child playing with dog

19 Small Dog Breeds That Are Good With Kids (Explained)

The benefits of having a small dog for kids are many, and they range from the obvious, that dogs make great watchdogs to help keep children safe in the house, or around the yard, to the more hidden benefits of having a dog that can serve as protection from strangers in the neighborhood, or in the event of an emergency such as a fire. 

Another benefit of having a dog is that most dogs make great pets and great companions because they love spending time with children, whether they be their own kids or those of another family member or friend. However, it’s important to know how to properly care for a small dog to ensure that your kids will have a wonderful time bonding together.

French Bulldog

The French Bulldog is an exceptional breed of domestic small dog, most commonly bred for companionship. The French Bulldog, is actually a cross between local Ratters from Paris, France, and tiny Toy Dogs imported from England in the early 1800s. They are extremely compact, sturdy dogs with a typically gentle, sweet, and kind disposition.

As they are generally calm and approachable, they are very good companions for kids, and good family pets. However, despite their friendly disposition, they are also known as stubborn dogs that can be stubborn and possessive when it comes to training.


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Image by JOSÉ SOMOVILLA from Pixabay

The beagle makes an excellent family pet, but like all dogs, they need to be left alone to achieve their full potential. The beagle will quickly learn to trust people and will become a reliable friend and companion. Beagles tend to have an intense loyalty to their owners and will follow their every command with enthusiasm. 

In general, the temperament of beagles is good with children, although some beagles do have a tendency to get aggressive with other dogs and children if they are not trained properly. Beagles are excellent watchdogs and will often lie in wait to scare away intruders. 


Image by Tobi Berger from Pixabay

As you can see, the Pug can be a great companion, but care must be taken that the Pug is properly cared for during its life. This care starts in puppyhood with regular socialization and introduction to people and other dogs. From there, you should provide daily exercise and engage in daily physical activity.

This should include plenty of walks to relieve the Pug’s physical stress, as well as daily playtime where the Pug can display a unique personality. With a little love, maintenance, and dedication, the Pug will live a long and happy life.


The Poodle is a magnificent dog breed that exhibits superb elegance and great athletic ability. This is an excellent long-term companion or household pet for those who prefer a companion and loyal family member to a pet cat.

The Poodle’s graceful appearance and highly pliable temperament make it an excellent choice for both elderly and disabled individuals, but it is also known to be a great pet for young children who love being around such a strong, confident personality. Poodles are highly intelligent and eager to please, making them suitable companions for children of all ages.


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A Chihuahua’s greatest strength is its gentle personality and high intelligence, making it a favorite among families with children. Chihuahuas are very intelligent and trainable, and are great companions for those who do not have a lot of time to spend with their dogs.

Although the Chihuahua may appear to be a delicate and small breed, they are actually strong and compact. In fact, Chihuahua owners must be willing to spend many hours caring for their dogs-not only must they provide ample time for exercise and play, but they must keep a watchful eye on their pups’ activities and, if necessary, step in to provide assistance when needed.

Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature Schnauzer
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These dogs are extremely playful, and they tend to do well in families with younger children. In particular, the Miniature Schnauzer enjoys playing, but these dogs also make an excellent choice of family pets because of their love of attention and affection. The Miniature Schnauzer has a reputation for being friendly towards children and other animals, however this is not a trait that you necessarily find in all Miniature Schnauzers.

Most Miniature Schnauzers that were originally bred for companionship were not trained to be aggressive towards other pets or people at all, but this dog has developed a reputation over time for being friendly towards humans in general.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Image by Elena Rogulina from Pixabay

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog is a very beloved breed, which originated many centuries ago in the beautiful Pembrokeshire region of Wales. They are also great pets for the family, as they are extremely affectionate and will quickly become part of your family if you make the right decisions about their care.

Pembroke Welsh corgi dogs may be small, but they are not delicate. This makes them a good choice for people with small children. They are great companions for the elderly and are very gentle with children of any age.


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Havanese is probably best known for being one of the smallest dogs in the world, weighing only about four pounds. This small size makes Havanese great as a family pet: as it has very little energy and very little playtime, it’s a great dog for a person who likes to spend time indoors rather than on the beach or in the park.

The Havanese tends to be somewhat sensitive to cold weather and has a low tolerance for excessive heat, so an apartment or condo living is out of the question. The Havanese requires large amounts of space to play and is therefore not recommended for those living in apartments or condos.

Cocker Spaniel

Cocker Spaniel
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Characterized by a dense coat and an attractive, “stiff,” yet cuddly look, the English Cocker Spaniel makes an excellent family pet. Perfect-for-family or apartment life, the English Cocker Spaniel needs little exercise and is very well-behaved around other animals.

However, it does have an eagerness to please its master that makes it a joy to be around. If raised in an apartment with only a few close friends the English Cocker Spaniel can become rather quiet and reserved, but it still exudes that happy, playful nature from its breed that is sure to make it a beloved pet.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Image by Anja Kiefer from Pixabay

The personality of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog is much like that of the other toy breeds of this type. This breed is very affectionate, calm, and easy to train despite its small size, even when younger.

The owners of this breed are able to produce a very healthy and stable family pet that grows up to become an adult dog that is very respectful and loyal towards its owner. They have a very pleasant temperament are extremely obedient, and do very well with children in particular.

Parson Russell Terrier

Parson Russell Terrier
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One of the most important aspects of understanding and caring for the Parson Russell Terrier dog is to recognize that it has certain personality traits that are quite distinct and that make each dog unique. These personality traits make the Parson Russell Terrier dog a great choice for anyone who wants a small, quiet, very affectionate dog that will not shed too much fur, but will still be very active and alert.

These dogs also make excellent companions, and they are very good at controlling large crowds of people or animals. They have a naturally friendly demeanor that makes them very easy to train. They love spending time with children and will become a great favorite to have as part of a family.

Bichon Frisé

Bichon Frisé
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A Bichon Frisé is an adorable little breed of dog. Bichon Frisé dogs are very easy to care for and breeders should never hesitate to educate potential owners about the character of this particular kind of breed. A Bichon Frisé makes an ideal pet because they have a very loving and devoted personality that makes them great companions.

These dogs are very lovable and loyal and require minimal training to become a well-behaved dog. Because of its great intelligence, a Bichon Frisé makes an ideal pet because it is eager to please its owner and learns quickly.

Boston Terrier

Boston Terrier
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The Boston Terrier dog is a large sized, sturdy breed originating from the state of Massachusetts. This “American Gentlemen” was adopted by the American Kennel Club in 1893 as a non-sporting breed. The original Boston Terrier was a sporting dog that loved to hunt, however, breeders over the years have bred the dog for its excellent companionship qualities, and now they also make a very attractive pet for the people interested in canines.

The Boston Terrier dog is a very friendly, outgoing, and lively breed that requires only a moderate amount of daily exercise and other daily care if it is going to remain healthy and vibrant.


Bolognese dog
Image by Micky Dunn from Pixabay

Many people consider the Bolognese dog a perfect small dog that loves attention and affection. Because this breed is so affectionate, they can often get along with almost any other dog, even larger ones because of their small size. This makes them an excellent choice for a first dog or show dog, especially one that enjoys being left alone.

The Bolognese dog is also a very healthy breed that rarely suffer from common health problems like hip dysplasia, congenital defects, or other inherited diseases. Because they are so good with humans and other animals, they are considered a very popular breed.

Australian Terrier

Australian Terrier
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The Australian Terrier is quite possibly one of the most lovable dogs on the face of the earth. The Australian Terrier was originally bred in Australia, but the ancestral breeds of dogs from which this breed descents were from Great Britain and Ireland. They have an adorable mischievous nature and are very fond of water.

They tend to be quite playful with children. The Australian terrier tends to be on the heavy side, but is otherwise a healthy breed that has an eagerness to please that makes it a good choice for a family dog.

Border Terrier

Border Terrier
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The Border Terrier is an average sized, rough-coated dog belonging to the small terrier category of dogs. Bred from a bloodline of cattle hunters, the Border Terrier blends in perfectly with its hunting and farming ancestors. Originally bred for dog sports, today’s Border Terrier enjoys the company of children, affectionate pets and companionship.

Although not overly aggressive, this breed does have a playful spirit and can get impatient with a partner who won’t make eye contact or stop running away. When properly socialized, border terriers live to be obedient, faithful friends to their families and enjoyable companions to people of all ages.

Brussels Griffon

Some of the character traits of the Brussels Griffon Terrier are very nice, including a very pleasant temperament, they are not overly demanding and are great to train because they like to learn new things. This dog is great to have as a companion because of it’s friendly nature, great sense of smell, and very loving personality.

They love to please and will always be willing to help you out. Other traits that the Brussels griffon possum has been a very open and inquisitive mind, quick to learn new things, and a very receptive and understanding pet that will bond with any owner.

Fox Terrier

Fox Terrier
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All in all, both types of this terrier kinds are characterized by pretty much the same kind of coats and they share almost the same kind of traits, such as strong personalities, endurance, and intelligence. The fox terrier, the smooth fox terrier, and the wire fox terrier, have less health problems than many other breeds, and they are usually a lot easier to maintain.

The fox terrier, the wire fox terrier, and the smooth fox terrier, are great companions for the disabled and those who have a hard time remembering their name or do not have the eye-hand coordination to perform tricks, but they still are not the best choice for animal lovers.

Norfolk Terrier

Norfolk Terrier
Image by sevenpixx from Pixabay

What really makes the Norfolk Terrier a great pet for families with smaller children? The people who choose this breed for their pets are those who want companionship and affection without the high-strung, anxiety-inducing barking of other pet breeds.

The cute and fun-loving personality of the Norfolk Terrier often make them ideal pets for families with children. Children who live with pets also find it easier to establish routines than those who do not have pets. They learn to respect and trust authority figures when they’re introduced to the Norfolk Terrier breed.


  • Karin S

    Welcome to All About My Small Dog, where my love for small dogs and years of hands-on experience meet your need for trusted information. As a dedicated small dog enthusiast and pet parent, I'm deeply committed to sharing expert insights, reliable advice, and a community of support. Every blog you read here is crafted with the utmost care, guided by my passion and expertise. You can trust that you're in the right place for valuable insights and a warm community that understands the unique joys and challenges of small dog ownership. Together, we'll make sure your small dog's world is filled with love, care, and knowledge.