Best Dog Breeds for Families

Boxer English Bulldog golden retriever labrador retriever Pembroke Welsh Corgi Shih Tzu

Getting a dog can be exciting for any family. There are some breeds that are especially great with children. Read on to find out the best dog breeds for families. And if you’re looking for pet stores in Houston Texas or pet stores in Tyler Texas, come on down to our Petland Texas locations. Our […]

Getting a dog can be exciting for any family. There are some breeds that are especially great with children. Read on to find out the best dog breeds for families. And if you’re looking for pet stores in Houston Texas or pet stores in Tyler Texas, come on down to our Petland Texas locations. Our knowledgeable pet counselors can introduce you to the right puppy breed for your family! 


A cute little girl sits outside in the sunshine with her yellow Labrador Retriever puppy, on of the best family dog breeds.

Known as the best family dog of all time, the Labrador Retriever does not disappoint. This dog breed is energetic enough to give your kids a run for their money. Yet smart and obedient enough to easily train. Most professional dog trainers agree that the Labrador Retriever is the easiest dog breed to train. Labradors are also friendly and non-aggressive. The one caveat that comes with owning a Labrador Retriever is that they need plenty of room to run. And they should receive adequate playtime with other dogs, but this is secondary. 

As a high energy breed, Labs need to sprint, run around, and burn off all their energy. They also need daily walks. We tend to recommend Labradors to active families. Taking your Lab to the dog park is the trick. You can throw a ball in a field for a Labrador Retriever for two hours straight and it will not tire him out like 30 minutes of playtime with other dogs. When dogs play together, they’re not only physically exercising, but also mentally exercising and becoming stimulated by meeting new dog friends. A trip to the dog park can fully satisfy the exercise needs of a Lab in a quarter of the time.  


A happy family poses for the camera outside with their super golden Golden Retriever family dog in front of them.

Golden Retrievers have held a top spot among the best dog breeds for families for nearly 100 years. This medium size, high-energy breed is easily the most patient, tolerant, and gentle with children. Golden Retrievers are also trustworthy and devoted by nature. They probably rank just as easy to train as Labrador Retrievers, but with one distinct difference. Goldies are known for becoming nearly overwhelmed with love for their families and even new people. 

This love expresses itself in the form of licking, jumping, and otherwise clobbering those they love. You can definitely train your Goldie as a puppy not to give unwanted kisses, especially to your guests. And train him not to jump up on people to say hello. But the time to reinforce these etiquette rules is during your Golden Retrievers puppyhood. Likewise, proper training for the leash is important. If you don’t properly leash train your Goldie puppy, you’ll probably end up with an adult dog that pulls or tries to launch into a sprint. That being said, Golden Retrievers are quick and easy to train!   


A happy boy crouches next to his English Bulldog while on a walk outside.

We love English Bulldogs for low-energy families who want an affectionate companion dog. English Bulldogs have a sweet disposition, low-key energy, and a sour-mug face unlike any other breed. They’re slow moving yet happy little creatures. This dog breed is great with children. This is mainly because English Bulldogs have predictable behaviors, attitudes, and reactions. 

If a particular English Bulldog is likely to have a testy side, you’ll see this right away when he’s a puppy. With tolerance training and lots of socialization to help desensitize your puppy, you can essentially influence him to mellow out. This isn’t unique to English Bulldogs. All dogs can successfully modify their behaviors and attitudes if they’re consistently trained during puppyhood. The one downside with English Bulldogs is that they tend to have a stubborn streak. It’s a good thing they’re small enough to pick up if and when they truly refuse to do what you say! 


A cute little girl wearing a yellow dress read a children's book out loud to her gentle Boxer dog, showing that Boxers are a great dog breed for families.

The beautiful, purebred Boxer dog is one of our favorite dog breeds for families. Boxers have an elegant gait, adorable face, and a natural love for children. This breed is playful and upbeat. They are naturally patient and tolerant, but we advise new Boxer puppy owners to focus on socializing their Boxer with new people and other dogs regularly throughout their puppyhood. This helps to teach the Boxer not to “react” to other dogs in a defensive manner. Boxers that are not properly socialized tend to be more protective of their families when they’re on a walk or at the park, which can quickly backfire. 

Raising the perfect Boxer requires frequent socialization, like we mentioned, and also about 1.5 hours of daily exercise, preferably high endurance. Taking your Boxer for a daily jog and a good 20 minutes at the dog park where he can play will ensure you have a calm, relaxed dog at home. Above all Boxers love people. And if you bring a Boxer puppy home, you’re guaranteed to receive tons of love and affection from your furry companion!


A pretty girl in a sunhat sits on a fallen tree trunk outside in the summer sunshine next to her two purebred Shih Tzu dogs.

For homebody families that want a companion dog to snuggle, you can’t go wrong with a Shih Tzu. This small size dog prefers lounging in the sun to a long walk. Though Shih Tzus are brisk walkers and have perky energy, they don’t need more exercise than a trip around the block. Like all dogs, Shih Tzus benefit from time spent with other dogs for high energy playing. But when you have a Shih Tzu, you’ll spend far more time petting and enjoying the stillness of life. 

The great thing about Shih Tzus is that in addition to loving children, they also get along with other domestic animals. This dog breed has zero prey drive, which means you can trust your Shih Tzu with your cats and other furry pets, like rabbits, guinea pigs, and other exotics. But we recommend you supervise if your other pets are especially small. Training a Shih Tzu puppy can be a little challenging due to their independent streak. The fix for this is regular, consistent, and firm puppy training. We recommend that you start training your Shih Tzu puppy as soon as you bring him home. And if you get your Shih Tzu from Petland Texas, you and your puppy will receive 6 weeks of FREE puppy training. More on that later! 


An adorable Pembroke Welsh Corgi enjoys the fresh air while going for a walk with his 8 year old girl owner in autumn time.

Is there a better small size, family dog with tons of energy than the Pembroke Welsh Corgi? We can’t think of one! Last on our list of the best dog breeds for families, but certainly not least, is the adorable Corgi. Corgis are highly affectionate, attention-seeking, people pleasing dogs. They are loyal, well-behaved family dogs when properly trained during puppyhood. Corgis love life and they love to make each member of their families happy!

Corgis are known for their quick intelligence and forceful will. They were originally bred as herding dogs. This might come as a surprise since they’re so short. But it’s true. They used to herd cattle and other livestock on farms in the United Kingdom. One not-so-great artifact of this cattle herding DNA all Corgis have is their tendency to “nip heels.” On farms, Corgis used to nip the hooves of cattle to get the herd moving in the right direction. But you definitely don’t want your Corgi nipping the heels of your children and guests. You can effectively train your Corgi never to nip by using a combination of positive and negative reinforcement training while your Corgi is a puppy. 

A smiling, happy family lays outside in the sun with their loyal Golden Retriever, on of the best dog breeds for families.


For the full list of family dog breed puppies we carry at Petland Texas, check out the breed descriptions by clicking the links below:

Feel free to ask our pet experts about hypoallergenic dog breeds if you or your children are allergic to dog fur. We have a fun selection of hypoallergenic family dogs, including Goldendoolde puppies (large dog breed), Labradoodle puppies (large dog breed), Poodle puppies (Standard, Miniature, and Toy), Maltese puppies (small dog breed), and the list goes on. 

Answering the question of how to find ethical dog breeders in Texas can be challenging. Not all dog breeders are created equal. And not all pet stores are transparent about the dog breeders they work with. Unlike other puppy sellers in Texas you may have come across, Petland Texas lists the names and locations of all of the USDA licensed, responsible dog breeders and hobby breeders we work with in Texas and throughout the country

We guarantee healthy, American Kennel Club certified purebred puppies. And we warranty this promise with our Puppy for a Lifetime Program. We also offer all of our new puppy parents 6 weeks of free puppy training with our professional puppy trainers. This free training ensures that our customers know how to raise the perfect puppy.

Petland Texas is a trusted name among pet stores in Texas, and we look forward to proving that to you! Come into our Houston and Tyler, TX, locations to meet the best dog breeds for families.