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Friendly Dog Breeds

I am interested in getting a dog and would prefer a friendly breed.

I like Shelties but am worried the breed is not friendly or is shy to people. Are Shelties a good breed? Are they generally friendly towards people and other dogs?

What are some other friendly breeds?

Comments for Friendly Dog Breeds

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Jul 10, 2010
My Online Vet Response to Friendly Dog Breeds
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Great question! I will comment on Shelties first. Being a long haired breed, they require more care to keep their coat tangle-free. Genetically, they are very similar to Collies and have the same tendency toward dog eye conditions that collies do, and the same sensitivity toward certain drugs such as the ivermectin found in heartworm preventive medicine. Their personality tends to be shy and introverted. Although they can be very loyal to one person, it takes good training to make sure they behave ok around children, strangers, mailmen, etc. They have a lot of energy and are very intelligent and eager to please, so they are fairly easy to train.

Raising a dog from puppyhood makes it much easier, especially if you are able to adopt a puppy around 8-9 weeks of age. The 'socialization' period for handling a puppy, so they become friendly and used to people, is 8 weeks to 12 weeks of age. If they are left to fend for themselves during this time and are never handled by humans (for example just left in a cage in a puppy mill/breeding facility), they will tend to be more shy, fearful, or even aggressive towards people.

Dr. Ian Dunbar, a vet in Berkeley, CA, is a superb animal behaviorist. Check out his website and this video which is a wonderful commentary on the human/dog relationship and training puppies.

Mixed breed dogs (i.e. terrier mix, lab mix) with a short hair coat and shorter upright ears, raised with the right handling, proper dog food nutrition, checked for parasites, and given only the minimal dog vaccinations would be the friendliest!

There has been a big move in popularity toward the French Bull dog. They are super friendly, but with their short nose, lower jaw longer than the upper jaw, short legs and broad chest, they can be prone to respiratory problems, dog dental problems, joint problems, and some are starting to show dog epilepsy.

Jack Russell terriers are another very friendly breed. They have a HUGE amount of energy, so need to have access to a BIG yard, and you need to devote a lot of your time to playing with them, to make sure they get the exercise they need.

(response continued below)

Jul 11, 2010
(My Online Vet response continued from above)
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

The larger breeds such as Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers are also very friendly. But since they are hunting dogs they also need to have access to a big yard so you can provide a lot of play time with them such as fetching, retrieving, searching for hidden objects, etc.

I hope this information is helpful.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

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Jul 12, 2010
The BEST Dog Breed
by: Zsofi's Mom

Check out Hungarian Vizslas.

They are a larger breed dog and the friendliest dogs ever. I have a Wire-Haired Vizsla named Zsofi. Everyone knows her around town because she must tell everyone "hello". The downside is she is so friendly, and I often wonder if someone tried to steel her she would go willingly, no treats needed.

Shedding is minimal and they are considered hypo-allergenic. They are known as the "velcro" breed, because they must always be where you are. If Zsofi is not at my side or under my feet, she is up to something.

She has never been a chewer or a barker. All around, I know we made an excellent choice.

Jul 17, 2010
by: Anonymous

I would take a look at the Havanese - every one I've met has been super friendly with a great personality!

Mar 10, 2012
by: Shar

I have had several breeds but the one that I think of as the best is the Pitbull. I have had this dog for 13 years and he has been the most loyal, gentle, wellbehaved dog I have ever had.

May 21, 2012
Bichon Frise
by: Anonymous

I have a 2 year old female Bichon Frise (full) -- a teenager right now. I wanted a small house dog and I also wanted a dog that didn't shed because my husband has allergies. She is small but very durable, a whopping 9 1/2 lbs, is very smart (sometimes too smart for her own good), healthy (no tearing eyes), sensitive and loves to play and go for walks. She was fully potty trained at 2 months (never pee'ed in the house at all) and has never, ever chewed anything in the house except her toys. She is good around other dogs, especially other Bichons, but is truly a people dog. She loves people and likes being around lots of activity. She loves to go for rides in the car and goes shopping with me, heading up the shopping cart like the masthead on a ship. Great dog if you truly want a companion and a dog that is good with children. The only down side is she needs to be combed out almost every day in order to maintain her coat to optimum. She tolerates it for some very special goodies. They are lovely dogs.

Aug 11, 2013
friendly dog breeds
by: Anonymous

The American Pit bull Terrier is the friendliest dog I have ever owned. The main thing is do not believe what you have heard from the media it is mostly lies most people when asked to identify a pit bull cannot. They were originally bred to be love people because when they were fighting these dogs there had to be a person in the pit with them making them fight and if the dogs bit the handler they were usually put down. It is the people that abused this wonderful breed that are to blame for the reputation it has.

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