18 Dog Breeds That Love Affection

Some dogs don’t feel comfortable with tight hugs or kisses, and some others aren’t even friendly enough to keep around the family. Thankfully, you’re still spoiled with options if you’re looking for an affectionate friend to have by your side. These 18 breeds are sure to keep you and your family happy.


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With bulldogs, you have friends who love to show affection just as much as they love to receive it. They’re a breed that loves to cuddle a lot and is known to get attached to their primary caregiver, so much so that people regard them as being too needy. Nonetheless, it’s just their way of showing love, and they get more gentle as they grow older.


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Chihuahuas are some of the best pets for first-time owners, and they’ll show anyone just how much joy a dog brings. They’ll give you long licks while you carry, stroke, and hug them. They are also so clingy that they develop separation anxiety when they aren’t with you. These small cuties don’t show this same level of affection toward strangers and larger dogs, however.


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Unlike chihuahuas, Newfoundlands extend their affection to everyone—you, strangers, other dogs, and even other types of pets you have in the house. They’re a large, easy-going breed that’s got the nickname “nanny dog” because of how affectionate they are with children and within family settings.

Great Danes

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The great Danes are some of the biggest and sweetest dogs on our planet. They’ll show you love by wagging their tails, and they don’t mind getting snuggled up with you. They’ll even sit on your laps without minding their size. Great Danes also get along well with children, strangers, and even some smaller dogs.

Springer Spaniels

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These dogs are energetic and loyal and will give you the “Springer smile” when they’re happy to see you. Spruce Pets also describes them as “a popular choice for families with children or other dogs” thanks to their calm demeanor, cheerful temperament, and easy trainability.


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Although Pomeranians thrive excellently in family settings, they usually get attached to only one person. They’re energetic small dogs that people see as amazing sleeping partners, and they love to stay close to you so they can be petted. Pomeranians, however, can get aggressive with strangers who get close to them without proper socialization.

Pit Bulls

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They may have a bad reputation as aggressive breeds due to their fighting pasts, but with proper socialization, pit bulls are some of the most affectionate around. They always want to be around you and cuddle up with you any chance they get. Pitbulls also have enough playful energy for you and the family.


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Labradoodles will bark to get your attention, whether it’s for food, cuddles, or just for you to acknowledge them. They’ll sleep with their heads on your lap when tired, play around with you anytime you wish, and also feel bad when left alone for long periods.

Australian Shepherds

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They may be playful and energetic dogs when outside, but Aussies come with just as much gentleness and love for you and your family. They don’t easily feel comfortable with strangers, so rest assured that their loyalty and protection are reserved for you only. Aussies will also want to follow you everywhere and do everything with you.

Golden Retrievers

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Golden retrievers will show you unconditional love and comfort you when you’re in distress. They’re so gentle, lovable, and trustful that the AKC gives them a perfect rating for being affectionate with family, good with other dogs, and great around children. Their great qualities make them perfect choices as service dogs for the blind.

German Shepherds

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German shepherds express their love physically, particularly by resting next to you. They’re dogs that thrive well in packs, so they’ll maintain as much physical contact with the people they love and trust as they can. They don’t mind getting cuddles and belly rubs from you, either.


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Pugs are another breed that gets attached so much that they’re prone to developing separation anxiety. They’re very needy, love to cuddle, will follow you from room to room, and get along well with strangers. The pug’s size also makes it a perfect companion to take everywhere you go.

Shih Tzus

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The Shih Tzu is an ancient dog that was especially bred to be small, affectionate human companions. The AKC even shares that the name “Shih Tzu” means “little lion” and emerged from the story of a Buddhist whose little travel partner turned into a lion to protect him everywhere he went. They have a great temperament and are wonderful pets to keep around children.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

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Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are an extroverted breed of dog that loves to play and stay around you. Like the German shepherds, they’re also originally pack dogs, which means they’ll show affection through constant physical contact and don’t mind being around strangers too.


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These muscular dogs have changed over the years from powerful hunters to loving family friends. Boxers are especially happiest when they’re around children—spending their energy playing with them and protecting them whenever they have to. Forbes ranks these sturdy guard dogs as the 16th most popular in the US.

Bichon Frise

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The bichon frise is another breed specifically created to be a companion and has thrived perfectly in its role. It will follow you everywhere you go, cry when left alone for too long, and easily learn new tricks to keep you happy. The bichon frise’s hypoallergenic qualities are another thing that makes it very popular.

Burmese Mountain Dogs

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The Burmese mountain dog is an energetic and playful dog that thrives when you give it constant company. It shows its affection by greeting you with tail wags, following you everywhere around the house, and leaning against you to feel secure. The Burmese mountain dog is also a smart, gentle companion fit for children.

Welsh Collies

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The AKC describes Welsh Collies as an intelligent breed that seems to understand its owner’s feelings. They’ll lean against you and rest on your lap when they feel comfortable, and they even need to be around handlers much of the time to be happy. They’re a great breed for any age, whether old or young.

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