The 20 Friendliest Dog Breeds

Finding the perfect dog can be a process, especially if you are looking for a particular breed with certain personality traits. It can take a while, but it is well worth the wait to find the best dog to fit in with your lifestyle and family and vice-versa. Most people who are in search of a new family member to adopt do look for friendliness as a positive trait. This is especially important if there are young children in the family. A dog with a gentle and welcoming personality will be less likely to exhibit aggressive behaviors if he or she is properly socialized. The following dog breeds have been chosen for our list in accordance with their friendliness towards other pets, strangers, their levels of affection and general friendliness.

Here are 20 of the friendliest dog breeds for your consideration.

20. Irish Setter

Irish Setters originate from the country of Ireland. They are also known as Irish Red Setters or Red Setters. They are a larger dog that has a reputation for being very affectionate. Other positive traits include their high energy levels, alertness, friendliness, and independence. They are lively and playful dogs who enjoy being social. Their coats are a lovely brownish red color. They are also known to be obedient, agile and good at hunting retrieving, pointing and tracking. They make wonderful family pets because of their social dispositions. They are loyal and enjoy physical activity. Because they are a larger sized dog, they need to have open space to run and exercise.

19. Samoyed

Samoyed are a large breed of dog who have multiple talents. The breed originally comes from Russia where they were commonly used for herding and pulling sleds and carts. They have a heavy wooly coat because of the climate of their origins. They are a loyal and friendly dog with a gentle and playful disposition. The enjoy being playful and social with humans and with other animals. They are also known for their liveliness, energy, cheerfulness, gentleness and friendly nature. They like being independent so training at an early age is required. They also need to get regular exercise because they are a dog that has been bred to be workers.

18. Dalmatian

Dalmatians originated in Croatia and the United Kingdom. They are well known to be cheerful dogs with outgoing personalities. They are a large breed who are known to be courageous, alert, intelligent and outgoing. they are also energetic and friendly dogs, but their independent streak makes it vital to train them to be obedient at an early age. Dalmatians are loyal dogs and they possess multiple talents including guarding, agility, search and rescue, tracking and protecting their loved ones. In order for Dalmatians to be at their best health, they need to have plenty of regular exercise and socialization because they love to play.

17. Whippet

Whippets are also called snap dogs. They are a medium sized breed who are recognized for their gentleness and friendliness. The breed originates in the United Kingdom. They are immensely intelligent and cheerful dogs when they receive the socialization that they need to be well-adjusted. They tend to be quiet and affectionate unless they are playing. Their talents include racing, hunting, lure coursing, obedience and agility. They require very little maintenance with regard to grooming but they do need to get plenty of exercise. They are the healthiest and happiest when they have something physical that they can do on a regular basis.

16. Saint Bernard

Saint Bernards as a breed originated in the countries of Italy and Switzerland. They are among the giant dog breeds yet they are known for their lovable dispositions and social tendencies. They love interacting with people, but the training process can be frustrating for humans. They are gentle and friendly and are among the most intelligent of dog breeds. They are outgoing and enjoy playing with their loved ones. There is a tendency for them to be quiet, but when there is danger, they are quite capable of sounding the alarm. They need to get regular exercise. They were originally bred to pull carts and participate in search and rescue activities.

15. Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is a kind of Irish Terrier that originated in Ireland. They are commonly referred to as “Wheaten or Wheatie.” They are a medium sized breed that is known for being highly affectionate, cheerful, gentle and friendly. They are also alert, loyal and playful. They are minimal shedders so they don’t leave much hair around the house. They are also known to be excellent pets for homes with children. In order for Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers to remain healthy, they need to be involved with regular physical activities. They are agile dogs who are talented in tracking, hunting and guarding.

14. Papillon

Papillions country of origin is France. They are a small dog that has very large ears. This makes them appear cute and cuddly. This dog is very friendly and they are easy to train. They are known for their cheerful, gentle and social nature. They are highly responsive and intelligent. They are also alert, energetic and playful. They need regular socialization and exercise. This breed of dog is very obedient and does well in obedience competitions.

13. Basset Hound

Basset Hounds were originally bred in the country of France. They were used for tracking and hunting which are still strengths of the breed today. They are known to be very good with children and they make amazing watch dogs. They are a large breed that is highly affectionate, gentle, sweet,friendly and alert. They need to get regular exercise and socialization in order to maintain good health. Basset Hounds originate from France, where the breed was known for hunting and tracking. Today, Basset Hounds make wonderful watchdogs, and are very good with kids.

12. Vizsla

Vizsla’s originally come from the country of Hungary. They are a large breed of dog that are good at man trailing, hunting, tracking and pointing. They are quiet dogs that are intelligent, responsive and protective. They are loyal to a fault, yet energetic, friendly, cheerful and gentle. The color of their coat is reed with a smooth sheen. Their shedding is minimal which makes them a good option for people with allergies or who have interior carpeting. Vizslas need to get regular physical exercise and they need socialization as well in order to stay healthy.

11. Pembroke Welsh Corgi

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a breed that originated in the United Kingdom. They are highly loving and affectionate dogs that like to show their feelings. They are outgoing and known to be very good with children. They are also known as “Corgi’s.” They get along well with other animals. They are also multi talented pets who are good at herding, guarding and competitive obedience. They are known to be one of the friendlier dog breeds who are recommended for families with children.

10. Miniature Schnauzer

The Miniature Schnauzer breed originates in the country of Germany. They are also referred to as Zwergscnauzer. They are a small dog that has an adorable bearded feature. They are intelligent dogs with a playful nature yet they are alert. They are well known for their friendliness. They have multiple talents which include agility. They are good at competitive obedience, tracking, hunting and earth dog.

9. Boxer

Boxers are a large sized dog that has its origins in the country of Germany. They are known for their courage and alertness. They are energetic dogs who are intelligent and outgoing. They are also loyal, playful and friendly. They have a low maintenance coat with minimal shedding. This makes the a good choice for people who have allergies. They are also talented dogs who enjoy participating in activities including guarding, competitive obedience, agility, police work, military work, and they are also skilled when properly trained in search and rescue. They may have a bit of a menacing look, but they really are a friendly and social breed. They must have regular exercise and socialization to maintain their emotional and physical health. Since they were originally used as working dogs, it is good to have them compete or at least participate in activities that keep them moving.

8. Bulldog

Bulldogs are medium sized dogs and the breed originated in the United Kingdom. They are also known as English Bulldogs. They have wrinkled faces which are a bit on the comical side and some of them are born with a cute underbite that makes them look adorable. They are excellent with children because of their sweetness and their friendliness. They rarely make great guard dogs because they are extremely friendly with kids and strangers as well.

7. Labrador Retriever

The Labrador Retriever is a native breed of the United States and Canada. They are a favorite in the US where they are often used for hunting. This dog is large in size and has a shiny, sleek coat with medium thickness. They are masters at learning repetitive tasks with extreme intelligence and loyalty. Labrador Retrievers are known for their friendliness as well as their kindness. They make wonderful pets for single people and households with children. Their loyalty makes them fiercely protective of their loved ones and unless properly trained at an early age, they will fiercely defend their home and surrounding property. They are also often referred to as a Lab.

6. Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is a breed that originated in the United Kingdom. They are a large sized dog that is comparable to a Labrador Retriever. They are among the most loving and friendly large dogs. They are easy to train because of their high intelligence. They enjoy becoming a part of the family and are great with kids.  These dogs are also among the most intelligent as well as easily trained breeds out there.

5. Beagle

The Beagle is a friendly breed that originated in the United Kingdom. Beagles are a medium sized dog that are masters at scent detection and tracking with amazing hunting skills. They also have a tendency to become excellent watchdogs, particularly if children are involved. They are good with kids and have sweet, loving and gentle dispositions. They also have an independent streak so they must be properly trained at an early age or obedience issues may develop. They must have regular exercise in order to maintain good health.

4. Siberian Husky

Siberian Huskies are a large breed that was developed in Siberia while having their origins in the country of Russia. They served as work dogs hauling sleds and cargo for great distances across the frozen Siberian tundra. They can withstand extremely cold temperatures thanks to their thick fur. Their degree of friendliness is extreme and this makes them an excellent choice for pets.

3. Shih Tzu

The Shih Tzu is a very small dog that has its origins in the country of China. They are an attractive dog that features a double coat, but they are best known for their friendly personalities. They are fiercely protective of those that they love. Shih Tzu’s are high maintenance because of their double coat that requires constant grooming.

2. Boston Terrier

Boston Terriers are a breed that originates in the United States. They are known for their playfulness and their friendliness. They are also known as Bull Terriers, Boxwood and American Gentlemen. They are lively dogs that love to play, but they don’t require a yard. As long as they get regular exercise, they will get along well and this is one of the reasons that they make such good pets for people who live in apartments or duplexes. They are intelligent and agile. They are talented in competitive obedience and agility contests.

1. Collie

Collies are a large breed that originates in the United Kingdom. They are constant shedders which makes it necessary to groom them regularly. They are known for their extreme friendliness. They also have loyal personalities, high intelligence, they are gentle, protective, social and responsive. They are known for their skills in competitive obedience, agility, guarding, herding, tracking, search and rescue and for guiding the blind. They make excellent family pets and they will protect their families from danger.


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