Although their faces are cute and fluffy, puppies are just like us. They have different personalities that can be categorized into various personality types.
And like people, a puppy can have more than one personality or possess a combination of personality traits. For most puppies, however, there’s usually one trait that’s more dominant than all of the others.
Now, all puppies have a noticeable personality type by the time they’re 7-8 weeks old. As such, knowing what personality type or traits your little furry friend possesses can help you make the most of your relationship with them!
You’ll understand how to train your puppy, what upsets them, and how they might react to your actions (petting, initiating play, etc.). Having this knowledge, in turn, can help you appreciate your puppy and strengthen your bond with them.
It will also prevent you from forcing your puppy to do things that go against their personality—like encouraging an extrovert to sit still or an introvert to become a social butterfly.
Read on to learn about the 5 different types of personalities that puppies have so that you can give them the best life possible!
The Confident Puppy
A confident puppy is self-assured and comfortable with others. As natural leaders, they enjoy taking control of their surroundings. They love working in teams and often display their confidence through their behavior.
Of course, due to their dominant nature, confident puppies may express aggressive behavior, especially in response to others. They may try to overpower a submissive dog during playtime, which can lead to fighting.
As an owner, you may think that dominant behavior is the only way for your puppy to assert its alpha status but that’s not always the case. Even among dogs, they do not need to express aggression to maintain themselves as leaders in their pack.
Therefore, it’s important to train your confident puppy early on to avoid displaying aggressive behavior. Use positive reinforcement while training your puppy and they will follow suit.
The Free-spirited Puppy
Many dog breeds have an independent, free-spirited nature. They enjoy bonding with those they view as their leaders. Some free-spirited dogs tend to bond with one person their entire lives while showing less interest in others. They enjoy their independence and may seem wary to strangers. This is perfectly normal behavior for this personality type.
When you force a free-spirited puppy to be a social butterfly, it may cause them to resent you. They may even try to bite or scratch you if you continue to force it. A puppy with a free-spirited personality may be difficult to train—most of the time, they may even try to “train” you.
This personality type needs the right attitude to train so that they feel motivated. Some famous examples of independent, free-spirited breeds include the Yorkshire Terrier and the Chihuahua.
These dog breeds are well-known for their stubbornness, often to the point of frustration for the owner. In order to train these pooches, you need to be smart and creative about your approach. Try using different rewards like treats, toys, or affection to observe what motivates your puppy.
The Laidback Puppy
Although all dogs are friendly, the laidback puppy is your ultimate best friend! Friendly, laidback puppies love everyone they meet. In fact, a laidback, friendly puppy would probably greet you with kisses and a happy, wagging tail.
Most laidback puppies get along well with people, other dogs, and even other pets like cats. Some puppies with a friendly personality may be a little too enthusiastic about meeting new people.
If not trained properly, these puppies may jump on other people, peppering them with kisses due to their excitement. While this may seem cute when they’re puppies, it can easily turn into a behavior problem when they become adult dogs.
Famous friendly, laidback breeds include Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers. Each of these dog breeds is large enough to knock people over, especially small children.
By effectively training your laidback puppy, you can help them contain their excitement and affection when they meet other people.
The Adaptable Puppy
Unlike the friendly, laidback puppy, the adaptable puppy is more in control of its emotions. They’re naturally eager to please and will try everything to make their owner happy.
A puppy with an adaptable personality is the easiest to train and their friendliness helps them socialize with other puppies.
However, unlike laidback puppies, the adaptable puppy is able to calm down and show others their excitement without trying too hard. They tend to mesh well with people, other dogs, and even other pets.
Because of this, they make amazing therapy and emotional support animals.
The Sweet-Natured Puppy
Gentle and big-hearted, these puppies are often taken advantage of for their meek, submissive nature. Like the adaptable puppy, a sweet-natured puppy will have an eager-to-please personality that comes off everything they do.
As young puppies, these little ones will stay very close to their mother, and follow her around for protection and comfort. Sweet-natured puppies are best suited for owners who love expressing their affection.
You won’t need to train puppies with this personality type for very long—their eager-to-please nature makes it easy to train them.
They also aren’t likely to roam or explore for long periods of time. They are absolute homebodies at heart. Some great examples of sweet-natured puppies are Goldendoodles, Cavapoos, and other designer dog breeds.
These personality types are some of the many personality traits your puppy can have. Some puppies grow up to have a combination of each personality type.
To test your puppy’s personality type, you may try out a few assessments available online. You can also ask your veterinarian for the best way to figure out your furry friend’s personality.
Knowing your puppy’s personality type will help you become attuned to their needs and bond closer than ever before. We hope you and your fur-baby become close friends!