Best Dog Breeds for Families
Families aren’t complete without a pet. Those cute, cuddly creatures can help keep families active and happy. But if you want a dog, which breed do you choose?
There are so many options, each with different needs and temperaments. Finding the right dog for your family is important. You want the dog to be active but cuddly, protective but not aggressive. Getting just the right combination can be tricky, but it’s a little easier when you’ve done a little research.
Of course, personal preference does factor into choosing the right kind of dog, but there are some things to consider that are a little more scientific. We’ll review the top contenders for family-friendly dogs including their temperaments, needs, and any potential concerns.
One breed that might be a surprise is the Siberian Husky. Many people consider the Siberian Husky to be low on the list for family dogs, but the truth is they are great options for many families. There are things to consider, however, including Siberian Husky homeowners insurance.
Benefits of a Family Dog
Family dogs aren’t just nice to have around. It’s not just about the cuddles or crumb cleaning. They actually help improve the lives of everyone in the family. The benefits of owning a dog are numerous.
Dogs naturally help relieve stress. Dogs, like a lot of animals, are intuitive. They are quick to feel a person’s pain, anxiety, fear, or sadness and intervene in their own way. Cuddling with a furry dog while experiencing any of these feelings can help minimize their effects or amount of time you feel them.
Dogs are also great teaching tools when little kids are involved. Dogs require a lot of work and attention. This means pet owners need to be responsible and attentive. Young kids can start learning how to be responsible by taking care of the family dog.
Having a family dog can also help increase physical activity for everyone. Most dogs are active and need stimulation. This means hikes, long walks, and adventures in the park. These activities are not passive, however. A dog has a way of getting everyone up and moving.
Dogs can also help with a person’s social life and empathy. Dogs are social animals, and they want to spend time with other people and dogs. They are easy ways to connect with others, increasing both social life and empathy.
Top 5 Dog Breeds
There are hundreds of different lists ranking dog breeds. Some lists look at activity levels, care needs, and even the dog’s ability to interact with other people. Few of these lists are the same, but there are often many similarities.
There are few surprises when looking at a specific dog breed. Most lists share the same information about temperament and needs. Ranking these animals, however, is all about your family and your needs plus the specific breed’s temperament and needs.
#1 – Boxer
The Boxer breed is a great choice for a family dog. Most people consider them to be one of the very best breeds. They are medium-sized dogs, weighing between 50 and 70 pounds when fully grown, with a generous life expectancy, between 10 and 12 years.
Boxers are one of the most childlike breeds around. They are cheerful, playful, and ready to mix it up with young kids. It’s important to know, however, that this playfulness can lead to some clumsiness.
Clumsiness can lead to a few bumps and bruises for the kids. Boxers are quick to jostle a child or two, but it’s all in good fun. Just keep this in mind when the children in the home are very young.
#2 – Golden Retriever
The golden retriever may be the quintessential family dog. Hundreds of sitcoms and family-centered movies show a family with two kids and a golden retriever frolicking in a well-manicured park.
This portrayal isn’t by accident. The golden retriever is a medium-sized dog that lives between 10 and 12 years. They are incredibly laid-back, tolerant dogs who rarely get aggressive. This makes them perfect for families with kids.
The main concern with golden retrievers is their intelligence. Their agile minds and energy levels can be difficult to handle when they aren’t stimulated or exercised enough. If you choose to get a golden retriever, then it’s important to have a plan for activity and exercise.
#3 – Beagle
If you’re looking for a smaller dog, then a beagle may be the right choice. This breed of dog usually reaches 20 to 25 pounds when fully grown. They do have relatively short life expectancy and live between 10 and 15 years on average.
The beagle is known to be incredibly loyal and social. These dogs are quick to bond and protect the people they love, including very young children. They also like to be around other people, so they are great for families that are active and engaged.
Things to consider before getting a beagle: They are vocal and a little high-strung. The vocal aspect of this dog breed can be helpful in some situations but can be a problem with young children who nap during the day.
Beagles can also be high-strung. They respond well to training and a strong alpha presence. If your family isn’t ready to consistently train a dog, then consider other training options or a different dog breed.
#4 – Irish Setter
If you’re an activity family with older children — upper elementary or middle school age — and looking for a dog to keep up, then an Irish setter may be the right choice. This dog breed is on the higher end of energetic. They are ready to go for a hike or play a long round of fetch.
This level of activity can be a drawback as well. If your family isn’t that active, or if you have responsibilities that take you away from home, then an Irish setter might not be the best addition to the family.
#5 – Siberian Husky
As mentioned before, the breed that may be a surprise is the Siberian Husky. Many people do not consider these dogs to be family dogs, but they have the right temperament and loyalty to make a great family pet.
Siberian Huskies are larger dogs with longer life spans — 12 to 14 years — and are used to working hard in extreme conditions. They are calm dogs who respond quickly to training.
It’s important to consider the level of activity and stimulation a family can provide for a Husky. These dogs are work dogs, they need to be active and stimulated daily. They also have some maintenance needs that can require additional time and money. If you’re considering a Siberian Husky, take the time to research everything they need by looking up a complete care guide for the breed.
The Family Dog and Homeowners Insurance
People are often eager to add a dog to their family. The puppy days are full of training and some sleepless nights, but once the training kicks in, a dog is pure joy. The puppy days don’t last forever, though. People need to consider how to care for their pet long-term.
The needs of a dog change over the course of their lives. It’s a good idea to understand and consider those long-term needs before bringing the puppy home.
It’s also important to consider homeowners insurance when bringing home the newest addition to the family. The addition of a dog on a homeowners insurance policy is most often used for dog bites.
While nobody wants to think their pooch could do something like bite someone, it’s always a possibility. Compare average insurance bundle costs for the top-rated insurance companies to see what rates are available.
These policies are meant to add a little peace of mind in the event of the unthinkable. The cost for this coverage depends on the dog breed.
Some breeds, those that are more aggressive by nature or perception, are more costly or harder to insure altogether. This might be another consideration when determining the breed your family will bring home.
The choice of when to get a family dog and which breed you choose is all very personal. No family is the same and it will take some time and research to find the right fit. Do the research, visit some dogs, and get ready for your life to change with that first tail wag.
Laura Gunn writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, USInsuranceAgents.com. She and her family are the proud owners of an Australian shepherd mix. They love the companionship and adventures their dog gives them on a daily basis.