Choosing a dog can be a major decision. Besides the time commitment and expenses involved, finding a pup who's a good fit for your lifestyle is key to making sure both of you are happy in the long run. If you're the kind of person who loves spending every free moment relaxing at home, the best dog breeds for homebodies might be just the thing you're looking for.
"It’s important to remember that all dogs are individuals and may not fit the stereotype that the breed is known for," Russell Hartstein, CDBC, CPDT-KA, a certified professional dog trainer and founder of Fun Paw Care, tells Bustle. As a dog parent, you'll be responsible for learning your little fur baby's specific needs as you get to know them better.
"The size of your home and your own activity level are the two most important considerations when looking to add a dog to your family," Dr. Gary Weitzman, DVM, MPH, CAWA, president and CEO of San Diego Humane Society and author of theComplete Guide to Pet Health, Behavior, and Happiness, tells Bustle. "Some large breed dogs — even as big as Great Danes — are giant couch potatoes and are perfectly content in an apartment, while some small breed dogs can be quite active," he says. In order to get a good sense of a specific dog's personality, try spending time with them before bringing them home. If you're looking at a shelter, pay a couple of visits and observe their energy levels.
Whatever pooch ends up stealing your heart, they're sure to become your best friend for life. Here are some perfect dogs for homebodies.
If you're looking to adopt a dog who'll be totally happy to join you on the couch for a Netflix marathon, a Greyhound might be a perfect fit for your love of lounging. "Generally speaking, they are known to have less energy and not be working dogs," Hartstein says. While like any dog, Greyhounds can have spurts of energy and still need exercise, they are generally well suited to lounge around at home, he says.
A Japanese Chin is typically a very calm and well-mannered dog that enjoys just hanging out with their family, Ruth MacPete, DVM, tells Bustle. She says that it's important to still take your Japanese Chin on walks, but this breed doesn't usually require a great deal of physical activity to be living their best life, which makes these pups great candidates for someone who loves nothing more than staying in and snuggling.
While small dogs can be great for spending time in small spaces, you don't necessarily have to give up your dream of owning a bigger dog just because you aren't super active outdoors. While some bigger breeds like Vizslas and Weimaraners do need lots of exercise, a Great Dane is a good alternative for a homebody. "Though big, [they] enjoy lounging around and are often some of the biggest couch potatoes I see as a veterinarian," Dr. MacPete says.
"Small breed dogs are the best for people who like to stay at home," Sara Ochoa, DVM, a small animal veterinarian and a veterinary consultant for doglab.com, tells Bustle. Getting an active larger dog, on the other hand, will force you to regularly take your pup on long walks or to the dog park so that they can burn off some extra energy. Most small breed dogs, like a Maltese, are very happy laying around sleeping all day or relaxing with you on the couch watching TV, she says.
"The best dogs for a homebody lifestyle would be a dog that has low to moderate energy," Josh Kreinberg, chief dog officer at PuppySpot, tells Bustle. "One of the most popular dogs that falls in this category is a French Bulldog," he says. "These little guys are fun and curious, but because of their snub nose, they tend to have slightly less energy." Just make sure that you're pretty comfortable money-wise before getting a French Bulldog, because Kreinberg says they're one of the most expensive breeds.
"If you don’t describe yourself as an adventurer and are just looking for a snuggler, you should narrow your search to a lower energy breed," Kreinberg says. This makes an adorable Dachshund the perfect candidate. This small, moderate-energy pup will be sure to become your best buddy for just puttering around the house. Although Dachshunds need playtime just like any other pooch, they'll be happy curling up beside you for a marathon nap.
"[Beagles] are the ultimate family dog with their even tempers and unconditional love," Will Tottle, professional dog trainer and creator of Dog Owner, tells Bustle. "However, they are also perfect for those who would rather not have to walk for miles on end, and would instead prefer snuggles," he says. But if you do feel like getting out of the house for some fresh air, they'll be totally happy to go along.
"Lapdogs to the core, these dogs prefer being groomed and treated like kings as opposed to running through the mud," Tottle says. They still enjoy some physical activity, but being pampered with plenty of belly rubs and naps in the sun will make them even happier, so if your ideal Friday night is ordering takeout and watching your favorite movie, this might just be the pup for you.
You definitely don't have to get a purebred dog to know you'll be getting the perfect companion for your chill lifestyle. "Shelters are flooded with dogs approaching the later years of their life," Angela Brittain, a dog expert at doggie daycare Fitdog, tells Bustle. "Getting an older dog (five years plus) means they need less exercise and generally prefer a chill environment," she says. Not only will you be giving a good home to a pup that might otherwise spend the rest of their life in a shelter, but you'll also gain a companion who'll be sure to love spending time at home with you.
Whatever kind of dog you decide to welcome into your leisurely lifestyle, just make sure you're paying attention to their needs so that they stay as happy as possible. If they are acting a little antsy, try going out for a walk. If they are content lounging beside you on the couch, then lounge on.