Well we love them all, but we did a bit of research to find out more about which dogs have the most desirable traits when it comes to incorporating them into the average family. We based our criteria on 4 categories: 1) Intelligence 2) How much they shed 3) Disposition 4) How much or how little they bark. Just as none of us humans are perfect, none of our canine counterparts scored perfect in all of these categories, but here are the results.
These gentle giants scored well in the family-friendly area. In addition to being affectionate and gentle, they are quite sturdy- which makes them great pets for homes with kids (but they are also quite large weighing up to 200lbs). They are moderately intelligent, but often get labelled as being not too bright because they can be stubborn. Short, consistent training sessions are recommended. Matiffs have short coats that are easy to care for, but they do shed. They are fairly quiet dogs unless there is danger. So in the end Mastiffs rated 2.5 out of 4.
Labs are among the top 5 smartest dog breeds making them very trainable. They are independent dogs, but they are also extremely loyal and loving and make great family pets. On the down side, they are high energy and may be destructive when they become bored, so they need a lot of exercise. They do shed but they don’t bark excessively. This left our beloved labs with a score of 3 out of 4.
3. Golden Retreivers
Similar to labs in size, intelligence and disposition, Retrievers tend to be more people pleasers than labs – making them more obedient. They are also affectionate and great with kids. Retrievers have longer coats than Labs which require more brushing but they shed a bit less if groomed regularly. They also don’t bark excessively which gave them a comparable 3 out of 4 ranking.
You probably remember how smart Lassie was. Albeit a tv show, but Collies do rank pretty high in intelligence. They also tend not to bark much (unless they are trying to tell you that Timmy fell into a well). Not to mention that Collies are very family-friendly dogs. However Collies do shed moderately. They have a double-coat which means that they have an undercoat that is insulated and protects them against harsh weather conditions. So they require a lot of brushing to avoid becoming matted. Hey 3 out 4 isn’t bad!
1. Standard Poodle
This curly canine takes first place when it comes to all 4 categories. Standard Poodles are ranked as the second smartest dog breed as well as being very good natured and good with children. They don’t tend to bark nearly as much as miniature poodles and don’t shed at all. That said, they do need to be groomed regularly. This was the only breed we could find which scored 4 out of 4.
All that said, we are especially fond of mutts which can give you the best traits of several breeds all rolled into one awesome canine BFF. So be sure to check your local rescue shelter before heading to the breeders.