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Best Dog Breeds for Kids

You may find it difficult to decide which dog breed is right for you, especially if you are a family with young children. Which traits should you look for? Here, our Leighton vets share some of the best dog breeds for families with kids and what makes them an ideal fit. 

Which dog breeds are great with kids?

A lot goes into choosing the dog you want to share your home with. You'll need to take the needs of both your family and the dog into account, along with your lifestyle. It may take you some time to find a dog that suits the space you live in, as well as your family's energy level and how much time each family member is willing to commit to training your new furry companion. To get you off to a good start choosing the dog breed that is best for kids, here are a few favorites from our veterinary team at All Animal Clinic in Leighton: 

English Bulldog

This breed may be less energetic than some of the others on the list but is no less adorable. Weighing in at about 50-55 pounds, these dogs are suitable for apartments and smaller homes. They are also cuddly pooches who seek out social interactions with their people. You can count on them to curl up with you while you read a good book or watch a movie. English bulldogs make sweet, dependable, and gentle family pets. 

While this dog breed is not the most active one out there, they'll enjoy seizing the opportunity to snuggle up and relax with the kids, which makes them a soothing companion to look forward to seeing after a long day. 


Have a large home and want a dog to help you fill it? A huge Newfoundland may be just right for your family. Nicknamed 'Nature's babysitter', these intelligent, sweet-natured dogs love to be around kids. Water-loving and friendly Newfoundlands can make wonderful family pets

These dogs are great to have around children due to their gentle disposition. Newfoundlands or 'Newfies' are also very protective of their family and will keep close watch on young children. At the same time, they are forgiving, patient pets who will not display aggression toward children due to accidental rough play. 

Golden Retriever 

Do you have kids who will love taking the family dog to the park to throw a Frisbee around or teach it new tricks? A golden retriever might be the breed to you. Weighing in anywhere from 55-75 pounds, golden retrievers are friendly, smart, confident, kind, and loyal, making them well-suited to family life. 

Golden retrievers are also people pleasers, which is even more true where their family is concerned. They are an easily trainable breed - and one of the most loyal, helping to build their reputation as a family dog. Children often enjoy the fact that they are easy to train, which means they can teach their new pup to play fetch and perform other neat tricks. 

English Bulldog

While English bulldogs may be less energetic and shorter in stature than other breeds, they make up for it with their personalities. Their small size - typically between 50 and 55 pounds - make them suitable for apartments and smaller homes. These dogs are fantastic cuddlers who seek out social interactions with their people. Picture curling up with your bulldog for a relaxing movie night. This breed is known for being dependable, gentle, and sweet.

Our Leighton veterinarians adore this breed because while they may not be the most active dog breed out there, they'll enjoy getting to snuggle and relax with the kids, making them a calm four-legged companion.


Weighing in between 18 and 30 pounds, this medium-sized breed loves spending time with its people, going for walks, and playing games. These intelligent dogs can also make exceptionally loving family pets when providing with plenty of exercise and time to interact with their family. However, this is not the best breed for busy families who are not home a lot of the time. 

Similar to golden retrievers, beagles are high-energy, love to please their owners and are very affectionate. They'll love playing with your young ones for hours on end, especially if there is running involved. 

Boston Terrier

Another people-loving breed, the Boston terrier wears an easy-to-care for "tuxedo" coat and prefers short walks. They are often charming dogs that are content to play with the kids. They also adapt well to apartment living and make a great companion. Beware - Boston terriers are full of energy and personality. When playing, they love running and fetching balls and other objects. 

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

At between 10-18 lbs, the portable size of this lively but gentle breed makes it ideal for smaller homes or apartments. Cavaliers get along well with kids as well as other dogs, loving to play and snuggle in equal measure. These sweet-natured dogs can be great pets for kids of many energy levels and ages.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are very gentle which is a great quality in a family dog, especially if you have young children in the house. These dogs are very loyal and will love to spend time snuggled up with your little ones.


These adorable little characters love to eat and sleep. If your kids are small, or lower energy and would appreciate a dog that will play indoors then curl up with them and watch TV, a pug may be the right breed for your family.  At around 15 lbs, this is a breed that doesn't need much space just a couple of short walks each day.

Pugs love playing around, which is a great fit for a home with kids. Because of their small size, they can be an ideal match if you have smaller children in the house.

The Mutt

Mutts are mixed-breed dogs that can be fantastic family dogs! These dogs often come equipped with the best traits of many kid-friendly breeds such as a gentle loving nature and loyalty. These dogs can be as good with children as purebred dogs and tend to be less susceptible to genetic diseases, and less expensive. The perfect breed for your child may be waiting for you at your local animal shelter. If you would like help with locating local animal shelters, the team at our animal hospital in Leighton would be happy to help.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding people or pets. If you are concerned about your pet's health, contact your veterinarian right away for diagnosis and treatment.

Are you looking for advice on which dog breed would be best for your family? Contact our Leighton vets today to book a consultation. We can provide guidance and advice, and book your new pup's first exam after they arrive home.

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Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Leighton animals. We currently only take pets by walk-in, so bring your pet to us today and let us help ensure their well-being.

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