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10 Best Low Maintenance Dogs For A Busy Lifestyle

Are you looking for a low maintenance dog breed? The bad news is that a maintenance-free dog breed does not exist. Every dog requires at least a little time and attention. The good news is that low maintenance dogs do exist and they make great companions for people with busy lives. These are dogs that don’t shed much, need moderate exercise, and have few predisposed health issues. As some of the easiest dog breeds to care for, the following list contains some of the best low maintenance dogs around.

Things To Consider

How much space do you have for your dog? Larger breeds often require more space to be comfortable, and smaller breeds can do with less, but you need to make sure you have adequate space for your breed.

Do you live in an apartment, house, or townhouse? Most dogs, and many on this list, are barkers. Make sure you don’t cause complications with your neighbors. If you’re looking for a low maintenance dog for your apartment or townhouse, test the noise level with all of your neighbors.

What’s your work schedule like? You shouldn’t leave most dogs alone for more than 4 hours at a time. This means you wake up with them, come back over lunch, and come straight home after work. Doing so will avoid potty accidents as well.

Do you have comforting mementos for your dog? Most dogs deal with separation anxiety to some degree. Often, the best remedy is to leave your scent on a comfy pillow or blanket. This will give your dog something to rest its nose on for comfort.

1. Dachshund

Tired Dachshund sleeping on the couch.

The Dachshund is the perfect couch buddy and one of the best low maintenance dogs. The Miniature Dachshund generally weighs 11 pounds or less, making him an ideal lap dog. While his big brother, the Standard Dachshund, typically ranges 16-32 pounds. Dachshunds are often regarded as small dogs that don’t shed. But keep in mind that long-haired Dachshunds require more grooming in comparison to the short-haired or wire-haired Dachshunds. All variations of Dachsunds make amazing pets.

Dachshunds can be stubborn, so early training is highly recommended to create an obedient foundation. Generally, they stay healthy, though some can be prone to dental disease, spinal problems, and skin issues. Dachshunds require moderate amounts of exercise. Furthermore, too much running around on those short little legs can worsen genetic spinal issues.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat difficult to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

2. Chihuahua

Chihuahua sleeping on a comfy blanket.

Looking for a non-shedding small dog? The Chihuahua weighs in at just 2-6 pounds and requires minimal grooming. However, long-haired Chihuahuas will need a bit of brushing to prevent tangled hair. Chihuahuas are known to get sudden bursts of energy, though they typically don’t require much exercise. Most Chihuahuas you encounter are relatively healthy.

Watch out for the notorious Chihuahua attitude. They can be quite stubborn so basic training early in life is highly recommended. Avoid bringing your Chihuahua with you everywhere you go. In addition, don’t spoil Chihuahuas or their entitlement becomes embedded. The Chihuahua is a natural Napolean when boundaries are not put in place.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion (some get attached to one person in particular)
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat difficult to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

3. Italian Greyhound

Italian Greyhound resting on the couch.

I know what you’re thinking. How could a racing-related dog also be a low maintenance dog? Contrary to popular belief, Greyhounds, as well as Italian Greyhounds, are not high-energy dogs. Many Italian Greyhounds simply enjoy lounging around the house with their owners. However, they need their daily walks and an occasional opportunity to run, but large amounts of exercise are not required.

Though stubborn at times, Italian Greyhounds are responsive to basic training. Most of them are in overall good health.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

4. French Bulldog

Tired French Bulldog resting on the bed.

The French Bulldog is an ideal lap dog. French Bulldogs are some of the most gleeful dogs in the world. These compact and muscular dogs weigh 19-28 pounds. Frenchies do have a fair amount of energy, but they lack stamina. So, moderate exercise on a day-to-day basis usually suffices.

The average French Bulldog is typically well-behaved and responds well to basic dog training. Frenchies are acknowledged as small dogs that don’t shed much. Grooming needs are minimal, but be conscious of possible health issues like brachycephalic syndrome and a variety of skin issues.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

5. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel resting in a biker basket.

Looking for a dog that possesses puppy-like qualities forever? The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an affectionate, mild-mannered, and adaptable dog. This smaller dog thrives on interactions and is happiest when snuggled up against a family member.

In general, Cavaliers weigh 11-18 pounds and they are easy to train. Most Cavaliers are healthy pets, though some dogs of this breed develop or inherit heart issues. They have some grooming needs, such as routine brushing and ear cleaning. In addition, occasional trips to a professional groomer are also encouraged.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Moderate shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

6. Brussels Griffon

Brussels Griffon smiling.

The Brussels Griffon is a cute and charming small breed of dog. They tend to be a bit energetic, so they need a lot of exercise. It’s recommended to start basic training early in order to offset their spunky side. These low maintenance dogs weigh 6-12 pounds and have minimal to moderate grooming needs. Griffons have a wiry coat that requires some brushing, however extensive brushing isn’t necessary. Furthermore, they are well-mannered and fairly healthy.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Minimal shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat difficult to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

7. West Highland White Terrier

West Highland White Terrier sitting politely.

The West Highland White Terrier is easy to care for. Westies weigh 13-20 pounds and they are moderately energetic. They are a gentle breed and make great couch companions.

Westies require some grooming but they don’t require as much trimming as other little white dogs. Most Westie owners brush regularly, but some choose to hand-strip their dog’s coat to keep it healthy (pluck the dead hairs). Typically, Westies are healthy and easy to train.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Minimal shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

8. Miniature Pinscher

Miniature Pinscher resting on his doggy bed.

The Miniature Pinscher is a great gentle and easy to care for. These low maintenance dogs have coats that are easy to maintain and they have minimal bathing needs. Your average Miniature Pinscher is generally healthy.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

9. Mastiff

Two Mastiffs sitting on the porch.

Looking for a giant couch potato? The Mastiff is about as big as they come and these dogs can weigh 120-220 pounds. Mastiffs generally have low energy levels and endurance is not their forte. Young Mastiffs have a tendency to be goofy during play, but they’re normally very docile. As Mastiffs age, they become more remote and indifferent, yet remain affectionate with family.

The Mastiff does have one inherent drawback. Like most large breeds, the Mastiff has a shorter lifespan than most dogs. Most are considered senior dogs by age six and pass by age twelve. Aside from the shorter lifespan, most Mastiffs are in good health.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Easy to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

10. Bullmastiff

Bullmastiff puppy laying on bed.

If you’re looking for a large-sized dog that’s smaller and a little more active than the Mastiff, then the Bullmastiff may be the dog for you. Bullmastiffs weigh 100-130 pounds and their health is comparable to the Mastiff. Although, the Bullmastiff has a longer lifespan than the Mastiff.

Though the Bullmastiff isn’t much for endurance, this breed has a little more energy than the Mastiff. Daily walks are adequate for keeping your Bullmastiff healthy. When he’s not on a walk, you’ll find the Bullmastiff on the couch.

Characteristics

  • Loyal family companion
  • Excellent watchdog
  • Little to no shedding
  • Loves to snuggle
  • Relatively healthy
  • 4-hour potty interval
  • Somewhat difficult to train
  • Somewhat aggressive towards strangers
  • Like most dogs, prone to separation anxiety

Conclusion

Whether you’re always on the go, or you work a job with odd hours, it’s important to remember that all dogs are much more at peace when their family is present. You shouldn’t leave most dogs alone for more than 4 hours. If you know you’ll be out of the home longer than that, make arrangements with a friend or family member to visit with your dog and let them outside to go potty. Remember, the best low maintenance dog breeds are not necessarily the best independent dog breeds. So, make sure you have time in your life for a dog.

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