Finding the right dog breed to suit your lifestyle
Bringing a dog into your life is a decision that comes with boundless joy and a few important considerations. Just as our own personalities and lifestyles differ, so do the temperaments and needs of various dog breeds. For most people, a dog is more than just a pet; they become a cherished member of our family, offering companionship, loyalty, and a unique kind of love. Finding a dog that aligns with your lifestyle, activity levels, and living situation is not only essential for your dog’s well-being but also paramount for yours too, in order to foster a harmonious and fulfilling relationship.
Whether you lead an active lifestyle or prefer the calm of a cosy home, there's a perfect pooch out there somewhere just waiting to join you on life's adventures, the important thing is not to rush, think through what might happen and always sleep on any decisions. The average dog lives for 10-14 years, but many smaller breeds live longer than that, so it’s a decision that should not be taken lightly or done on a whim. Don’t let other family members pressure you and read up about each breed as much as you can beforehand.
This week we’re looking at a few of the behavioural traits that you might want to take into account when looking for you perfect doggy match, including clinginess, aloofness, energy levels and laziness with the pros and cons of different breeds to help you choose a dog that is aligned with your lifestyle.
Dachshund photo by Binyamin Mellish on Pexels
The six clingiest dog breeds
1. Labrador Retriever
Loyalty: Labs are known for their unwavering loyalty, forming strong bonds with their owners.
Great with Families: Their friendly nature makes them excellent family dogs, providing companionship to all members.
Easy Training: Labs are highly trainable, making them adaptable to various living situations.
Separation Anxiety: Labs can develop separation anxiety if left alone for extended periods, leading to destructive behaviour.
2. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Affectionate: Cavaliers are affectionate lap dogs, always ready to cuddle and shower their owners with love.
Adaptable Size: Their small size makes them suitable for apartment living and easy to bring along on outings.
Dependence: Cavaliers may become overly dependent, struggling with loneliness when separated from their owners.
Portable: Chihuahuas are small and portable, making them easy to take with you wherever you go.
Alertness: They are excellent watchdogs due to their alert nature.
Territorial Behaviour: Chihuahuas can be possessive and territorial, displaying jealousy and clinginess. They can also be quote defensive due to the effects of ‘small man syndrome.’
4. Golden Retriever
Gentle Nature: Goldens have a gentle and patient demeanour, making them great with children.
Sociable: They thrive on social interaction, enjoying being part of family activities.
Need for Attention: Goldens require a significant amount of attention, and neglect may lead to behavioural problems.
5. Shetland Sheepdog
Companionship: Shetland Sheepdogs are true companions, often forming a strong bond with their owners and they make great family pets.
Adaptability: They adapt well to different living environments.
Separation Anxiety: Shetland Sheepdogs can suffer from separation anxiety, becoming distressed when left alone for too long.
Devotion: Dachshunds are known for their devotion to their owners, creating strong bonds.
Playful: They have a playful nature, bringing joy and entertainment to the household.
Stubbornness: Dachshunds can be stubborn, and their strong attachment may lead to behaviour problems if not properly managed. They are also not keen on going out in the rain and would prefer to pee indoors than feel the rain on their back!
Shiba Inu photo by Cottonbro Studio on Pexels
The 6 most aloof dog breeds
1. Afghan Hound
Elegance: Afghan Hounds are known for their regal appearance and elegant demeanour.
Low Maintenance: Their grooming needs aside, Afghans are relatively low-maintenance and can be content with moderate exercise.
Dignified Independence: Afghan Hounds are known for their dignified independence, which may be misunderstood as aloofness.
Quiet Nature: Basenjis are often referred to as the "barkless" dogs, making them ideal for those who prefer a quieter companion.
Cleanliness: Basenjis are meticulous groomers and have minimal odour.
Stubbornness: Their independent streak may lead to stubborn behaviour, making training a bit challenging.
3. Shiba Inu
Adaptable Size: Shiba Inus are small and adaptable, making them suitable for various living environments.
Clean Habits: They are known for their cleanliness and self-grooming tendencies.
Reserved Demeanour: Shibas can be reserved and may not always seek attention, even from their owners. Some people refer to them as being very ‘catlike’ in their behaviour.
4. Chow Chow
Loyal: Chow Chows form deep bonds with their owners and are fiercely loyal.
Low Exercise Needs: They are content with moderate exercise, making them suitable for less active owners.
Independence: Chow Chows can be independent and may not always display overt affection.
Gentle Nature: Borzois have a gentle and calm demeanour, making them great companions.
Don't expect frequent attention: Borzois were originally bred to hunt in large open spaces so they are very independent and do not expect a lot of interaction and attention, they are quite content in their own company which might be better for you if you prefer a pet that doesn't follow you to the toilet.
Reserved with Strangers: Borzois can be reserved with strangers and may not always seek interaction.
6. Irish Wolfhound
A sweet tempered dog Wolfhounds enjoy resting and are very content to lounge at your feet.
Wolfhounds are one of the largest breeds of dog and will take up a lot of room and shed a lot of fur.
Considered to be very noble and independent, they can be more difficult to train as they like to do their own thing and are not fixated on you like some of the clingier breeds that mentioned earlier.
Husky photo by Joey Marrone on Pexels
The 6 most energetic dog breeds
1. Border Collie
Exceptional Intelligence: Border Collies are highly intelligent, making them adept at learning tricks and commands.
Agility: They excel in agility activities, providing an outlet for their boundless energy.
Constant Stimulation: Border Collies require mental stimulation as well as physical exercise; otherwise, they may become bored and resort to destructive behaviour.
2. Siberian Husky
Beautiful and Strong: Huskies are known for their striking appearance and strength.
Great for Outdoor Activities: They thrive in cold climates and love outdoor activities like sledding or hiking.
Escape Artists: Huskies have a penchant for escaping, so a secure environment is crucial to prevent them from roaming.
3. Australian Shepherd
Herding Instinct: Aussies have a strong herding instinct, making them excellent partners for outdoor activities.
Loyal: They form strong bonds with their owners, providing unwavering loyalty.
Need for Exercise: Without enough exercise, Australian Shepherds may become restless and engage in destructive behaviours.
4. Jack Russell Terrier
Compact and Energetic: Jack Russells are small yet highly energetic, making them great for active individuals.
Intelligence: They are quick learners and thrive on mental stimulation.
High Energy Levels: Lack of physical and mental activity can lead to behavioural issues, as they may find their own ways to burn off energy.
Distinctive Appearance: Dalmatians are known for their unique black or liver-coloured spots.
Athletic: They are agile and excel in activities like running or agility training.
Prone to Boredom: Dalmatians may become bored easily, and a lack of stimulation can result in destructive behaviour.
Affectionate: Vizslas are affectionate and thrive on human interaction.
Versatile Athletes: They excel in various dog sports and activities such as agility and canicross.
Separation Anxiety: Vizslas may develop separation anxiety if left alone for extended periods, leading to destructive behaviour.
Shih Tzu puppy photo by Caio on Pexels
The 6 laziest dog breeds
1. Basset Hound
Gentle Nature: Basset Hounds are known for their calm and gentle demeanour.
Low Exercise Needs: They're content with short walks and enjoy lounging around the house.
- Stubbornness: Bassets can be a bit stubborn, requiring patient training.
Affectionate: Bulldogs are known for their affectionate and docile nature.
Low Energy Levels: They are happy with short bursts of activity, followed by long periods of rest.
Prone to Overheating: Bulldogs should be protected from extreme heat due to their brachycephalic (short-nosed) anatomy.
3. Cocker Spaniel
Sweet Temperament: Cockers are known for their sweet and gentle temperament.
Adaptable: They are content with both indoor and outdoor activities but don't demand rigorous exercise.
- Separation Anxiety: Cocker Spaniels can experience separation anxiety if left alone for extended periods.
4. Shih Tzu
Compact Size: Shih Tzus are small and perfect for apartment living.
Low Exercise Needs: They are content with short walks and indoor play.
Grooming Requirements: Their long coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting.
Despite their racing background, Greyhounds are known as "40 mph couch potatoes" due to their love for lounging.
Gentle Demeanour: They have a calm and gentle nature, making them excellent companions.
Fragile Frame: Greyhounds have a thin coat and may need protection in extreme weather conditions.
6. English Mastiff
Gentle Giants: Mastiffs are known for their calm and gentle disposition.
Low Exercise Needs: They require moderate exercise but are content with short walks.
Health Concerns: Mastiffs are prone to certain health issues, including joint problems.
Hound photo by Andreas Schnabl on Pexels
Owning a lazy dog breed can be a delightful experience for those who appreciate the joy of a calm and easygoing companion. Or maybe you’d prefer a breed that wants to hike 10 miles a day or accompany you on your morning run, whatever you decide to get, take you r time, talk to other breed owners and do plenty of research, where possible adopt from a shelter a there are plenty of wonderful dogs that need rehoming. If you are buying from a breeder make sure they are reputable and that you can see both parents and that you feel confident before making your decision.
Main photo of dogs in the snow by Anna Galimova on Pexels