Top 7 Dog Breeds for People Fighting Depression

As someone who has suffered from depression, I cannot express the value our dog Rollie has brought to my life. The happiness, the companionship, the responsibility, the activity, the touch, and the laughter.

While many of us have heard about the studies proving dogs reduce stress, tension, and depression – I'm here to convince you to take the next step. To jumpstart the mental process of actually picking up a pouch and taking a step toward a depression free life.

Being married to a dog groomer these past 4 years,  she's taught me an abundance on our furry friends. Anything from breed characteristics and temperament to maintenance and health risks.

The key to choosing a dog to help overcome depression is quite different than choosing one for general needs. You'll want to find a breed which is playful yet not overly energetic, loving and not independent, low maintenance, and somewhat portable.

Here is what my wife and I put together:

Top 7 Dog Breeds for People Fighting Depression

1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Pros: Very affectionate, portable, easy to train, and great for apartments
Cons: They need to be groomed and they’re prone to heart issues.
Short Video on Cavaliers: http://youtu.be/rd5dR7YR2ig

Dogs for depression

2. Pug
Pros: Funny personality, portable, highly adaptable, and very positive temperament
Cons: Shedding, not good in heat, and potential breathing issues
Short Video on Pugs: http://youtu.be/8Kkrmubsgf8

Dogs for depression

3. Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Pros: Energetic, playful, good with children, and low maintenance
Cons: Their stereotype
Short Video on Staffordshire Bull Terrier: https://youtu.be/wNWQMs2kRvQ

Dogs for depression

4. Golden Retriever
Pros: Loving, athletic, easy to train, love to swim
Cons: Shedding, have been known to nip, need to be groomed, not great for apartments
Short Video on Golden Retriever: http://youtu.be/kI4EbABtJQ0

Dogs for depression

5. Poodle
Pros: Adaptable, long life-span, natural performer, great family dog
Cons: Professional grooming, prone to bloat
Short Video on Poodles: http://youtu.be/74mx2OWM6mE

Dogs good for depression

6. Labrador Retriever
Pros: Loyal, easy to train, and active
Cons: Potential hip and joint problems, needs space
Short Video on Labrador Retrievers: http://youtu.be/0cj81wHmfXc

Dogs good for depression

7. Vizsla
Pros: Extremely healthy, athletic, very clean, loving
Cons: Needs space, not great with small children
Short Video on Vizsla: https://youtu.be/zEn4WXXhKmQ

Dogs good for depression

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322 Responses

  1. Corgi’s! I’ve had 3 in my lifetime. My previous Corgi my bff (best furry friend) Pearl helped me with so much. She passed away last October. She helped me stay calm when my anxiety decided to rear it’s ugly head. I’m epileptic you see. So anxiety is an unwanted friend. I had her for 11 years. I loved her to the ends of the earth and missed her and still miss her terribly, Recently my husband, as a surprise, contacted a breeder and got me 2 Corgi puppies for my birthday. Panda and truffles, they were the runts of the litter and ate sisters. They’re adorable and I’m glad to have another furry baby to give my love to! ????????

  2. I have a Rottweiler that is very loving and protective. She is 6 mo old and about a 50 lb foot warmer at night. I couldn’t ask for a more loyal dog for my family

  3. I have never had a dog more loyal, devoted, and sweet than a Bassett Hound! They are easy to maintain, don’t make a lot of noise, they won’t tear up your lawn, and no other dog is as loyal, kind, gentle, and loving than a Bassett. They may not be able to jump up on the couch with you (unless you help them) but, they’ll sure sit by your side.

  4. I love my Golden Doodle, Fiona. She is only 9 months old & a lot of work still in Training, but I can tell she is maturing and will soon be my Psych Support Animal or even Service. Keeping my fingers crossed!

  5. I have been suffering with depression and P T S D for large part of my life, at one of my lowest points my brother asked me to look after his dog Kiki ,as he was having work done to his property, it was only meant to be for a couple of weeks and ended up being several months, I was having trouble eating, sleeping and finding a meaning in life a lot of people who I trusted had turned against me and I was heading down the slippery slope.
    As always Kiki was full of love, joy and affection and it wasn’t long before she got me to smile,I was eating properly again and even started to get myself fit again, she was giving me a sense of purpose and even when she went back home to my brothers her affect on me was lasting, she is a 13 yr old Ridgeback and still going strong,I believe any dog can help anyone out of depression, dog’s are my best friend

  6. My two mutts are awesome! I have a Jack Russell mixed with a Dachshund who makes me so happy and his entire body wiggles when he sees me, and a three legged husky mixed with possibly a collie who’s only purpose in life seems to be to be close to everyone at every minute in her life. My dogs have brought me so much comfort in some of my darkest times dealing with depression. Dogs are wonderful!

  7. My Schipperkes Bonney and Cinder….joyful, loving and wanting to be with you. One morning when I couldn’t bring myself to get out of bed…I woke up to them pressed on each side of me…enveloping me in a Schippie hug. I’ve ever forgotten that…

  8. I’ve had several different breeds of dogs. I think the best one was a lab whipet cross that we had. She was the sweetest dog. She was our first rescue. Now I have four Chihuahuas and one terrier chihuahua mix. Each one has their good and bad but I would be terribly lonely and more depressed without them. They are my little pack. One of them suffers from anxiety and he and I have a strong bond because I also suffer from that. But each one brings joy to my life in their own ways. They are awesome little dogs with huge hearts. I don’t think I will ever be without at least one chihuahua. Though rescuing a whippet or grey hound may be my next venture when my pack reduces in size. All of my dogs are rescues and I believe they rescue us as much as we rescue them.

  9. Miniature Daschunds are the best little dogs ever. They are very much breed recognition and love other daschunds. So many daschund clubs in the world. So affectionate loyal clean and smart little dogs. I love my 4 to bits. Mr Mena and Tequilla Mouse and Miss Meggsie and Xaviar Georgexx

  10. Maltese!
    Pros: hypo allergenic. Real hair. Super intelligent. Adapts to your lifestyle
    Cons: ??? Unless you don’t like small dogs

    My Maltese is my favorite! She makes me laugh by all the crazy things she does. She has her own spunky personality and absolutely loves to play. She earned her STAR puppy and canine good citizen before a year old. She cuddles all night and is part of the family

  11. Vizsla’s are also known as “The Velcro Dog” because they are always next to you! I know, I have two! They are also very loyal and smart! They just love being around their people!

  12. My border collies cure all! They always make me smile and feel better when I’m blue! Couldn’t imagine my life without them.

  13. English Springer Spaniels will not allow you to be depressed. They are so affectionate and happy all the time. We have had 3 over the last 30 + years and of all the breeds I have had from childhood I wouldn’t have any other (except maybe a Cavalier or Cocker). They are very entertaining and intelligent. Our dog has a vocabulary of over 30 words. Life is never dull with a Springer.

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