Choosing the right dog breed for your family is a big decision and can become complicated depending on the ages of your children, size of your home, and activity level of your family members.
Factors such as a dog’s size and lifespan can impact whether a breed is best for your family, but most importantly, the temperament of the dog should be the greatest determining factor. Not to worry, the dog experts at Petland Kansas City have put together a list of the top family dog breeds for you.
Read on to learn about the best family dogs for kids.
Known for being playful, affectionate, and even-tempered, Golden Retrievers quickly became the #1 family dog back in the 1920s and 1930s. These gentle dogs are highly patient and accepting, so if you have other pets or very young children, you can rest assured that your new Golden Retriever will easily blend with your household. Retrievers also love to be helpful thanks to their eager-to-please attitude and will gladly fetch your slippers or keep your toddler from toppling over.
Fun Facts About Golden Retrievers
- These loyal dogs hail from Scotland
- They are known as the best breed for therapy dogs
- Golden Retrievers are so gentle when picking things up with their mouths that they can even pick up eggs without breaking them!
No need to worry about drooling or snoring, Golden Retrievers are neat, tidy, and quiet companions. They might not even bark when a stranger comes to the door! Having one of these trustworthy dogs as a new addition to your family can mean 10 – 13 years of mutual bliss.
The Labrador personality can be described in a single word—fun! These medium-to-large sized dogs make fantastic family pets thanks to their affectionate nature and energetic yet gentle temperament. In fact, this breed is currently the most popular in America for both families and individuals. As a top choice dog for families with slightly older children, i.e. at least 7 years old, you can count on your Labrador to be playfully enthusiastic if and when your kids try to climb, prod, or even ride the dog.
Fun Facts About Labradors
- This energetic breed originates from Newfoundland, Canada, not Labrador
- Labradors are great swimmers thanks to their webbed toes
- These easy-to-train, eager-to-please dogs are currently the most popular dog breed in America & the UK!
Due to the Labrador’s naturally high energy level, you’ll want to place a lot of emphasis on adequately training the dog while it’s a puppy and remain strict in terms of upholding the household rules you’ve established. If not, the Lab’s boundless energy could mean accidents around the home. That being said, raising one of these personable dogs alongside your kids will be a nice addition to your family.
The personality of this medium-sized dog breed packs a big punch. Border Collies are known for their energy, intelligence, and strong work ethic, making them an ideal breed for the highly active family. If you envision bringing your dog on family vacations where hiking, camping, and fishing are on the itinerary, then look no further than this athletic dog. Just be ready to manage some intense doggy energy, and don’t forget that as a puppy this little guy is going to need a lot of attention in the form of training in order to satisfy their high IQ and intrinsic need for important duties around the house and backyard.
Fun Facts About Border Collies
- Border Collies are the smartest dog breed in the world and can be trained 5x faster than other breeds
- This intuitive, skilled breed is ideal for search and rescue missions
- Intelligent and versatile, these dogs can take on a lot of responsibility, from herding sheep and cattle to starring in Hollywood movies!
Providing your Border Collie with plenty of time for outdoor exercise, whether it’s in the form of work or play, is imperative. These dogs love to sprint, chase, fetch, and otherwise jump for joy, so if your family tends to be ultra low-key and prefers relaxing indoors more than anything else, then this breed might not be the best match.
If you’re looking for a small-sized family dog, consider the Beagle. This breed is, hands down, one of the best family dogs under 40 lbs. Beagles are known to be cheerful, affectionate, and curious. They tend to bring a friendly, outgoing attitude everywhere they go, which means they’ll fit right in when you take the kids to the park to play ball. This dog breed meshes well with other pets and will develop a deep bond with your children, especially if your kids are playful and energetic, just be sure to take the super-high energy games outside. You don’t want your Beagle bouncing off the walls.
Fun Facts About Beagles
- Beagles were originally used as hunting dogs thanks to their boundless energy and keen sense of smell
- These dogs are among the most vocal and are known to communicate using a standard bark, a “bay” or yodel-like sound, and a long howl
- Some beagles have such a heightened sense of smell that they can even smell pregnancy!
The only caveat when it comes to Beagles is that you and your family must be prepared to give your Beagle plenty of attention. This breed is notorious for howling and becoming destructive if left alone at home for too long. As natural hound dogs, your new Beagle will be sure to explore every nook and cranny of both your home and yard, so be sure to puppy-proof your house, as well as dog-proof your backyard. Otherwise your family Beagle could end up at the neighbor’s house!
Out of all the dog breeds, if one could possibly love your children more than you do, it would be the German Shepherd. This particular breed is known for being the rock of whatever family it’s a part of. German Shepherd’s instinctively take on the roles of protector, helper, guard, and even babysitter—within reason—when they join a family, and they carry their responsibilities with a noble air of quiet confidence. Heck, the expression “all dogs go to heaven” was probably coined by a family who had a German Shepherd!
Fun Facts About German Shepherds
- This highly trustworthy breed was the original guide dog for the blind, but today they’re more commonly employed in police and military jobs, that is, when they aren’t protecting a family!
- Selfless and brave, German Shepherds worked alongside soldiers during WW1 & WW2, serving as Red Cross dogs, rescuers, and messengers. They even carried ammunition!
- These courageous and loyal dogs are happiest when they have jobs to do, and they enjoy taking on responsibility!
While your German Shepherd would die to protect you and your family, this particular breed will have a very different response to strangers who come by unannounced. All of the traits that make these dogs excellent guards can also cause them to be a bit aggressive during unexpected encounters. That being said, if you take the time and care to properly introduce your German Shepherd to your friends and acquaintances, then the dog will treat them like part of the family, too.
Are you residing in Kansas City and ready to take home a brand-new puppy for your family? Check out our available puppies or use our breed finder to learn more about the five dog breeds we covered in this article as well as other dog breeds. Our Frequently Asked Questions can also help you make the right decision for you and your family.