Dogs that are playful and good for first-time pet owners

Want to know more about dogs that are playful and good for first-time pet owners? 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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Tiny, noble, and extremely friendly, the Cavalier King Charles spaniel has become one of the most popular breeds in the world due to its ability to fit into any living situation.
Golden retrievers are smart, loyal dogs that are ideal family companions. With their gentle nature, shining coats, and charming smiles, they are considered one of the most popular breeds in America. Learn more about living with these people-pleasing pups.
Bernese mountain dogs are smart, hardworking, and loyal dogs who love to spend time with their human family. Learn more about living with Bernese mountain dogs.
Few dogs fit the description of majestic but gentle giants as well as the loving, sweet, and mild-tempered Newfoundland. Easy-going with children and protective of their families, learn why they’re devoted pets.
Pomeranians are small in stature but big in personality. Alert, intelligent, and confident, Pomeranians have a beautiful coat and a charming personality to match. Read on to learn more about this little, loveable breed.
Patient and caring Saint Bernards aren’t just known for their massive size—they have huge hearts, too, full of devotion for their human companions. Intelligent, mellow, and playful, learn how they can protect and adore a family like yours.
Chihuahuas are charming, smart, and sassy. Small in size, but big in personality, Chihuahuas are beloved by owners for their unique appearance and entertaining attitudes. Learn more about living with this pint-sized breed.
Border terriers are intelligent, energetic, and affectionate little dogs with big personalities and low grooming needs. They make great family pets and are easy to train. Learn more about living with border terriers.
While their flowing white locks draw attention, Maltese are especially beloved for their smart, gentle nature. Learn more about living with the Maltese.
Maltipoos make the perfect companion for young families, empty nesters, and everyone in between. Highly devoted to their humans, they love to accompany them on walks (and on the couch, of course). Plus, they’re non-shedders and make great apartment dwellers.
Goldendoodles are a highly affectionate crossbreed known for their intelligence and fierce loyalty to their humans. Active and playful, doodles fit in well with families and are great for first-time dog owners. Smaller versions make good apartment dwellers, too.
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.
If you're looking for an exercise companion or a velcro family dog, the fluffy, exuberant Portuguese water dog might be your new best friend.
With the intelligence of a poodle and the loving nature of a cocker spaniel, it’s no surprise the cockapoo is one of the most sought-after crossbreeds in America. They are a low-shedding, easy-to-love dog that comes in a myriad of colors and sizes to please any family.
Great Danes are enormous, gentle dogs that love spending time with their family, whether guarding them, or lazing at their elbows. Is this gentle gargantuan dog breed right for you?
One of a small number of AKC-recognized breeds to be wholly developed within the 20th century, the Boykin spaniel is a brilliant, energetic, all-American dog with an eye toward hunting and water retrieval.
The sheepadoodle is a cuddly, fluffy cross between an old English sheepdog and a poodle. Learn more about living with sheepadoodles.
Bred primarily as companion dogs, Frenchies crave all the love and affection we humans have to offer. They’re just as satisfied playing with kids and other dogs as they are being a couch potato. Goofy, yet intelligent, French bulldogs make an easygoing best friend for any dog lover.
Labrador retrievers, or Labs as many know them, are an ideal combination of friendly and active, making them one of the most beloved family pets. Read on for more information about this most popular dog breed.
The shih tzu is a born companion who loves to sit on anyone's lap. A regal, ancient breed, the shih tzu is a lively charmer. Read on to learn more about living with the majestic shih tzu.