The best dog breeds for seniors

Top dog breeds for retirees or the elderly

Finding a suitable dog for your lifestyle and individual taste can be difficult. There are so many existing breeds and information about them that it can be overwhelming when you start researching.

Today, we want to break down the best dog breeds specifically for the elderly and what to consider when getting a dog for yourself or a senior family member. 

In the ranking below we take into consideration the following four things: 

Their energy levels 

Including how much exercise they need and whether they require a garden. 


Their personality but also how easy they are to train and handle.

Dog size

This will be important in instances of bathing or picking your dog up for medical or safety reasons. 

Grooming requirements 

Do they require frequent brushing or grooming? Do they have short, medium or long hair and do they shed?

The rating system is 1 paw = minimal effort    5 = most effort


Energy: ๐Ÿพ ๐Ÿพ ๐Ÿพ  

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Dog size: ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ  

Grooming ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ 

Total: 9 

Greyhounds are intelligent and gentle creatures. Despite being known as racing dogs, they donโ€™t require more than an hour of exercise a day and are very happy to snuggle up to their favourite human most of the day. 

They have a short coat but they do shed and will need grooming once a week. As they are large, there may be some difficulty in bathing them which is something to consider if you have any motor difficulties.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels 

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Total: 9 

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are highly affectionate and eager to please. They need someone who can spend most of their time with them. They are a smart breed and therefore easy to train. They require up to an hour of walks per day and will be happy with a small garden or even in a flat. 

They have a medium coat and they will shed. You will need to regularly brush their coat and you may want to consider a visit to the groomers every four to six weeks.


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Total: 9 

Although Corgis can be mischievous, they are fun, loyal and playful and with training are a great pet. They only require an hour of exercise a day and are suited to a small or medium garden and house. 

They require brushing more than once a week and they shed, but have a short coat.

Yorkshire Terrier

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Total: 10 

Yorkshire Terriers are an ideal dog for older people as they are small, easy to pick up and not too strong. They only require half an hour of walking a day due to their stature. 

They are an independent and confident breed but can occasionally be aggressive. However, this can be dealt with through steady training. 

Although they donโ€™t shed which is a definite plus, they require daily brushing and the occasional trim at the groomers.

Mini Schnauzer 

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Total: 8

Miniature Schnauzers are loyal and devoted dogs. They are obedient and friendly which makes them a great companion. They require up to an hour of exercise a day but would be happy in a flat other than that. 

They donโ€™t shed and have a medium coat that only needs brushing a couple of times a week. They do require visits to the groomers every four to six weeks for a trim and their nails clipped.

Golden Retriever 

Energy: ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ  ๐Ÿพ 

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Total: 12

Golden Retrievers have a relaxed temperament, they are intelligent and friendly and get along with almost all dogs and humans. They do require more than two hours a day of exercise and preferably a garden too. They may become restless and misbehave if they are bored or donโ€™t get enough exercise. 

They have medium coats and do shed. They will require brushing a couple of times a week.

Overall, the Miniature Schnauzer comes out on top of our list as an all round dog for elderly people. However, all these dogs have their own great qualities and would all suit an older owner.  Hopefully you now have a few things to consider and more ideas about what these dog breeds can offer you.

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