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Which dog breeds are the best for a first dog?

When you're looking for your first furry companion, choosing the right breed is essential to ensure a positive pet ownership experience. Luckily, several dog breeds are known for being friendly, adaptable and easy to train, making them ideal for first-time dog owners. Here are a few breeds to consider.

Photo of a golden retriever and a kid


Boxers are known for loyalty and their energetic and affectionate nature. They make great companions, thanks to their playful and fun-loving personalities. They’re also great with children, which makes them a popular choice for families.


Poodles are highly intelligent and trainable. They also come in three sizes — standard, miniature and toy — so you can choose one best suited to the space constraints in your household. Poodles also have a hypoallergenic coat, making them suitable for people with allergies.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

These small dogs are known for being affectionate and having a gentle nature. They love to cuddle and get along well with all types of people. Plus, they only need a moderate amount of exercise.

Golden Retriever

Gentle, affectionate and loyal, golden retrievers are great with kids and get along well with other family pets. They also have a high level of intelligence, which makes them easy to train.

Labrador Retriever

Labradors are known for being friendly and extroverted. They’re eager to please, extremely trainable and friendly with children. Their gentle nature and intelligence make them an ideal choice for families.

Shih Tzu

Small and sturdy, Shih Tzus require minimal exercise and have a cheerful disposition. They enjoy companionship, form strong emotional bonds with their owners and aren’t prone to excessive barking.

Bichon Frisé

Playful and well-suited for indoor living, Bichon Frisés are affectionate and sociable, and they get along well with children and other pets. They’re also low-shedding and easy to train.

Before choosing a breed, consider your lifestyle, living situation and the amount of time you can dedicate to training and care. Research and careful consideration will help you find the perfect match for your first dog. Additionally, consider adopting from a shelter or rescue organization, as many mixed-breed dogs make wonderful companions. And once you adopt plan your puppy training classes for proper training techniques and socialization right away, as those can get full fast.

Dog hospital in Scarborough

Once you adopt your new dog, regular veterinary care is essential. Bellamy-Lawrence Animal Hospital near Toronto offers annual checkups, grooming services, microchipping, surgical procedures, dental care, emergency services and more. Simply fill out a new patient form and book your first appointment to ensure a long and happy life for your furry friend. Get in touch with us to arrange a vet visit for your new best friend.

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