Dogs that are willful and that are good with children

Want to know more about dogs that are willful and that are good with children? See all the dogs that fit this criteria and learn more about what it's like to have these dogs as pets.

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  • breed group: terrier
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: hypoallergenic, requires lots of grooming, apartment-friendly, high prey drive
  • colors: cream, gold / yellow, fawn
  • patterns: bicolor, saddle / blanket
  • coat length/texture: medium, curly
  • temperament: outgoing, willful, friendly, playful
Soft-coated wheaten terriers are spunky, energetic dogs with a signature wavy, cuddly coat. They love to jump, run, and play, and always want to stick by your side like a fluffy shadow.
  • breed group: none
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, easy to groom, highly territorial, high prey drive, apartment-friendly, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: black, brown / chocolate / liver, white
  • patterns: bicolor, merle
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: willful, outgoing, playful
American bulldogs might surprise you with their devotion, task management, playfulness, and courage. They’re terrific guardians and working dogs—but they also have a sweet, sensitive side that makes them good family dogs.
  • breed group: sporting
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: good hiking companion, strong loyalty tendencies, easy to groom, cold weather tolerant, high prey drive, easy to train
  • colors: brown / chocolate / liver
  • patterns: bicolor
  • coat length/texture: medium, wiry
  • temperament: gentle, aloof, willful, playful
The Chesapeake Bay retriever, the only American-bred retriever, is a loyal family dog who loves a job, whether that’s hunting, hiking, or splashing around in the cold water of his namesake. 
  • breed group: sporting
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, requires lots of grooming, high potential for weight gain, apartment-friendly, good hiking companion, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: gold / yellow, brown / chocolate / liver, blue, white
  • patterns: bicolor, tricolor, flecked / ticked / speckled
  • coat length/texture: long
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful
English setters, the “gentlemen of the dog world,” are good-looking, athletic dogs who can impress in either the show ring or hunting in the field. This medium-sized dog requires a decent amount of grooming, but in return gives you a loving, loyal companion. 
  • breed group: non-sporting
  • breed size: small (0-25 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, highly territorial, high prey drive, high potential for weight gain, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: red, cream, black, white
  • patterns: bicolor, tricolor, tuxedo, black and tan
  • coat length/texture: medium
  • temperament: willful, playful, aloof, protective
Small but mighty, Shiba Inus are an ancient Japanese dog breed that walk to the beat of their own drum. They’re completely satisfied roaming the house without much human attention, but they still love to entertain and make their owners laugh.
  • breed group: working
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, tendency to chew, highly territorial, high prey drive, high potential for weight gain, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: white
  • patterns: sable
  • coat length/texture: long
  • temperament: friendly, willful, outgoing, playful
Loyal, intelligent, cuddly, and more than a little sassy, Alaskan malamutes apply a dedicated work ethic to everything they do—even playtime! If you’re eager to have one, learn more about their unique personality and needs.  
  • breed group: hybrid
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, easy to groom, requires lots of grooming, tolerates being alone, low prey drive, loves water, apartment-friendly, cold weather tolerant, hot weather tolerant, good for first-time pet owners, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: brown / chocolate / liver, red, gold / yellow, cream, black, white
  • patterns: bicolor
  • coat length/texture: long, medium, curly
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful, outgoing, playful, protective
A friendly, loving family dog who's easy on the allergies makes Labradoodles one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States. These dogs love activity, just not as much as they’ll love you.
  • breed group: hound
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, high prey drive, high potential for weight gain, good for first-time pet owners, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: brown / chocolate / liver, red, gold / yellow, black
  • patterns: tricolor
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful, aloof
You know that jowly face, those floppy ears. Basset hounds are excellent tracking dogs, but they're just as happy to spend time napping with your family. Learn more about living with basset hounds.
  • breed group: working
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, highly territorial, high prey drive, hot weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: white
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: friendly, willful, outgoing, playful, aggressive
Few animals balance fierce protection with friendly playfulness quite like dogo Argentinos. They’re loyal, independent, high-energy dogs that rely on their human companions for support and guidance. Learn how these sporting dogs respond to family life.
  • breed group: hybrid
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: hypoallergenic, good hiking companion, hot weather tolerant, apartment-friendly, easy to train, easy to groom, high prey drive, strong loyalty tendencies, loves water
  • colors: gray, blue, cream, white, fawn, red, brown / chocolate / liver, black
  • patterns: merle, tricolor
  • coat length/texture: medium, curly, long
  • temperament: outgoing, friendly, playful, willful, gentle
An intelligent, athletic crossbreed with oodles of love to spare, Aussiedoodles could be a terrific choice for active pet parents who want a low-allergen pooch.
  • breed group: sporting
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, easy to groom, tendency to chew, high prey drive, loves water, hot weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: blue, gray
  • patterns: sable
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful, outgoing, playful, aloof
Weimaraners are friendly, fearless, and obedient with a striking appearance—thanks to their unique silver-grey coat—that draws a lot of attention. Highly energetic and affectionate, this breed needs just the right family fit. Learn more about living with Weimaraners.
  • breed group: herding
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, requires lots of grooming, high potential for weight gain, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: red, fawn, black, brown / chocolate / liver, white
  • patterns: bicolor, tricolor, sable, saddle / blanket, black and tan
  • coat length/texture: medium
  • temperament: friendly, willful, outgoing, playful, protective
The Pembroke Welsh corgi is an active, intelligent, and beloved breed that has become extremely popular in recent years. Find out why people love corgis (and their little legs).
  • breed group: terrier
  • breed size: small (0-25 lbs.)
  • other traits: hypoallergenic, easy to train, easy to groom, tolerates being alone, apartment-friendly, cold weather tolerant, good for first-time pet owners, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: red, cream, black, gray, white
  • patterns: brindle
  • coat length/texture: short, wiry
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful, playful, anxious
Cairn terriers are loyal, intelligent, and playful little dogs who are just as happy snuggling on our laps as they are accompanying us on hikes. Learn more about cairn terriers’ behaviors and traits here.
  • breed group: hound
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: good hiking companion, easy to train, easy to groom, high prey drive, cold weather tolerant, high potential for weight gain, loves water, apartment-friendly, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: gray, black, white
  • patterns: tricolor
  • coat length/texture: medium
  • temperament: outgoing, friendly, willful, playful, protective
A loyal family companion and an eager outdoor playmate, intelligent Norwegian elkhounds are an ancient dog breed that fits well into an active, modern lifestyle.
  • breed group: hound
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: tendency to chew, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: black, fawn, red, brown / chocolate / liver
  • patterns: bicolor, black and tan, liver and tan
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: gentle, friendly, willful
Bloodhounds are talented trackers who live by their noses, require dedicated care, and love their humans. Learn more about living with a bloodhound.
  • breed group: working
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to train, requires lots of grooming, prone to health issues, highly territorial, high prey drive, high potential for weight gain, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: black, gray, red, blue, cream, white, fawn, gold / yellow, brown / chocolate / liver
  • patterns: bicolor, tricolor, brindle, liver and tan, black and tan, blue and tan
  • coat length/texture: long
  • temperament: gentle, willful, aloof, protective
Known as a national treasure in Japan, Akitas have wooed American dog lovers with their loyalty, watchfulness, and graceful strength. Learn more about living with the Akita.
  • breed group: working
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, high prey drive, apartment-friendly, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: red, black, gray, white
  • patterns: bicolor, sable
  • coat length/texture: medium
  • temperament: friendly, willful, outgoing, playful
Always alert and raring to go, Siberian huskies are energetic, fun-loving, and friendly dogs. Learn why they’re eager to take on all your adventures as welcome additions to an active family lifestyle.
  • breed group: hound
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: easy to groom, high prey drive, hot weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: red, gold / yellow
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: willful, playful, aloof
Known for the trademark ridge that runs along their spines, Rhodesian ridgebacks are an independent, strong, and faithful breed. Learn more about living with Rhodesian ridgebacks.
  • breed group: terrier
  • breed size: medium (26-60 lbs.)
  • other traits: tendency to chew, high potential for weight gain, cold weather tolerant, strong loyalty tendencies
  • colors: red, fawn, black, blue, white
  • patterns: bicolor, brindle
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: friendly, willful, playful
Bull terriers are loyal, rambunctious, and endearing companions. This playful breed can also be a bit mischievous and certainly draws attention with their unique physique. Learn more about living with bull terriers.
  • breed group: working
  • breed size: large (61-100 lbs.)
  • other traits: tendency to chew, prone to health issues, low prey drive, apartment-friendly, strong loyalty tendencies, good hiking companion
  • colors: white, fawn
  • patterns: brindle
  • coat length/texture: short
  • temperament: friendly, willful, outgoing, playful
Muscular, athletic boxers are fun, cuddly, loyal dogs that love being part of an active family. They thrive in social environments and are powerful protectors. Learn whether these playful pups are the right fit for your lifestyle.