Many people assume that with small children, you need a small dog. That’s simply not true. Many big dog breeds are good with children.
When looking for the right dog breed for your family, you'll do better by focusing more on temperment and activity level than focusing on the height or weight of the dog. If you’re looking for dog breeds that are good with children, here are 9 of the best big dogs.
Saint Bernards (pictured at left)
Originally bred to rescue travelers in freezing conditions, Saint Bernards are natural caretakers and guardians. They are friendly, eager to please, and intelligent. Saints make extremely loyal family members. Typically weigh 130 to 180 pounds.
Bernese Mountain Dogs (sometimes called Berners)
Large, loyal, and gentle. They’re patient and easy-going enough to accept rough petting from a child, people-oriented to want to be surrounded by their human family, and intelligent to make training easier. Typically weigh between 80 and 110 pounds.
The protective instinct runs strong with the big dogs. They are very loyal and protective of their family, and will let down their guard to act silly with trusted family. Calm, with a need for daily exercise that makes them perfect playmates in the yard. Typically weigh between 85 and 130 pounds.
Vizslas (pictured at right)
Their high energy level makes Vizslas good, active companions for children. They are affectionate, smart, and perfect for families that want a pet that can join them in physical activities like biking, hiking, and camping. Typically weigh 40 to 60 pounds with a tall, lean frame.
German Shepherds are wonderful protectors and absolutely devoted to their family. Their calm disposition coupled with intelligence makes them a great addition to the family. Their ability to learn and energy level make them great for active families, especially those interested in dog sports. Typically weigh 75 to 90 pounds.
The AKC calls a Newfoundland’s sweetness “the most important single characteristic of the breed.” Their sweet nature and gentle disposition make them excellent dogs for families with children. They are social enough that neighborhood kids and friends will be welcomed by these gentle giants. Typically weigh 100 to 150 pounds.
Poodles (pictured at left)
Often thought of in their smaller forms, standard Poodles are among the smartest dogs there are. They are gentle, good-natured, and tend to win over loyal fans. They are patient with children, friendly, and do best when surrounded by people. Typically weigh 45 to 70 pounds.
There’s a good reason why Labradors top popularity lists. They’re easy-going, intelligent, and ready to play at a moment’s notice. The retriever instinct initially developed for hunting makes for summers full of fetch. This dog ball launcher toy helps kids throw a ball longer distances. Typically weigh between 50 and 100 pounds, though some get much larger.
Golden Retrievers are the charmers of the dog world. Their easy-going nature, engaging personality, and affectionate tendency makes them a loving addition to any family. They are gentle and patient with kids, with enough energy to make wonderful playmates. Typically weigh 50 to 75 pounds.
These are not the only big dog breeds good with children, but they are some of the best. Large dogs are excellent playmates and guardians for children. If you're looking for a dog to add to your family, be sure to consider these breeds. Petfinder.com is a great place to start looking for dogs that need homes.
If you liked this, you may also like:
How To Introduce A Dog To A Baby - Have a little one on the way? These 9 tips will help your dog adjust.
Finding Your Dog Dates - Much of a dog's ability to get along with others comes from socialization. Here are a few ways to socialize your dog.
Large Dog Backpack - If your big dog is joining your family on a trip, he can carry his own stuff in this pack.
Photo credit (top to bottom): Gabrielle, 1000zen, Michael Gil