10 Dog Breeds That are Worst Choices for First-time Dog Owners

There”s no such thing as a “bad” just bad training. And while we don’t disagree that a good owner along with proper training and socialization can make a world of difference, we have to admit that some dog breeds are best suited to experienced owners.

Nonetheless, in case you”re a newbie and inexperienced dog owner, these dog breeds might not be for you until you have a couple of years of training tack under your belt.

No. 10: Saint Bernard

The Saint Bernard is a huge and massive dog breed. This gentle giant stands 61 – 70 cm (25.5 – 27.5 inches) and weigh around 50 – 91 kg (110 – 200 pounds). A well-bred Saint Bernard is extremely gentle, calm, friendly, sensible, and very tolerant of children. The breed is slow moving, highly intelligent, extremely loyal and easy to train.

A Saint Bernard is a good choice – If you want a dog who…

• is massive, with a thick furry coat
• is kind and steady-tempered with everyone

However, this lovable giant requires a lot of work. And here”s the challenge:

• heavy shedding
• Drools (and drools and drools) after eating and drinking
• A loud contented snorers
• Known to ingest items like socks and dishtowels
• Low tolerance for hot weather
• A good watchdog but an indoor dog as well. So, he takes up a lot of space in your house
• A massive dog who wants to sit on your feet and lean his weight against your leg
• Prone to serious health problems including skin problems, heart problems, and hip dysplasia
• A short lifespan (8-10 years)

No. 9: German Shepherd

The German Shepherd is a highly intelligent, fun-loving, and loyal family pet. He is energetic, fearless, and known as a natural protector. The breed is well-suited to a wide variety of jobs: a guide dog, a military dog and a drug sniffer. German Shepherds can do almost everything – the ideal choice for many families.

However: German Shepherd is not your breed – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Providing regular exercise and grooming
• Providing early and ongoing socialization
• Potential aggression toward other dogs
• Destructiveness when bored
• Constant heavy shedding – 365 days a year
• Prone to serious health problems including hip dysplasia and neurologic issues

No. 8: Australian Cattle Dog

An Australian Cattle Dog is a robust, medium-sized dog known for its serious endurance. One of the most intelligent breeds, he has a reputation for being stubborn and energetic. This breed is very easy to train and best with a job to do. He is absolutely NOT an apartment dog

An ideal family dog – If you want a dog who…

• Has a short, easy-care coat that comes in striking colors
• Is absolutely loyal and obedient to its master.
• Protective, it makes a vigilant watchdog

An Australian Cattle Dog may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with….

• Heavy shedding
• Potential for excessive barking, often in a high-pitched voice
• Vigorous exercise requirements
• Destructiveness when bored
• Watchful and suspicious toward strangers
• Aggression toward other animals
• Prone to hip dysplasia and PRA. The merle-colored dogs are prone to deafness.

No. 7: Dalmatian

The spotted Dalmatian was bred to work as a coach dog, running alongside carriages or horses, alerting coachmen to approaching highwaymen and warding off stray dogs. This breed is an athletic, dependable, high-spirited and playful dog.

A Dalmatian may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is medium to large and built like a sleek athlete
• Is loyal, playful, easy going and very dedicated
• Has a short easy-to-brush coat
• Thrives on vigorous exercise and interactive family activities

A Dalmatian may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Constant shedding — 365 days a year
• Stubbornness, requiring a confident owner who can take charge
• Vigorous exercise requirements
• Aggression when not socialized enough
• Too much barking when left alone too much
• Destructive when bored
• Prone to serious health issues including deafness, skin allergies, and urinary stones

No. 6: Weimaraner

The Weimaraner is nicknamed “Gray Ghost” for his beautiful gray coat and habit of following his owner closely. The breed is highly intelligent, extremely energetic cheerful and affectionate dog. Though this dog is stubborn, given the proper training he is capable of learning and doing virtually anything.

A Weimaraner may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is odd-looking, with a gray/silver coat and eerie light eyes
• Has a sleek, carefree coat
• Is robust, powerful, brave, alert, protective and loyal – an ideal hunting companion
• Is highly energetic and thrives on vigorous exercise and athletic activities
• Is watchful with strangers so makes a keen watchdog

A Weimaraner may not be the right dog for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• A strong-willed mind of his own, requiring a confident and athletic master who can take charge
• Vigorous exercise requirements
• “Separation anxiety” – when left alone too much
• Aggression toward cats and other small pets
• Reserved with strangers when not socialized enough
• Excessive barking when bored

No. 5: Rottweiler

The Rottweiler is confident, courageous, protective, trainable, and loyal devoted to its owner and family. This muscular and powerful dog is typically calm, sensible, and serious (though some are happy-go-lucky clowns!) This gentle giant tends to respond quietly and with a wait-and-see attitude to influences in his environment.

A Rottweiler may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is very affectionate to his master and family
• Is large, robust, and powerful
• Is calm, sensible, and confident
• Is handsome and easy to groom
• Makes an intimidating-looking deterrent

A Rottweiler may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Vigorous exercise requirements
• A heavy dog who wants to sit on your feet, lie on your lap, and lean his weight against your leg
• Slobbering and drooling (typically large males ) after eating and drinking
• Gassiness (flatulence) that can send you running for cover
• Strong-willed mind of his own, requiring a confident owner who can take charge
• Potential aggression toward dogs with the same sex, cat, and other animals
• Destructiveness when bored

No. 4: Alaskan Malamute

The Alaskan Malamute is a large, muscular and rugged working dog, best suited to people who love the great outdoors. The breed is intelligent, affectionate and extremely loyal toward its master and family. Alaskan Malamutes are very challenging to train and live with.

An Alaskan Malamute may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is furry, with a wolf-like appearance
• Looks imposing, so make an intimidating protector , yet is usually friendly with everyone
• Loves outdoor activities in cool climates

An Alaskan Malamute may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Obedience training
• Very heavy shedding
• Vigorous exercise requirements
• Stubbornness, requiring a confident owner who can take charge
• Destructiveness and howling when bored
• Aggression toward other animals
• Dominant and possessive of their food – children and other animals should not approach an Alaskan Malamute who is eating

No. 3: Chinese Shar-Pei

The Shar-Pei, with the wrinkled skin, “hippopotamus” head, is an intelligent, calm, dominant, and brave dog. It is active, easy-going playful and very loyal to its master. This highly territorial dog tends to bond with one person and aloof with strangers.

A Chinese Shar-Pei may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Has an unusual appearance
• Is medium-sized and sturdily-built
• Has a sober, confident nature
• Is extremely loyal to his master
• Is quiet and mannerly in the home
• Needs only moderate exercise
• Doesn”t bark much
• Is naturally clean and easy to housebreak

A Chinese Shar-Pei may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• A high price tag
• Strong-willed mind of his own, requiring a confident owner who can take charge
• Potential aggression toward people and other animals when not socialized properly
• Snoring and snorting sounds
• Serious (often chronic) health problems

No. 2: Chow Chow

The Chow Chow with the lion-like ruff is an intelligent, dignified but stubborn dog. This teddy-bear looking dog must be accustomed to people at an early age so that their territorial instincts are properly discriminatory. The breed requires firm authority and training starting at puppyhood, before you get the results you’re looking for.

A Chow Chow may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is medium-sized, very stocky, cute and furry
• Is intelligent, confident, sober
• Is an imposing watchdog
• Needs only moderate exercise
• Is quiet and mannerly in the home
• Is naturally clean and easy to housebreak

A Chow Chow may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Heavy shedding
• Regular brushing and combing (Rough variety)
• Stubbornness and requires a confident owner who can take charge
• Aggression toward other animals
• Serious health problems

No. 1: Akita

There are two types of Akita; the original Japanese Akita or “Akita Inu” breed and an American strain, known as the “Akita” or “American Akita.” Males measure 66 – 71 cm (26 – 28 inches) at the shoulder and weigh between 34 – 54 kg (75 – 120 pounds). females are smaller 61 – 66 cm (24 – 26 inches) and weigh 34 – 50 kg (75 – 110 pounds.)

The Akita Inu is alert, handsome, courageous, independent, calm, dignified, and quiet (seldom barks.) The breed is loyal, affectionate, playful, and will protect family members. New dog owners might think this is a desirable pet.

An Akita Inu may be right for you – If you want a dog who…

• Is large, handsome, robust and rugged, with a wolf-like appearance
• Has a thick coat that comes in many colors and patterns
• Looks intimidating so makes an effective watchdog
• Requires minimal daily exercise

An Akita Inu may not be right for you – If you don”t want to deal with…

• Stubbornness requiring a confident owner who can take charge
• Possible aggression toward people when not socialized properly
• Aggression toward other dogs and other pets
• Heavy shedding

20 thoughts on “10 Dog Breeds That are Worst Choices for First-time Dog Owners

  1. Cebuana Mom

    Love the Chow Chow! I used to have a pet but it's a smaller breed which I personally prefer. Now I'm planning to have a Siberian Husky

  2. Loudthinkin

    I have a German shepard and although I love him to bones, I have to agree that they can get destructive when bored!

  3. Fred Hawson

    What an interesting post. I note that most of these difficult breeds are those that require a big space and extra time for exercise.

  4. Eliz Frank

    That's an interesting approach to sharing information on the habits of certain types of dogs. I wouldn't say any dog breeds are the worst because people often buy what they like, and the same goes for the pets they choose. Love the photos.

  5. Franc

    These dog breeds look really harder to maintain and heavier to handle. It's best to go for smaller and easier to take care pets as a new pet owner.

  6. Vanessa

    Huge and massive dogs are suitable for big mansions but they are definitely a bad choice when it comes to small space and the flats most of us live in. The dogs are beautiful but I totally agree with you.

  7. Phylicia Marie Pineda

    The Alaskan Malamute is definitely for me! Aside from its fierce look, I love how it's very inteligent, just have to get past heavy training.

  8. Priscilla Yeo

    My cousin first dog was a German shepherd and yes they are a handful. the owner must be the disciplinarian but being the kids we were, she didn't know how to take care of her. Later on that German Shepherd was taken over by her father's factory neighbour, whom knows how to deal with her.
    Overall, she was the best dog ever, and yes, very protective!

  9. Rochkirstin Santos

    The Saint Bernard and Chow Chow look huge and I would love to keep either one of them as a pet. Even if they are big, these dogs do not look scary or harmful at all.

  10. Sunshine Kelly

    The Chinese Shar-Pei is so wrinkled I thought its a bull dog. Anyway my condo do not allow me to keep any pet.

  11. Raymond Vasquez

    It's always German Shepherd that I'd pick. Chow chow would be for my girl, although she doesn't really like dogs.haha But if I'd have to have dogs in our house it's GS. I love them.

  12. Tiffany Yong W.T.

    Awww… dogs are men's best friend! I can't have my own dog as I'm asthmatic and I live in a small flat with 7 other family and relatives! So having a pet will make it inconvenient for others 🙁 But i love them all and thanks for sharing this information!

  13. Dannea

    Wonderful dogs, but truly they can be a handle. indeed it is best to start with a more manageable breed if it's you're first time owning a dog 🙂 love to own an Akita one day though!

  14. Mia Foo

    I've long read of chow chow for their potential aggression problems. Then I finally met one at a pet cafe and realised it probably all boils down to how the owner discipline their pups. The chow I met was extremely mild tempered, chill and laid back.

  15. Hina Naz

    I am liking Chinese Shar-Pei. Appearance is unsual. Very informative post. This is help all dog lovers a lot.

  16. Chubskulit Rose

    The last three are my favorite, Alaskan malamute, akita, and chow chow. The priest administrators of the school I used to work had Dalmatians, they were so tall!

  17. Travel Quest

    We're planning to adopt a dog and this post is very helpful to what breed is suits to us. Thanks 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *