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15 Best Dog Breeds for First-Time Owners

15 Best Dog Breeds for First-Time Dog Owners - Premier Pups

15 Best Dog Breeds for First-Time Owners

Published Friday, May 6, 2022 by PremierPups

Getting your first ever puppy is a decision that will reward you with unconditional love, friendship, and an endless supply of cuddles for many years to come. But, as a first-time puppy owner, there are a few things you need to consider before adopting your first puppy. Some dog breeds are more energetic than others, some are high or low maintenance, and some can or cannot be trained easily. Ideally, your first puppy should be easy to care for, friendly, and easy to train. It should also be a breed that matches your lifestyle and personality. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the 15 best dog breeds for first-time owners. These dogs are naturally well-behaved, charming, loyal, and a breeze to care for.  

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a fantastic first puppy for new owners. This dog is renowned for its intelligence, sweet nature, and easygoing personality. Cavalier spaniels have been around for quite some time, and their popularity is ever-growing, especially with novice owners. These dogs are on their best behavior around kids, and they aren’t known to be snappy or reactive. The Cavalier is also an inquisitive and very sociable breed that gets along well with other dogs, strangers, and pets.  

Cavaliers are known to shed regularly, but their grooming requirements are entirely manageable for new owners. Given their moderate exercise needs and good health, these dogs are overall a low-maintenance breed that is easy to care for. 
Temperament: Calm, social, affectionate 

Life Expectancy: 9-14 years 

Height: 12-13 inches 

Weight: 12-18 pounds 

Adopt a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 


One of the most popular doodle puppies on the planet, the Cavapoo charms with impossible cuteness and a personality to match. Cavapoos are a crossbreed of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel crossed with a Mini or Toy Poodle, and like their parents, their qualities are limitless. These bundles of joy are smart, loving, and peaceful. They have adoring behavior towards children and are very sociable with other dogs. What these adorable dogs love most is to be with their owners. They make excellent house pets and are known for being quite adaptable. 
Caring for a Cavapoo is as easy as it gets. Their grooming requirements are minimal, and they have low exercise needs. They are one of the best dogs for new owners. 

Temperament: Intelligent, loyal, friendly 

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years 

Height: 9-14 inches 

Weight: 8-20 pounds 

Adopt a Cavapoo 


A clever and charismatic dog, the Cockapoo is a great choice for non-experienced owners. Cockapoos are a mix between the Cocker spaniel and Poodle. They're highly trainable, attentive, and responsive to their owners. Cockapoos have a happy-go-lucky personality and a fun-loving nature. They enjoy playing games of fetch, going on family adventures, and most importantly, being near their humans.  

Taking care of a Cockapoo is simple. A few minutes of brushing their coats and a bath every now and then is all it takes to keep them clean and looking good. Training these dogs is also easy as they are fast learners who want nothing more than to please their owners. 

Temperament: Outgoing, loving, sweet 

Life Expectancy: 13-16 years 

Height: 10-15 inches 

Weight: 12-25 pounds 

Adopt a Cockapoo 


The Havanese is an easy-to-train breed that is also easy to groom and care for. It has a calm and gentle disposition that makes it perfect for first-time owners. Havanese dogs are generally well-mannered and very playful, making them great family dogs. They are an excellent choice for families with kids and for households with multiple pets. They are not as energetic as other breeds, but they can still make good adventure companions. The Havanese is a small dog with an elegant appearance, which makes it a favorite among first-time owners who want a small, adorable lapdog.  

Temperament: Cheerful, gentle, loving 

Life Expectancy: 12-14 years 

Height: 9-12 inches 

Weight: 7-13 pounds 

Adopt a Havanese 

Mini Goldendoodle 

A charming pet in every way, the Mini Goldendoodle is a top choice for new-time dog owners. If you’re familiar with the Golden Retriever and the Poodle, you will love this designer doodle dog, as it is a mix between the two. Mini Golden doodles are happy and energetic dogs that respond very well to their owners and environment. They adapt quickly and train easily. They’re also incredibly friendly and sociable. 

Mini Goldendoodles are low-shedding dogs that don’t have high grooming needs. They need more exercise compared to other breeds but are otherwise very easy to care for. 

Temperament: Intelligent, friendly, energetic 

Life Expectancy: 10-14 years 

Height: 13-22 inches 

Weight: 20-45 pounds 

Adopt a Mini Goldendoodle 


Excellent first dogs for beginners, Cavachons make caring for them an effortless task. These bundles of joy are smart, eager to please, and easy to love. They are a mix between the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Bichon Frise. Cavachons are renowned for their cuddly personalities and joyful nature. They get along with just about anyone and are very well-behaved. Training them as puppies is very easy, as is caring for them in general. They are healthy, easygoing, and responsive to their owners. Grooming a Cavachon is also easy since these dogs have a low-shedding, manageable coat. Overall, they are a great choice for new puppy owners. 

Temperament: Joyful, smart, sociable 

Life Expectancy: 10-17 years 

Height: 12-13 inches 

Weight: 10-20 pounds 

Adopt a Cavachon 

Teddy Bear 

Teddy Bear dogs are true to their name. They are small, adorable pups that love to cuddle and be doted on. There are two breeds that are part of our Teddy bear dog category. These are the Mal-Shi – a Maltese and Shih Tzu mix, and the Shichon – a Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise mix. Both designer breeds are an ideal fit for a new owner. Training them might take a little more effort than it does with other breeds, since these pups are usually easily spoiled, but otherwise they make fantastic pets for non-experienced owners. They are more relaxed than energetic and have low grooming requirements, which makes them a low-maintenance breed that is perfect for a new dog owner. 

Temperament: Outgoing, independent, affectionate 

Life Expectancy: 12-14 years 

Height: 9-12 inches 

Weight: 6-14 pounds 

Adopt a Teddy Bear 


If you're looking for a dog that is easy to train, easy to groom and doesn't shed much, then the Morkie might be the perfect breed for you. Morkies are also known as Maltese-Yorkie mixes. They are small dogs with a lot of energy and personality. They are very playful and intelligent, making them great companion pets for any type of owner.  

The Morkie is an excellent choice for first-time owners because they can easily be trained to do basic commands such as "sit," "stay," "come," and "lay down." They have been known to get along well with children and other dogs, and they are also easy to care for when it comes to grooming. Their very petite size is a bonus as they fit quite wonderfully in a small apartment. 

Temperament: Curious, energetic, playful 

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years 

Height: 6-10 inches 

Weight: 5-8 pounds 

Adopt a Morkie 

Shih Poo 

The Shih Poo is an ideal dog for first-time owners. They are easy to care for, responsive to training, and naturally well-mannered. The Shih Poo is a small designer breed that is quite popular worldwide. They are also known as the "Elegant Poodle and Shih Tzu mix" because of their adorable size and looks. 

These dogs are very intelligent and eager to please their owners. They have a great personality that is ideal for owners of every age. They are just as great for senior owners as they are for a family with kids. Shih Poos have moderate exercise needs and low grooming requirements. 

Temperament: Gentle, clever, loving 

Life Expectancy: 10-15 years 

Height: 8-17 inches 

Weight: 8-18 pounds 

Adopt a Shih Poo 

Yorkshire Terrier 

Apart from being extra cute and sweet, the Yorkshire terrier also makes one of the best dogs for first-time pet owners. Yorkies are relatively easy to train, adapt well to any lifestyle, and only need moderate exercise to stay in shape and happy. They have a great personality, they're easy on the wallet, and they're a lot of fun to be around. 

Yorkies thrive in a setting where they can be the center of attention. They adore playing with kids and have great affection for their families. Grooming them is easy and exercising them doesn’t take up much time, so they are overall a low-maintenance dog breed that fits well with a non-experienced owner. 

Temperament: Outgoing, clever, courageous 

Life Expectancy: 10-16 years 

Height: 8-9 inches 

Weight: 4-6 pounds 

Adopt a Yorkshire Terrier 

Mini Bernedoodle 

The Mini Bernedoodle is a fluffy beauty that loves to relax and spend time with its owner. This adorable dog is a mix of a Bernese Mountain dog and a Mini Poodle. Like their amazing parents, Mini Berne doodles charm with a lovey-dovey personality. They love meeting anyone and everyone and are very fond of their owners. Caring for a Mini Bernedoodle involves basic training and grooming. Since they are a very healthy dog breed, trips to the vet are also rare, which is another bonus for a new owner.  

The Mini Bernedoodle’s personality is very friendly, and its energy levels are moderate. This means that they will love going to the dog park, but they don’t necessarily require intense daily exercise.  

Temperament: Gentle, calm, affectionate 

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years 

Height: 13-22 inches 

Weight: 20-50 pounds 

Adopt a Mini Bernedoodle 


The Maltese is a centuries-old breed that has always thrived on laps and attention. Bred for companionship, these dogs have all the right tools to make life easy for a new dog owner. Maltese dogs are very easy to train. Their intelligence and eagerness to please help them pick up on tricks and commands quite fast. Grooming them might take up a little more effort than it does with other small breeds since their hair grows quite long if left unclipped. The Maltese requires a brush every other day, if not daily, to maintain its coat in pristine condition. Other than their somewhat moderate grooming needs, Maltese dogs have the ideal personality to fit well with a new pet owner. 

Temperament: Friendly, playful, gentle 

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years 

Height: 9-10 inches 

Weight: 4-7 pounds 

Adopt a Maltese 


Havapoos are a good breed for first-time dog owners because they are responsive to training, loving, and calm tempered. These adorable dogs are a crossbreed of a Havanese and a Poodle. They enjoy being around humans and children, making them the perfect pet for families and singles alike. The Havapoo is an intelligent and easy-to-train companion dog that can get along with children and other animals in the home. These dogs are a low-maintenance breed, which makes them an ideal choice for first-time dog owners looking for a low-cost alternative to other breeds of similar size and temperament.  

Havapoos like to dote on their humans and be part of any activity going on around them. They are very sociable and quick to make friends with other dogs and strangers. 

Temperament: Sweet, intelligent, cuddly 

Life Expectancy: 10-14 years 

Height: 9-12 inches 

Weight: 8-20 pounds 

Adopt a Havapoo 


An impressively intelligent and versatile breed, the Poochon is perhaps one of the top 3 breeds for non-experienced owners. Poochons are a mix between the Poodle and the Bichon Frise, and like their parents, they come with elegant looks, joyful personalities, and an agile mindset. Training them is effortless as they are fond of attention, and they enjoy pleasing their owners more than anything. These beautiful dogs play nice with children and adults alike. They are quick to bond and love unconditionally.  

When it comes to grooming, the Poochon may be a bit more high maintenance compared to other similar breeds. These dogs require daily brushing to keep their coats mat-free, otherwise, they are very easy to train and care for.  

Temperament: Playful, clever, affectionate 

Life Expectancy: 12-15 years 

Height: 9-15 inches 

Weight: 6-17 pounds 

Adopt a Poochon 


Last but not least, the Maltipoo is a top pick for a first-time pet owner. Maltipoos check all the boxes for an easy-to-care-for pet. They are highly trainable, outgoing, and naturally obedient. Friendliness, charm, and affection are their biggest strengths. These dogs make friends wherever they go. They adore playing with kids and are very fond of being included in all family activities. Maltipoos also adapt well to all environments and are moderately energetic.  

Maltipoos are a mix of a Maltese crossed with a Poodle. They are just as smart and as beautiful as their parents. Given that both of their parent breeds have quite the reputation as therapy dogs, service dogs, and circus dogs, it’s safe to say that Maltipoos can also be easily trained for any job. 

Temperament: Intelligent, loyal, playful 

Life Expectancy: 10-14 years 

Height: 9-12 inches 

Weight: 5-10 pounds 

Adopt a Maltipoo 

Similar articles that might interest you: 

New Puppy Owner Guide 

20 Best Dogs for Kids 

15 Dogs That Seniors Love 

Hypoallergenic Puppies 

How to Train a Puppy 

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