Dog Breeds for Young Families

Dog Breeds for Young Families

The Best Dog Breeds for Young Families

Adding a new canine friend to your young family is super exciting, but also a big decision!

  • How do you know which dog breed is best for your family?

  • Perhaps you have certain things to take into consideration like a small living space or allergies?

Knowing which dog breeds are best suited to your family’s needs can really pay-off in the long-run. Have a read of our top best dog breeds for young families.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Apart from being adorable, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an excellent canine choice for young families. Their mild temperament and affectionate personality mean they will quickly adapt to smaller living situations and maintain exceptional patience with young children. Although a dog with calmer temperament, they still retain their sporty nature from their spaniel ancestors! They love nothing more than a belly rub and a good pat, but they will not shy away from a run in the park or a playtime session.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? No
Average lifespan: 9 - 14 years
Temperament: Patient, sociable, fearless, playful, affectionate and adaptable
Weight: 5.9 - 8.2 kg (for both adult females and males)
Height: 30 - 33cm when fully grown (same for both female and males)
Colours: Black and tan, tri-colour, chestnut and white, and ruby-red


Originally bred for hare hunting, the beagle has a fantastic sense of smell and is never happier than when following a good scent. So, you can expect your beagle to be very busy during your daily walks! The beagle is an inquisitive and curious breed, but they are also happy, outgoing and loving. Their loving and gentle nature make them a perfect companion to young families looking for their first family pet.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? No
Average lifespan: 10 – 15 years
Temperament: Amiable, excitable, loving, intelligent, even tempered, gentle and inquisitive
Weight: Male: 10–11 kg, Female: 9–10 kg
Height: Male approx. 36–41 cm, female approx. 33–38 cm
Colors: Lemon and white, white and tan, tri-colour, chocolate-brown tri, white and chocolate-brown, orange and white, red and white

Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

wheaten terrier
Friendly, affectionate and loyal, the soft-coated wheaten terrier is a wonderful addition to any family. Their energetic and playful personality also makes them the perfect backyard playmate for kids who also have plenty of energy to use up! They are everybody’s friend, so you don’t have to worry about whether they will fit into your family dynamic. They also get along well with other dogs which makes it easier if you already have a dog at home. Furthermore, they are excellent apartment dwellers, so if you live in a smaller space, this could be a breed for you to consider.
This breed has a high energy level and is very playful, so they will need a good exercise routine with plenty of walks to keep them fit and entertained. Luckily, they are also intelligent dogs and are easy to train with little likelihood of frequent barking. The soft-coated wheaten terrier also happens to be a “hypoallergenic” dog which sheds less fur. So, if you happen to love dogs but have allergies, this could be a particularly suitable breed for you!

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? Yes
Average lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Color: Wheaten
Temperament: Affectionate, energetic, spirited, playful, intelligent, faithful
Height: Males are approx. 46–48 cm and females are approx. 43–46 cm
Weight: Males are approx. 16–18 kg and females are approx. 14–16 kg

Miniature Schnauzer

If you are looking for a high-energy canine companion for your family, look no further than the miniature schnauzer. With a personality that almost outshines their cuteness, the miniature schnauzer oozes character and will keep you on your toes day in and day out. They will adapt well to smaller living spaces and do not mind being alone during the day while you are at work. They are happy in both warm and cold weather and will not drool or shed (much).

The miniature schnauzer is a perfect family companion and will be sure to show their affection lavishly. They are easy to train, very intelligent and love to play. However, they are also very energetic and will need plenty of exercise to keep them fit and happy. It is a great excuse to get the kids exercising too! Ask the kids to take the family dog for daily walks (if they are old enough) or take the whole family for daily walks with your miniature schnauzer. Bonus points: the miniature schnauzer sheds less and is a “hypoallergenic” dog suitable for people with allergies.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? Yes
Average lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Temperament: Obedient, intelligent, fearless, alert, friendly, active
Weight: Females are approx. 5.4–8.2 kg and males are approx. 5.4–9.1 kg
Colours: Black, white, salt and pepper, black and silver
Height: Both females and males are approx. 30–36 cm


Originally bred to be lap dogs, pugs are incredibly affectionate and make for fantastic additions to any family. Much like humans, they love eating and sleeping (perhaps a little too much!) so they are extra susceptible to gaining weight. Pugs adapt well to small living spaces and will get along great with children and adults alike. However, they do not like being alone and will not appreciate being kept inside all day while their family is out.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic:? No
Average lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Temperament: Docile, attentive, intelligent, stubborn, charming, sociable, playful, quiet,
Colors: Black, fawn, apricot, silver fawn
Height: Males are approx. 30 cm (at the withers) and females are approx. 25 cm (at the withers)

Golden Retriever

The golden retriever is a crowd favourite for a reason! They are fantastically social and the perfect companion for families with larger homes and plenty of backyard space. They are tolerant, friendly and very intelligent, making them perfect additions to any family. Of course, they are also fantastic retrievers! Throw a stick, and they will happily retrieve it over and over (and over) again.

Golden retrievers adapt quickly to new environments and will get along with the whole family. They are also relatively easy to train but do not like being alone. So, expect a warm welcome every time you return home! However, they are certainly not hypoallergenic, and you will spend a good portion of your day collecting their seemingly never-ending supply of leftover dog hair.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? No
Average lifespan: 10 – 12 years
Weight: Females are approx. 25–32 kg and males are 30–34 kg
Temperament: Kind, friendly, confident, intelligent, reliable, trustworthy
Height: Females are approx. 51–56 cm and males are approx. 56–61 cm
Colors: Dark Golden, cream, light golden, golden


Poodles are not just beautiful, they are also exceptionally intelligent and make for the perfect family pet with their faithful and friendly nature. Depending on the type of poodle (toy, miniature, standard, or medium), your poodle will adapt well to all living conditions (whether a smaller apartment or large house with a backyard). Poodles absolutely adore affection and will be the perfect snuggle companion for any family. They will not only get along with children and their adult family members, but they are also easy friends to strangers and other dogs. However, they hate being alone and will not appreciate being left alone all day while the rest of their family is at work or school.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? Yes
Average lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: Toy Poodle: 24 – 28 cm, Miniature Poodle: 28 – 35 cm, Standard Poodle: 45 – 60 cm, Medium Poodle: 35 – 45 cm
Temperament: Intelligent, easy to train, alert, active, faithful, instinctual, friendly
Colors: Black, white, apricot, cream, sable, black and white, blue, grey, silver, brown, red

Australian Shepherd

Despite their name, the Australian Shepherd originates from the United States! They were first bred to herd livestock, and they are still used as working dogs today. Although they are very energetic and happiest when they have got a job to do, they can also make for great family pets. However, you will have to make sure they get plenty of exercise and stimulation every day. They are very knowledgeable so easy to train and are very playful.

Quick info:

Hypoallergenic? No
Average lifespan: 13 – 15 years
Temperament: Good-natured, intelligent, affectionate, friendly, active, protective
Height: Males are approx. 51–58 cm and females are approx. 46–54 cm
Colors: Merle, red merle, blue merle, black, red tricolor, black tricolor, red
Weight: Males are approx. 25–32 kg and females are approx. 16–25 kg

Mixed-breeds and Rescue dogs

rescue dog
There is absolutely nothing wrong with a beautiful mixed-breed dog to make the perfect addition to your family. If you are looking for a new dog but are not sure which breed, head down to your local pet shelter and take a look at who needs a new home. Whenever possible, be sure to adopt - do not shop! Often, purebreds can also be found at your local shelter - and they will always appreciate a quality home and loving family to join.

However, if you do choose to adopt, pay close attention to where the dogs’ previous life experience. For example, if this dog has been abused or comes from a breeder, it may well be that the dog is very fearful of children or can even be aggressive. Bad experiences can make dogs very anxious and unpredictable. Always ask the workers at the animal shelter for more information.


This article was written in collaboration with Babysits - Australia’s babysitting community.
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1 comment

I am elderly and I am looking for a friend who is a mature girl who needs a friend too. A dog who can like a bit of a walk now and then. I live by myself and I find it a bit boring.

Pamela Neii

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