10 Dog Breeds With the Worst Breath


How many times growing up did you tell your little brother that he had dog breath, or vice versa (Mom and dad, that was just one of the reasons I wanted to be an only child back then!)? Probably at least once a day, if I’m not mistaken in my memories of childhood. My 4-year-old has a huge problem with people speaking to her in close proximity, and she’ll be the first one to crinkle her nose and wave you away with, “Yuck! Your breath smells!” loudly enough that everyone in the state of Florida will hear her. She’s not worried that you’ll be embarrassed; she’s worried that you’re not going to fix yourself before you talk to her again. Bad breath is something that comes with all mouths; dogs included. While it might be more acceptable for dogs to have bad breath (they do lick themselves, after all), that doesn’t mean it’s all that fun to have a dog breathing on you with rather unpleasant breath.

Additionally, it’s important to understand that no real breed is more prone to bad breath than others. However, some types of dogs have worse breath than other types. For example, you’ll see a lot of small dogs on this list because toy breeds are more prone to gum disease, which can cause bad breath. Additionally, dogs with longer fur around their faces also top the list since they tend to get more food and saliva stuck in their fur, which can cause your dog to smell and make you believe it’s coming from its mouth. That’s why you might want to consider which dog breeds have the worst breath of all before you go out and buy one of your own. Read on to find out which dog breeds have the most unpleasant scents in their mouths.

**Please note that any and all dogs can have bad breath, but these are the dog breeds that are most prone to periodontal disease, which is a disease that affects the mouth and the breath of a dog. Any dog can contract gum disease, periodontal disease and bad breath, and speaking to your dog’s vet about these issues is going to be your best course of action in all circumstances.

Miniature Schnauzer

They’re small and particularly prone to issues with their mouths. For this reason, you might notice that your dog has some bad breath. While it could just be the food you’re feeding him (wet foods tend to have more of an unpleasant odor than dry foods), it could be a sign of oral disease.


They’re small, adorable and oh-so-sweet, and they smell terrible sometimes. These dogs not only have issues with their oral health, they also have a lot of hair around their mouths. This means that they are more likely to end up with food stuck around their mouths, as well as saliva, which never smells that good.

Toy Poodles

Toy breeds have more health issues, in general, than larger breeds. There is just always a risk factor with breeds so small, and bad breath is a problem for this type of toy dog. It could be halitosis or some other issue with oral health, and your vet will want to check it out.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

They seem like the most adorable dogs that ever lived, and perhaps they are. But they can have some pretty rank breath. This is typically because small dogs are more likely to have oral health issues, and your Cavalier might be one of them. Regular vet checkups can catch this early on.


These little balls of fluff tend to have pretty unpleasant breath thanks to poor oral health and because they have so much fur around their faces. Food and saliva are commonly stuck around their mouths in their fur, which can cause them to smell slightly disgusting between baths.

Yorkshire Terrier

Sweet and small, these dogs are always excited to see their owners. Unfortunately, you might not be quite so excited to see them when their breath is kicking. These dogs are prone to some oral health concerns, and regular visits to the vet to have them checked out will help tremendously with your dog’s bad breath.


Aren’t these just the sweetest? They are so adorable, and so small and they are just the kind of dog that every family with a little child needs. Unfortunately, this dog might require more frequent trips to the vet for oral health issues than other dogs, which is part of the reason so many dachshund owners don’t want their dogs giving them welcome kisses when they arrive home. Their breath is not all that good.


These are dogs that people tend to love, and others cannot stand. For some reason, I’ve never met a person ambivalent about a Chihuahua; they either love them or hate them. There’s very little in-between, and it’s because these are dogs that can be quite territorial, as well as a little bit talkative. They also have issues with gum disease, which makes their breath less than desirable, which is just another check in the ‘cons’ column.

Shetland Sheepdogs

These are lovely dogs, and they make great pets. But they have a lot of fur, and that means a lot of stuff gets trapped in there on a regular basis. They’re beautiful, but it’s not uncommon to smell a bit of unpleasant odor emanating from the hair on this dog’s face.


Seriously, this dog looks like one of those sweet, adorable gremlins from the movies. Remember those? It’s too bad that it looks like the cute one but can smell like the ones that aren’t all that adorable. These dogs have the most fun ears you’ll ever see, but they also have some seriously unpleasant breath, which means you’ll need to make good friends with your vet so that you can have that checked out whenever possible. These are dogs that need some help in the breath department, but they make wonderful additions to any family.

Photo by Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images

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