Dog breeds come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and temperaments, and unfortunately, some of those personalities don’t mesh well with children. This is especially true if your children are very young and don’t know how to properly interact with dogs.
We’ve compiled a list of the top 20 dog breeds that are less likely to tolerate certain behaviors from children. Of course, no two dogs are alike, and some may do well with kids regardless of their breed – but this can give you a good general idea of dog breeds you might want to avoid.
This breed is very tiny, but also very mighty! If they aren’t carefully trained, they have a big tendency to develop small dog syndrome, where they think they are the authority. This makes them very prone to biting when they feel threatened, and are easily stressed out.
Nervous dogs are never a good match for children.
Rottweilers have the natural instinct to run after prey, so if a child runs away screaming for whatever reason – a rotty might give chase. They are also highly protective of their families. If they do get along with your child, they might not get along so well with another child that they think might be hurting their own.
Australian Shepherds were bred to… you guessed it, shepherd! They will instinctively try to herd your children, which can involve nipping and even biting to try convincing your children to go where they think they need to be.
They are also prone to chasing, and their intense need to protect can have unfortunate side effects.
Simply put, this is a very large breed and it is best not to invite one into your home unless your children are older than the age of six. They are very intelligent and can tolerate a lot, but will absolutely react if they’re pushed beyond their limit.
They are also known to be rather stubborn when they’re young.
A Bullmastiff’s gigantic size is clue enough that they aren’t the greatest match for small children. They also have less than impressive qualities, such as being known for excessive flatulence and drooling. They are also prone to heatstroke and overheating.
This breed is absolutely beautiful, but that beauty comes at a cost. They can be highly destructive when bored, and aren’t a great fit for anyone who might have allergies. They also have a very high prey drive, so a running child might become an accidental target.
Even if your child is the biggest fan of the 101 Dalmatian movies – think twice before inviting this breed into your home. They are known to be highly irritable, and an energy level that most young children aren’t able to handle.
Dalmatians also require a lot of attention, and need lots of exercise, which is something a lot of homes with children don’t always have the time to provide.
They may look like cuddly, wrinkled giants that would love to be hugged on and loved by a child, but that simply isn’t the case. They are known to be incredibly headstrong and difficult to train, along with needing special care to deal with their rough coat and skin that is especially prone to serious infection.
Although these dogs may do well with children when they’re older, Saint Bernards are known to be slow to mature. This means they basically act like large puppies for several years, which isn’t always a great fit to have around children – especially given their large size. They also drool a lot!
This is a breed known for their love of heavy pulling. A child isn’t going to be able to manage a dog like this, especially if they’re at the other end of the dog’s leash. Alaskan malamutes also shed a great deal, which is important to keep in mind if you’re not a fan of vacuuming your home on a daily basis.
Continue on to Dog Breeds You Should Avoid if You Have Children, Part II, to see which dog ranked #1.