All dogs have their own personalities, whether small or large. However, larger dogs tend to be a little more successful when it comes to intruding on one’s personal space, simply due to their size. Many large dog breeds are just as suitable for families as small dogs. But which are the best breeds to introduce into a family setting? We have created a list of 15 large dog breeds that outshine the competition when it comes to being loyal family members.
The 15 Best Big Dog Breeds for Families:
1. The Golden Retriever
Golden Retrievers are loyal, fun-loving, affectionate, and extremely active, much like kids. They are known for their patience and their ability to pick up on a human’s inner feelings, which may be why they make such good therapy and rescue dogs. This breed can be up to 24 inches tall and weigh up to 75 pounds when fully grown.
2. The German Shepherd
Although these pooches are known for being voracious guard dogs, they are sweet and gentle once you get to know them. German Shepherds have intelligent, patient dispositions. If socialized from a young age, they get along well with children and other animals. This breed is easy to train and can even be conditioned to perform a job at home that helps out the whole family.
3. The Bernese Mountain Dog
Weighing in at 110 pounds during adulthood, these are huge dogs with even bigger personalities. They are fearlessly devoted to their human companions and are self-confident but are rarely aggressive unless they perceive a true threat. They love hanging out with kids and will go out of their way to interact with them gently. They can also get along with other pets, like cats.
4. The Labrador Retriever
Labs are big and goofy. They love playing and expect daily walks unless they have a job, like being hunting companions or animal herders. Although active, these dogs do not mind cuddling up in the living room while everyone in the house watches a movie. In return for fun, exercise, and mental stimulation, Labrador Retrievers will reward their family with loyalty, affection, and a best friend for the kids to rely on.
5. The Rottweiler
Rottweilers do well with families that include older children. They can be a little overbearing for younger kids, but if they grow up with a youngster from puppyhood, chances are that they can adapt to the need for gentler and more patient interaction with kids of all ages. These dogs are smart, patient, loyal, and softhearted. They will also defend their family members as necessary, but the threat must be imminent.
6. The Great Dane
Great Danes are mighty in stature, with males standing at 32 inches and weighing up to 175 pounds once fully mature. Even though their size is intimidating and can be tough to accommodate for small households, the Great Dane is a joy to spend time with and does not have an aggressive bone in their body. They get along well with kids of all ages and will quickly become their best friends.
7. The Boxer
Boxers have a strong work ethic, so they take their jobs of watching over children and pulling wagons extremely seriously. These affectionate dogs are always alert, and they always seem to be paying attention to what their human family members are up to. Their agility will keep up with any child on the playground, and their grounded personality allows them to easily adapt to a calm, relaxed setting at home.
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8. The Samoyed
These gorgeous dogs have many intriguing qualities. They are powerful yet loving, intelligent yet willing to learn, and confident yet humble. They want to be an active part of the family unit, whether that means spending time around a fire pit at night while everyone roasts marshmallows, heading off on a weekend camping trip with the household, or helping with yard work by hauling dead leaves and grass cuttings.
9. The Chow Chow
This all-purpose pooch is soft and cuddly, which is something kids and adults alike tend to admire. The Chow Chow is a working-class dog, so they do not want to spend all day lounging around at home. This dog is best for active families that spend a great deal of time outdoors together. This breed can be easily trained for obedience and agility courses from the time that they are puppies.
10. The Dalmatian
Many people purchased these dogs after Disney’s “101 Dalmatians” movie originally came out. Because so many were returned or sent to the humane society, people assumed that they were hard to care for. The truth is that with proper exercise and care, Dalmatians are loyal, loving dogs that enjoy nothing more than spending quality time with their human family members.
11. The English Setter
Any family looking for a laidback, mellow dog should consider the English Setter. These dogs are always gentle and loyal. They are followers rather than leaders, so it is hard to find a dominant one in the pack. However, this does not mean that they can skip exercise. They should get moving daily to maintain a positive frame of mind and family-oriented disposition.
12. The German Shorthaired Pointer
Although these dogs are full of energy, they are sensible and patient, which helps balance their personalities and makes them awesome pets for families. Their energy keeps up with the kids, their sensibility lets them know how to decipher what is wrong and what is right, and their patience makes them both easy to train and easy to love.
- See also: 28 Best Small Dog Breed for Families
13. The Poodle
Poodles are well-behaved, happy-go-lucky, and playful. They make excellent family dogs for many reasons, including their hypoallergenic qualities and eagerness to please. These outgoing dogs love going on outings, and if trained, they will be happy to greet strangers during their travels. There are three sizes of Poodles to choose from, all of which are suitable for families.
14. The Saluki
While not a well-known breed, the Saluki is a hardy Egyptian breed that loves spending time with humans. They are well-domesticated and athletic, so they can get along in the house well, but they should have a fenced yard to run around in daily. These dogs have warm, loving personalities and patient temperaments, which makes them suitable to be around children.
15. The Weimaraner
This breed has a gorgeous gray coat that looks silver in the sunlight. They can be up to 27 inches tall when fully grown, but they seem to understand their large size and know how to stay within boundaries when interacting with their human family members and other animals. Weimaraner dogs happen to be easy to groom and train too.
Best Big Dogs for Kids: Which Is Your Favorite?
We love all the big dogs that are good with kids mentioned on this list. Each breed has endearing qualities that are great for families of all types. Which one a family chooses depends on the specific personality traits and care requirements that suit everyone’s lifestyles the best. Which of the breeds on our list are the most attractive to you? We want to know! Vote for your favorite large dog breed for families in our comments section.
Featured image credit: Olena Polianychko, Shutterstock