Welcoming a new furry friend to the family is an exciting and fulfilling time, but while dogs are wonderful company, and a great way to encourage responsibility and sociability in your youngsters, they’re also demanding, and high maintenance — especially in the first few months!
When exploring options for your new addition, it’s important to bear in mind the breed’s reputation — in terms of interaction with other animals and children – how much exercise they require each day, and whether they take kindly to being left on their own for prolonged periods.
So, to give you a head start, here are our suggestions for family-friendly dogs to welcome into your home this year.
1. The loveable Bulldog
A descendent of the historical Mastiff family, Bulldogs are known for their laid-back manner and fondness for cuddles as opposed to long jaunts in the outdoors.
An excellent choice for the novice pet owner, this low-maintenance, affectionate breed is great with children and a slower pace of life.
2. A classic Labrador Retriever
The Labrador Retriever was originally used as fisherman’s sidekicks — fetching ropes, retrieving fish and pulling nets out of the water. Nowadays, the most popular dog breed in America makes an excellent companion, and their sweet temperament means they are effective therapy or assistance dogs for the elderly or disabled.
If you’re searching for a guard dog, however, perhaps this breed is not for you, as they’re far more likely to make friends with the intruder than frighten them off!
3. Adorable Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
This petite member of the toy family loves nothing more than a morning of walks and playtime, an afternoon filled with tasty treats, and an evening spent curled up on the sofa with their owner.
As a sociable breed, Cavaliers are happiest when around people, and are therefore a wise choice for families who are home during the day to pay the pooch the attention they crave.
4. A gentle Poodle
Poodles have long been recognised as one of the most intelligent dog breeds in the world and are extremely susceptible to rigorous training.
As they were originally used to jump into water to fetch assorted waterfowl for hunters, Poodles are still to this day extremely comfortable playing in rivers, lakes, and by the beach. Intelligence combined with a playful nature make this dog the perfect pick for an active family.
5. The loving Bull Terrier
Despite a slightly imposing appearance, this dog is a lover, not a fighter. Their high energy levels and love of playtime mean they are the best fit for experienced dog owners who are comfortable asserting discipline every now and then.
6. Beautiful Beagle
Small in size and calm in nature, Beagles are an excellent family pet. Originally used as hunting dogs, they’re always up for frolicking in the great outdoors.
With a keen nose, they’re happiest with their head to the ground picking out interesting trails to follow.
7. The energetic Jack Russell Terrier
And finally, the Jack Russell is one of the most popular breeds in the UK, for their happy, energetic personalities and generally even temperaments.
A lover of company, Jacks don’t do well left on their own for long periods and are better suited to busy households with lots of people to interact with.
If you’re ready to make the commitment and bring a new pawed playmate home, there are plenty of responsible, local dog shelters in the Huddersfield and Holmfirth areas dedicated to rehoming dogs. Check out Whitehall Dog Rescue, RSPCA, or Yorkshire Rose Dog Rescue.