The Worst Dog Breeds for First Time Owners

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When it comes to getting a new dog, there is a lot that the first-time dog parent won’t know. There are various confounding factors to consider when trying to find the right breed. And no one can pick a pup for you. The final decision will ultimately rest with the owner. After all, all the research in the world won’t be able to tell you if you’re better off with a chihuahua or a dachshund. That decision is a personal one. However, new pet parents should be aware of a few breeds of dogs, as they may want to avoid them.

First-time dog owners should look for breeds that match their lifestyle, activity level, and available resources. In general, dogs such as Great Danes, Beagles, Border Collies, and Dalmatians may be too much for first-time pup parents to handle.

There is more nuance to why each breed may not be best for new owners. So, if you’re disappointed to see your favorite dog type on this list, don’t fret. Even novice dog owners can handle the fussier dog breeds with a little precaution and knowledge. The key is to make sure that you have a suitable situation to support a more challenging breed. Read on below for more details on all of the species most often believed to be the worst dog breeds for first-time owners.


Some might be surprised to find Beagles here. After all, the little cuties are known for their floppy ears and keen sense of smell more than anything else. And while these dogs can be great for first-time owners in some circumstances, they will make less than ideal family pets in most cases. Beagles are highly curious and can be prone to boredom if not adequately stimulated. 

This means that, despite their size, a Beagle is not particularly well suited for apartment living. A confined space combined with a lack of stimuli will cause most Beagles to act out. If you keep a Beagle in an apartment, be sure that it gets plenty of outdoor exercise and playtime to keep them from acting out.

Border Collies

Border Collies are an amazing yet exacting dog breed. This medium-sized dog originates from the British Isles and has been used for centuries as a sheepdog. Its history as a sheepdog gives the breed some of its fewer desirable traits. One trait would be the breed’s high overall energy level. However, their desire to herd can also be a problem at times. 

For example, nipping a sheep to get it to stay in line probably won’t cause much harm. However, if a young child receives a bite from a Border Collie in a family setting, this would be much more concerning. The best way to combat the seemingly endless supply of energy that Border Collies can provide is to make sure that they are adequately entertained throughout the day.


You don’t need 100+ of these dogs to know they can be a handful. Originally from Croatia, these working dogs have also famously been used to keep horses calm when fighting fires. As a result, Dalmatians are notoriously calm and can be good dogs for families with small children. And while these dogs are smart and outgoing, they also have a few traits that can make them difficult dogs to care for.

Most first-time puppy parents will struggle with a Dalmatian that is overly stubborn during training. Other issues can include Dalmatians that are too protective of their family. Finally, Dalmatians’ high activity level means that they require almost non-stop play and interaction, something owners away at the office or school during the day will struggle to provide.

Great Danes

The issue regarding a breed such as a Great Dane is pretty readily apparent. It isn’t a matter of temperament or bad behavior regarding these dogs. (Great Danes are typically recognized as calm, loyal, and outgoing dogs.) Instead, the problem with Great Danes is usually pretty predictable: their size is the issue. A Marmaduke look-a-like can easily clock in at 175 pounds or more! So, with such substantial heft, this breed is probably a little too much dog for most first-timers. 

Those that want some of the best traits of a Great Dane without the gargantuan size may choose to go with a mixed breed. For example, mixing a Great Dane with another working group dog type such as a Collie can result in a more manageable-sized dog that retains some of the best qualities that a Great Dane can possess.

Siberian Husky

Finally, we have the Siberian Husky, a beloved breed worldwide for its striking wolf-like looks. And while they may resemble one of nature’s greatest apex predators, that doesn’t mean that a Siberian Husky is a menace. Problems that arise from Husky ownership typically can be traced back to improper socialization, boredom, or poor training. In truth, these dogs can be great family companions if the proper steps are followed. 

One of the best ways to ensure that your dog has the right temperament and builds a strong connection with the family is to get the dog as young as possible. Sometimes this can be easier said than done, as puppies are always popular. This is why you must be prepared to move fast if you find Siberian Husky puppies for sale. Such popular pups aren’t likely to stick around for a while. Still, getting a Husky puppy is well worth the extra effort. Doing so will give family and dog the best chance of creating a meaningful bond that is hopefully just the start of a lifelong relationship.


Mehru Khan studied fashion design at the Fashion Institute of technology in New York and moved to Lahore, where she pursued a successful career in design as Head designer at a leading fashion house of couture and luxury pret. Fashion designer,stylist and a consultant Mehru is a fashion insider for Social lifestyle magazine, keeping us abreast with latest trends and events in the world of fashion, arts and culture.

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