Best Small Family Dogs

There are so many small dogs good with families, but getting the ideal family dog requires some extra research. Some people would argue that small dogs do not make the cut. But the truth is; there are some great small family dogs out there!

Dogs and kids have been close since the beginning of time and they share a very tight bond.
When choosing a family dog, choose a dog by its temperament, energy level and disposition. All the above traits should suit your family’s lifestyle. Without further ado, here are the best small family dogs to consider if you have a family with young children.


cute Maltese

Maltese dogs have been bred for thousands of years as companions and they are great playful lap dogs that are very compassionate. Since they come with a long flowing coat, grooming them can be quite difficult, but when kept trimmed, time taken for grooming is greatly reduced. They are small in size, often 4 to 6 pounds, but most become heavier as adults.

The Maltese has an energetic nature thus copes well with children. However, younger kids should be taught how to play with such a small dog. The best time to teach young children how to interact with their Maltese is when you immediately bring it home.



Poodles make excellent family pets. They thrive around people, are tender and friendly and are adventurous in nature. Poodles love being in a family with young kids due to the commotion that’s associated with such households.

But be warned, this are high maintenance dogs especially when it comes to grooming and unless you learn to clip your own dog, you will have to visit a groomer every 6 to 8 weeks. So before you buy a Poodle, bear that in mind and ensure it fits into your budget. The only caution that Poodles present is their small body size and delicate nature. Rough play should be avoided as these dogs can easily get injured. It might be wise to get a bigger Toy Poodle or Miniature. By all means, keep off the teacup versions.

Bichon Frise

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise is a jolly, small dog breed that is quite cheeky with lots of love to give. With its black eyes and fluffy white coat, one can easily confuse the Bichon with a kid’s toy. It doesn’t take long to notice that the Bichon can be a merry and enthusiastic companion.

This dog breed loves to swim and retrieve although we cannot say the Bichon Frise is a hunting or retrieval dog. If this is the first time you are owning a dog, you may require more patience when dealing with the Bichon Frise. However, the right training goes a long way with this breed. It’s also important to socialize this dog earlier with other dogs.

Depending on its gender and body frame, the Bichon Frise weighs between 10-20 pounds. This small dog is great for laps and if you realize your dog feels uncomfortable while on your lap as you watch TV, then you can be sure it needs some extra exercise. It thrives in a family with young children.


Peekapoo dog

A Peekapoo makes a great family dog who will spend the entire day running up and down with children and then spend the evening perched on your lap or cuddling by your side. He is loyal, doting and can be protective of the people he truly loves.

The Peekapoo is a highly intelligent dog which makes him so fun to train. Positive reinforcement methods work best when training him any new skills. Harsh treatment doesn’t get you any far. Treats and any other rewards are vital in training your Peekapoo. With the correct training, your Peekapoo can be a good therapy dog as well especially if you have a special needs child in the family.

As long as you socialize your dog from an early age, he gets along well with other dogs and pets as well as children. A very loving and devoted dog, the Peekapoo is a keen and active member of the family. He’ll want to follow you anywhere you go and loves to cuddle on your lap immediately you sit down. This dog is eager to please and will thus learn fast. He also likes being around kids.

A wonderful watchdog this dog will alert you when a stranger is approaching your home. He makes a great companion dog especially in a family, but this also means he will always want to be with you. Do not leave him by himself for long periods of time. This can cause excessive anxiety in addition to too much barking and chewing.

Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu

This small dogs are much stronger than their small size may suggest making them excellent for small kids. They are good natured, quiet and calm, though they have energy bursts when all they want to do is run around and play. They do not shed, so they are perfect for people with allergies. However, you will need to groom them well if you decide to keep them in full coat. A lot of people prefer keeping their coats short trimmed. They have very little exercise needs so running around in the house with kids is enough for them. Training them can also be a challenge since they are stubborn at times.

It’s important to begin obedience training of your dog immediately it gets in your home. The Shih Tzu dog breed has a very short span of attention thus, training him in shorter increments will produce great results. Shih Tzus are intelligent and curious, so ensure those lessons are fun and if you are patient, your dog will be able to learn faster. They weigh anywhere from 9 to 16 pounds. Since this is a small dog, ensure it doesn’t become overweight.

So now that you know about best small family dogs, settling for one for your family should be easier. Keep in mind that highly strung small dogs are not often the best for small kids.

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