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Low-Maintenance Dog Breeds for Busy Owners

7 min read

By Clarissa Vanner

  • Dogs can make great companions but some breeds aren’t ideal for busy owners.
  • If you work long hours, have a busy home life, or simply don’t enjoy being active, then high-energy dog breeds are not for you.
  • Luckily, there are many low-maintenance dog breeds that might make a more suitable option for your lifestyle.

Dogs can make the best companions but deciding which breed to get can be a challenge — there are tons to choose from! But if you’re a busy person it’s very important to do your research and find a breed that fits your lifestyle. This helps ensure that your new furry companion is receiving the optimal care they need to be healthy and happy.

Busy schedules can look different for everyone. Some people are busy because they have to work a lot of overtime hours and other people are busy because they have to manage many children at home. Some may even have to balance both. But even if you have a hectic schedule, there may be a perfect dog breed out there for you! Let’s take a look at which traits you should look for when doing your research and find out which are the top low-maintenance dog breeds for busy owners!

Low-Maintenance Traits to Consider

When searching for a low-maintenance dog, The Spruce Pets says you should consider breeds that have the following traits:

  • Moderate to low energy levels
  • Moderate to low grooming needs
  • Average intelligence
  • Overall good health

Though some dog breeds are more low-maintenance than others, every dog still has needs and it’s important to take these into consideration. For example, just like humans, every dog needs some form of exercise to stay healthy. This may look like a daily walk or at the very least, playtime indoors or in the backyard.

Furthermore, all dogs need some type of grooming such as the occasional bath, weekly brushing, and at least a monthly nail trimming. Annual vet visits are also necessary. Finally, dogs do need companionship to thrive so you need to make sure you have time for quality time with them too. If you’re still eager to add a dog to your family consider the following low-maintenance dog breeds.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi may be small, but they’re smart and very affectionate without being too needy. They’re also well-known low-maintenance house dogs.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) says they can benefit from moderate daily exercise. A daily walk or fun indoor games can keep your corgi happy and healthy. Just remember to not take them on long runs or bicycle rides as their short legs can’t keep up.

One possible drawback is because they can be watchful guard dogs, they sometimes have a “big dog” bark. The corgi’s coat is also quite thick and does shed, so they’ll need regular brushing to keep their coat healthy.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is another excellent low-maintenance breed to consider. This breed is gentle, affectionate, and adaptable. In fact, the AKC  says they do equally well with active owners and homebodies and will adapt to their owner’s lifestyles. These small to medium-sized dogs are easy to train and eager to please.

The AKC also says they’re friendly with strangers, other animals, and children but it’s still important to socialize them at a young age. Another benefit of this breed is they’re non-shedding, hypoallergenic dogs that only require the occasional bath and a weekly brushing to keep their coats free of mats and tangles.

Basset Hound

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance dog that isn’t high-energy, then consider the basset hound. Though they’re known to be hunters with unparalleled tracking abilities, they can thrive with moderate exercise. The AKC says a daily walk at a moderate pace will keep them happy and prevent them from being overweight.

Another benefit to the basset hound is they require minimal grooming compared to some breeds. They are prone to shedding but a weekly brushing can help control the shedding and keep their coat shiny and healthy.

Pug

Pugs are another great contender for busy owners. They can be perfectly content spending most of their time snuggling on the couch, however, the breed also has a fondness for eating. These two factors make obesity a risk so it is important to watch their food intake and provide regular moderate exercise. A daily walk or play session in the yard or indoors will do.

Pugs are also low-maintenance because they have coarse short hair but they are prone to shedding. So a weekly brush is necessary to keep shedding at bay and to keep their coat healthy. Another benefit to pugs is they’re very adaptable. They can thrive in apartments in the city, or with more land to roam in the country. They’re also compatible with children, seniors, and other dogs.

Dachshund

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance cuddly companion, consider a dachshund. This lovable and affectionate breed enjoys feeling connected to their owner but this can also sometimes make them prone to clinginess.

The Spruce Pets notes that dachshunds also come in two sizes, including miniature and medium-sized. And due to their short legs, they’re not ideal for owners who are looking for a running companion. Moderate amounts of exercise are sufficient to keep them healthy and happy.

Finally, long-haired dachshunds require more grooming than short-haired or wire-haired varieties but they all make great companions. Just be sure to invest time into training as they tend to have a stubborn side.

BullMastiff

The Bullmastiff checks all the boxes on the low-maintenance dog breed list! Firstly, their smooth coat only sheds moderately and requires monthly grooming. Secondly, unlike traditional guard dogs, the Bullmastiff doesn’t bark much as they’re bred to be silent and stealthy.

Another possible benefit is though they are a large breed, they tend to have moderate energy levels. They’ll enjoy daily walks but the rest of the time, you’ll likely find them snuggled on the couch.

Chihuahuas

If you feel like a large dog breed is too much to handle and are looking for a much smaller dog, consider a chihuahua. This adaptable breed weighs only 2- to 6-pounds! Additionally, both short and long-coated varieties require minimal grooming. A quick occasional brush will do the trick.

One downside to this breed is they tend to be quite vocal and have a “big dog” attitude. The Spruce Pets also says you should avoid “babying them too much” and set boundaries, otherwise, they may try to boss everyone around.

Finally, another possible benefit is they require minimal exercise. Following their family around can be enough to keep them happy but if you do take them for a walk make sure they’re short and slow and avoid overexerting your chihuahua.

Greyhound

If you don’t know much about greyhounds you may be surprised to find them on this list. A common misconception is that even though they are known to be racing dogs, they are not a high-energy breed. In fact, The Spruce Pets says most greyhounds are “couch potatoes” and prefer lounging around with their family. That said, they still require (and enjoy!) a daily walk and the occasional opportunity to run.

Greyhounds have short, smooth coats that require minimal grooming. Regular nail trimming, the occasional bath, and weekly rubdown will be enough. It’s also important to inspect their ears weekly for any buildup of wax or debris. The Spruce Pets also notes that if you enjoy the personality of a greyhound but prefer a smaller dog, you should consider a whippet.

Boston Terrier

This dapper breed is commonly known for their black and white ‘tuxedo’ coat but they’re also low maintenance. The AKC also says they have impeccable manners and have earned the nickname “The American Gentleman.”

While their exercise needs can vary, most are happy with a daily (or twice-daily) brisk walk. Some may need a bit more playtime to release their energy. Their single coat doesn’t shed much and requires minimal grooming. Weekly brushing can help keep it healthy.

One thing to keep in mind is they don’t do well with being alone for long periods of time. This may cause them to become frustrated and develop poor behaviors. So this is not the breed for you if you work long hours and don’t have anyone to care for your dog while you’re away.

Newfoundland

Newfoundlands are known as one of the largest dog breeds in the world. Though they are large, they’re incredibly friendly and great with families. In fact, they’ve garnered the nickname “nanny dogs.” They’re also surprisingly low maintenance.

Newfoundlands have moderate energy levels and can thrive on at least a half-hour of daily moderate exercise. They will enjoy staying indoors but also like outdoor activities like hiking or swimming. They’re also intelligent and curious but are never skittish or aggressive. They also respond well to training, but do better with “gentle guidance,” says the AKC. They do have a heavy coat that requires a thorough brushing at least once a week.

French Bulldog

The French bulldog, also known as the Frenchie, is a charmer. They’re eager to please and can easily adapt to life with singles, couples, or families. The AKC also says they get along well with other animals.

Frenchies are low-maintenance for a couple of reasons. Firstly, they require minimal grooming. Weekly brushing can help keep their short coat looking its best. Secondly, they don’t require a lot of outdoor exercise. Frenchies will enjoy an outdoor play session or short walk but it’s important to never allow them to exert themselves in hot or humid weather. This is because of their flat face, which makes them prone to breathing difficulties.

Junior Managing Editor

Clarissa is the Junior Managing Editor of ActiveBeat. She aspires to live a healthy lifestyle by staying active and eating foods that nourish her body, but she isn't afraid to indulge in a little chocolate here and there! Clarissa loves cooking, being outdoors, and spending time with her dog. In her free time, you'll find her relaxing in her hammock or curled up on the couch reading a book.

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