Dog Breeds You Should Think Twice About Getting

There are pros and cons to every breed of dog, but it’s important to have all of the information before you commit to taking care of a furry friend for the next 10 to 20-ish years. Doing your research ensures that you’re getting a pet that’s well suited to your lifestyle.

Keep reading to find out which dogs don’t do so well in small spaces, which aren’t so tolerant of children, and which need a lot of exercise.

Siberian Husky

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Siberian Huskies are a strong breed of dog and they’re known for being excellent sled pullers. These dogs were built to work, so they have a ton of energy. They also do really well in cold climates.

These dogs can be stubborn, and they’re known for their tendency to take off running when they’re let off leash. You need to lay down some serious training in the early years to make sure an adult husky is going to listen to you and stay by your side.


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Chihuahuas look pretty innocent. They’re one of the smallest dog breeds, so you would think that they’re also one of the safest. The thing is, because Chihuahuas are small, they have to be super stubborn and aggressive to protect themselves from bigger animals.

While you can train a chihuahua to respect people, if you’re not firm enough they can turn on you and even attack small children who provoke them. They also tend to get jealous of small kids.

French Bulldog

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The French Bulldog is a playful dog breed, but they can take advantage of humans in their household who aren’t as strong-willed. If you’re considering getting a French Bulldog and you have small children, you have to teach your children to be assertive but gentle with these dogs.

French Bulldogs can also develop a lot of health and breathing issues because of their flat faces. This could lead to some expensive vet bills down the road.


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Greyhounds were bred for racing and they’re known for their incredible speed and energy. In fact, they can exceed speeds of 40 mph! Greyhounds are gentle and intelligent, and very affectionate with their family.

One aspect that owners might have trouble with is that if let outside off-leash, this dog breed has a tendency to take off running, which can be dangerous with street traffic. It’s recommended that owners have a backyard fence with a minimum height of 4-6 feet to prevent a Greyhound from jumping the fence and running into the street.


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The Dalmatian was originally bred for hunting small animals. They were also used as guard dogs in the past. While they seem super friendly in that movie about 101 of them, these dogs can actually be quite aloof. These dogs need to be socialized properly to prevent them from becoming aggressive or territorial.

Dalmatians are not a popular family pet, although they can make excellent companions with the right training.

Jack Russell Terrier

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The Jack Russell Terrier is a super energetic dog breed. They require a regular schedule, lots of exercise, and a lot of attention. With proper training, these dogs can become excellent companions. With insufficient training, Jack Russell Terriers can be more like Jack Russell Terrors (as they are often called).

Make sure you can take the time to properly train one of these adorable dogs. If you put in the effort, you’ll be rewarded with a wonderful pet.

Australian Shepherd

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Australian Shepherds are super high energy dogs, which means you have to be committed to keeping them active and occupied. These dogs were bred to herd sheep, so sign your Aussie up for sheep herding classes if they’re available in your area.

Because these dogs are herders, they may try to herd small children. If you channel that desire into something more productive like sheep herding, you’re going to have happier kids and a happier pet.

Great Dane

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The Great Dane is one of the tallest dog breeds in the world. While having a big dog has its benefits, it also has its drawbacks. Big dogs are prone to health issues such as hip dysplasia. They can also overpower young children and even small adults.

If you’re thinking about getting a Great Dane, make sure you have a big house and a decent sized yard. These dogs need a lot of space.

English Toy Spaniel

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Even though the English Toy Spaniel has the word “toy” in its name, it’s not a great pet for children. These little dogs can feel threatened when children aren’t careful with them. They can react violently when they feel like they’re under attack.

Some people think that you don’t have to spend as much time training English Toy Spaniels because they’re so small and cute, but these dogs need a lot of training and guidance if they’re going to be good family pets.


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The Shar-Pei’s signature wrinkles make this dog very distinguished looking, but all of those wrinkles and folds can attract and trap bacteria. These dogs can develop a whole bunch of skin issues if they aren’t properly groomed or taken care of.

These dogs were initially bred to be guard dogs, and they can become aggressive if they’re not properly trained. They do make excellent guard dogs, though.

Skye Terrier

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The Skye Terrier is a medium-sized dog breed bred for their hunting skills. This type of dog is known for being fearless and self-assured. The Skye Terrier is still very much a terrier and they can become aggressive if they’re not properly socialized.

Skye Terriers also don’t like being neglected, and if they’re left alone for too long they’ll start chewing things they should chew and digging in places they shouldn’t dig.

Pit Bull

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It’s no surprise that Pit Bulls are on this list. They definitely have a reputation for being aggressive bullies with a fierce bite. The truth is, most Pit Bulls make excellent pets, but a few of them have been trained for dogfighting purposes. When Pit Bulls bite, they bite hard, but most of them aren’t aggressive.

Still, you need to be careful around Pit Bulls you don’t know. These dogs need you to be the pack leader.

Saint Bernard

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The Saint Bernard breed became pretty well known after the film Beethoven came out. These gentle giants make great pets, however, you have to keep in mind that these dogs are huge. If you’re thinking about getting a Saint Bernard, you have to consider the size of your living space and your car.

You can’t take a Saint Bernard to the vet in a tiny sports car. Also, they drool a lot, so you don’t want a Saint Bernard in a sports car anyway.


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Akitas were bred in Japan to serve as guide dogs. They can be great protectors for your household, but they may also see your friends and neighbors as intruders. You need to train your Akita to protect you when you need protecting, but also to remain calm when friends come over to visit.

You also need to teach children to approach Akitas calmly and gently. They (like all of us) don’t like being provoked.


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The Pekingese may look cuddly and cute but they definitely don’t want to be treated like little dolls. These dogs are fiercely independent and strong-willed. They don’t like to be cuddled or crowded. Some children don’t understand that these dogs don’t like to be cuddled.

While kids can learn to be wary of a Pekingese’s boundaries, they may be better off with a dog that is more tolerant of rough play and physical touch.

German Shepherd

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When trained the right way, German Shepards can make wonderful pets that are obedient, smart, and loyal to their owners. These dogs are super intelligent, which is why they’re often used as police dogs. They also have very powerful noses that can help them detect illegal substances or missing people.

These are powerful dogs though, and if they’re not trained properly, they can really push you around. Make sure to train these dogs well while they’re puppies so they don’t bully you when they get older.

Neapolitan Mastiff


The Neapolitan Mastiff was first bred in Southern Italy. These dogs were originally used as guard dogs, although their bark is usually worse than their bite. Neapolitan Mastiffs are really gentle giants.

If you’re thinking about getting a Neapolitan Mastiff, be aware that these dogs drool a lot. Just be ready for puddles of drool all over your furniture. Also, large dogs tend to have more health issues than smaller dogs, so be aware that there may be some hefty vet bills in your future.

Presa Canario

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These puppies may look adorable now, but when they get bigger they’re going to be all kinds of trouble. The Presa Canario dog has earned a bad rap over the years. These big dogs are bred to guard livestock, and they do not do very well in houses or apartments.

In some parts of the world, the Presa Canario is actually banned. These dogs have a tendency to attack anything they perceive as a threat.

Shi Tzu

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The Shih Tzu is the least recommended dog breed for families with small children. These dogs are easily overexcited and scared and that can lead them to bite children. They bite when they’re frightened, and these dogs are easily frightened.

Shih Tzus can also develop separation anxiety. This isn’t a good breed to adopt if you travel a lot or if you work long hours. These dogs need to be taught how to remain calm when they’re left alone.


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Wolfdogs are absolutely stunning, but it is by no means easy to turn a half-wolf half-dog into a tame domestic animal. There will always be wildness in the blood of these creatures. Wolfdogs have the instincts of a wild animal, and wild animals need to kill to eat.

Even with proper training, these animals will always be unpredictable. Definitely do not get a wolfdog if you live with small children.

Chow Chow

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Chow Chows look like big teddy bears, but these dogs aren’t actually the greatest with children. They can be stubborn and pushy and they’re notoriously hard to train.

These dogs need a strong alpha to put them in their place, and children aren’t generally strong alphas. These dogs can grow very attached to their owners and they can become quite jealous when another person or animal tries to approach their “master.”


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This little guy looks all cute and innocent now, but just wait until he gets older. These dogs were bred for their strength, which means they’re great at pulling carts, but they’re also hard to push around. A dog like this could easily knock down a small child.

These dogs are super loyal, but that means that they might try to protect you from people you don’t need to be protected from, like your friends or your grandparents. Rottweilers love to play, but they can sometimes play rough, so if you already have a smaller pet in your home, that’s something to be aware of.

Afghan Hound

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Afghan Hounds were bred for hunting and guarding homes. While they make excellent guard dogs, they don’t always make the best family pets. They can become destructive and disobedient if they’re not properly trained.

They also have long silky fur that requires a lot of grooming and attention. While some Afghan hounds can be super friendly, the breed doesn’t tolerate rough play well. They can become aggressive towards children if children play too rough with them.

Doberman Pinscher

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Dobermans make excellent police dogs and military dogs, but that means that they’re often bred and trained to be aggressive. These dogs are super powerful, and they can take a person down if they need to.

Most of the time, Dobermans who are raised as pets don’t have issues with aggression, although other dog owners and people on the street may keep their distance because of the Doberman’s reputation for being violent.


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Bullmastiffs can grow very large and they don’t seem to be aware of their size. These dogs are rather clumsy and they can sometimes knock over small children. These dogs can also be aggressive, but that aggression can be trained out of them with strong leadership.

If you get a bullmastiff, make sure you start training your puppy early because they can develop bad habits which may be hard to fix down the road.

Japanese Chin

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Japanese Chins are small in size and they’re super cute. They were bred to be companion dogs to Japanese royalty. While these dogs are very loving and affectionate, they demand a lot of love and affection from their owners.

If you have small children, you may not be able to give a Japanese Chin all the love and attention that it needs. Having a Japanese Chin is like having another child in your family.


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Dachshunds are little dogs that were bred to hunt small game animals. They have strong hunting instincts, so they don’t usually get along well with animals smaller than them, like kittens or hamsters.

Dachshunds can be quite timid and sometimes they get frightened around large crowds or unintentionally aggressive children. These dogs are prone to weight issues so be careful not to overfeed a Dachshund. Make sure you don’t feed them any table scraps, even when they look at you with those puppy dog eyes.

Alaskan Malamute

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The Alaskan Malamute was bred to survive in harsh and isolated environments. They can be a very serious breed and they aren’t as playful as your average golden retriever. They can also be very difficult to train. They need strong leadership and a lot of attention.

Also, these dogs shed a lot. They grow a very thick coat during the winter months, and then they shed all that fur in the summer. If you or someone in your family suffers from asthma, this is probably not the breed for you.


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The Affenpinscher isn’t the most common dog breed in the world, but many families looking for a small breed might consider getting one. These dogs are mischievous and they often get into all kinds of trouble.

These dogs are small, but that doesn’t mean that you can slack off on the training front. Affenpinschers can be disobedient, but with a lot of time and effort, you can get them to listen to you.


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The Weimaraner was originally bred to be a hunting dog. These pups are full of energy, so you’ll need to take a Weimaraner on regular walks and outdoor excursions. These dogs love to chase small animals, so it may not be the best breed for you if you already have a cat.

These are high maintenance dogs, but they’ll also repay you for all of that time and effort with lots of love and loyalty.