Every Turner needs a Hooch or every Grinch needs a Max.
And nobody can be a better sidekick than a good dog for all the crazy shenanigans that you get up to, right?
While choosing a dog, remember that a lot of dogs are misunderstood as aggressive breeds, and all they require is early socialization and proper training to improve their temperament (study).
“My name is Dug. I have just met you, and I love you.” (Up, 2009) perfectly summarizes these furry babies.
Find out how you can find your Dug from this list of 111 least aggressive dog breeds.
Types of Aggression
There are four main types of aggression:
- Territorial aggression is when a dog feels the need to protect its home, family, or belongings from perceived threats. Often seen in guard dogs or other breeds that were bred for protection.
- Possessive aggression is when a dog becomes aggressive over food, toys, or other objects that it perceives as its own. This can be seen in any breed of dog and is often the result of lack of socialization or training.
- Social aggression is when a dog is aggressive towards other dogs or humans, as a result of fear or insecurity and can be seen in any breed of dog.
- Predatory aggression is when a dog attacks another animal with the intent to kill or harm. Most often seen in hunting dogs, it can, however, occur in any breed if they are not properly trained and socialized.
Dog Behavior and Ownership
Dogs are social animals and have been bred for thousands of years to live in close proximity to humans (study). As a result, they developed behaviors that help them to interact with their human companions (study).
Some of these behaviors are instinctual, while others have been learned through experience.
There are a number of different factors that can influence a dog’s behavior, including genetics, early socialization, and obedience training. However, the owner’s attitude and management style also play a big role in shaping a dog’s behavior (study).
Dogs that are well-adjusted and happy typically display different behavior than those who are anxious or fearful.
The most important thing for any dog owner to remember is that all dogs are individuals and will therefore exhibit individual temperament and personality traits (article). Hence, it’s important to get to know your own dog’s unique personality in order to provide the best possible care and environment.
List of Least Aggressive Dog Breeds
There are many factors to consider when choosing a dog, which includes intrinsic and extrinsic factors, with their aggression levels certainly being one of them. If you’re looking for a new addition to your family, check out our list of the least aggressive dog breeds below.
Least Aggressive Small Dog Breeds
What’s the best part about having a small dog? There’s one for everyone!
Whether you prefer a prized blue ribbon winner, an athletic dog, or even a low-maintenance dog, you can easily find them amongst the small dog breeds. Don’t be fooled by their size because they can still pack a punch!
With a sweet and feisty mix of breeds, here are some that you can really dig:
1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Known for its sweet, loving nature, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has the ability to get along well with other pets and people. They are gentle, affectionate dogs that make great companions.
A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is adorable and not prone to aggression or territorial behaviors. You may remember them as Charlotte’s prized pets on the hit TV series, Sex and the City.
Pugs are small and goofy. Bred to be companion dogs, they love nothing more than being with their people. Despite not having a strong prey drive, they can be assertive with other dogs.
They are usually more interested in playing than fighting. If you are looking for a laid-back, easy going dog, a Pug is the perfect breed for you.
3. French Bulldog
French Bulldogs are one of the most popular dog breeds, and also one of the least aggressive. They are known for being loving and affectionate dogs that enjoy cuddling and spending time with their families.
Despite being stubborn at times, French Bulldogs are generally easy to train and they respond well to positive reinforcement. With a playful demeanour, Frenchies make great companions.
4. Norwich Terrier
As one of the calmer breeds, Norwich Terriers were originally used in England to hunt rats and other small vermin. These diminutive pups still retain some of their hunting instinct today.
Despite their size, these Terriers are fiercely loyal and protective. They also make great watchdogging companions, but are just as happy lounging around the house with their loved ones.
5. Toy Poodle
Of all dog breeds, this is perhaps the most surprising. Toy Poodles are a small elegant breed known for being lively and intelligent, as well as being extremely gentle dogs.
They share a great rapport with children and other pets, making them wonderful companions.
If you’re looking for a loving, low-maintenance breed that will bring joy to your home, this dog may be the perfect choice for you.
6. Miniature Schnauzer
The Miniature Schnauzer is a small, sturdy dog with a wiry outer coat and a soft, dense undercoat. The breed’s signature beard and eyebrows give it a unique, playful appearance.
It is an intelligent, active breed that is devoted to its family, but can be quite willful and stubborn. However, these dogs are also eager to please, making training relatively easy. To ensure they have a non-aggressive upbringing, they need early socialization and training. The Miniature Schnauzer also gets along well with pets in the home and is generally good with children.
7. Miniature Poodle
When many people think of miniature poodles, they might picture small, fragile dogs that need to be coddled. However, they are actually highly energetic and can play almost non-stop as young dogs, making them ideal companions for families with children.
Miniature poodles are highly intelligent and trainable dogs. As they are eager to please their owners, they learn tricks and commands quickly. While they can be protective of their family, they are not prone to aggression.
Instead, this breed is typically friendly and outgoing with everyone they meet.
8. Shih Tzu
Often thought of as yappy and high-strung, Shih Tzus are actually one of the sweetest breeds. They are loyal, affectionate dogs that make great companion animals. While they may be small, Shih Tzus are not to be underestimated – they are brave little dogs with big personalities. But their feistiness is directed more towards playing and having fun than aggression.
In fact, most Shih Tzus enjoy nothing more than spending time with their human families, cuddling and being doted on. If you’re looking for a gentle, loving dog that will be a lifelong friend, a Shih Tzu is the perfect choice!
9. Welsh Terrier
Welsh Terriers are a small, shaggy-coated breed of dogs. They are known for being independent, playful, and obedient. However, despite being friendly, they are aloof with strangers.
These pets do best in homes with older children and adults, as they can be reserved around younger kids. Welsh Terriers need moderate exercise, and enjoy walks, runs, and playing fetch.
10. Scottish Terrier
The Scottish Terrier is a small dog, known for its obedient and playful nature, making them great companions. These quirky dogs are excellent house pets, and can delight households who can provide gentle care and firm handling.
Rarely a barker unless necessary, you can be at peace with them. They are comfortable around people, making them ideal pets for families with children.
11. Cairn Terrier
Originating in the Scottish Highlands, they are recognized as one of Scotland’s earliest working dogs. They are highly intelligent, and despite their small stature can be assertive and fearless dogs.
Children will find them to be great companions due to their happy and gay attitude. One of their famous claims to fame is a female brindle Cairn Terrier named Terry, who plays the role of Toto in the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz.
The Havanese is a small, docile dog originating from Cuba. They are known for being one of the friendliest dog breeds, making them excellent family dogs.
Although they are not particularly athletic, they do enjoy short walks and playtime. These dogs are also very intelligent and trainable, learning tricks and commands easily.
13. Tibetan Spaniel
The Tibetan Spaniel is a small, muscular dog with a thick coat of fur. They are known for being friendly and good-natured, making them great companions.
They are not aggressive by nature, and they are usually very accepting of other pets and people. However, Tibetan Spaniels may be suspicious of strangers and will bark to alert their owner if they sense anything amiss.
14. Shetland Sheepdog
The Shetland Sheepdog is a small, alert, rough-coated Collie breed. They are known to be very intelligent and obedient dogs. Shetlands are bred to herd sheep on the small island of Shetland, off the coast of Scotland.
Due to their herding instincts, they may try to herd small children and other animals if not properly trained. However, with proper training and socialization, they can be a loving and gentle companion.
15. Yorkshire Terrier
Known as the perfect lapdog, the Yorkshire Terrier is the smallest breed from the Terrier type or any other breed for that matter. With an affectionate and loving attitude, you can’t get enough of them.
Despite this, these dogs can also be independent and stubborn.
However, they’re not known for being aggressive, but are protective of their owners if they feel threatened.
16. Bichon Frisé
The Bichon Frisé is a breed of small dog that is known for being very friendly and good natured. Looking like a tiny cloud, this breed is a great all-around pet, making them ideal for families with children. They’re not typically vocal, but may bark for attention.
Besides that, they are intelligent dogs that are easy to train, and make great companions for families and children alike. However, these dogs require weekly grooming and can be high maintenance.
“Papillon” is derived from the French word for “butterfly,” and refers to the breed’s characteristic wing-like ears. The Papillon is a small, yet energetic dog that is easy to train and does not require a lot of exercise.
Although they are small, they are not timid or fearful, and make great watchdogs. Papillons are cheerful and friendly dogs that get along well with children and other pets. They do bark frequently, but their overall aggressiveness level is low.
Famous for their floor length coats, these prized dogs are gentle, loving, and lively. When they’re not competing in dog shows, they can be amazing for families as they enjoy learning new tricks. Maltese dogs are known for being lap dogs, and LOVE to be pampered.
They are also very loyal and will bond closely with their owners. However, despite being friendly, they may snap at children if provoked.
19. Brussels Griffon
The Brussels Griffon is a small toy dog. Noted for their companionship with humans and its affinity for being house-trained, they generally get along well with dogs, cats, children, but may be wary of strangers.
Similar to other small breeds of dogs, they are attentive watchdogs and require owners who can spend a lot of time with them due to their clingy nature.
20. Bedlington Terrier
The Bedlington Terrier is a small, elegant dog with a lamb-like appearance. Bred in England, they were originally used for hunting rodents and badgers.
Bedlington Terriers are an intelligent, active breed that is good with children and other animals. Their size and affable nature makes them adaptable to both the city and the country. Families should note that they do bark a lot, like most Terriers do.
The Schipperke is a small, active dog that is full of energy. They are curious and playful, but can also be independent and stubborn. Schipperkes are very devoted to their families and make great watchdogs.
Due to their headstrong temperament, these pooches are also called “little black fox”, or the “little black devil”. These intelligent and energetic dogs are trainable, but may be difficult to housetrain. Hence, they can only thrive with households that can patiently train them and appreciate their mischievous nature.
22. Jack Russell Terrier
If you’re looking for a dog that is not aggressive, the Jack Russell Terrier is a good option.
Jack Russell Terriers are hyperactive small dogs, meaning they need a lot of exercise. Bred to hunt, they are also known for being loving and affectionate dogs. They are loyal to their families and make great companions. As long as they are given plenty of attention and exercise, they make wonderful pets.
The Bolognese is a small, white, fluffy dog that originates from Bologna, Italy. Despite their cute and cuddly appearance, Bolognese dogs are actually quite independent and stubborn by nature. However, they are also known for being gentle, loving, and devoted to their owners.
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance dog that will still provide you with plenty of love and companionship, the Bolognese might be the perfect breed for you!
24. West Highland White Terrier
The West Highland White Terrier is a small, smart, and independent dog breed. Westies are loyal and loving dogs who make great additions to any family. They are active and playful, but can be independent and stubborn at times.
Westies need plenty of exercise and stimulation, and they may become destructive if left alone for too long. You should focus on early socialization and training for this breed.
25. Coton de Tulear
Originating in the island of Madagascar, the Coton de Tulear is a small, fluffy dog, named after the cotton-like coat that they sport. These dogs are hypoallergenic which means that they do well for owners with pet allergies.
The Cotons are known for being gentle and loving dogs that make great companions. They typically do not bark excessively and are not aggressive by nature. However, despite being on the lower end of shedding, these loveable dogs are pretty high maintenance when it comes to grooming.
As a small designer dog breed, the Peekapoo is a cross between the Pekingese and the Toy Poodle. They are a low-shedding, hypoallergenic breed that do well in apartments and small homes.
Peekapoos are intelligent, affectionate, and loyal dogs that make great companions for seniors and families with older children. They are quite easy to train with positive reinforcement and require gentle owners.
27. Norfolk Terrier
Norfolk Terriers were originally bred in England to hunt rats and other small vermin, so they have a natural prey drive. Despite loving to curl up on their owner’s lap, they are not specifically lapdogs, and have a feisty side to them.
However, they are non-aggressive pets who are great with children, making them ideal for any family. Norfolk Terriers are also relatively easy to train and are obedient dogs. If you’re into traveling, you’ll find these dogs to be great companions as they love adventure!
28. Chinese Crested
The Chinese Crested is a small, hairless breed of dog that is known for being gentle and loving. These dogs are typically very quiet and docile, making them great companions for families with children.
While they may not be the most athletic breed, Chinese Crested still enjoy going on walks and playing fetch. Apart from their fashionable looks, these dogs are great therapy dogs due to their sensitive and gentle nature.
Fun fact: They adore kisses from their owners!
29. Norwegian Lundehund
The Norwegian Lundehund is a small, Spitz-type dog breed that originates from the arctic islands of Norway. The breed is known for its six toes on each foot, which helps them to climb rocks and hunt for their prey.
Without early socialization, these dogs tend to grow up shy and remain aloof, especially around strangers. However, they do not have aggressive tendencies and are among the rarest dog breeds in the world.
Fun fact: these dogs trace their roots all the way back to the Ice Age!
Maltipoos are a cross between a Maltese and a toy or mini poodle. Maltipoos are low-shedding and considered to be hypoallergenic, which makes them a popular choice for people with allergies.
They are intelligent and easily trained, and typically have gentle dispositions. However, they possess a sensitive temperament and can be quite sensitive to changes in their environment or chaos in any manner. If you tend to travel or move around a lot, this may not be the best dog for you. Maltipoos thrive in a stable and caring environment.
The Lowchen is a small, friendly dog breed that is great for families with kids. These dogs are very loving and affectionate, and they enjoy being around people.
Also known as the “little lion dog”, Lowchens are also relatively low-maintenance dogs, which makes them a good choice for busy families. However, they are very people oriented and do not like to be left alone for long periods.
32. Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is a gentle and loving breed that is great with children. They are easy to train and are very loyal companions.
They do not have an aggressive nature, and are content to live peacefully with their owners. If you have a family with kids, these happy-go-lucky dogs like to wrestle and romp about. These terriers do tend to bark A LOT if not properly trained.
33. Japanese Chin
The Japanese Chin is a small, Spitz-type dog. They are loyal and loving companions who make great lap and companion dogs. Though they may be independent at times, they generally crave human attention and love being near their owner.
Japanese Chins do not bark a lot and like most introverts, prefer keeping their thoughts to themselves. If you prefer a peaceful and calm companion, then this is the dog for you! The best part is that they thrive in apartments and multiple dwelling houses, due to their sweet temperament and affectionate nature.
34. Italian Greyhound
The Italian Greyhound is a gentle and loving breed that is known for being quiet and docile. They are affectionate with their families and make great companion dogs.
While they can be a perfect couch buddy, don’t be fooled. Competing in races, they are a sturdy and athletic breed, as well as one of the fastest dogs around. Their friendly nature makes them a popular choice for families with children.
However, unlike most dog breeds, Italian Greyhounds can be difficult to potty train and require owners who can patiently devote their time to these prized pets.
35. Lhasa Apso
The Lhasa Apso is a small dog breed that originated in Tibet. They are considered to be one of the gentler breeds, and they make great companions. Lhasas are friendly and playful, but they can also be independent and aloof.
If you’re looking for a laid-back breed that isn’t prone to aggression, the Lhasa Apso may be a good choice for you.
A cross between a Poodle and a Cocker Spaniel, Cockapoos are known for being low-shedding, hypoallergenic dogs, and make good hearing dogs. These dogs tend to be very affectionate and loving, and enjoy spending time with their families.
As a highly intelligent breed, they are also easily trainable. While Cockapoos can make great pets, they may not be the best choice for everyone. However, these dogs can be barkers and may not be ideal for people who live in apartments or small homes.
37. Welsh Corgi Pembroke
The Welsh Corgi Pembroke is a low-set, long-backed dog with short legs. They are one of the most popular herding dogs in the United Kingdom and are also used as working dogs on farms.
They are an excellent competitor in agility trials and obedience competitions. However, they can also make good house pets. The Corgi is an intelligent breed that is easy to train, and are excellent with children and other animals.
The Beagle is one of the most popular dogs and was originally bred to hunt, and they are not aggressive towards people. In fact, as hunting dogs go, they are unanimously the top dog, and can also be considered as one of the best gun dogs. Beagles are friendly, happy-go-lucky dogs and are a top choice for families.
39. Boston Terrier
The Boston Terrier is a small, short-tailed breed of dog originating from a cross between the English Bulldog and the white English Terrier.
As muscular dogs, Boston Terriers have short, stout legs and a square-shaped head. These intelligent little dogs are known for being affectionate, gentle, and good-natured companions. Relatively easy to train, this breed rarely barks.
40. Australian Terrier
The Australian Terrier is a small, active terrier originating from Australia. They are friendly and fearless, while also maintaining their independence and resourcefulness, making them difficult to train.
However, with patience and consistency, they can be taught basic obedience commands. Australian Terriers do not typically display aggression, but may become defensive if they feel their territory is being threatened.
41. American Cocker Spaniel
The American Cocker Spaniel is a breed of domestic dog. These dogs are a descendant of the English Cocker Spaniel, and were originally bred as a gun dog.
Known for its long, silky ears and dense, wavy coat, American Cocker Spaniels are friendly, outgoing dogs that make good hearing dogs.
Cocker Spaniels are relatively low-maintenance dogs and make good companions for children.
42. Fox Terrier
If you want a dog who is energetic and playful, but not aggressive, the Fox Terrier is a great choice. This breed is known for being friendly and good with kids. They are also relatively easy to train. Fox Terriers are active dogs, so they need plenty of exercise. A daily walk or run will help keep them happy and healthy.
43. Lakeland Terrier
When it comes to friendly dogs, the Lakeland Terrier takes the cake. This breed is known for being gentle, loving, and affectionate with their family. They are also great with kids and make excellent playmates. While they may not be the most aggressive dog breed out there, they can still hold their own in a fight if necessary.
44. English Bulldog
We all know the Bulldog to be the muscular and hefty brute of a dog. However, that’s completely not true. With a sweet and gentle disposition, these breeds are dependable and make wonderful friends.
Their people-oriented and easy-going nature also makes them crave human attention most of the time. These dogs seldom bark, but when they do it’s hard to get them to stop. If you want a buddy to cuddle on the couch with you, an English Bulldog is the perfect pet!
Least Aggressive Medium Dog Breeds
One of the few sizes that has all of our favorites! From golden retrievers to Spaniels, it’s often an exhausting list.
Known to be the perfect family sized dog and easy for kids to play with, medium sized breeds can perform various tricks and can be trained to retrieve newspapers, or be the best cuddle partner.
Medium sized dog breeds make great travel and hiking partners for those who always seek out adventures! Find your new best friend below:
45. Basset Hound
The Basset Hound has a reputation for being one of the sweetest despite looking like a mellow dog. This gentle giant is known for being even-tempered and easy going. Although they can be stubborn at times, a Basset Hound will typically be very loving and affectionate dogs. They are also known for being great with children.
46. Golden Retriever
Definitely the most popular name when it comes to pets, Golden Retrievers are outgoing, fun, and eager-to-please pets. They naturally have a joyous approach to life and maintain this behavior into adulthood. With their playful temperament and inquisitive nature, it’s no wonder that Golden Retrievers are a popular dog breed as they get along with everyone. Literally everyone.
These adorable pets, however, need families that can exercise them regularly to disburse all that energy. On the down side, a Golden Retriever is a heavy shedder and does not fare well alone.
47. Labrador Retriever
Similar to most Retrievers on this list, Labrador Retrievers exercise a great amount of authority as all-around best pets. Known for their playful and energetic demeanor, these dogs can also get quite protective of their owners when threatened.
Originally bred to work, a Labrador Retriever loves having jobs or tasks to do. Just about anything that can keep them busy, which explains their need for exercise and training. With a social and gentle attitude, Labrador Retrievers are excellent with children and a great addition to any family. They can also be amazing nanny dogs.
Usually portrayed to be a pompous dog in most depictions, these fashionable dogs are generally quite sweet tempered and calm, also making them great therapy dogs.
Their gentle nature also makes them amazing guide dogs, as well as to provide assistance to people with disabilities. Known to be one of the smartest and most elegant of dog breeds, they require a lot of physical and mental stimulation through exercise and training.
Fun fact: For its keen sense of smell, they were earlier utilized by truffle hunters!
49. Bull Terrier
When it comes to the bully breeds, the Bull Terrier is often at the top of the list. But despite their rough exterior, Bull Terriers are actually a wonderful breed. In fact, they’re known for being gentle and loving with their families.
So, if you’re looking for a big dog that’s not going to cause any trouble, a Bull Terrier may be the perfect choice for you. Just be prepared to give them plenty of exercise, as they have a lot of energy!
50. American Eskimo Dog
The American Eskimo Dog is a small to medium sized breed that is known for its friendly disposition. This breed comes in three sizes: toy, miniature, and standard. They are outgoing and affectionate with family, but can be reserved around strangers. This is an intelligent breed that is easy to train. They are also relatively active and need daily exercise.
51. Norwegian Elkhound
The Norwegian Elkhound is an ancient dog breed that is still popular today. This loyal and dignified breed is also known for being quiet and gentle, making it a great choice for families.
Elkhounds are also known to be very good with children, if socialized properly. If you’re looking for a loyal and loving companion, the Norwegian Elkhound may be the perfect breed for you.
A Keeshond is a small to medium-sized dog breed that originates from the Netherlands. The breed is related to the German Spitz and Pomeranian, and shares many of their characteristics.
Being playful and cheerful dogs, they’re affectionate and make great companions for families with children. Known to be good learners, they are also easy to train.
53. Finnish Spitz
The Finnish Spitz is a friendly, vocal breed that is not known for aggression. They are an active breed that needs plenty of exercise and stimulation, so they may not be the best choice for a family with very young children. Spitzes are intelligent and independent dogs, so they require firm training and socialization from an early age.
54. Boykin Spaniel
The Boykin Spaniel is a breed of small hunting dog. While they are bred as hunting dogs, Boykin spaniels are also known for being good pets. They possess a cheerful disposition, and are quite intelligent. Boykin Spaniels typically get along well with most pets and with children. They have a smooth coat that is brown or dark brown in color. Some may even have white markings on their chest or feet.
55. Portuguese Podengo
The Portuguese Podengo is a unique breed of dog that originates from Portugal. Considered to be one of the best due to their gentle and loving nature, this breed is affectionate with their family and friends, but can be aloof with strangers.
Portuguese Podengos are intelligent dogs that are easy to train, and are known for being very athletic and energetic. An additional bonus is that you can always adopt more pets as the Podengo loves being in the company of other animals.
56. Welsh Springer Spaniel
The Welsh Springer Spaniel is a friendly, outgoing breed that loves to play and has a strong desire to please its owner. This pup is an eager learner, making training relatively easy. While the Springer can be rambunctious at times, he is not aggressive and makes an excellent family companion.
57. Pyrenean Shepherd
The Pyrenean Shepherd is a loyal, protective breed that makes them a fun companion to have around. They are reserved around strangers but make great watchdogs.
These dogs love to stay active and require plenty of exercise and training, best suited to suburban or rural areas. Besides, one of their primary purposes is to ward off predators, which means they have the energy to bark endlessly.
58. Standard Schnauzer
The Standard Schnauzer is a robust, medium-sized dog with wiry coats, and originally bred in Germany. Known to be the original Schnauzer breed, they have an intelligent disposition, and are easily trainable. However, they are independent by nature and can also be quite stubborn.
With a strong hunting instinct, they excel at tracking, herding, and watchdogging. Schnauzers are generally good with children, but may be reserved around strangers.
59. English Springer Spaniel
The English Springer Spaniel is a friendly, outgoing breed that loves people. They are not an aggressive breed, and are actually quite gentle and love to play. With an easy going and affectionate nature, it’s not hard to see why they are the top choice for families, especially those who prefer their young children growing up with a best friend!
60. English Setter
The English setter is a beautiful breed of dog, known for its gentle and loving nature. These dogs are easily trained and can make any family happy. They are also one of the loyal, active, making them ideal for homes with small children.
61. Bearded Collie
Bearded Collies are one of the most gentle dogs, with a loving disposition, and are loyal to their families.
As boisterous and outgoing dogs, they can be found bouncing about and are great with children. These dogs are cheerful and happy-go-lucky companions.
Bearded Collies require plenty of exercise and need to be brushed regularly to prevent mats from forming in their coat.
Saluki, also called Arabian hound or Gazelle hound, is a traditional Emirati breed of dog used for falconry. It is a quiet breed that does not demonstrate the aggression required for hunting other prey.
Known to be the oldest domestic dog, Salukis are exceptionally fast and tend to remain devoted towards their family, maintaining an aloof attitude towards strangers. They love sitting by their owner but prefer not being coddled on their lap, and are extremely gentle with children.
63. German Wirehaired Pointer
The German wirehaired pointer is a medium-sized breed of dog that is originally from Germany, and is known for its intelligence, energy, and loyalty.
They are an excellent choice for families with children and are social by nature. With a high drive, these dogs have an even temperament and love to be involved in meaningful work, which means they look forward to tasks. Overall, they also make good watchdogs.
64. German Short-haired Pointer
A German Short-haired Pointer is a versatile hunting dog that is also great as a family companion. Although they are an active breed, they are not aggressive and are known for being gentle and loving. As a gun dog, these dogs thrive on vigorous exercises, positive training and require a lot of love. Many people also know these dogs to be the ‘perfect pointer’.
65. Flat Coated Retriever
The Flat Coated Retriever is a loyal, friendly, and intelligent breed. They do well with everyone, owing to their social nature, and can be a great addition to families with children and other animals. They are known for their love of the water and their retrieving skills, due to their longer coat and leaner silhouette, making them skilful swimmers.
66. Chesapeake Bay Retriever
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a large, powerful dog breed that is known for its hunting ability. The breed traces its origins to the United States, where it was bred to retrieve ducks and other waterfowl from the cold waters of the Chesapeake Bay.
They are still used as hunting dogs and are also popular as a family pet. The breed is intelligent and obedient, but can be stubborn at times. These dogs make excellent watchdogs and are devoted to their families. They are tolerant to roughhousing from children, and are great playmates.
67. Curly Coated Retriever
The Curly Coated Retriever is a breed of dog originating from England. It is a large-sized breed, with a lifespan of 10-12 years. The coat is thick and curly, and can be black, liver, or red in color. The breed is known for being gentle, intelligent, and trainable. They make excellent family companions and are good with children.
68. Chinese Shar Pei
This breed is known for being loyal and protective, but they are also calm and gentle. Shar-Peis are good with children and quite social. They can be a little aloof with strangers, but they warm up quickly once they get to know you.
If you’re looking for a guard dog, the Chinese Shar-Pei is an excellent choice. These dogs are very alert and will bark to warn you of any potential threats. However, they are not aggressive by nature and will not attack unless they feel their owners are in danger.
69. Australian Shepherd
The Australian Shepherd is a breed of dog that is known for being loyal, protective, and intelligent. They love being outdoors and have a social approach. As a herd dog, they do well with livestock, while also having a playful nature, making them ideal for families. Australian Shepherds are very receptive to training and make loyal companions.
70. Belgian Sheepdog
The Belgian Sheepdog or Groenendael is a breed of dog that is known for being calm, patient, and good-natured. They are an intelligent breed that is easy to train, and they can get along with any family. Belgian Sheepdogs are not prone to aggression, and they are typically very gentle with children.
71. Pitbull Terrier
Despite stereotypes as one of the most aggressive breeds, Pitbull Terriers, a large and sturdy breed, have a sweet attitude towards families and children. That said, they are still strong and energetic dogs that need plenty of exercise. With a goofy playful temperament, they are very loyal and make affectionate pets.
72. Airedale Terrier
The Airedale Terrier is a lively and playful breed that is great with children. Unlike other breeds, these Terriers are highly intelligent and can be taught a variety of tricks. While they may initially seem like they have a lot of energy, Airedale Terriers are actually quite easy going and make great house pets.
73. American Staffordshire Terrier
Known to be a protective and loving dog, the American Staffordshire Terrier is used as service dogs or therapy dogs due to their gentle dispositions. They are also one of the most popular breeds for families with children.
74. Afghan Hound
The Afghan Hound is a large, elegant hound dog with a thick coat and long, flowing hair. They are independent and aloof, but not aggressive. They are gentle and loving with their family and friends, but can be standoffish with strangers.
Afghan Hounds need plenty of exercise and space to run. They are not the best choice for families with small children and they may chase after smaller animals.
Chinooks are a rare and ancient breed of American dog, developed in the early 20th century. They are large, powerful working dogs, used for sledding, carting, and weight pulling.
Bred for their strength, stamina, and good temperaments, they are intelligent and loyal dogs, with a great deal of patience and tolerance. Chinooks are gentle giants who love people and get along well with most animals.
The Samoyed is a gentle, affectionate dog breed that is known for being good with children. They make excellent pets for families due to their playful and energetic demeanor.
In fact, these active dogs can also be great travel buddies as they have an inquisitive nature and they love long hikes. Going for over ten miles or more! Despite their friendly nature, Samoyeds can be somewhat aloof with strangers, so they may not be the best choice for a watchdog.
The Labradoodle is a designer dog breed that is a cross between the Labrador Retriever and the Standard Poodle. The Labradoodle was originally bred to be a low-shedding, hypoallergenic service dog. However, they have since become a popular family pet.
Due to their alert and attentive nature, they are often considered to be one of the top seizure response dogs. Labradoodles are typically gentle, loving, and intelligent dogs. They are also known for being very sociable and good with children.
78. Siberian Husky
The Siberian Husky is a popular choice for a family pet. These goofy dogs are gentle and love being around people, mostly famous for singing along or being dramatic on social media as well.
Traditionally, this dog breeds prefers cold climatic conditions and would thrive in environments where they can be close to snow. However, they can be independent and stubborn, so they may not be the best choice for first-time dog owners.
The Vizsla is a gentle, affectionate and highly intelligent breed of dog. They are often referred to as the “velcro” dog due to their close bond with their human family. Vizslas make great companion dogs and are excellent with children. They require moderate exercise and do not do well in cold weather.
80. Brittany Spaniel
When it comes to finding a laid back, low energy breed that is also affectionate and good with children, Brittany Spaniels are an excellent choice.
This beautiful breed hails from France where they were originally used as hunting dogs. They are still popular hunting companions today, but their amiable personality has the perfect companions.
Known for being intelligent, friendly, and eager to please, training them is a breeze.
They are also relatively easy-going when it comes to most animals, making them great candidates for homes with multiple pets. If you’re looking for a gentle and loving dog who will quickly become a cherished member of your family, the Brittany is the perfect breed for you!
The Whippet is one of the least aggressive dog breeds. This sleek and fast breed is often described as being cat-like in their behavior. They are gentle, affectionate, and get along well with other dogs and animals. Although they have the tendency to get quite competitive, they actually enjoy the quiet, serene life, and are very adaptable dogs.
Boxers make great rescue pets as they rarely bark. This breed is known for its loyalty, protectiveness and friendliness. With its protective nature, they make excellent watchdogs and can be great additions to a family.
Boxers are not naturally aggressive dogs, but their powerful build and size can make them appear threatening to strangers. With proper socialization and training, boxers can be good around people and animals.
83. Rough Collie
Rough Collies are gentle, loving dogs that make great additions to any family. They are known for being easy to train and very intelligent. Rough Collies are also very loyal and protective of their families.
Unlike most dogs, a Rough Collie is not only attached to one person and loves every family member equally. As an intelligent breed, they can quickly pick up on individual characteristics and behaviors of a household.
The Bergamasco Sheepdog is a shaggy breed that was originally used for sheepherding in the Alps. They are calm, patient dogs that are not prone to aggression. However, they are protective of their family and territory, and will bark to warn of strangers. Bergamascos do best in a calm home with plenty of space to roam.
85. Spanish Water Dog
The Spanish Water Dog-originating from-you guessed it! Spain! As a pup historically used for herding and working on farms, they have an athletic build, making them good at swimming (another one of their jobs back in the day) and other water activities.
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance breed, this isn’t the one for you–as they regular grooming to prevent mats and tangles from forming in his coat. But if you don’t mind spending a little extra time on your pup, they’re a loyal and loving companion.
86. Portuguese Water Dog
Portuguese Water Dogs are one of the affable breeds with a calm disposition. With a sweet and loving nature, these dogs are great with kids.
Unlike most dogs, they have a low prey drive, which means they get along amazingly well with small animals like cats and even rodents. Despite having a loud woof, a Portuguese Water Dog is not known to bark frequently.
Being highly intelligent, they’re easy to train as well as quick learners. If you’re looking for a non-aggressive breed, the Portuguese Water Dog is a great choice.
The potcake dog can be found on several Caribbean Islands, and is intelligent, resilient and loyal. Unlike other dog breeds, these dogs are able to eat many foods that can usually be upsetting for most pets, as they have incredibly strong stomachs.
Potcakes are a friendly and gentle breed that is great with children. They are perfect for families who are looking for a low-maintenance pet. They can be easily trained, making them a perfect choice for first-time dog owners.
Fun Fact: Their name comes from a traditional local dish of seasoned rice and pigeon peas, i.e. overcooked rice or leftovers that are fed to the dogs.
88. Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is a medium-sized breed dog originating in Nova Scotia, Canada. The breed is known for its webbed feet, which make it an excellent swimmer, and its dense, water-resistant coat, which protects it from the cold weather.
Being a versatile breed, they can be used for hunting, dog sledding, and as a working dog on farms. They are also known for being intelligent and easy to train. They are athletic dogs with medium energy levels and require daily exercise.
89. Irish Setter
The Irish Setter is a gentle, loving breed that is great with children. They are typically very playful and friendly, and would make a good family dog. Habituated to frolicking about and playing fetch, your children would love them.
However, they do require a lot of exercise and may become destructive if bored or not given enough attention. They are also a very vocal breed and require training to keep them calm.
Fun Fact: Irish Setters have been described by its partisans as the most beautiful of dog breeds!
90. Border Collie
The Border Collie is one of the world’s most popular dog breeds. They are known for their Intelligence, athleticism, and herding instincts. Border Collies are intelligent and easy to train. They excel in obedience, agility, and other sports. They are also great rescue dogs.
Some people believe that Border Collies are the best all-around dogs because they have all the attributes that make them a popular breed: they’re intelligent, good with children, have a moderate energy level, and require moderate exercise.
91. German Shepherd
While German Shepherds are often thought of as one of the most aggressive dog breeds, they are actually the least aggressive breeds. German Shepherds are loyal, obedient, and protective of their family and property, but they are not naturally aggressive.
With proper socialization and training at a young age, German Shepherds can be gentle, loving companions, as well as great mobility dogs.
Least Aggressive Large Dog Breeds
Funny thing about dogs is the larger they are, the more gentle they are.
Despite their sizes, these gentle giants have a big heart and rarely bark. Carrying their playful nature into adulthood, these dogs can also easily protect you, so you can always rest assured that you’re in great paws!
Imagine cuddling next to one of these big babies on the couch:
92. Bernese Mountain Dog
Bernese Mountain Dogs are large, gentle giants. They are loving, loyal, and good-natured dogs that make great family pets. Despite their size, they are gentle and calm.
Born in the agricultural regions of Switzerland, a Bernese Mountain Dog is typically an all-around farm dog, good at herding, and protecting livestock. Due to its close relationship with humans, a Bernese Mountain Dog is prone to separation anxiety, and may develop destructive behavior if left alone.
These large dogs are also known to be devoted to their families and very protective of their home and property. If you own a large yard, a Bernese Mountain Dog will be your bestest friend!
93. Great Dane
Originating in Germany, these giant hounds are a cross breed between English Mastiff and Irish Wolfhound, initially bred as hunting dogs for wild boar and deer. Despite being one of the largest breeds in the world, it is definitely one of the least aggressive dog breeds you can own.
A Great Dane is highly affectionate and social, and these dogs love to love! They love human contact and are great with children. Don’t let their daunting size fool you, as a Great Dane will carry their puppyish behavior into adulthood and prefers being cuddled.
Fun Fact: The Hound of the Baskervilles and Scooby Doo are both based on Great Danes!
Newfoundland dogs are massive, gentle giants. They’re easy-going, patient, and good-natured. They’re also one of the most loyal dog breeds.
Newfoundlands are known for being strong and tireless swimmers – they make excellent family pets. Despite their size, they are quite good with children as well as a good companion to other dogs. They love being around people and usually have a calm demeanour.
Newfoundland Dogs are intelligent and easily trained. However, they need plenty of exercise and may not be the best breed for a small home or apartment.
Mastiffs are large, powerful dogs that have been historically used for guarding and protection. Despite their intimidating size and appearance, mastiffs are actually one of the least aggressive dog breeds.
They are gentle giants that are typically very loyal and protective of their families. Mastiffs are patient and good-natured, making them great companions for kids. If you’re looking for a big, lovable dog breed, the mastiff is a great choice.
The Borzoi is one of the least aggressive dog breeds, and is known for being calm and gentle. They are also very intelligent and have a strong sense of smell, which makes them excellent hunters.
Originally they were linked to aristocracy, and are elegant pets who are quite affectionate with their owners. Despite all their affable qualities, they can also be independent and stubborn, requiring those who have the patience to train them.
However, while they make adequate watch dogs, due to their sensitive and non-aggressive nature, they won’t be very good at protecting you.
The Leonberger is a large, gentle breed of dog, initially bred in Germany. These dogs are meant to be an ideal for families and a working dog. However, they may be aloof with strangers, but remain affectionate and devoted to their family.
Despite their size, these gentle giants are known for their aristocratic grace and elegance. Leonbergers need moderate exercise and do best in a home with a yard.
98. Gordon Setter
When it comes to aggression, not all dog breeds are created equal. Some dog breeds are more prone to aggression than others, while some are relatively easy-going. The Gordon Setter is one of the latter.
This relatively large breed is gentle, loving, and affectionate with people, even strangers. They make great family dogs and are incredibly patient with children. They can be a bit aloof with other dogs, but they’re not particularly aggressive.
If you’re looking for a laid-back, easy-going companion who isn’t going to start any trouble, the Gordon Setter is a great choice. Just be prepared for a lot of drool!
99. Great Pyrenees
The Great Pyrenees is an ancient breed of dog that was originally used for guarding sheep and to herd cattle. They are also ideal for families who need companions.
They have thick, double coats that can be white, cream, or brownish-gray in color. They are gentle giants, known for their loyalty, devotion, and calm dispositions.
While Great Pyrenees are not typically aggressive dogs, they can be protective of their families and territories if they feel threatened. Proper socialization and training can help to prevent any aggression from developing.
100. Irish Wolfhound
The Irish Wolfhound is one of the least aggressive dog breeds as well as the largest dog breed in the world. These gentle giants are known for their docile nature and easy-going personality. Even though they may look intimidating, they are actually very friendly and loving dogs.
A surprising fact about them is that despite their size, they actually prefer indoor environments, granted that they are spacious enough to move about in. They are excellent with children and would make a great addition to any family. If you are looking for a big, lovable dog breed, then the Irish Wolfhound is the perfect breed for you!
101. Old English Sheepdog
These big, shaggy pups were once known as “heath dogs” because they herded sheep on the moors of England. The Old English Sheepdog is a gentle soul who loves nothing more than being part of the family. They’re patient and good-natured with kids, and they enjoy the company of other dogs.
102. Alaskan Malamute
The Alaskan Malamute is a large member of the Spitz family. Despite their size and thick coat, they are gentle, playful dogs that love nothing more than spending time with their families.
They can be stubborn and independent at times, but with patience and positive reinforcement training, can learn anything you throw their way.
103. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is a large, muscular breed that is surprisingly gentle and good-natured. They are loyal and affectionate with their families, but can be reserved with strangers.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are intelligent and trainable, but their independent streak can make them stubborn at times. Like all large breeds, they need plenty of exercise and can be destructive if left bored or pent-up.
104. Irish Water Spaniel
The Irish Water Spaniel is a large, rangy dog from Ireland that retrieves waterfowl. They are one of the oldest spaniel breeds, and their long, curly coat is well-suited to swimming in cold water. Irish Water Spaniels are friendly and good-natured, but they can be strong-willed and require firm training. However, this breed loves playing fetch with its owners and requires a lot of exercise.
105. Giant Schnauzer
Similar to all Schnauzers, the Giant Schnauzer is also originally from Germany and are hard working farm dogs. They were used for cattle driving and as guard dogs.
Today, they are still used as working dogs in some capacity, but they also make great family pets. They are intelligent, loyal, and loving dogs that bond closely with their owners.
While Giant Schnauzers can be strong-willed and stubborn at times, they are not aggressive by nature. They are gentle giants that love to play and have a great sense of humor. If you are looking for a large breed dog that is gentle and good with children, the Giant Schnauzer is a great choice.
106. Saint Bernard
One of the least aggressive dog breeds is the Saint Bernard. This gentle giant is known for its docile nature and is a popular choice for families with children.
While they are large dogs, they are not aggressive and are often described as being “like a big teddy bear”, and make amazing nanny dogs for young children. If you’re looking for a non-aggressive breed that will still provide you with plenty of love and companionship, the Saint Bernard is a great choice.
Hovawarts are large dogs with a thick coat that can withstand cold weather. They were originally from Germany and are still used for herding and protection today. Hovawarts are loyal, obedient, and are a great source of company.
Although they can be protective of their family and territory, Hovawarts are not aggressive by nature and make good companion animals.
108. Rhodesian Ridgeback
With a short, dense coat, the Rhodesian Ridgeback is a large, muscular dog. The most distinguishing feature of this breed is the ridge of hair running along its back in the opposite direction to the rest of the coat.
Bred in southern Africa to hunt lions, the Rhodesian Ridgeback is an intelligent, loyal, and protective dog. Though they are not naturally aggressive, they will defend their family if threats arise.
With proper socialization and training, the Rhodesian Ridgeback can be a calm and loving companion.
Akbash dogs are gentle giants who are affectionate and loyal to their family. They are patient with children and make great playmates. Akbash dogs are not aggressive by nature, but they will protect their family if they feel threatened.
These dogs need plenty of exercise and space to roam, so they are not a good fit for apartments or small homes.
110. Bull Mastiff
The Bull Mastiff is a large and powerful dog that is not aggressive by nature. These gentle giants are usually thought of as one of the most aggressive dog breeds, but that’s hardly true. Instead, they only display a protective attitude for their families and are quite affectionate.
However, they can be wary of strangers and may bark at them if they feel threatened. Bulldogs are Mastiff’s closest relatives and the two breeds share many common characteristics.
There are many reasons why people choose to adopt greyhounds. These adorable and athletic dogs make for amazing companions for families. Despite their reputation as being one of the fastest dog breeds, they are actually quite calm and relaxed indoors.
Greyhounds do not need a lot of exercise, so they are a good choice for people who live in apartments or homes with small yards. If you are looking for a laid-back companion that will provide you with unconditional love, then a greyhound may be the perfect dog for you!
How to Socialize Your Puppy to be Non-Aggressive?
The best way to socialize your puppy to be non-aggressive is to expose them to as many different people and animals as possible (article). This includes taking them on walks in busy areas, to the dog park, and even hosting playdates with other puppies.
The key is to make sure these experiences are positive ones so that your pup associates all other living creatures with happiness. Another helpful tip is to obedience train your puppy early on; this will help instill a sense of discipline (study) and respect that will carry over into their interactions with others.
Frequently Asked Questions
When it comes to dog breeds, there are a few gentle breeds, but the undisputed “gentle dog” title is held by the Golden Retriever. Known for its playful and sunny disposition, they make great service dogs, as well as great nannies and companions for families with children. The best part about Golden Retrievers is that they maintain their puppy mannerisms and attitude into adulthood, making them the complete all-around pet.
Dogs need to be socialized from an early age and trained in order to ensure that they are obedient and gentle with families. Of these there are a few dog breeds which are known to be the least violent – Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Irish Setter, Brittany Spaniel, Beagle, Basset Hound, Pug, Saint Bernard, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and Collies.
The number 1 friendliest dog is undisputedly the Golden Retriever. As an all-around dog, they are easy to train, playful, intelligent, and are a perfect choice for families with children. Besides this, they are also popular service dogs and can liven up any household.
Basenji is known to be the top dog breed that doesn’t bark, but expresses themselves between a yodel and a chortle. Other dog breeds are Pug, Chinese Shar Pei, Japanese Chin, Greyhound, Great Dane, Newfoundland, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, English Bulldog and the Rhodesian Ridgeback. These dogs aren’t aggressive and seem most unlikely to bite their owners.
The safest breed of dogs for families, especially those with children include the Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Beagle, Border Collie, Irish Setter, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and the English Bulldog.