Did you know that the state pet of Utah is the shelter pet? I didn’t either. My family has always had some sort of pet when I was growing up. When my husband and I moved in together, we decided that we didn’t want a pet. We thought that having kids would be enough work and that we didn’t want to add to it. So for several years that’s how it was. Then, our former babysitter asked me if I wanted to rehome their cat.
I said. “Yes.” We found ourselves as pet owners for the first time in close to a decade. I’ll tell you this, though. Our house didn’t feel like a home until Aspen moved in.
Another thing about me is that I take things very literally sometimes. When my manager told me that we were going to be going with the theme this week for the “Dog Days of Summer”, the first thought I had was that I had to write something about dogs. Like actual dogs.
15 Most Popular Dog Breeds
Here are the 15 most popular types of dog breeds. This list is in no particular order, so I’m not comparing them. One of the things you have to remember about animals is that even if the animal is from a certain breed and is supposed to have certain characteristics, its not necessarily going to have all of them. The breed determines what an animal is likely to be like, but the individual animal is going to have their own personality.
Easily one of the most popular types of dog breeds, this is a classic pup that is perfect for families. These dogs are notoriously sweet and smart. The Labrador Retriever is playful, patient, loving and protective. They will go to great lengths for their owners and are fiercely loyal.
They need a lot of exercise and love to swim. If you have a larger family with several children or if your family is active, this may be a perfect dog for you. The Lab comes in 3 varieties; black, chocolate and yellow. They tend to have shorter coats which means they don’t require extensive grooming.
The Goldie is another breed that is super popular. They are incredibly sweet dogs that are extremely patient. One of our neighbors had a golden retriever and their littlest child liked to ride him like a pony. The dog just let her and seemed to be happy.
They are extremely receptive to training and are eager to please. They are also incredibly affectionate. They need a lot of exercise, so this is another pup that does well with a large or active family. Their coats tend to be long and flowy and need a bit more care than the Lab’s do. You’ll need to groom them quite extensively.
Who didn’t grow up wanting a sweet, smart and courageous dog like Lassie? Collies are amazing dogs to have with a family. They are a gentle breed and they rarely misbehave. They are smart and take well to any type of training that you want to put them through.
Collies have a need to please that makes them great to be around kids. They were originally bred to be herding dogs and so they might actually try to herd your children! The Collie does have a beautiful long coat, so grooming is going to be an ongoing process. They also tend to be a bit stubborn, so be firm with obedience training.
One of the iconic cartoon pups, the Boxer is looking to make a comeback as a family dog. While they may not be good at figuring out that it was Old Man Wilson behind that mask after all, the Boxer is a great breed.
Boxers are playful and energetic dogs that are pack oriented and love to take care of kids. Make sure to give them plenty of exercise or you may have a mischievous pup on your hands.
Your name doesn’t have to be Charlie Brown for you to have your own Snoopy. These pups make fantastic friends for you and your kids. They are clever and friendly and are perfect for that little one who seems to be running on all cylinders all the time.
Beagles love to play and are sturdy little guys, so you don’t have to worry about the kids being too rough with them. Just don’t let them eat too much! They have a tendency to pack on the weight and give you the look when they don’t think they’re full yet.
Remember Lady from Lady and the Tramp? She was a cocker spaniel. They are beautiful little dogs that are perfect for city living. Cocker Spaniels are happy and have a strong desire to please. Anywhere you are, that’s where they want to be.
They are snugglers and love to curl up on the couch with you. They also like to run and play. Cocker Spaniels don’t take well to teasing, so make sure that your kids understand that before the play goes too far. These are also great pups for senior citizens because they just love to cuddle.
Do you have allergies? Is every spring a sneeze fest for you? Well a poodle can’t fix that problem, but they won’t make it much worse either. Poodles are as hypoallergenic as you can get with a dog. They don’t have the same dander that most breeds do and so they are great for allergy sufferers.
They are also very intelligent, gentle, patient and loyal. They don’t require much exercise. (Think of the poodle in the movie “Oliver and Company”.) They are also great pets for senior citizens because of their intelligence and calm nature.
These little pups are both sturdy and gentle making them perfect for any family with small children. They also serve as great guard dogs. They will keep your babies safe from any threats.
Have you ever heard of someone being like a bulldog and not letting something go? Well this breed is known for their loyalty. They will stick with you through thick and thin. Keep an eye on their breathing as they get older. Bulldogs are known for respiration problems later in life.
Like their “cousins” Frenchies are perfect little pets for a family. They come in a bit smaller than the traditional bulldog and only get to about 30 lbs. when they are fully grown. They are basically forever puppies.
Frenchies have the cutest little faces, too. They look like they are smiling all the time and they are happy go lucky little pups. They don’t need much exercise despite their antics and their grooming needs are pretty basic. Just like the Bulldogs, watch for breathing problems as they get older.
This is not one of the more popular breeds, but they are excellent dogs for an active family. These are sporting dogs which means they have been bred for long bouts of activity. This also means that they take training very well.
They are smart and affectionate dogs that are perfect for families with growing children. They are always ready to get outside and have a good run and romp. Vizslas are also great at learning tricks so keep an eye out for especially clever behavior.
Now this is a controversial subject, but I’m actually in the pro pit camp. These dogs were traditionally bred to be nursery dogs. They have an innate gentle nature that is very protective of those that they have termed as their family.
Pits really love pleasing their owners. This is how the mean people get them trained badly, they want to please them even though its not good behavior. They are energetic and playful and very stout so that even the roughest wrestling match is not going to hurt them. Plus, they are a built-in bully deterrent.
These little fluffballs are just dying to be picked up and held. They are the epitome of the lap dog and boy do they love the attention. They only get up to about 15 lbs. and they are easy to handle for most people.
They will need to be groomed fairly regularly, but other than that these little guys are mostly low maintenance. They don’t need very much exercise and are perfect for cuddling with, so this pet is great for families with teenagers or older children or for senior citizens.
From a super tiny dog to an absolutely massive dog, Newfies are huge pups. They are also one of the most intelligent breeds in the world. They have been nicknamed “Nature’s Babysitter” because they love children and are super protective of them.
This big teddy bear of a dog is gentle and kind and takes well to be a super fluffy pony for the little ones. They need lots of open space and a family that doesn’t mind the drool that will be inevitable for them.
Known for its distinctive red coat, the Irish Setter is a playful pup that loves being around people and plays well with children. Irish Setters hate to be alone and so will actually misbehave when left to their own devices for too long. One of my aunt’s friends had an Irish Setter and he would “have an accident” whenever she left him home alone for too long.
They need lots of exercise and is a perfect match for a family with active kids. They are very smart and easy to train. They also don’t have a fear of strangers so having large gatherings will make them happy, not scared.
If you hate exercise as much as I do and missing your favorite shows bums you out, then a pug is the perfect choice for you. (We’re actually thinking about getting a pug and naming it Otis.) Pugs love spending their times inside on the couch.
This small breed is great for cuddling and they are good with kids. Just like the Frenchies and the Bulldogs, they are tougher than they look and so you don’t have to worry about the kids hurting them. Be careful, though, they have a tendency to eat too much and gain weight. (Another reason they would be perfect for my family!)
If you are looking for a dog, I would recommend that you go to your local shelter. Many shelters are filled close to capacity right now and so being able to adopt one into a loving home is their goal. If you prefer cats, like I do, but want some of the characteristics of a dog look into a Scottish Fold. These clever kitties act like dogs and will play fetch with you!
Don’t assume that because a dog is a mutt that it won’t be a good choice for your home. There are plenty of good pups out there that need a good home that may not be a purebred. Only one of the dogs in our family was a purebred pup. He was rescued from a puppy mill and we adopted him from the Humane Shelter.
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