Deciding to get a family dog is easy. It's the whole "settling on a specific breed" thing that's the challenge. It's only natural to gravitate towards a dog based on their endearing personality or cuddly looks, but you also need to consider how well-suited your environment is for that particular breed. A tiny dog won't necessarily thrive in a tiny space, and a big dog doesn't always require a big back yard. If you're on the fence about what dog will fit best behind your fence, here are the best dog breeds to get based on your yard size.
If I had my pick of the litter, I'd be bringing home an Australian Sheep Dog. I just love their eager, exuberant demeanor. But I know my smallish backyard wouldn't be nearly enough room for an active, herding dog to roam. I even looked into personality traits of a miniature Australian Shepherd, in hopes that a smaller-sized version of my preferred pup might require less activity, but alas, they too are highly energetic. I may have to cave to my daughter's demands for a maltese!
If your spirit animal is a Great Dane, but your backyard is more 'miniature oasis', fear not, there are plenty of other sweet canines to fit any backyard type. You just need to find the right pooch for your porch.
1. For The Micro Backyard
If you live in a city and your backyard is basically the size of a closet, you'll find your perfect four-legged friend in an English Bulldog. These stout fellows prefer to lounge and laze, according to iHeartDogs, so they don't require much space. Chilling in your tiny urban oasis is just fine for this laid-back pup.
2. For The Small Backyard
We probably all have different definitions of small. For example, I think a small backyard is big enough to house a picnic table and a kiddie pool, but not big enough for a full-size pool. If that sounds like your backyard, a Yorkshire Terrier, or Yorkie, would be a good fit. "They are brave and energetic but require limited exercise due to their size, making them great dogs for small spaces," explained the American Kennel Club.
3. For The Small Backyard & Small House
Whether you've embraced the tiny house movement, or live in a small apartment or condo with an equally small backyard space, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is your kind of dog.
"They’re very attached to their owners, so small homes are even better for them," explained DogTime.
For Sex in the City fans, you'll recognize this breed. Charlotte owned a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel named "Elizabeth Taylor."
4. For The Medium-Sized Backyard
Considered a Dwarf dog because of their short legs, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is known for being active herders, despite their stubby legs, according to iHeartDogs.
"A corgi isn’t afraid to flirt with danger. This herder is accustomed to guiding cattle, sheep, ponies — even geese — so with a long history of nipping at heels, it’s natural to assume exercise and fun might involve some playful provocation," explained Rover.
5. For The Medium-Sized Backyard & An Active Owner
If you have a medium-sized backyard, with enough room to throw the ball around and play fetch, then a Boston Terrier will be right at home in your space. You just have to be up for an exercise buddy.
"Simply letting a Boston out into the backyard doesn’t count as exercise — he’ll probably just sit at the door waiting to be let back in. Left alone for long periods of time, a Boston will tend to become frustrated and develop undesirable behaviors. Throw him a ball or a toy, however, and he’ll be more than happy to play with you," advised the American Kennel Club.
6. For The Big Backyard With A Fence
The dog breed known for competing in the Iditerod is going to need a lot of space to run. If you have a sprawling outdoor space, a Siberian Husky would love to call it home. Just make sure you have a good fence!
"Huskies also put the “H” in Houdini and need a fenced yard that is sunk in the ground to prevent escapes," according to Dogtimes.
7. For The Beach Backyard
If you're lucky enough to have a beach for a backyard, you'll want to get a Portuguese Water Dog.
"Bred to herd fish, retrieve broken nets, and swim as couriers, Portuguese water dogs excel in the surf," explained Outside.
And if you opt for a Portuguese, you'll be in good company. The Obama's have two Portuguese Water Dogs, named Bo and Sunny.
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