to Keep You Company

Top 10 Least Active Dog Breeds for Lazy People

Top 10 Best Dog Breeds for Seniors and Older People

Top 10 Best Dog Breeds for Apartments and Smaller Living Spaces

Top 10 Longest Living Dog Breeds to Fill Your Home With Love

Top 10 Best Dog Breeds for Protection and To Keep You Safe

Top 10 Favorite Medium Dog Breeds That Encompass The Best of Both Worlds

Top 10 Favorite Large Dog Breeds for Any Adventure

Top 10 Small Hypoallergenic Dog Breeds for People Who Suffer From Allergies

Top 10 Working Dog Breeds to Help With Those Tasks

Top 10 Herding Dog Breeds for Active Families

Why Does My Dog Do That? An Answer to The Most Googled Questions of 2020

Helpful Tips to Follow When Introducing Dogs

New Puppy Checklist to Help You Ease Your New Companion Into Your Home

How To Build a Dog’s Confidence In A Shy or Fearful Dog

Ways to Recognize Stress in Dogs To Help Them Through a Tough Time

Top 10 Big Fluffy Dog Breeds That Are The Same As A Real Life Teddy Bear

Top 10 Terrier Dog Breeds to Keep You Entertained

Why Does My Dog Run Away and How to Stop Them

Dog Body Language Guide: How to Read Your Dog Like a Pro

How to Train Your Dog to Play So You Can Have Hours Of Fun

Top 10 Dog Breeds for Cold Weather Adventures and Activities

Top 10 Gassiest Dog Breeds

Top 10 Worst Dogs for Kids and Families

Top 10 Ideas for Your Dogs Birthday – Things to do for Your Dog’s Special Day

Top 10 Healthiest Dog Breeds

Top 10 Double Coated Dog Breeds to Cope With Difficult Weather

How to Puppy Proof Your Home For Your Newest Member

Training a Rescue Dog: Everything You Need to Know

10 of the Worst Foods For Your Dog – Top Toxic Foods for Dogs

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