Many of us will celebrate Valentine’s Day this weekend with those we love. Does that include your 4-legged friend? If so, you are not alone. Why do we love our dogs so much? It’s hard to pinpoint when the turning point was which took our canines from a work necessity to loving companion. Dogs have moved in, now living inside the home instead of outside, some even sleeping in the same beds as us.
We all know dogs are lovable, but are there some breeds rising above others? Maybe. While there is not a specific “lovable” quotient to determine what makes some dogs more lovable than others. For now, this list was developed by an unofficial poll of dog lovers within our own organization as well as those who interact with us on social channels, plus data from the American Kennel Club (AKC).
As you are searching for the love of a dog, here is our list of the 14 most lovable dog breeds.
14. Rescue Dogs
By popular request, rescue dogs are on the list. While they are not a specific breed, they are one of the biggest groups out there. According to the ASPCA, there are about 6.5 million companion animals entering the U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, 3.3 million are dogs and 3.2 million are cats. Thankfully, 3.2 million shelter animals are adopted every year, with 1.6 million dogs and 1.6 million cats.
According to dog experts, many have said there is not a love compared to that of a rescue dog. They are thankful to have a home and appreciative of all their humans do for them.
As most adopted breeds are a blend of different dog breeds, check out this post about Mixed Breeds.
“Rescue dogs are the most lovable. They have been let down by humans and they still manage to trust them again.”
13. Old English Sheep Dog
There are several giant breed dogs on this list. Seems the bigger the dog, the bigger the love they offer. Many have claimed their Old English Sheep Dogs to be good natured and adjustable to live in any environment. They are adaptable, intelligent dog with an easy-going, lovable attitude. They love children and are affectionate family dogs. As with most lovable big dogs, they are not good guard dogs. Mostly, because they’d prefer to lick a stranger than bark at them.
There are really several versions within this breed known as the bulldog. While they can often look intimidating in their appearance, the reality is they are big snuggle dogs. Some say bulldogs are one of the most easy-going breeds out there today. Classic traits belonging to bulldogs is their blocky build, short noses and extreme devotion to their families. Be sure to celebrate Bulldogs are Beautiful with us every April!
11. Irish Wolfhound
The Irish Wolfhound is another one of the giant breeds of dogs out there. This breed is calm, sweet and kind to their family. If you have one of these giant dogs, most likely their favorite place to be is in your lap. They do not realize they take more lap than you have to give, but they do take adorable pictures.
This lovable dog is also a great family watchdog. They are smart and love to snuggle. You may see many single women with these dogs, which are known for being quite fierce when they need to be. For this reason, they are thought of as great protectors.
9. St. Bernard
The St. Bernard breed is one of the more popular giant dogs out there. Weighing at roughly 150 – 250 pounds (70 – 120 kilos), these dogs are great companion animals. Because of their instincts to take care of humans, they are one of the most lovable breeds. The St. Bernard started their working relationship with people by recovering skiers from avalanches and were bred specifically as a rescue dog. Thankfully, these beauties now offer those loving instincts and strong relationship bond at home.
Those eyes and wild nature are what captures our hearts, but the love given from the Husky dog breed keeps us coming back for more. A medium-sized dog, the Husky is an intelligent and affectionate breed. They are great family dogs and are very welcoming. Another bonus is as far as a shedding dog, this breed sheds far less than most dogs. They do have heavy shedding "season" twice a year.
7. Great Dane
Great Danes are considered to be the “gentle giants” of the dog world. This breed is considered one of one of the most affectionate breeds around. Danes are great dogs, offering love and affection to their family and their friends. They are also great dogs because of their adaptability to live in any size of a home, no matter how small or large. Danes enjoy being outdoors and exercising but since they are so large, they do not need a lot of living space as long as they can sit in your lap as often as possible.
Read our recent post all about Great Danes.
6. Pit-bull type dogs
Pit-bull mixed breed dogs have a trademark strong, muscular body and strong neck. Sometimes feared by others because of this look, they are actually a very loving breed. Surprisingly, there are more Pit-bull mixed breed dogs than any other breed of dogs because they are often mixed in with adopted dogs. Read all about these beautiful dogs.
"Pitbulls are unconditionally loyal and loving they want nothing more than to be loved and cuddle!"
For snuggling and loving, you can hardly beat a beagle. They are known for loving and sleeping next to you. Sometimes they may have other things to do, like chase whatever they smell. But at the end of the day, they have great personalities complete with an affectionate baying beagle lovers love. We recently featured this lovely breed and why we love our beagles.
"Beagles are lovable and affectionate. While they are a slave to their nose, they also have a sense of what is going on in the world around them. Sick at home? Your beagle will be right by your side. Ready to run? Your beagle wants go. Staying in to watch a movie? Your beagle is right there. Eating dinner? Your beagle is at your feet. They are great companions."
— Jessica, Parnell employee
4. Great Pyrenees
These large, beautiful white dogs are another giant breed of dog. The love of a Great Pyrenees is unprecedented according to those who have them at home. Built to help in the stockyards with livestock, these beauties are now just as comfortable inside as they are outside. They are smart enough to help on farms but gentle enough to take care of the kids in classic nanny fashion.
3. Golden Retriever
There is nothing like our beautiful Golden Retrievers. They have been one of the top 3 dogs for the past several years. Most of us see them and our hearts melt. They are smart, lovable and especially good at snuggling. They have soft fur, which makes it easy to love on. Goldens are larger dogs and have a great temperament, which is why they are often the go-to dog for families. Did you catch our recent post all about those beautiful Golden Retrievers?
2. German Shepherd (GSD)
German Shepherds might be intimidating to those who do not know them. However, they are a fiercely loyal and lovable to the humans in their pack. They are considered great family dogs because of their caring temperament. They also make up the largest percentage of police dogs around the world because of their intelligence, strength and fearlessness. Check out our recent post on why we love German Shepherds.
"German Shepherd’s! They are very lovable and loyal and constantly always wanting to cuddle!" - Sara
1. Labrador Retriever
As the #1 dog breed in the world, it’s no wonder why they are so popular. The Labrador Retriever breed is a loyal, loving breed which fits well with most families. Labradors are known to be lovable dogs with a high intelligence, helping those who need help. Labradors make up a majority of the service dogs, helping people as seeing eye dogs and those with special needs. We have highlighted Labrador Retrievers before. It's not surprising that one of the most-visited blog posts on our site are all about Labrador Retrievers.
"Labradors! I'm partial. I have had labs almost all my life (as well as other breeds) and the labs are such such big, sweet, loving, lap dogs!"
"Labs.... they just have a personality like no other dog, they are so loyal and always friendly and love to please their owner!"
Big Dogs, Big Love, Big Joint Problems
Most of the dogs on this list are big and lovable. One thing to note is often, larger dogs have joint problems associated with arthritis in dogs at a faster rate. As these dogs are give us lots of love, it is important to keep them healthy for as long as you can. Click the dog below and take the quiz to find out more, including your dog's risk rate for arthritis.
Of course we all know EVERY dog is lovable! Which ones did we miss? Comment on our social pages. Enjoy your dogs every day, and give them the best. We all know they deserve it!