10 Suitable Dog Breeds For First-Time Owners

So, you’ve finally decided to get yourself a canine companion for the first time ever! But before you charge headlong into getting yourself your favourite dog, wait a minute. There are several things you need to consider besides your favouritism. A few things to take into account are size, coat type, energy levels, friendliness and temperament, available space, and your available time. To help you select a suitable best friend, here are 10 suitable dog breeds for first-time owners!

1) Golden Retriever

Named after its shiny coat, the Golden Retriever is one of the most popular dog breeds. Widely known as an assistance dog for the disabled, it also makes a great pet that is easily trained. A rather large and active dog, it needs space and activities to keep it occupied.


Energy level: Active
Coat type: Long-ish, requires regular brushing (once a week should do fine)
Size: 25-34 kg//53-61 cm tall
Life expectancy: 10-12 years

2) Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

At first glance, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel may look like your typical lap dog, but don’t be fooled! It retains some athleticism from its ancestors, and will enjoy a good run. Just remember that this dog is extremely sociable, so you’ll need plenty of time with him/her.

Image Credit: petguide.com

Energy level: Average
Coat type: Medium-long, requires regular brushing (few times a week)
Size: 5.9-8.2 kg//30-33 cm tall
Life expectancy: 9-14 years

3) Shih Tzus

Shih Tzus seem like a popular breed for dog owners in Malaysia. As they are small, you can practically keep them anywhere, and as long as they have some space to expend their energy, all is good. However, their coat is considered long, and will require grooming.

Shih Tzu Names
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Energy level: Average-Active
Coat type: Long, requires regular grooming
Size: 4.1-7.3 kg//20.3-28 cm tall
Life expectancy: 10-16 years

4) Pomeranian

Highly resembling an adorable, miniature fox, the Pomeranian is great for first-time pet owners as well! Small but active, they will thrive anywhere as long as they receive plenty of attention. Did you know? Royals favoured this breed, and skyrocketed it to popularity!

Image result for pomeranian
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Energy level: Active
Coat type: Double coat, requires regular grooming
Size: 1.9-3.5 kg//Around 20 cm tall
Life expectancy: 12-16 years

5) Great Dane

Also known as the “Apollo of dogs”, the Great Dane is suitable for a first-time pet owner, if you have the space to accommodate him/her. They make great watchdogs, yet are patient with kids. Popular cartoon character Scooby-Doo is in fact a Great Dane!

great dane standing on a hill
Image Credit: danesonline.com

Energy level: Low-medium
Coat type: Short and easy to maintain
Size: 45-90 kg//71-86 cm tall
Life expectancy: 8-10 years

6) Miniature Schnauzer

The mini schnauzer is one of the most popular breeds worldwide due to its temperament and size. Home and family-oriented, the mini schnauzer makes a great watchdog, but is more inclined to bark than bite. Once you welcome your visitors, they too, will follow suit.

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Energy level: Average
Coat type: Double coat with minimal shedding, but requires regular grooming
Size: 5.4-9.1 kg//30-36 cm tall
Life expectancy: 12-15 years

7) Whippet

A tall, thin dog, the Whippet is one of the fastest domesticated animals of their weight. Usually, the Whippet is calm and collected, but watch as he/she takes off like the wind once there’s something to chase. They rarely bark, and are quite low-maintenance.

Image Credit: petbarn.com.au

Energy level: Medium
Coat type: Very short
Size: 6.8-14 kg//45-56 cm tall
Life expectancy: 12-15 years

8) Labrador Retriever

Friendly and sociable, the Lab remains one of the most popular dog breeds worldwide. Irresistible with its toothy grin and wagging “otter tail”, the Lab is generally eager to please and non-aggressive towards human or animal alike!

Image result for labrador retriever
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Energy level: Active
Coat type: Short and thick but prone to shedding
Size: 25-36 kg//55-62 cm tall
Life expectancy: 10-14 years

9) Toy Poodle

The toy poodle is also a rather popular dog breed in Malaysia, perhaps due to its small size and adorable curls. Did you know? Toy poodles, like its other larger counterparts, are great swimmers! Once aristocrats, (toy) poodles still carry themselves proudly.

Image result for toy poodle
Image Credit: omelet.co.uk

Energy level: Medium
Coat type: Thick with minimal shedding, but requires regular grooming
Size: 2.7-4.1 kg//24-28 cm tall
Life expectancy: 12-15 years

10) Mixed Breed

If you really can’t decide, then perhaps you might want to opt for a mixed breed. Purebreds may be plagued with genetic health problems, but mixed breed dogs tend to be healthier, and may also retain the best characteristics. However, as genetics aren’t a 100% thing, there are mixed breed dogs that get the worst characteristics, so before you make a decision, be sure to understand your potential doggy friend first! Happy choosing your very first dog!

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