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10 Best Dog Breeds for Kids

Are you wondering which dogs would be great four-legged companions for your kids? In this post, we'll share the 10 best big and small dog breeds for kids as recommended by our Santa Clarita vets. 

Choosing the Best Family Dog for Your Kids

If you're looking to bring home a dog for your children, it's critical to pick a breed whose characteristics match your child's temperament. For example, would your child prefer a pet to run around the yard with or a reading buddy to curl up under some blankets with?

Also, consider the available space in your home. Do you have plenty of space for a larger breed to run, or is your home small and more suited to a smaller pup?

Our team at Sweetwater Veterinary Clinic has compiled this list of dog breeds most likely to do well around families with young children. 

1. Mutt 

The best pup for your family may be waiting for you at your local animal shelter. Mixed-breed mutts can be great family dogs, and just as good with children as purebred dogs. They are also less prone to genetic diseases and less expensive to care for. 

If you're thinking about getting a mutt for your family, visit a number of local animal shelters and be patient while seeking the right dog for your lifestyle. Shelter workers can often provide you with a doggy report card that lists all a dog's known personality quirks, likes and dislikes. 

2. Beagle

Dogs of this medium-sized breed typically weigh between 10 and 18 pounds. Beagles are intelligent yet loving pups who enjoy playing games, going for walks, and spending time with their owners. They can make wonderful family pets provided they get enough exercise and interaction. However, beagles are an unsuitable choice for families who spend a lot of time away from home. 

3. Bernese Mountain Dog

If you're looking for a large breed dog with a sweet nature, a Bernese Mountain Dog might fit the bill. They weigh between 70 and 100 pounds when fully grown, but are known for being gentle with children despite their size. One word of caution: While these dogs are beautiful, they shed heavily. 

4. Boston Terrier 

Weighing about 25 pounds or less, these small, people-loving bundles of energetic fun often love playing with children of all ages and going on short walks. Their short tuxedo coats may be easier to care for than a longer-haired pooch. 

The Boston Terrier's smaller stature makes it well-suited for apartment living. However, because they move fast, they'll need to be in a secure space and kept on a leash.

5. Cavalier Kind Charles Spaniel 

This gentle breed has a lively disposition. They can be both cuddly and playful, which makes them an excellent pup for children of all ages and activity levels.

Cavaliers weigh between 10 and 18 pounds, and their compact size makes them ideal for apartments or small homes. They tend to get along well with kids and other dogs. 

6. Golden Retriever 

Golden retrievers are well-known for being loyal companions. They are also affectionate, great with children, and playful with other dogs—characteristics that make them an excellent option for families with children. This breed's dense, lustrous gold coat makes it a great snuggle buddy. 

Golden retrievers are positive and playful pups. They approach life with a playful, positive disposition and typically keep their youthful spirit well into adulthood. Expect them to shed moderately and grow to between 60 and 80 pounds. 

7. Labrador Retriever 

The Labrador Retriever makes an excellent dog for children because it is gentle, loyal, and entertaining. Labs enjoy spending time with people and will quickly become your child's best friend. However, it is critical to give labs plenty of exercise or they will become mischievous. These dogs vary in size, but they usually weigh between 55 and 80 pounds.

8. Newfoundland 

Sweet, loyal, and patient are just a few words to describe this fluffy giant. This endearing breed has a genuine fondness for children and is often referred to as a 'nanny dog' due to its gentle patience with them. Weighing between 100 and 150 pounds, you'll need plenty of room if you want to get a Newfoundland for your family. It's also important to note that, like many giant breeds, Newfs have a relatively short life expectancy of only 8 to 10 years, whereas many small to medium dogs can live 15 to 20 years or even longer.

9. Pug

These adorable little characters will entertain the entire family! Pugs are content with simply eating and sleeping. If your children are small or have low energy and would benefit from a dog who will play with them indoors before curling up beside them to watch TV, a Pug could be the ideal breed for your family. Weighing around 15 pounds, this breed does not require much space and is content with a couple of short walks per day.

10. Standard Poodle 

The standard poodle is an energetic, proud, and intelligent breed that would make an excellent family pet. Standard poodles, known for their distinctive hairstyles, shed little and, with proper grooming, can look handsome whether clipped to breed standard or left natural. Poodles are generally easy to train, energetic, and fun-loving family dogs with a quirky sense of humor. These dogs typically weigh between 45 and 60 pounds and live for 10 to 14 years.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Have you recently welcomed a new dog to your family? Contact our Santa Clarita vets today to schedule your canine companion's first physical exam.

New Patients Welcome

Sweetwater Veterinary Clinic is accepting new patients! Our friendly and experienced vets are passionate about the health of Santa Clarita companion animals and horses. Get in touch today to book your four-legged friend's first appointment.

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