Are you new to the dog world and looking to adopt a pooch in need of a good home? Many experts advise first time dog parents to start with a small dog. “But I want a big dog!” you might say.
I’ll try to make a case for smaller dogs. Here are a few reasons first-timers should start with a little pooch:
- Small dogs won’t keep outgrowing their collars, crates, beds or other accessories, which means more money in your pocket!
- They produce less doggy doo, and that means less poop to scoop.
- They eat less food, so you’ll keep even more money in your pocket.
- Tiny pooches can’t reach those steaks you left thawing on the kitchen counter!
Here are some excellent dog breeds and hybrid breeds for first time pet parents. And remember you can get just about any breed of dog from a rescue or shelter. Check out DogTime’s adoption page that lets you search for adoptable dogs by breed and zip code!
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The Bichon Frise is always happy and will make a great companion — perfect any first time dog parent.
They don’t shed as much as many other dogs, so you won’t have to clean up stray fur. Plus, you can take them almost anywhere!
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
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The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is eager to meet every person who crosses their path and is a great choice for people new to dog parenting.
They like to please and will fall all over themselves trying to make you happy.
Coton de Tulear
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The Coton de Tulear is a great companion dog. They like going for walks but can adjust their activity level to yours.
These are typically very friendly dogs and great for people who don’t have a lot of canine experience.
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The Havanese gets along with everyone — people, children, other dogs, and cats.
They are also very versatile and can live in a big house or small apartment. This pup is a great choice for anyone!
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The Maltese is a people oriented dog. They respond well to training.
Remember to reward them with treats, praise, and play, and you’ll have a companion for life!
Maltese Shih Tzu
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This is actually a mixed breed dog that combines the loving traits of two parent breeds on this list: the Maltese and the Shih Tzu.
With the Maltese Shih Tzu, family is a top priority and nothing else matters as much as being with you! If they have that, everything else is negotiable.
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The Maltipoo is a hybrid of the Maltese and the Poodle, which makes for an active and charming small dog.
They can fit into all kinds of homes and families: apartment or house, families with kids or elderly single. This hybrid is another great choice for first timers.
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The Norfolk Terrier is what’s considered “a big dog in a small package.”
Alert, gregarious, and nimble, they’ll make for a loyal companion with the heart of a working terrier.
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The Papillon is happy, alert and friendly. They should never be shy or aggressive.
This is a “take charge” little dog with a moderate to intense activity level. They’re very smart and highly trainable, and they’re best described as a doer, not a cuddler.
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The Peekapoo is a gentle and rarely combative hybrid of the Pekingese and Poodle breeds.
This hybrid is loving and loyal and dedicated to their family. An ideal lap dog, they delight in being a part of every family activity.
Toy Or Miniature Poodle
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Behind the blue ribbons, impressive hairdos, and regal attitude, you’ll find an affectionate family dog in the Poodle.
Despite their appearance, they can be goofy and love to play!
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Pugs are a great small dogs for first time dog parents.
These dogs crave affection and a comfy spot on your lap!
Toy Or Miniature Schnoodle
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As a hybrid between the Schnauzer and the Poodle, the Minature Schnoodle is cheerful and intelligent.
Described as “forever happy,” they’ll fit into your life and lap with love and laughter!
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The Shih Tzu is an ancient, royal breed. Though they are linked closely to wolves through their DNA, these little dogs are warm and happy.
They don’t need very much activity but crave being near you.
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The Yorkipoo is a great small, hybrid dog that combines the traits of the Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle.
They’re confident thanks to their terrier heritage but also easy going and less demanding than many small breeds.
There are many other dog breeds that make great first time pups! I’m a fan of the mutt or rescue dog, personally, and senior dogs make amazing first time dogs because they’re often already potty trained and know how to walk on a leash.
If you’re looking for a dog, check your local shelters and rescues to find the perfect pooch for you!
What was your first dog? Are there any kinds of dogs you recommend for first-time pet parents? Let us know in the comments below!