The 16 Most Affectionate Dog Breeds

Woman Petting Golden Retriever
Photo: Tom Stewart/Getty Images

As an unknown genius once said, "Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong." There is nothing like a dog to make you feel loved, accepted, and like a darn good conversationalist, too. Dogs are great if you need a TV-watching pal, a hug, a faithful friend, a running buddy, or a resident couch potato. While pups of any and every breed can be good pets, especially if you rescue one from a bad situation or adopt one from a shelter, some kinds of dogs seem to particularly love hanging out with humans. While dogs have distinct personalities, if you're looking for a real cuddle bug to come home to, some breeds are more likely to snuggle up than others.

Here are 16 of the most affectionate, cuddly, human-loving dog breeds:

01 of 16


English Bulldog Laying on Owner
John Fedele/Getty Images

Speaking of good-natured lugs: the English bulldog also qualifies for that moniker. They are naturally sweet, extremely docile, and known for their gentle dispositions. They are loyal and dependable, and according to Hill's, bulldogs are "people-oriented" and "actively solicit human attention." Plus, they are fun to look at and even more fun to cuddle up with for a nap (although they are known to snore).

02 of 16

Labrador Retrievers

Smiling Yellow Labrador dog
sanjagrujic/Getty Images

The American Kennel Club calls labs America's favorite dog and it's easy to see why. They are smart, even-tempered, easy to train, and always eager to please. They make excellent companions in the field or at home and will do anything for their favorite people, especially if food is involved.

03 of 16

Brussels Griffon

Brussels Griffon Dog
ginastancel/Getty Images

These funny-faced pooches are "loyal, alert, and curious" according to the American Kennel Club (AKC). These dogs pack a lot of personality into their small packages. These rambunctious puppers love to be around their very special humans and will happily follow them to the kitchen, living room, bedroom, bathroom, and everywhere else they are invited.

04 of 16

Staffordshire and Pit Bull Terriers

Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier Puppy
Sharon Vos-Arnold/Getty Images

These pups can have a bad reputation, but in the right home their most egregious behavior can be hogging the entire bed or being convinced they are lap dogs, even though they can weigh up to 80 pounds! They love people and can make truly wonderful family pets who are eager to please and hard to get out of bed. Like many breeds, they need some training and socialization, but they can be great family companions and truly goofy cuddle bugs.

05 of 16


Newfoundland Puppy
David Gillis/Getty Images

These gentle giants are renowned for their calm, loving dispositions. That's why when author J.M. Barrie was writing Peter Pan he decided the Darling family needed to hire a Newfoundland to be the patient nursemaid to their three children, based on his own family's experience with the breed. Even if you're not in need of a nanny, these sweet-tempered pups make excellent pets.

06 of 16

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Dog Running
HollyAA/Getty Images

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are an elegant breed that have been raised as companions since the times of their namesake King Charles. As members of the spaniel family, they can hunt, but they are just as happy rollicking in the backyard with kids or snoozing on the divan with grandma. The dog pros at Rover caution, "These outgoing dogs are relaxed with friends and strangers alike, so don't count on a Cav to be a watchdog!"

07 of 16


Hillary Kladke/Getty Images

These tiny pups have enormous personalities and despite their small stature, they seem to truly believe they are in charge. These rambunctious pups make excellent companions for people who don't mind a bit of sass in between snuggles. Chihuahuas tend to closely bond with one person and generally tend to get along best with older, calmer human companions. Once they form a bond, though, it's forever.

08 of 16

Bichon Frisé

Bichon Frise
Martin Rogers/Getty Images

These adorable white fluff balls make excellent companions whether you're looking for an energetic pooch or just someone to share your pillow at night. These little dogs are fun, full of energy, and incredibly loving, and in the words of the AKC, they are "irresistible canine comedians" looking for a cozy lap.

09 of 16


Woman Hold Pug
PatrickBraun/Getty Images

Pugs are ridiculously friendly little doggos who love anyone and everyone who is around them. They tend to be outgoing little goofballs who are super busy living their best lives at the dog park, at home, and everywhere in between. They exude happiness from their funny little faces.

10 of 16

The Most Affectionate Dog Breeds

11 of 16


Border Collie Dog
R A Kearton/Getty Images

One word: Lassie. Like their TV counterpart proved, collies are clever, gentle, loyal, and occasionally stubborn, like when Timmy is stuck in a well and someone absolutely needs to help. According to, collies are good for anyone looking "for an outdoors-y partner, and who also have a family to share her with."

12 of 16

Golden Retrievers

Woman Petting Golden Retriever
Tom Stewart/Getty Images

Goldens are the go-to choice for family dogs for a good reason: They are goofy, cuddly, and happy. These good-natured lugs are endlessly friendly and tend to be very patient with kids and other pets and always happy to settle down for a nap with their family.

13 of 16


Purple Collar Pet Photography/Getty Images

Like their Labrador Retriever parents, this "doodle" breed is known for its extreme friendliness, gentle manner, and trainability. Like most mixed breeds, each one has a little bit of a different look. They range from standard size, about 50-65 pounds, to miniature, about 16 to 25 pounds, and can have a wavy, curly or wiry coat. While their outer looks may depend on their parents, their inner nature is characteristically people-oriented, playful, and affectionate.

14 of 16

Great Dane

Great Dane
Richard Theis/EyeEm/Getty Images

Don't be fooled by their size. Great Danes are darn good cuddlers. Friendly, patient, and dependable, Great Danes are "a joy to live with," according the American Kennel Club. These majestic dogs are often rambunctious as puppies, but they become gentle giants in adulthood.

15 of 16

Old English Sheepdogs

Old English Sheepdog
dewollewei/Getty Images

With such a soft, shaggy coat, Old English Sheepdogs are practically begging to be pet. Andy they'll enjoy it too. Famous for its coat, these dogs love to explore, but are known for their mellow, agreeable nature. According to the American Kennel Club, they have an "off switch" when they come indoors.

16 of 16

Shih Tzu

Pet Shih Tzu
moaan/Getty Images

Curling up in your lap for an afternoon nap is this pup's idea of a good time. According to the American Kennel Club, they're known to be especially affectionate with children, making them a great pet for families. Not only are they loving, playful, and outgoing, but their big, adorable eyes will almost let them get away with all sorts of trouble.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles