Best Dogs for First Time Owners – Which One Suits You?

Thinking About Buying A Dog? Here’s My List of The Best Dogs for First Time Owners…

The decision to get yourself a dog is not one to be entered into on a whim or a lark. It is something you need to consider with great care and concern.

Why did you choose to live where you did?

Perhaps you liked the climate, or you enjoyed the location. Perhaps you are okay with small spaces, like an apartment in a big city.

Or maybe you chose the country because you like space to move around.

Dogs are the same way we must choose places that match their individual needs.

The same goes for the owners. If you are an active person, choose an active breed.

If you’re a bit on the lazy side, choose a breed that is less active (although make no mistake-all dogs need some form of exercise).

It can be a challenge to decide, given that all breeds are great in their own way.

But have no fear, we will show you what to look for!

Hi! My name is Nance. My German shepherd and I, Fang, are here to show you some great ideas on how to choose a great dog if you are a first-time owner.

There are so many things to consider, and it was not easy for me at all when I was first looking to adopt my dog.

I scoured the internet and spent many hours thinking and deciding what to do. It can get super overwhelming, so I am going to break it all down for you into the best information. We cut to the chase for you!

I first learned of how important it is to be mindful of your dog’s breed when I read Jenna Stregowski’s article on dogs for first timers over at The Spruce Pets blog.

I did my own research and shared it with my family and friends-it really helped them out!

Active Dogs

If you are an active person-you love running, the gym, or just being out and about, these are the dogs that will be best for you.

These dogs tend to do better in open spaces, as they need a place to run around and be active.

Labrador Retriever

black dogLabrador Retrievers are immensely popular and so recognizable within the dog lover community.

They are great for families, and they are good at forming close bonds with their keepers.

They are very smart dogs, so be ready to outwit your pup when he or she decides to slip the leash or learn how to open the door!

They are quite playful, so if you have kids that love to play outside, they will have a lot of fun with this breed.

These dogs are fast learners and will enjoy learning tricks, playing fetch and running.

Be sure you can provide the correct amount of stimulation for these dogs.

They tend to act out if they are bored, something that happens more during their younger years.

They will eat just about anything so be sure that you keep food out of their sight for good health.

They are great for busy families in the grooming department. Short hair means minimal haircuts, although shedding will still happen.

Be sure to brush them often. They are great for families with kids!


src=”×300.jpg” alt=”Large dogq” width=”266″ height=”300″ />A boxer is known for his or her playful nature. Get this pup if you really want to play and have some fun.

They need lots of exercise and training, but they have very basic grooming needs.

For people on the go, this dog might just be for you!

They love to learn and enjoy the attention you give them.

They will thrive well in your active home, and if you have kids, they will become fast friends.

Boxers are also known to be very protective of their families, so be sure they are socialized so that they can handle people and dogs outside of their own families.

Golden Retriever

light coloured dog

Ah, is there anything more traditional than a golden retriever?

These dogs are great for just about anybody. My mom has a golden named Sundance, and she is the friendliest dog you will ever meet.

She loves children and is very obedient to my mom’s commands, plus she has an established daily routine that makes ownership somewhat easier.

These dogs are wonderful for families with kids because they can adapt just about anywhere.

They are active, so they love to play and be outside. They tend to get bored, so an active home with plenty of stimulation would suit this dog well.

These dogs are all about making their keepers happy, which is part of their affectionate and loyal personality.

If you can keep a golden happy, entertained, and have lots of love to give, this is the dog for you!

Not So Active Dogs

If a daily walk for exercise is all you like or have time for, these dogs will suit you well.

If you live in a smaller place, these dogs are ideal.

Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkies are the epitome of all that is cute and adorable

. We’ve all seen a Yorkie with ribbons in her hair and just fell right in love.

You will, too. These dogs are perfect for first-time owners who want a little companion to snuggle up with and go for walks.

Yorkshire terrierThey are a lot of fun but will require plenty of care as their fur tends to grow quickly.

Be sure to brush your Yorkie on the regular and make appointments with a dog groomer or learn how to trim the hair of your dog.

Grooming appointments can be a bit of a budgetary concern, so take that into account as you decide.

A daily walk will be enough to keep this pup in good health.

They have a moderate level of energy, so people who are less active will take pleasure in raising this breed.

They do, however, need training, lest they end up rather stubborn and talkative.

Treat your Yorkie like a regular big dog as far as training goes. They will appreciate the structure, become your friend for life, and be super affectionate to you.

King Charles Spaniel

This dog really does look so royal and for good reason!

The lovely brown, large eyes will sweep anybody off their feet and make them fall in love right away. ‘

This dog is small in size, but not super tiny at all.

They are durable for their size and very gentle in their personality.

They have a moderate level of energy. This means that going for a simple walk once a day will be enough to keep this dog in shape and satisfied.

They do have a medium-length crop of fur, which means that brushing is going to be necessary. (You wouldn’t think it’s that bad, but you should hear from my neighbor…her King Charles sheds everywhere if she’s not careful!)

Basic training is needed for these cute pups, and they are generally rather quiet.

This would make a nice dog for a retired person who has never owned a dog, or somebody who would like a companion but lives in an apartment with other people around.

They are also great with kids!

Bichon Frise

If you’ve ever wanted a dog that you could just cuddle, the Bichon Frise is it!

These dogs have happy little personalities, and they are small in stature but big of heart.

They make great companions for owners of all ages and experience levels.

A small white dogThey are smart, easy to train, and will thrive in just about all households.

They will basically fit any lifestyle. You will, however, need to budget for coat care.

This means you will need to take the dog to a groomer or learn how to care for your Bichon Frise’s fur yourself.

The Bichon Frise has a curly, beautiful coat that must be brushed and kept neatly trimmed.

You might also trim the dog’s coat short for easier maintenance.

These dogs work really well in apartments, and if you have children, they will do great.

You just need to provide him or her with a little exercise each and every day for good health and prevention of boredom.

A Great All-Around Dog

Mixed-breeds, or “mutts” as they are sometimes called, are great for everybody.

You can go to your local shelter or adoption center and find plenty of great dogs that need loving homes.

You can find them in all shapes and sizes, and ages. If you are a young family who needs a puppy to raise, you might find one!

If you’re an older person, who just wants a friend during your golden years, you likely can find an older dog who might like a nice walk once a day before retiring to the comfort of his bed or the couch.

A chocolate labradorThe shelter workers or volunteers can tell you about each and every dog, about his or her personality, and give you their story so you know how to treat them.

You can also often walk the dogs after showing some ID.

This way, you can get to know your future friend before making any snap decisions.

Best of all, these dogs often come with all shots and are spayed/neutered in advance, meaning you are off to a healthy start from the get-go.

You can find a dog of the right size and personality, pay a relatively small adoption fee, and get a friend for life!

Final Thoughts

There are just so many great breeds out there, I knew I wanted to show you what worked for me when choosing my first dog.

I know I mentioned Fang, my German Shepherd. German Shepherds are NOT ideal for first-time owners.

They are super smart and super active, which is good, but if you’ve never dealt with just how high-energy and intelligent a dog can be, it would be best to go with a calmer breed.

Growing up, we had a mixed-breed dog named Champ that we adopted from the local animal shelter.

A dog with a ballI learned a lot from Champ, and he was a great first dog-really laid back and fun to play with.

He taught me the basics of dog ownership so that I was able to work with and keep an advanced breed once I got older.

He got along well with other dogs in our neighborhood and was not temperamental at all.

There are so many things to consider when choosing your first dog. Here’s what you should ask yourself as you decide:

  • What size works for my house?
  • Do I have the time to exercise and groom the dog?
  • Will my kids get along with the dog?
  • How active is our family? Can we keep the dog stimulated?
  • How much can I afford to pay in adoption fees or other fees associated with adopting or buying from a breeder?

I really hope this steers you in the right direction when searching for a good first-time dog.

I wanted to write this so that anybody who needed a push could get going on the path of finding a great furry friend.

Please leave a comment and share this post! We want to hear about your first dog and any ideas you have.

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