Every child begs their parents for a dog – they’re cute, entertaining and great company – we get it. A furry companion can teach our children about responsibility, care and much more. As a parent you have a little more to think about before agreeing to the constant nagging. First of all, which friendly dog breeds are right for you and your family?

As a whole, there is no right answer to the question of which breeds are the most child friendly dog breeds, nevertheless, considering the temperament of the dog, the size and energy levels of different breeds, there are some that are more suitable for a family life than others. To help you out on your quest to make your child happy, here are the top 10 child friendly dog breeds.

#1 – Beagle

Beagles are intelligent, sociable and ‘merry’ dogs. They are excellent with children and generally get on well with other dogs. Due to their history they can be a little harder to train but that’s something your children can help out with. If you choose this dog breed, their meals should be controlled and strict, as beagles have a tendency to easily become obese. Nevertheless, the beagle loves play time and walks, making it a great companion in terms of activity and is definitely one of top child friendly dog breeds.

#2 – Poodle

The Standard, The Miniature and The Toy are ranked the second smartest dog after the Collie. They are also very energetic, sociable breeds no matter their size and don’t just require walks but also a lot of mental stimulation which your kids can help out with. Of all the sizes, the standard poodle is the most highly recommended for families as Miniature and Toy Poodles tend to have less patience with young children. Even though they need quite a bit of grooming they are also hypoallergenic dogs meaning those with allergies won’t be affected.

#3 – Golden Retriever

If there’s one dog that is considered to be the best family companion, it’s the Golden Retriever. One of the worlds friendliest dog breeds, the character of the retriever is full of traits that make them perfect for kids. They tend to be extremely friendly, confident, patient with children and caring, and are also easy to train and are commonly used as assistance dogs. Being a retriever they tend to be drawn to water and mud so they may not be the best option if you like a spotless house!

#4 – Newfoundland

A lesser known breed, the Newfoundland, also known as the ‘gentle giant’, is a breed that is known for being loyal, intelligent, strong and calm. They can be easily trained and are great at water rescues due to their size, thick coat and webbed feet. The only slight issue might be their size and should really only be considered if you have slightly older children as they have a tendency to knock small children down quite easily.

#5 – Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise which translates to ‘Curly Lap Dog’ is an extremely affectionate breed that loves attention. They are gentle mannered, playful and sociable characters so would enjoy joining you out on weekend trips. They are great with children due to their playful personalities and need for attention. They need training from an early age that needs to continue throughout their lives so they don’t become territorial.

#6 – Boxer

Boxers are energetic, playful breeds that are great with kids due to their patience and protectiveness. They require a lot of exercise and attention to prevent them from boredom-associated behaviours such as chewing and digging. They are not aggressive dogs but can become very attached to it’s family so they need proper socialisation from a young age and throughout their lives – we do think this makes them one of the best family friendly dog breeds.

#7 – Labrador

The Labrador is the UK’s most popular breed so it’s safe to say they are excellent family dogs. They are known for their energy, intelligence and gentle nature.  As well as being great escape artists they are known to follow their appetite and you will always find them around food – being very good at persuading you to give them something from your plate. They are easy to train and are commonly used as assistance dogs.

#8 – Cocker Spaniel

Cocker Spaniels are known for their happy disposition and constant waggy tail. They don’t usually like being alone and will end up having a strong bond with one family member. The breed is extremely loyal, obedient and affectionate and makes a great family dog. Cockers can be easily stressed by loud noises and rough treatment so it’s important to teach your kids how to interact appropriately.

#9 – Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Don’t believe what you’ve read in the media. Staffies are friendly, enthusiastic and extremely affectionate dogs. They are adaptable to different homes and situations so are happy to come along on holiday with you or have a stay at a friends house. They may appear intimidating sometimes but with proper training from a young age they are an all round family dog, and commonly known as the “nanny dog” as they famously good with children – could this possibly be one of the most friendly dog breeds of all time!?

#10 – Cross breeds/mixed breeds

We know this is quite generalised but we can’t forget about the cross breeds that are out there. A lot of dogs in the list above have been mixed with others and are great family pets. There are thousands of dogs out there in rescue homes that need a new home so don’t be put off if it’s not the full breed you hoped for – the important thing to remember is to make sure you do your research and ask as many questions as possible.


If you need any help finding the perfect carer for your pet, make a request below. It’s free and it only takes 30 seconds – let’s see who we can find for you.

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