The Top 10 Family Dogs Your Children Can Grow up With

23 Oct, 2019 by Sylvia

There are so many dog breeds that are great family dogs with whom small children can grow up. Nothing can add more joy to your home than having a puppy playtime and cuddles with the whole family.

Australia has one of the top pet ownership rates (62% of the population) with over 25 million pets in the country.

The most popular pet is, of course, a dog, followed only by a cat. Hence, the internet is flooded with pictures of these two animals. It is an essential part of the fond childhood memories for many Aussies. Kids (as well as the parents) can get a lot of exercise by running or walking the dogs.

Not only are they great companions and playmates, but they also help teach important lessons about responsibility. Kids will volunteer for chores to make sure that their furry best friend isn’t going hungry or feeling lonely. Since kids are very high energy, dogs are great at tiring them out so the activity level demanded from the parents is reduced.

Some parents have a paranoia about having a dog or any other animal when they’re about to welcome a newborn child. Some feel as though they won’t be able to take care of the dog when they’re prioritising their babies. We’re here to reassure you that you needn’t give up on having a dog because your family is expanding.

What Makes the Best Family Dogs?

Home portrait of two cute children hugging with ginger cat and puppy of Chinese Shar Pei dog on the sofa against black wall
Photo: Alena Ozerova / Adobe Stock
  • Safe for young children: Dogs that do not get jealous and are not rough with your newborn child
  • The right energy level: Friendly dogs that do not get alarmed by strangers (dogs or humans) yet also do not aggressively demand attention
  • The right personality: Dogs without extreme hunting dog instincts so they are not shooting off in every direction when you go out on a walk with the whole family
  • Size: The right puppy size depends entirely on the space you live in and your preferences

Top 10 Family Dog Breeds

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog on the grass
Photo: Happy monkey / Adobe Stock

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a very popular family dog thanks to its friendly attitude and gentle demeanour. It quietly follows you around and is happy with just cuddling with the family members rather than needing regular exercise. With an elegant, royalty-like personality, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is adaptable, affectionate, and patient with a strong desire to please the owners. It is not a guard dog so it rarely barks or gets startled.

Bernese Mountain Dog

Portrait of happy bernese dog lying on sunny green field in sunset. Green yellow red grass and trees background.
Photo: Alexandr / Adobe Stock

For families that love gentle giants, the Bernese Mountain Dog is perfect. It can weigh up to 45kg, but it is affectionate and seems to understand that its role as a caretaker for small children, which makes it a wonderful pet for a family with newborns or young children. It loves outdoor times but mostly as part of playtime with the family, not for his own exercise.

Boston Terrier

Alert Boston Terrier with the distinctive tuxedo markings lying on a grey background watching intently to the side of the camera with copy space on either side.
Photo: Gajus / Adobe Stock

Never heavier than 10 kg, Boston Terriers are small, low-maintenance dog breeds that are extreme people-pleasers. They will welcome and plead for attention from any of the family members yet do not exhibit extreme energy levels. They will be quite happy with short daily walks and spending most of the time being petted and adored.

French Bulldog

French bulldog laying on the pavement outdoor. Canine portrait shot in natural light and landscape mode
Photo: Atharia / Adobe Stock

French Bulldog is a perfect family pet for city dwellers with limited space who require low-maintenance puppies. They have a great energy level that makes them alert and fun for playtime yet not too much that it will be burdensome. They are social and curious, which could make them a great companion for your children!


A portrait of a beagle dog. Sitting on the couch, sticking out h
Photo: kostyazar / Adobe Stock

As a pack animal that thrives on companionship, you wouldn’t have to worry about beagles wandering off when out and about with your family. They will stick by your side and rely on your signals to determine where to go and how fast. They have curious and playful attitudes that will make them explore the house and their surroundings which sometimes can get them in trouble. But, how can you stay angry at those pleading eyes?

Golden Retriever

Beauty Golden Retriever dog relax on the hay bale
Photo: SasaStock / Adobe Stock

Golden Retrievers are stereotypically a great family dog. They are extremely intelligent and enjoy physical activities that involve at least one human player: running or chasing and fetching. They are jokesters and love when you goof around with them. Their gentle and loyal nature makes them the most trustworthy creatures to have around your children.


Dog border collie closeup on nature day
Photo: annaav / Adobe Stock

Collies ranks high on intelligence and wits, as showcased in Lassie. Their grooming need can be more intense than that of the other breeds but certain collies have smoother fur that is easier to manage. They are able to adapt to accommodate your need – if you are distracted and busy, they can easily entertain themselves.

Bichon Frise

bichon frise puppy cute portrait in park
Photo: Kate / Adobe Stock

Bichon Frise is a small dog breed that is perfect for a new family – it is a hypoallergenic dog with a low-shedding coat. Their small size does not inhibit them from trying to make friends with creatures of all types and sizes. No matter who you are and where you are, they will want to say hello and happily accept your admiration.


Hungarian hound pointer vizsla dog in autumn in the field
Photo: tmart_foto / Adobe Stock

A sporting dog and family dog in one breed is the Vizsla. It loves the outdoors and exercises yet almost acts like a small, laid-back dog during its downtime. Vizsla is sensitive, dedicated, and gentle – it will come lick your face if your child falls down and cries to encourage him/her to keep going.


portrait of two royal poodle in an autumn forest
Photo: Christian Müller / Adobe Stock

Poodles are the ultimate hypoallergenic custom dogs, which make them deemed high-end. They come in three different sizes (standard, miniature, and toy) and colours. They can be quite standoffish at first but they warm up to their owners and stay loyal only to them. Their superior intellect makes them perfect pets that a whole family can train together.


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