A Retiree’s Guide to Finding the Perfect Dog

Do you suddenly have more time on your hands and want to share your life with a new four-legged friend? The good news is that there are fun, easygoing breeds that may fit your lifestyle and aren’t likely to demand to play fetch every hour or shed so much that you are constantly vacuuming. Of course, if you are looking for a more active breed, we have recommendations for those, as well.

Check out our photo gallery below to find some of the dogs that can be good matches for older adults.schipperke

Adult Dogs Who Already Know Basic Commands

Puppies can be quite a handful, which is why many people prefer to adopt an adult dog. With a mature dog, you usually have a better idea of what you are getting. The great thing about adult dogs is that most are already housetrained and know some basic commands. With any adoption, research your potential pet’s health history so you’re aware of any preexisting conditions, and find out if he’s friendly around new people. Your best bet may be a small but sturdy breed, like a French Bulldog, Schipperke or one of these breeds that can be good for older adults.

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Low-Energy Breeds Who Are Easy to Hang Out With

For many people, the perfect dog is a couch-loving breed that tends to enjoy snuggling and usually doesn’t demand constant attention. It doesn’t mean that these breeds won’t enjoy going out for a stroll, but they will probably enjoy relaxing with you more than embarking on a five-mile run. From the adaptable Cavalier King Charles Spaniel to the calm and composed Keeshond, these typically low-energy breeds might be good matches for you.

If, however, you are looking for a running companion, consider these dog breeds.

Leesia Teh, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Leesia Teh, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Apartment-Friendly Breeds Who Can Fit Almost Anywhere

If you are living in a smaller space or want a dog you can take almost anywhere with you, toy breeds who are more laid-back, like Pugs and Pekingese, are prime candidates for you. But if you have your heart set on an apartment-friendly big dog, don’t give up hope, as even Mastiffs can be great choices for smaller homes. Check out these breeds to find some of your best bets.

Stephen Taylor, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Stephen Taylor, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Dogs Who Don’t Shed a Lot

You have better things to do than spend your days vacuuming up hair and lint-rolling your clothes. We asked veterinary professionals to rate the dogs who shed the least, and their top pick was the curly-coated Poodle. Here are nine other dogs who made the list.

Karin Newstrom, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Karin Newstrom, Animal Photography / Vetstreet.com

Big Dogs Who Are Gentle Giants

Although small dogs tend to be easier to handle, if you want a really big dog, you may want to consider a gentle giant breed, like a Newfoundland or Great Dane. These large breeds are generally known for their calm demeanor and lower energy levels. Some of them may even try to share the couch with you. Just remember, these dogs can weigh as much as you do and can easily knock over humans and furniture, so they aren’t the best choice to have around fragile people or things. They also have relatively short life spans. Learn more about these giant dogs.

By Laura Cross | Vetstreet.com

56 comments

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus C3 years ago

Thank you for sharing!

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Nikki Davey
Nikki Davey3 years ago

Thanks for this

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william Miller
william Miller3 years ago

tey forgot rescue dogs are the BEST!

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Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen3 years ago

Thank you

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Natasha Salgado
Past Member 3 years ago

thanks

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Kamia T.
Kamia T3 years ago

I vote for big dogs from local shelters ANY day, and I'm older. You can't miss them, risking a tripping hazard; they are large enough that stupid intruders are generally intimidated; and they're not constantly barking as many smaller breeds have the tendency to do.

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Valentina R.
Valentina R3 years ago

So perfect dog = Pedigree dog? Not in my book, Vetstreet.

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Sen Senz
Sayenne H3 years ago

Wish everyone knew all this

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Sen Senz
Sayenne H3 years ago

Good info thanks

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Debbi -.
Debbi -3 years ago

Sometimes you'll need to check several shelters until you find the dog that is right for you. It may not be the one you were looking for, but may be the one for you anyway.

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