When choosing a canine companion, there are many things to consider. You want a dog that’s easy to train, personable enough to get along with and low maintenance. But beyond the basics, it’s crucial to think about your lifestyle. What kind of dog will fit into your life the best?
The last thing you want is to care for a dog with exercise needs you can’t fulfill. Not only is it a disservice to the dog, but you could run into many issues as a new owner. Fortunately, you don’t have to settle for dogs constantly on the go.
There are plenty of calmer varieties that live life at a much slower pace. Whether you’re looking for a pup to be your couch companion or you have mobility issues that prevent you from rigorous play and intense exercise, these dogs may be your perfect match.
The Whippet is an adorable medium-sized dog with a penchant for running. But before you gloss over this breed, Whippets are pretty easy to calm down. They need time to run around daily to burn calories and release that pent-up energy.
But once they get their exercise fix, Whippets are more than ready to lounge around for the rest of the day. They’re relatively calm and don’t go crazy barking like other breeds. The dogs tire out quickly, making it easy to maintain a quiet home.
The Whippet’s body is perfect for racing.
Over short distances it can reach speeds up to 35 mph. The male of this dog breed stands 18 to 22 inches tall at shoulder height and 17 to18 inches for females. Their weight range is from 20 to 30 pounds. Built for racing the Whippet’s legs are well muscled, with strong bones and it has a long thin tail.
2. Irish Wolfhound
These shaggy beasts are a thing of unconventional beauty. They’re massive, standing about three feet tall at the whithers and tipping the scales at around 180 pounds. Their bodies are covered in a mess of straggly gray fur. This sturdy Wolfhound has a long back, deep chest, long muscular legs and a long, slightly curved tail. Those unique quirks make the Irish Wolfhound a special breed.
The Irish Wolfhound is the largest sighthound and one of the biggest and strongest of all giant / large dog breeds.
Despite their size, these dogs are gentle giants. They’re intelligent and well-connected to owners. For that reason, they make excellent therapy dogs and companions to people of all ages.
3. Cocker Spaniel
This medium-sized breed is a real beaut. Cocker Spaniels are sought-after house pets that are instantly recognizable thanks to their curly brown fur and floppy ears.
Believe it or not, this somewhat posh dog has a history of retrieving game birds! The Cocker Spaniel was originally bred to be a hunting dog, excelling at catching birds due to their small size and agility.
Compared to other dogs in the sporting category, the Cocker Spaniel is small. However, they are actually a medium sized dog that stand between 14 and 15 inches tall and weigh between 24 and 28 lbs. Normally, males are slightly larger than females.
That penchant for work and exercise remains. You’d be hard-pressed to find a Cocker Spaniel that will refuse to explore, run around, and have fun. But the great thing about this breed is that it calms quickly. It’s just as ready to cuddle up on the couch and do nothing.
4. Golden Retriever
The Golden Retriever is among the world’s top ten most popular breeds. It’s not hard to see why. Not only are these dogs the epitome of All-American beauty, but they’re some of the easiest dogs to raise.
Golden Retrievers are calm, easygoing, highly trainable, and attuned to your emotions. There’s a reason why these dogs are the go-to for therapists and guides. The breed is loyal above all else and can train to become a working dog in many different trades.
5. St. Bernard
Here’s another large dog breed that many assume is aggressive or larger-than-life. The dog’s appearance can be intimidating, but St. Bernards are usually calm and collected. Their large size makes them capable of pulling heavy objects. Therefore, these dogs are perfect for lugging around backpacks and supporting owners.
Outside of that short work, you can find most St. Bernards lounging on the couch or patiently waiting for a command next to their owners. They’re a fantastic example of patience.
Talk about big teddy bears! The Newfoundland is a large dog breed covered in a thick coat of long brown hair. Their constant drooling and sheer size create an intimidating look, but Newfoundlands are even-tempered and calm. They’re fierce protectors, do well as watchdogs, and will even put themselves in harm’s way to help humans.
The dog’s personality is nothing short of amazing. Newfoundlands are affectionate, loving, and calm. What’s not to like?
These creatures are quirky and instantly recognizable. Who doesn’t love that squished face? While the unique biology of the Pug creates many health challenges, these pups are a joy to raise. They love being the center of attention and will not turn down an opportunity to play.
But they’re not particularly active or physically demanding. Because they have short snouts, Pugs can’t exert a ton of physicality. They’re limited in what they can do, so you’re most likely to find these dogs laying around, cuddling with owners, and showing affection.
8. Biewer Terrier
Here’s a pint-sized pup that not too many people know much about. The Biewer Terrier is a small breed that looks strikingly similar to a Yorkie. It has that same long hair that needs regular upkeep. These dogs are also just as small.
But what makes a Biewer Terrier different is its personality. Small dogs are known to be feisty and challenging to train, but that’s not the case here. The Biewer Terrier is an intelligent breed that easily picks up on commands. Pair that with its inherent sweetness, and they’re the perfect addition to any household.
9. Cavalier King Charles Terrier
Take one look at those big brown eyes, and it’s not hard to fall in love with Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. They have a loving personality to match, too. This breed is known for its easygoing disposition. These dogs are affectionate. Most importantly, they’re adaptable.
They fit right in with most lifestyles. Whether you’re a homebody or love to get out and go for hikes, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are always down. They go with the flow and never complain.
10. Great Pyrenees
The Great Pyrenees Mountain Dog comes to us from France. They have a long history of being working dogs, scaring off predators to keep livestock safe. But don’t let that penchant for protection fool you. It’s all a facade. These dogs are very gentle.
They can be a little stubborn, showing signs of independence here and there. But for the most part, these dogs are highly trainable. Devote guardians and protectors, the breed is willing to stand watch around the clock to keep your family safe. All the while, they’re always down for some snuggles and relaxation.
These goofy canines offer some nice middle ground between playful and calm. They’re not masterful athletes by any means. Those short, stubby legs don’t get very far and running looks closer to wobbling than anything else. But that doesn’t stop the breed from having a good time when you’re ready to play.
Outside of those bursts of energetic play, Corgis are grounded homebodies. They want nothing more than to spend time with owners. If that means lounging on the couch or relaxing for easy socialization, so be it!
12. Border Terrier
As a whole, Terriers tend to be scatter-brained, stubborn, and independent. That’s not the case with the Border Terrier. All dogs are different, but most pups of this breed are far less intense. They can have fun like any other dog but are keen on listening, staying close, and heeding your commands.
You may see some of their Terrier instincts come out when they go outside and play. But for the most part, these dogs are even-tempered and do well in social environments.
Here’s a small, fluffy dog that can easily turn into your purse pooch! Pekingese dogs are a popular breed for dog owners wanting a companion they can spoil. These dogs require a lot of upkeep because of their thick coats of fur. But when it comes to behavior, they’re easygoing animals.
Like Pugs, Pekingese can’t exert a ton of physical activity. Doing so can lead to breathing problems, so most pups live a sedentary lifestyle.
14. Basset Hound
Basset Hounds are a low-key dog breed that doesn’t require much exercise. They have short legs, stocky bodies, and enormous ears that like to get in the way. The only thing you have to worry about with Basset Hounds is their strong sense of smell.
They can be stubborn when they get a whiff of something that piques their interest. Fortunately, breaking that concentration is easy with some treats and attention. The dogs are loyal, loving, and calm when they’re not hyper-focused on a smell.
When most people think of toy breeds like the Havanese, calm isn’t an adjective that comes to mind. But these dogs offer a nice balance between playful and mellow. They’re super affectionate and in tune with their owner’s emotions. For that reason, it’s not uncommon to see them as therapy dogs.
Havanese are playful and do enjoy a brisk walk for exercise. However, their small stature makes fulfilling those needs a breeze. Outside of active play, these creatures are affectionate lap dogs!
This super-sized dog breed has a massive heart of gold. They can be a handful for novice dog owners. The animal’s sheer size and thick coat require more maintenance than other smaller breeds. But if you can manage it, Leonbergers can be excellent companions.
They’re wildly affectionate and thrive in family settings. They’re pretty mellow and can get along with just about anyone. These big german dogs are also patient, making them a surprisingly good fit for families with children.
Last but not least, we have the Bulldog. These stocky canines have an intimidating look. But that signature frown is nothing more than a physical characteristic. Most bulldogs and bulldog mixes are easygoing creatures that spend most of their time snoozing in their favorite rest spot.
Like Pugs, Bulldogs have a short snout. Don’t be surprised if you hear your pup snoring like no tomorrow! That unique biology does make physical activity a challenge, so most Bulldogs prefer to take things easy instead of going buck wild.
You don’t have to be active to bring a canine companion into your life. These breeds can lounge with the best of them! They’re easygoing and calm enough to stick by your side. But of course, forming a solid bond will result in tons of affection and love.
All dogs have unique personalities. Focus on socialization and obedience training to ensure your pup stays mellow regardless of the breed.