6 Best Dog Breeds for First-Time Owners

It can be hard to know when it’s the right time to get your first dog or if it’s even the right choice for you at all. There are a lot of factors to consider. Dogs can be a significant investment, both in your cost of adopting one and in the cost of food, supplies, grooming, and training. You will also be responsible for a dog’s medical care and well-being. 

best dog breeds for first-time owners
Best dog breeds for first-time owners

While those are all the drawbacks, the fact is that owning a dog is also an amazing experience. You will have a lifelong friend or family member that will provide you with endless love and affection. Many people consider their dog to be their best friend. They love unconditionally, and they want you to be happy. 

It’s a big decision and one that you should carefully consider before you take the plunge. While the costs will be what they are, many people are dissuaded because of the daily commitment. Owning a dog means taking time out of your daily schedule to feed, train, exercise, and care for your dog. A good option might be to get a breed that will make it easier for you. Here are 6 of the best dog breeds for first-time owners. 

German Shepherd

One of the toughest things for any first-time owner is training. It takes practice on the owner’s part, which also means it takes longer for the dog to pick it up. However, getting a smarter dog can mitigate some of these difficulties. They will adapt more quickly, understand what they need much quicker, and make it easier for you. German shepherds are known for their smarts. They are used as guard dogs, performing dogs, drug sniffers, and even attack dogs. They are very loyal to their “pack” and will do whatever they can to please you. On top of their markets, they also have easy coats to groom and do not shed much. This means you don’t have to spend much time brushing and vacuuming. One interesting fact about German shepherds is that they were actually deployed in WWI and WWII. In the second World War, the USA had 15 dog platoons that were deployed alongside the soldiers. 

Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire terrier is better known as the Yorkie. They are tiny dogs, but their small frames are packed with big personalities. They are sassy and fun, and you will find that a Yorkie loves to show off. One of the top concerns with new dog owners is asthma and allergies. Yorkies are hypoallergenic, meaning their fur and dander are less dangerous for asthmatics and people with allergies. As a result, you won’t have to worry about using your inhaler every few hours or being constantly stuffy and sneezy. That said, you should be aware that Yorkies tend to need professional grooming to prevent their fur from getting tangled and inundated with dirt and debris. 

Golden Retriever

You can’t go wrong with a golden retriever as your first-ever dog. They have everything to make your new life easier. For one, they are very smart and very amenable to training. You can teach them obedience quickly using positive reinforcement, and they will work very hard to please you. They are exceptionally loyal and less likely to run off and get into mischief. They will want to spend as much time with you and others in the household as possible. You can bring friends over, and they will be accepting and friendly unless they are suspicious, which makes them great guard dogs. They are also very cute, so you will fall in love when you see Golden Retriever puppies for sale. 


Some people worry that they will end up with a dog that’s aggressive or that barks too much. Choosing a papillon can help avoid those concerns. Papillons are known for how patient and gentle they are. They don’t bark much and won’t get aggressive if you try to pick them up and move them from one spot to another. They are very small, so you can easily keep them in a safe area with a short barrier to prevent them from getting into trouble. They also love kids and don’t need a lot of space because of their size. Another interesting fact is that Papillons don’t have that characteristic dog odor. 

English Springer Spaniel

When you have a new dog and are inexperienced at training them, you want one eager to please. That’s where the English springer spaniel comes in. This dog just wants to make you happy. They love to play and goof around, and they will also spend a lot of time snuggling or lying in your lap. They are loyal animals that want to be as close to family as possible. They are quickly housetrained and don’t require too much exercise to stay healthy. They will need some grooming and brushing to keep their long coats clean. Springer Spaniels are also known for their love of water. This could be great news for active people that love to go for a swim, but maybe not ideal for someone who doesn’t like swimming. 


The poodle is the full package. They are adorable, for starters, so you can’t go wrong with that. You can also manipulate their coats to give many different looks should you wish to switch things up. They are very smart dogs and love spending time with their “packs.” The poodle is another dog considered hypoallergenic, so they are a great choice for households with allergies and respiratory issues. They don’t shed much, so you won’t have to worry about vacuuming every single day, but you will need to get some grooming techniques to keep their coats shiny and clean. They aren’t one of the most popular dog breeds for nothing. 

It’s only natural to be hesitant about getting your first dog. It’s a big life change, and you have to be sure. However, there may be a breed on this list that can help you transition into dog ownership and make things easier for you. 

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