Top 5 small dog breeds that are perfect for a family with kids.

Many parents have been considering adopting or purchasing a small dog for their children to enjoy during the pandemic. But what is the best small dog breed for a family with kids?

Small dogs can be a great addition to your home. They provide safety, security, emotional support, and more. But there’s a lot to consider when you have children in the home, especially when it comes to a dog’s size, temperament, and trainability.

Parents often want the benefits of a family dog without too much additional maintenance. That’s why small dogs are a wonderful way to add a canine companion to your family. So how do you find the right small dog for you and your children?

There are a few things to keep in mind when selecting a dog for your family. The first being to consider your family’s lifestyle. If you have an active family that regularly goes out on walks, find a breed that can keep up with you. But if your family tends to stay indoors or does not have access to a dog park, find a dog that does well with little activity and small areas.

You will also want to consider safety. At first, you may only consider your children’s safety. But it’s also important to remember the dog’s safety. For example, some children may not know how to handle a small animal. They can get overly excited and accidentally injure or scare the dog. So keep in mind how old your children are, and ask yourself if they can handle a small animal.

With these things in mind, we still believe that there are plenty of dogs out there that would be a great addition to your family. We’ve reviewed the top five small dog breeds you should consider and included basic information about their size, health tendencies, lifestyle preferences, and personality traits.

Here are the top 5 small dog breeds that are perfect for a family with kids

Welsh Corgi

Cardigan Welsh Corgi

  • Size: 25-35lbs
  • Health: 12-15 year life expectancy, some health considerations (hip and back)
  • Exercise: Very active (several walks or room to run)
  • Grooming: Medium (medium coat and sheds an average amount)
  • Personality: Loyal, loving, friendly

The Cardigan Welsh Corgi is an excellent choice for a family dog. This breed has grown in popularity over the last several years for many reasons. They are loyal, friendly, and very trainable. And when socialized well, they do great with kids, strangers, and other dogs. Keep in mind that despite their small stature, this breed is part of the herding group and is known for its athleticism. You and your family will want to be sure to take them on long walks or find a nearby dog park to enjoy.

boston Terrier
Image by Yenni Vance from Pixabay

Boston Terrier

  • Size: 12-25lbs
  • Health: 11-13 year life expectancy, some health considerations (eye and respiratory)
  • Exercise: Normal (two walks a day)
  • Grooming: Low (short coat and sheds an average amount)
  • Personality: Quirky, dependent, curious

The Boston Terrier is a fan favorite for many people. Their spunky personality and adorable facial features make them hard to resist. Their small size allows them to travel well, and they love to spend time with their family members. Because they are a dependent breed, it may be a good idea to have a family member who regularly works from home. Boston Terriers are also very trainable and respond well to positive reinforcement and treat-based training methods. While they may be prone to respiratory issues (similar to many flat-faced breeds), they are overall healthy and adapt well to their surroundings.

cavalier spaniel
Image by 🎄Merry Christmas 🎄 from Pixabay

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

  • Size: 13-20lbs
  • Health: 12-15 year life expectancy, several health considerations (heart, eyes, and hips)
  • Exercise: Normal (two walks a day)
  • Grooming: High (long coat and sheds a low amount)
  • Personality: Friendly, sweet, outgoing

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a family favorite across the nation. Their sweet disposition and loving nature make them a fantastic addition to any family. While they tend to have more energy in their younger years, they typically only require a few walks a day and some playtime. Since this breed is very pack-focused, it’s essential to have someone at home most of the day so your dog will not be lonely. While Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are prone to some health issues, they are overall a low maintenance breed with high reward.

beagle puppy
Image by Nick115 from Pixabay


  • Size: 15-20lbs
  • Health: 10-15 year life expectancy, few health considerations (hips and ears)
  • Exercise: Very active (several walks or room to run)
  • Grooming: Low (short coat and sheds a normal amount)
  • Personality: Curious, playful, vocal

Beagles are a well-known breed in homes of all kinds around the world. Their sunny disposition and playful nature lends itself to a great family dog. And since they are a more vocal breed, they will add a layer of security to the home. Beagles are known for their loyalty and protective nature of their pack. Since they are part of the herding group, they require a lot of exercise every day. Beagles are a wonderful small dog breed and a top contender to consider when adding a family pet.

Image by Pablo Villalon from Pixabay


  • Size: 10-25lbs
  • Health: 12-16 years life expectancy, few health considerations (weight and back)
  • Exercise: Normal (two walks a day)
  • Grooming: Medium (short or long coat and sheds an average amount)
  • Personality: Dependent, spunky, protective

A Dachshund is a great dog for any home due to its size and loyal nature. They are very protective of their humans, so they provide an element of security to your house despite their short stature. Dachshunds travel well, do well with children if socialized properly, and are very trainable. They may have some health concerns, specifically regarding their long backs and short legs. But overall, this breed is known for living a full and healthy life.

One final thing to consider is what your daily routine may look like after the pandemic. Children will head back to school and adults may go back to the office. So it’s a good idea to create a healthy routine for your dog that will continue long after quarantine has finished. 

Take time to learn about each breed, visit shelters to learn more about dogs available for adoption, and reach out to local vets if you have questions about ongoing care. At the end of the day, you and your family will know what small dog breed works best for your lifestyle. 

No matter what, you’ll find that your house will feel like more of a home with a furry family member. Check out some of our other articles.

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