Which breed of dog to adopt for the first time?

Raising a dog is a very big responsibility. It’s a living being that we are about to welcome at home for several years. You will have to be attentive to Its needs and respond to them infallibly: food, health, well-being, education … If the desire to embark on this great adventure tempts you, we can only encourage you to do so. You will need to take great care in choosing the breed, however,  not all dogs are easy for a novice to deal with.

So here is something to help you know which breed of dog to adopt for the first time.

Choose a dog suited to your lifestyle

The choice of the dog breed for a first adoption is not easy. It involves careful thought and taking into account a multitude of factors, starting with those relating to your own lifestyle.

You must, in fact, choose a dog whose characteristics are in line with your habits, your availability, your home, etc.

If you are the sedentary type, do not direct your choice towards a breed of dog known for its sporty character. Otherwise, you run the risk of not offering enough daily activities, which in the animal results in boredom, depression, and various behavioral problems, such as the destruction of objects and the tendency to run away.

Instead, look to a less active dog like the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel or the Continental Miniature Spaniel. Be careful, however: “less active” does not mean “totally inactive”. Whatever its breed, the dog needs a minimum of daily activity.

Also, make sure that you can take full responsibility for the dog. For example, for an elderly person, taking care of a large quadruped is not easy: Saint BernardLeonbergerMastiffNaples MastiffTibetan Mastiff …

Finally, it’s also important to see how willing you are to provide the care your dog will need, especially in terms of grooming. If you have little time and energy to devote to it, prefer breeds that don’t call for frequent grooming. Again, this will not exempt you from performing basic care such as brushing.

What are the best dog breeds for a first adoption?

The criteria for choosing a dog breed for a first adoption may vary, but in general terms, the following trends can be identified:

  • Size: prefer a small or medium-sized dog.
  • Character: it is obviously advisable to opt for a breed of dog known to be easy to train and calm.
  • The necessary care: as explained above, avoid choosing a dog whose grooming needs are important.

From there, among the dog breeds best suited for a first adoption experience, we can cite: the Golden Retriever, the Labrador Retriever, the Pug, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, the Collie, the Shetland Shepherd, or again the Greyhound (if you’re willing to give it enough exercise).

Do not hesitate to take our personalized test which, based on your profile and your lifestyle, will provide you with the breeds most compatible with your answers. Once the result is obtained, all you have to do is find the dog that will join your home.


  • Amanda Wheatley

    Passionate about animals, Amanda draws her expertise from her training as an educator, pet behaviorist as well as her extensive experience with animal owners. A specialist in dog and cat behavior, Amanda continues to learn about our four-legged companions by studying veterinary reference books but also university research sites (UCD, Utrecht, Cambridge, Cornell, etc..) Why Trust ShelterAPet? At ShelterAPet, our collective is composed of writers, veterinarians, and seasoned animal trainers with a deep passion for pets. Our team of esteemed professionals delves into extensive research to deliver trustworthy insights on a broad spectrum of pet-related subjects. We anchor our evaluations on direct customer experiences, meticulous testing, and comprehensive scrutiny. Our commitment is to uphold transparency and integrity for our cherished community of pet aficionados and prospective pet parents.

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