13 Best Dog Breeds for Single Women Living Alone

best dog for a single woman

Everyone has their own reasons for adopting a dog. Some, like me, can’t imagine their lives without one walking by my side and occasionally tripping me. Others want a dog for protection or to safeguard their flocks. Single women tend to get dogs for various reasons as well. 

If you live alone and are looking to adopt a companion, there are some considerations to keep in mind. For example, are you out of the house for a long time each day? Do you travel a lot? Are you looking for a guard dog to serve as a deterrent to anyone who might break in, or do you simply want a companion dog to keep you company?

Your lifestyle should play a very significant role in the pup you bring home, as it is a huge responsibility no matter how easy movies and TV shows make it look!

Best Dog For a Single Woman

Whatever your reason, whether you’re looking for some added safety or a cure for those quiet nights, there are plenty of dog breeds to choose from. 

1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

woman breeds with dog

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a special dog in so many ways. It’s not likely to deter anyone, so I don’t recommend the breed serve as a guard dog. However, in terms of being a companion dog? This is the top dog I’d recommend on this list. 

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a sweetheart of a dog that will always be there to cuddle or comfort. It’s on the smaller side, too, so you can own one whether you choose a home or apartment living.

They do require a bit of grooming because their silky fur can get tangled or matted easily. One thing to be aware of is that they bond so closely with their owners that they can suffer from anxiety if left alone for too long.

If you love the breed, check out the other types of Spaniels out there!

HEIGHT12″ to 13″
WEIGHT13 to 18 pounds
LIFE SPAN12 to 15 years

2. Yorkshire Terrier

best guard dogs for women

The Yorkshire Terrier is a great choice for a single woman who is looking for a small dog to serve as a companion. Don’t let their size fool you, though. The Yorkshire Terrier is a fun-loving dog with a huge personality and is endlessly entertaining.

These dogs were originally bred to be ratters but have since settled quite nicely into the domesticated life. 

Yorkshire Terriers have long, fine fur that requires lots of grooming. This means regular brushing and trips to a professional groomer for trims and upkeep to prevent tangles and matting.

HEIGHT7″ to 8″
WEIGHT7 Pounds
LIFE SPAN11 to 15 years

3. Labrador Retriever

best dog for single woman

If you’re living alone and looking for a big dog, I highly recommend you consider a Labrador Retriever! This is my go-to dog for many reasons.

First, they’re extremely friendly and affectionate dogs that bond very closely to their humans. Second, they have the best personalities. They will romp around when they need some physical activity and make you laugh with a case of the zoomies, then melt into you for cuddles.

The Labrador Retriever tends to shed quite a bit, especially in the spring and fall, so you’ll definitely be sweeping up a lot of furs, but other than that, they are low maintenance. They also do well on their own for several hours if properly trained.

HEIGHT21.5″ to 24.5″
WEIGHT55 to 80 pounds
LIFE SPAN11 to 13 years

4. Golden Retriever

dog breeds woman

If you want a sweetheart of a dog, the Golden Retriever should be on your list. These dogs are amazingly sweet, but that comes at a cost. While they can be protective, most Golden Retrievers are so good-natured that they love people in general and won’t get the “stranger danger” memo.

They are, however, great barkers, so they serve as good alert systems

The Golden Retriever is a very popular breed because of its loyalty and dedication and because it likes to make new friends. Golden Retrievers have medium-length fur that should be brushed regularly to avoid tangling and knotting.

The Golden Retriever is one of those dog breeds that has moderate exercise needs and should go on daily walks or play in the yard to get rid of their energy.

HEIGHT21.5″ to 24″
WEIGHT55 to 75 pounds
LIFE SPAN10 to 12 years

5. Boxer

best dog breed for single female

If you’re looking for a charming, goofy dog to add to your home, look no further than the Boxer dog. These pups are very energetic and athletic, though, and will need someone who is able to keep up with them.

Despite their energy needs, they actually don’t need much space and do well in apartments and homes alike, as long as they’re sufficiently worn out. They are also courageous, which means they’ll have no problem standing up to a perceived threat.

The Boxer is a sweet dog that bonds very closely to its owner and often doesn’t like to share. So, if you have other pets, you’ll definitely want to make sure you get them as puppies and socialize them properly. Did you know that there are different types of Boxer dogs?

HEIGHT21.5″ to 25″
WEIGHT50 to 80 pounds
LIFE SPAN10 to 12 years

6. German Shepherd

dogs for single women

If you’re looking for dogs that show they mean business, there’s no greater choice than the German Shepherd. Intruders will be deterred by the dog’s appearance alone, as they are known for being aggressive in protecting their property and people.

However, with their owners, these pups are total sweethearts and love bugs that have the added benefit of making you feel safe. 

The German Shepherd will need appropriate training, for sure, and it’s a working dog, so it will need to engage in physical activity to keep it from becoming destructive. German Shepherds are super intelligent as well and learn tasks quickly. Let’s take a look at the different types of German Shepherds

HEIGHT22″ to 26″
WEIGHT50 to 90 pounds
LIFE SPAN7 to 10 years

7. Doberman Pinscher

best dog for woman living alone

Another fearless protector, the Doberman Pinscher, is one of those dogs that, when you have one, you want to own the breed for life. They are affectionate, so affectionate, they’re actually called Velcro dogs.

They want to be where you are, and for single women living alone, Dobermans give you that confidence that you’ll be okay. 

This is one dog breed that will need training, and they are powerful dogs, so you want to make sure you can walk them without pulling. Dobermans are extremely loyal, as well, and you’ll see that from day one. 

HEIGHT24″ to 28″
WEIGHT60 to 100 pounds
LIFE SPAN10 to 12 years

8. Jack Russell Terrier

dogs for women

The Jack Russell Terrier is a big personality wrapped in a smaller package. Despite their small size, though, they are very intense dogs with an instinct to protect. They have no problem challenging much larger animals, though it may not always be the smartest thing to do. 

The Jack Russell Terrier is extremely smart but also very energetic, so it will need physical and mental stimulation to keep it busy. These pups thrive in an apartment or house, and daily walks are usually enough to keep them exercised. 

HEIGHT13″ to 14″
WEIGHT13 to 18 pounds
LIFE SPAN13 to 16 years

9. American Staffordshire Terrier

best dogs for women living alone

The American Staffordshire Terrier gets a bad rap, but it doesn’t deserve its bad reputation. These pups are actually very sweet and loyal to their people. That’s not to say they can’t ever become aggressive, but that’s true of any dog.

It’s all in how you raise the pup, and with proper socialization and training, they will thrive as a pet. 

The American Staffordshire is a moderately active dog that will require regular walks and exercise, but playing in the backyard or a trip to the dog park is enough to suffice. They also don’t have a lot of grooming needs, except the occasional bath, and they’re low shedders, which is even more of a plus!

HEIGHT17″ to 19″
WEIGHT40 to 70 pounds
LIFE SPAN12 to 16 years

10. Great Pyrenees

dog breeds girl

If you’re looking for a larger dog to serve as a deterrent and a companion, the Great Pyrenees is the best dog for the job. These pups are huge but so very affectionate and loyal. They have an amazing temperament and are good with children and other dogs and animals. 

Great Pyrenees, despite their large stature, do well in both apartments and homes, but they will need a bit of exercise to keep them from getting overweight.

They are also quite fluffy and require a significant amount of brushing to keep their fur free of tangles. But, if you want a dog that will bark and challenge someone who they consider suspect, the Great Pyrenees is your dog.

HEIGHT25″ to 32″
WEIGHT85 to 100 pounds and up
LIFE SPAN10 to 12 years

11. Akita

dogs for single females

Akitas are one of the most loyal dogs on this planet, as anyone who has ever watched the movie “Hachi” can attest. They are also great protectors, and while they love their owners, they are aloof with strangers. This is a good quality for women living alone. 

Akitas are very energetic working dogs and can grow to be big, so they do need an outlet for releasing their energy, lest they become bored and engage in some not-so-fun behaviors. However, with the proper training, Akitas are amazing dogs.

HEIGHT24″ to 28″
WEIGHT70 to 130 pounds
LIFE SPAN10 to 14 years

12. Great Dane

best dogs for females living alone

The Great Dane is on my bucket list of dogs to own, and it would be a wonderful addition for someone living alone. They are big, one of the largest dogs on the planet, and that in itself serves as a deterrent.

However, these goofy pups are also amazingly devoted to their people, affectionate, and lounge about like they’re winning a medal for the sport. 

Great Danes don’t need a ton of exercise, believe it or not, but they can benefit from regular activity to keep from getting obese. They are moderate shedders but otherwise are easy maintenance when it comes to grooming. 

HEIGHT28″ to 32″ 
WEIGHT110 to 175 pounds
LIFE SPAN7 to 10 years

13. Irish Wolfhound

female dog breeds

Like the Great Dane, you’ll definitely want to make sure you have a lot of room for an Irish Wolfhound, as they are one of the biggest dogs in the kingdom. They were originally bred to protect livestock, which they still do in Ireland, but they are also amazing family pets with a great temperament and all the qualities you’d want in a dog. 

One of the downsides to this breed is that they don’t live very long. Their average life expectancy is 6 to 8 years due to their enormous size. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t adopt one, of course; it just means that you should be prepared to soak up all of the time you have with them.

HEIGHT30″ to 32″ minimum
WEIGHT105 to 120 pounds
LIFE SPAN6 to 8 years

How to Pick Dogs for a Single Woman?

Picking a dog for single women involves a bit of research! There are a variety of factors to consider, such as: 

  • Whether you work from home or are away for long hours for your job
  • How big your home is
  • How big of a dog you can control
  • How active you are

Each of these should be heavily weighed to determine whether you have the time to take care of a dog and what type of dog specifically you should adopt.

Those who are away from home for extended periods or travel a lot, for example, should avoid breeds that are considered velcro dogs or suffer from separation anxiety.


What Is the Best Dog for Protection for a Single Woman?

If you’re looking for guard dogs, you probably want to get a bigger pup rather than a smaller one.

Small dogs can alert you to something out of the ordinary, but big dogs like German Shepherds, Akitas, American Staffordshire Terriers, Irish Wolfhounds, and Great Danes will definitely step up to the challenge intruders pose.

What Dog Breed Can Be Left Alone for 8 Hours?

There are several dog breeds that women living on their own can leave alone for 8 hours, especially if they are potty trained. Dogs that are subject to separation anxiety shouldn’t be left alone that long unless there is adequate stimulation. 

What Is the Best Dog to Have If You Live Alone?

The best dog to have if you live alone is the one that best fits your needs, whether it’s a dog to keep up with your active lifestyle, a companion to cuddle on your lap, or a larger dog to serve as a deterrent. 


Single women get dogs for all types of reasons, whether it’s to have a companion or a protector. Just make sure when you’re looking to adopt that you do your research into the breed, whether it’s a purebred dog registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC) or a mixed breed, to ensure that it will be able to fit into your lifestyle.

Consider how long you’re home, how active you are, and whether you live in an apartment or house.

Christina Drury
Meet Christina Drury, a dedicated animal enthusiast, and proud pet parent. She has a deep-rooted affection for all creatures, and Christina has called the Buckeye State home for the past four years. As a seasoned writer, she possesses a versatile writing style that spans various niches, yet her heart truly belongs to animals. With her innate connection and expertise, Christina is committed to crafting engaging and insightful content for animal-related issues.

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