Due to their size, small dogs are often mislabeled as effeminate. For some breeds, this can be true, but there are also many so called “best small dogs for men” are breeds that are considered “large dogs trapped in a small body.” So even those these breeds are small, they have huge personalities and often have no idea how small they are! So whether you’re a single bachelor living in an apartment, or a husband with a wife and kids, the following breeds are sure to become your pint-sized best friend.
Small Terrier Breeds with Big Personalities
Terriers get a bad reputation because they are known to bark a lot and they can be aggressive. In general Terriers are energetic and loyal, but they do not tolerate other animals well. If given the right amount of positive training and socialization, Terriers are great additions to a family.
Scottish Terriers are independent dogs with a strong prey drive. Because they were bred as working dogs, they are happiest with something to keep them occupied. While they can adapt to apartment life, Scotties are super energetic. They may be a little difficult to train because they are very intelligent and have an ancestry of working without much training from their owners. Scotties, if socialized and trained correctly, make great watchdogs due to their natural suspicion of strangers. Scottish Terriers bond well with their owners and they are sure to entertain you constantly.
Bull Terriers have earned the nickname “kid in a dog suit” due to their energetic and clownish demeanor. Like kids, they also don’t like to spend much time by themselves, so make sure you can devote a large amount of time to them. This breed is very affectionate towards family and strangers, but is recommended for households with older children due to his rowdy playfulness.
Jack Russell Terriers are an iconic breed due to their appearances on TV and in movies. Adoptive parents beware: this pup is not naturally as well behaved as they are made out to be on the big screen. Jack Russells are very independent and they have a mind of their own when it comes to training. Only patient and experienced owners should adopt Jack Russell Terriers for this reason. Once trained, they must still be kept occupied, but they can be loving and loyal family members.
Boston Terriers are known as “the Little American Gentlemen.” This breed is super lovable and energetic. They are great companions for all ages and personality types. Boston Terriers are prone to some health issues due to their short noses and large eyes. It is recommended to work with a reputable breeder with an accurate history on both parents to minimize potential health issues.
Other Best Small Dogs for Men Breeds with Big Personalities
The Pug is an extremely popular breed. They are stout little comedians who are able to charm anyone and everyone. Pugs love to be the center of attention and they are very playful. They do not bark a lot, only when alerting their owners. Pugs typically make great apartment dogs because their exercise needs are generally taken care of with a brisk walk around the block or some extended playtime indoors. Like Boston Terriers, Pugs are prone to respiratory and ocular issues, so it is a good idea to work with reputable breeders.
Miniature Pinschers are tiny dogs with huge personalities. They are very confident and independent dogs, so it is recommended that their owners always keep the upper hand beginning early. Pinschers extremely curious and will run toward open doors or anything they find interesting. Be sure to always keep them on a leash or in a fenced in yard. Miniature Pinschers love attention and are affectionate towards their owners. So if you’re patient with training, Miniature Pinschers may be the right dog for you.
Beagles are another well-known breed. They are compassionate and loyal family members who are great with kids and other animals. However, they do tend to be noisy. It is recommended to train them when barking/braying is acceptable early on. Beagles have extremely sensitive noses so they often wander following scents, so be mindful of them if they are outside alone. It is important to monitor their food intake as well because they tend to overeat.
Shiba Inu are spunky little guys who sport cat-like abilities. They are very active and do best with active owners who will take them on long walks or bike rides. Shiba Inu can be a difficult breed to train due to its independence (much like Terriers). They are great companions and family pets who are very loving and loyal.
Dachshunds are iconic dogs who love their owners. Well-known for their “hot dog” appearance, they were originally bred for hunting. Today, they make close companions with their families. Dachshunds are lively and entertaining, and eager to please. They make great therapy dogs because they have a variety of different demeanors, and they are much attuned to their owner’s feelings.
Shetland Sheepdogs are an intelligent breed that make great watchdogs. They are protective of their families and wary of strangers and unfamiliar animals. They can bark a lot, so early training is essential. Shelties can adapt to apartment living, but they will need to be taken on daily walks to expend their energy. They do shed frequently so be prepared for a lot of vacuuming. Because of a high demand for Shetland Sheepdog puppies, many puppies are bred in mills or from irresponsible breeders. Always make sure to work with reputable breeders to decrease chances of health or temperament issues.