12 Most challenging dog breeds for first-time owners

So, you’re thinking about getting your first dog. But as a first-time pet parent, you aren’t sure which dog breed is best for you.

What should you consider when choosing your first dog? Are some breeds better than others for first-time owners?

Important considerations

When considering getting a dog for the first time, there are some important factors to keep in mind. You want a good fit for your dog and your family, so it is important to be realistic about your expectations and lifestyle to set your new dog up for success.

First-time dog parents may not be prepared for a dog who requires extensive grooming, has serious health concerns, needs significant training, or needs a lot of exercise. If you like to keep a clean house or are not very active, some breeds may be a better fit than others.

Temperament can also play a significant role in how well-suited a specific dog or breed may be for a first-time owner. Without much experience, highly independent, task oriented, stubborn, aggressive, or anxious dogs can be very challenging for first-time pet parents and require intense training and attention.

Puppy or adult dog?

What about dog age? Many prospective pet parents want cute little puppies—they may be cuddly and adorable, but they are a lot of work! Between health check-ups, potty training, socialization, young pup energy, and other behavior training, puppies need time and attention that not everyone is ready to take on.

Adult and senior dogs can be excellent options for first-time pet parents. Spruce Pets points out that they tend to have more manageable energy levels, and many have already mastered potty training and some basic commands. Adult and senior dogs will love you just as much as a puppy would, but without some of the puppy challenges.



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