Easiest Dogs To Own – 8 Breeds For Novice Owners

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Do you have a busy lifestyle but are ready to welcome a new dog into your home? Or do you yearn for canine companionship but haven’t owned a dog before? In these cases, your best bet of finding the perfect breed for you is to look at the easiest dogs to own. 

The good news is, there are many different dog breeds you can choose from, and some are perfectly suited for novice owners and people with long working hours.

The bad news is, there is no such thing as a low-upkeep dog! A low-maintenance dog might not need two hours of vigorous exercise every day, but you’ll still have to take him for walks.

What are the easiest dog breeds for new dog owners? - yellow Labrador Retriever puppy lying down on fleece blanketWhat are the easiest dog breeds for new dog owners? - yellow Labrador Retriever puppy lying down on fleece blanket
What are the easiest dog breeds for new dog owners?

The truth is, all dogs require time, attention, and affection, but it’s up to you to determine how much of your time you can dedicate to your dog.

My dream is to own a border collie, but I’m aware that I don’t have the energy to go out and exercise such an active breed. So I made a compromise and got a breed who is equally smart but more into cuddling than running. 

Below, you will find a list of eight low-maintenance dog breeds that are ideal for busy people and novice owners.

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Eight Easiest Dogs To Own

Whether you are a first-time owner or are looking for a dog that will fit into your busy lifestyle, you are in the right place!

Listed below are some of the calmest and easiest dog breeds that might be a perfect match if you are looking for a laid-back and low-maintenance canine companion. 

1. Bichon Frise

Cute and fluffy, the Bichon is a small-sized dog and a member of a non-sporting group of dog breeds. Known for their cheerful and loving natures, Bichons can be amazing companions to people of all ages.

Good-natured and smart, they are a great fit for novice owners and even get along with other pets and children. 

Surprisingly, the thing that makes the Bichon Frise one of the easiest dog breeds to take care of is its coat.

While at first look the Bichon might seem like a high-maintenance dog, their fluffy coats don’t shed and don’t require extensive grooming. And since they don’t shed like other dogs, Bichons are often recommended for people with allergies. 

Playful and mischievous at times, Bichons have an upbeat attitude, which they use to charm everyone they meet.

They love to be the center of attention and will use every trick in the book to be the sole receivers of your affection and devotion. If you shower your Bichon with love and affection, he will return it tenfold and be the most adoring canine companion.

Bear in mind, while they have an independent nature, Bichons don’t like to be alone and frequently develop separation anxiety if left at home for many hours. In this case, a good-natured Bichon may become destructive.

So, if you have long working hours or live alone, look for another breed, since your Bichon isn’t the one who will wait idly for you to return home. 

2. Pug

Small and spunky, the pug is well-known for its wrinkled, short-muzzled face, stocky build, and curled tail.

Originally bred to be lap dogs, pugs crave human companionship and make amazing pets and great apartment dwellers. While pugs may be stubborn at times, they don’t have high energy or grooming needs and are easy to care for.

If you are looking for a laid-back, affectionate, and goofy canine companion, the pug might just be the perfect fit.

However, they crave companionship and will not appreciate being stuck home alone for hours on end. Bear in mind, while they don’t need long walks or vigorous exercise, pugs are one of the clingiest dog breeds you can own!

If you decide to get a pug, expect him to follow your every move and never leave your side, no matter where you decide to go.

They are one of the easiest dog breeds to own and don’t need much—except your undivided love and attention. When provided with all the affection they crave, pugs are funny, devoted, obedient, and playful companions.

As a potential owner, you need to know that pugs are prone to certain health conditions that might require long-term care and rack up hefty vet bills.

To avoid health issues and frequent vet visits, get your pug puppy from a reputable breeder who does genetic testing and can provide health certifications. 

3. Bulldog

While they may not look like it, bulldogs are one of the easiest dogs to take care of and are a great choice for novice owners.

Originally used to drive cattle and in the bloody sport of bull-baiting, bulldogs are, in fact, gentle souls and devoted companions. 

The bulldog is a medium-sized breed, with a wrinkled face and pushed-in nose, and a powerful body.

While their bodies give the impression of power and might, bulldogs don’t need a lot of exercise and are at their happiest when lazing around or napping on the sofa. A brief walk around the block and some play is all the exercise your bulldog will ever need. 

As far as grooming goes, this breed is fairly easy to maintain. They are average shedders, and you’ll only need to brush your dog twice a week to keep his glossy coat in tip-top condition. 

Bulldogs have easygoing and playful temperaments, but have a stubborn streak and might be difficult to train.

However, with the right training techniques and high-value treats, you will be able to house train your bulldog and teach him to obey commands. 

4. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 

The small Cavalier King Charles spaniel is one of the largest members of the toy dog breed group.

Being a spaniel at heart, they might try to chase after smaller prey and birds and are often very athletic. Although they like to play, run, and hike, Cavaliers are friendly and affectionate dogs that love to spend time with their owners. 

Cavaliers are very dependent on their people and like to follow their owners around the house like a second shadow. Needless to say, these dogs don’t appreciate being left at home alone and crave company at all times. 

Intelligent and eager to please, Cavaliers generally respond well to training and will learn commands quickly with positive reinforcement and reward-based training.

Bear in mind, Cavaliers are highly sensitive dogs, so any harsh corrections or yelling will be completely counterproductive. 

Another thing to keep in mind is the Cavalier’s medium-long, silky coat. While the coat is fairly easy to maintain, Cavaliers are moderate shedders and have to be brushed four times a week.

This might not seem a lot at first, but setting aside time for grooming might be too much if you have a busy schedule. 

5. Greyhound

Originally bred as hunting dogs to chase foxes and deer, Greyhounds can run very fast and are prized racing dogs. But while they excel at dog sports, Greyhounds are sweet-natured and gentle dogs that make amazing pets. 

Despite common beliefs, Greyhounds aren’t extremely energetic dogs. As much as they love a good sprint, Greyhounds also enjoy a good nap and will spend a significant amount of time curled up on the sofa. Due to this trait, they are great apartment dwellers and a great choice for first-time owners and families with kids.

This breed has an affectionate, sweet, loving, and sensitive nature, but they are also very independent.

They are fairly easy to train and will learn new commands and tricks easily when properly motivated. Like all other dogs, every Greyhound needs to be socialized from an early age, so expose your puppy to different people and sights as soon as you bring him home. 

And if you don’t have a lot of free time to take your dog to a groomer or brush his coat, the Greyhound may be an ideal choice. This breed has a very short and smooth coat that is very easy to maintain. 

6. Bernese Mountain Dog

Originally bred to be a versatile working breed, the Bernese mountain dogs were used as watchdogs, to pull carts, herd cattle, and serve as companions.

Large and sturdy, they might not look like a low-maintenance breed, but in the right hands, they can be. Friendly, calm, and obedient, the Bernese mountain dog can be an ideal companion if you have a backyard.

While they aren’t overly energetic, Berners need exercise and can feel cooped up living in an apartment. But while they need some outdoor space to roam and play, Berners should live inside and be involved in all family activities. 

Outgoing and relaxed, the Bernese mountain dog is very intelligent, thus you won’t have trouble with training.

They can learn commands fairly quickly but aren’t stubborn or difficult to train like some other highly intelligent breeds.

Berners are protective of their family but aloof with strangers, so early socialization is a must and will help your dog to overcome his shy nature.

The Berner’s thick, double coat requires regular brushing, but you won’t have to take your dog to a professional groomer.

Bear in mind, this breed sheds moderately all year round and goes through a heavy shed during spring and fall. Therefore, if you are too busy to brush your dog and vacuum his hair, this breed might not be the best choice for you.

7. French Bulldog

The French bulldog is essentially a smaller version of a bulldog and has distinctive, large bat ears. Small and stocky, the Frenchie served as a ratter but is now an affectionate family companion.

Due to their size and gentle nature, Frenchies are great apartment dwellers and ideal for first-time owners. 

Affectionate, easygoing, and patient, a French bulldog likes to spend a lot of time with its people and will follow you around the house.

Being a low-energy breed, your Frenchie won’t need a lot of exercise and will contentedly sit on your lap or nap on a sofa. Although they like to laze around, French bulldogs are fun-loving dogs that won’t fail to make you laugh.

The short, glossy coat is another trait that makes a French bulldog one of the easiest dog breeds to take care of.

They are easy to groom and require minimal brushing, which makes them ideal if you have a busy schedule and are looking for a low-maintenance dog. 

Please note, French bulldogs are intelligent and eager to please but are also free-thinkers. Thus, training can go either way and will largely depend on how motivated your dog is to try new things.

To keep things interesting and to train your puppy, try different training techniques, and use treats and praise to reward good behavior. 

8. Labrador Retriever 

Originally bred to be a working dog, the Labrador Retriever is nowadays one of the most popular dog breeds.

This popularity is largely due to the Lab’s friendly, affectionate, and gentle nature and high trainability. Bear in mind, the Labrador is a large and highly energetic breed and, as such, not a good choice for condo and apartment living. 

Due to the breed’s working history and high energy, Labs are active dogs that need regular exercise.

While high energy usually isn’t a trait of easiest dog breeds, the Lab’s good nature makes this breed easy to take care of. The sweet-natured and friendly Labrador gets along with everyone and is exceptionally gentle with kids.

Another great thing about this breed is that they are eager to please and very easy to train, even if you haven’t had a dog before.

And while they are friendly and affectionate, all Labs have to be trained and socialized from a young age since this breed has a lot of energy.

If you have time to exercise your Lab regularly, he will be an ideal companion and always in the mood for snuggling.

FAQs About Easiest Dogs To Take Care Of

What’s The Most Low-Maintenance Dog?

All dog breeds were developed to meet specific needs and goals, and owning a dog comes with a set of responsibilities.

However, not all breeds are created for the same purpose, and some are easier to take care of than others. Ultimately, your individual lifestyle, schedule, and preference will determine what is the most low-maintenance dog for you.

Breeds such as the French bulldog, Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Bichon Frise, and Greyhound are some of the easiest dog breeds for first-time owners.

However, larger breeds such as Labrador retriever and Bernese mountain dog are also good options if you live in a house with a fenced backyard.

Which Dog Breed Is Best For First-Time Owners?

If you’ve never owned a dog before, you should look at easygoing breeds with a friendly, gentle, and affectionate personalities.

Furthermore, look for breeds that are eager to please and described as highly trainable and obedient. Breeds that tick off all of these boxes are Labrador retriever, golden retriever, Bernese mountain dog, Bichon Frise, and a poodle.

Depending on what you are looking for in a dog, many other breeds fit these criteria and are easy to train.

If you have time and space to meet the exercise needs of a larger and more active dog, then the golden retriever or Labrador retriever are great options. On the other hand, if you live in an apartment or a condo, opt for a poodle or Bichon Frise. 

Which Breed Of Dog Is The Calmest?

The wrinkle-faced pug is one of the calmest dog breeds you can own. They are low-energy dogs that don’t need a lot of exercise and will be the happiest when lounging and napping all day long.

However, pugs are goofy and fun-loving dogs that love to be in the center of attention and know-how to make people laugh with silly antics.

What Is The Most Laid Back Dog?

With their stocky build and wrinkles, bulldogs are one of the most laid-back dog breeds. Despite their robust appearance and bloody history, bulldogs are gentle, affectionate, and easy-going companions.

Not overly energetic, this breed will be content with a short walk and spend the rest of the day napping and lounging on the sofa.

What Type Of Dog Can Be Left Alone During The Day?

Dog breeds that can stay home alone while you are working extra to earn for dog treats include Basenji, Chow Chow, Shar-Pei, and Shiba Inu.

Keep in mind that no dog should spend more than six to eight hours a day alone without company. Even if you own an independent dog breed, a dog that is always alone can develop serious behavioral problems. 


The easiest dogs to own come in different shapes and sizes, and have distinctive personalities.

However, all of them have one thing in common: each can be a great fit if you have a busy lifestyle and are looking for a low-maintenance canine companion. Some of the easiest dogs to take care of are:

  • Bichon Frise
  • Pug
  • French bulldog

While all of these breeds are easier to take care of, they are still living and breathing dogs who crave love, companionship, and interaction with their special person!

What breed of dog do you own? Is he/she an easy dog?

Tell us about your experiences in the comment section below.

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Easiest Dogs To Own - 8 Breeds For Novice Owners - yellow Labrador Retriever puppy lying down on fleece blanket - What are the easiest dogs to own? More specifically I'm looking for a dog and want to know what dog breeds are the best for a novice dog owner?Easiest Dogs To Own - 8 Breeds For Novice Owners - yellow Labrador Retriever puppy lying down on fleece blanket - What are the easiest dogs to own? More specifically I'm looking for a dog and want to know what dog breeds are the best for a novice dog owner?

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