Most families searching for a dog are searching for a breed known for its ability to interact with children. There are many options to pick from.
If you’re trying to figure out which kind of dog is right for your family and looking for a giant dog, look over the breeds on this page.
How Do You Find A Dog Great with Children
While breed plays a significant role in a dog’s behavior, it is crucial to assess each dog’s individuality. If you have kids, you’ll want an enthusiastic and social pet. They must be friendly, open, and kind in their interactions. Whatever their level of friendliness or boisterous a dog may be, one who jumps, paws, or mouths could pose a danger to children.
It’s also a great option to choose a calm and intelligent dog who reacts well to training. If your dog is uneasy or has trouble focusing, the belligerent and aggressive behavior of children could be too complex for them.
Teaching children how to behave around dogs
While it is vital to select the right breed of dog that can be a good fit for small families, it’s equally important to teach children to behave when around dogs. Older children are encouraged to be part of the dog’s life but should first learn to recognize the body language and observe their boundaries.
Children and toddlers should never be left without supervision with a dog, including an animal that is the family’s pet. Children under 5 are the most susceptible to dog bites, usually due to being frightened, overwhelming, or causing injury to the dog. But even toddlers can be taught not to grasp fur, pull tails or scream into the face of dogs.
The parent must instruct their children to interact safely with dogs and make sure their dog is safe and calm around children. If you’re not sure how to accomplish this, ask a respected trainer in your region to get help.
15 Big Family Dog Breeds That Work with Kids
The Bulldog, also known as the English Bulldog, consistently ranks among the top large dogs for babies and children. They’re small; however, they are pretty slender and can appear intimidating to potential owners. But, they are easy-going and gentle. They are ideal family pets, especially for families with children.
They are known for being kind, patient, affectionate, and loving, an excellent combination for children of all ages. It is said that the Bulldog Club of Greater San Diego defines Bulldog to be “a family dog that has a fairly even temperament.”
Are you familiar with Nana of the animated Disney film Peter Pan? She was a Newfoundland selected because of her reputation as a loving “nanny dog breed” to children. The breed was initially bred for Water rescue dogs; Newfoundlands have gentle, large dogs with a soft, humane and gentle temperament. They are quiet, affectionate, and excellent family members.
Despite all these great attributes, it is crucial to be aware that the growing Newfies might have no idea of size. They grow so fast that it’s easy to forget that they are still young puppies with a plethora of energy, and they can accidentally knock over more minor children.
As with the other breeds of dogs, Newfies have to be trained and patient.
2. Golden Retriever
Golden Retrievers might be big; however, they are the gentlest of all breeds of dogs. They are often described as intelligent, sweet, gentle, loyal, and caring. They are lovely emotional and service pets for people of all ages. Due to their sensitive nature, they appear to be able to recognize that the elderly and children require a gentle touch.
Certain Goldens are very active, making them ideal playmates for children. Despite their energy levels, they’re one of the most friendly and trainable breeds of dogs. Golden Retrievers are awe-inspiring to learn, and they enjoy working.
Goldens are also very confident and trusting; therefore, they are less likely to snap if a child pulls their tailor stumbles on them.
3. Labrador Retriever
It is believed that the Labrador Retriever has been the most sought-after pet breed in the United States for 29 years running and has many desirable characteristics similar to the Golden Retriever cousin. Like Goldens, Labradors are affectionate, gentle, and calm, making excellent family pets.
Labs are loving family dogs. They are calm and even-tempered. They are among the few dogs to become aggressive. They are friendly, outgoing, gentle, and clever dogs. They do well with other dogs and children at home. They tolerate children by embracing, patting, or gently pushing them. Their calm demeanor is a huge plus for families with small children. They love lots of space and prefer an outdoor space, as they require plenty of physical activity.
4. Bull Terrier
While the Bull Terrier might seem like an unusual choice, they’re incredibly loyal companions for children, mainly raised together. Breeder Peggy Arnault wrote the following paragraph that is now well-known to those who love the breed:
A Boxer is a fun-loving, playful dog that can be a great partner for families with active children. The Boxer breed standard demands the sweetest disposition and devotion to their family members, which can be seen even in children.
Be aware that Boxers are energetic dogs that require regular training to be at their peak. Therefore, they might not be the best option for infants or toddlers. While the Boxer is not likely to hurt or snap at the child, they can accidentally knock small children down while playing.
Boxers are known for their playful nature and are not afraid to join children as playmates. An active dog can play toe-to-toe with kids who seem to have endless energy and love the great outdoors. It has a fun kid-like temperament that children are sure to enjoy. It’s sometimes awkward, and knock or bump the kid or two. Be sure to observe it with young children.
6. Bernese Mountain Dog
The Bernese Mountain Dog is one of four breeds with a giant size on our list of top big dog breeds for children. Despite their massive size, they are incredibly calm and balanced.
The AKC describes them as friendly, gentle, calm, and powerful with a sweet, loving nature. The AKC also notes that Berners are devoted to pleasing their humans.
“Berners are a good fit for everyone in the family. They are especially gentle with children. However, they can frequently be more affectionate to one particular human. They can be intimidating, but they are not intimidating and keep a distance from strangers. .”
The Rough Collie is one of the most popular breeds of dogs for children, partly because of Lassie’s fame. The breed is affectionate, gentle, loyal, and, sometimes, extremely protective of its family, including children.
Collies are herding dogs; therefore, you can be sure that they will keep a tight rein on children should they try to wander off. They may also be cautious of strangers, so they make excellent watchdogs.
8. Great Dane
A Great Dane is another gentle giant that is very comfortable with its family and children. Concerning whether Great Danes work with toddlers, children, and infants, the website GreatDaneCare.com mentions:
“While they aren’t the most massive dogs, Great Danes are an extremely gentle and affectionate breed. They are also very comfortable with children of all ages. Great Danes are wonderful family pets. They are gentle, affectionate and guardians of their family members if needed. .”
9. Basset Hound
Basset Hounds can be described as medium – to large-sized scenthounds with long legs. They’re energetic and playful; however, they also enjoy snuggling and sleeping on the couch in front of the television. It’s a great combination for kids!
NeaterPet.com calls them the “best pet for families,” they are described as affectionate, outgoing, loving, and protective, yet still comfortable enough to withstand a lot of noise and activities in the home.
Standard Poodles are vivacious and intelligent dogs. They are often criticized due to their luxurious appearance. This is unfortunate because they are very social dogs that love being around children and adults. This, along with their low shed coats, makes them ideal pets for families with children.
Poodles are exceptionally smart and possess an excellent temperament. Poodles’ energy usually corresponds to the child’s. Poodles are affectionate, cuddly, and gentle. Additionally, there is the option of a size that includes a miniature, toy, or regular. The giant standard poodle is the most suitable option for families with children as it is the most durable and will withstand more roughhousing than smaller breeds.
11. Bichon Frise
The little dog’s cotton ball enjoys playing and isn’t usually overly excited. It is a sweet, affectionate dog, and energetic match a child’s unending enthusiasm. It’s also a smaller dog and doesn’t scare or intimidate children. If the child is too rowdy or rough, it could issue a warning snarl to warn them that there’s only so much it can handle.
Beagles are the breed of dog popularized in the movie “Snoopy.” They are affectionate, intelligent, and not overly large, making them ideal for young children. Although some breeds might be over-stimulated, they generally respond quickly to training. They are a breed that loves being around individuals, even children. They are loyal and quickly befriend children. They can even be among the best guard dogs you can get for your baby and will let you know by their distinctive yelp whenever someone is near. A loud breed is not the most suitable dog for toddlers and infants who are easily woken by barking or sound.
13. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is the last giant breed we have listed and is closely related to the Bernese Mountain Dog. Both species originate from the Swiss Alps and are regarded as gentle yet playful giants. The GSMDs are highly attached to their family members, especially children. They make great companions for all age groups.
The AKC describes them as loyal, family-oriented, reliable, and trustworthy.
14. Cairn Terrier
Active dogs seem to have an inherent attraction to children. They are also popular on the big screen – think Toto of “The The Wizard of Oz”–they can keep pace with children and take on everything. They’re a lovable and gentle breed, especially for children. Although smaller dogs generally aren’t able to handle roughhousing with children, however, the Cairn Terrier seems to be in love with its owners.
15. American Staffordshire Terrier
Their roots can be traced back to the 18th century of England before they came to America during the late 1850s. This was when they developed into two distinct breeds: The American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier. As per the American Staffordshire Terrier Club of Queensland, the breed “has been bred for a pet dog for families, a child’s guardian, show dog and even a dog that competes in obedience.”