There are all kinds of dogs for all kinds of owners. Regardless of the type of person you are or the lifestyle you live, one thing I’m confident in is that there is a dog out there that fits you just right — you just have to find him!
When it comes to people who live busy lifestyles or perhaps don’t like to be out and about all the time, a low-maintenance dog breed is probably the best. While the breeds will vary, the characteristics of these pups are largely the same.
The best low-maintenance dogs, for example, don’t require a lot of grooming or exercise. They’re easy to care for beyond the mandatory regular walks they need to relieve themselves.
Another trait they share is that they’re often highly intelligent, so they don’t need a lot of training, nor do they have a ton of health afflictions that might result in lengthy treatments.
Best Low Maintenance Dog Breeds
When it comes to choosing a low-maintenance dog, we’ve got you covered. Here are the top 15 dog breeds on our list for busy owners.
|Weight||2 to 6 pounds|
|Height||6″ to 9″|
|Fur and Color||Long or short coats, smooth; cream, white, black, silver, red, chocolate, fawn, or blue|
|Lifespan||12 to 20 years|
There’s no pup more low maintenance than the Chihuahua. Chihuahuas have a lot of energy, but they can usually exert it through daily walks or exercise inside the home. Chihuahuas come in short-haired and long-haired varieties, but even long-haired Chihuahuas have minimal grooming needs.
A weekly brushing is more than enough to suffice to keep the fur of long-haired Chihuahuas free of tangles.
Chihuahuas make great lap dogs and are also easy to take everywhere, so they can accommodate you on trips and save money for a groomer. And, did you know there are different types of Chihuahuas?
|Weight||Three sizes: 45 to 70 pounds (Standard); 15 to 18 pounds (Miniature); 5 to 9 pounds (Toy)|
|Height||Over 15″ (Standard); 10″ to 15″ (Miniature); 10″ and under (Toy)|
|Fur and Color||Dense curly coat; white, brown, grey, black, or apricot|
|Lifespan||10 to 18 years|
Poodles are one of the best dogs you can own if you have a busy lifestyle. These great family dogs can require moderate exercise, but they are a very adaptable dog.
The breed comes in three sizes: Standard, Miniature, and the Toy Poodle, so you can choose the size that fits your home. They don’t shed very much, either. However, you will need to make sure you keep up with its grooming needs, which means regular brushing because their fur can grow very quickly.
Typically, taking them to a groomer once a month will suffice. This low-maintenance dog also doesn’t require a lot of training because they learn new tasks quickly and efficiently.
3. French Bulldog
|Weight||19 to 28 pounds|
|Height||11″ to 13″|
|Fur and Color||Short, smooth coats; white, fawn, brindle, or combination thereof|
|Lifespan||10 to 12 years|
The French Bulldog is one of the friendliest pups out there and makes for a very low-maintenance dog. Frenchies, as they’re affectionately known, are some of the most playful, laid-back, and devoted companion dogs.
You can count on your French Bulldog keeping up with you while you’re outside tending to the yard or on a walk and then cuddling up as a couch potato later in the day — they’re great lap dogs.
Frenchies don’t have a lot of grooming needs other than the occasional bath, but beware, if you own a French Bulldog, you should also own a broom. Frenchies do shed, and you will need to sweep their fur up regularly.
|Weight||25 to 40 pounds|
|Height||18″ to 22″|
|Fur and Color||Short smooth coats; many colors and combinations, which may include black, blue, fawn, red, white, brindle, or sable|
|Lifespan||12 to 15 years|
The Whippet Dog is a cousin of the Greyhound, which it strongly resembles, albeit in a smaller package. These pups are adaptable and love to spend time with their humans. They are great with other dogs and children and tend to be very affectionate with their family.
The Whippet will need a bit of exercise, but that is something you can alleviate with a play session indoors or outdoors and with a daily walk. They will, however, need some mental stimulation to keep from developing destructive behaviors.
Whippets don’t shed an astronomical amount, and they have minimal grooming needs.
|Weight||14 to 18 pounds|
|Height||10″ to 13″|
|Fur and Color||short, smooth coat; black or fawn|
|Lifespan||13 to 15 years|
Pugs do great with children of all ages, as well as other dogs and pets. The Pug also makes for a great couch potato because it will cuddle up with you all day if given the chance. They don’t need a lot of exercise either, and you should be careful not to overexert them in hotter weather.
Pugs don’t require a lot of grooming due to their short, smooth coats, but shedding is generally an issue with them, which, in the grand scheme of things, is so minimal. So invest in a really good broom or vacuum.
6. Shih Tzu
|Weight||9 to 16 pounds|
|Height||9″ to 10.5″|
|Fur and Color||Double coat, long; many colors and combinations, which could include black, white, brindle, gold, red, blue, liver, and silver|
|Lifespan||10 to 18 years|
The Shih Tzu is a playful and outgoing pup on our list of low-maintenance dogs. It’s an affectionate breed that will cuddle up with its owner and is adaptable to their lifestyle.
They can be couch potatoes, and they can romp around in the backyard, offering a balance of both calm and feisty. They’re great with children and other dogs, so you can introduce them to any size family.
While their shedding levels are low, they will require moderate grooming, including regular brushing, to keep their fur clean and free of tangles since it can get quite long. If you want very little grooming needs with this dog, keep its fur cropped short.
7. Basset Hound
|Weight||40 to 65 pounds|
|Height||up to 15″|
|Fur and Color||Smooth, short coats; black and white, black brown and white, black tan and white, lemon and white, mahogany and white, and others.|
|Lifespan||12 to 13 years|
I make no excuses for squealing over the Basset Hound; it’s one of the cutest pups on this list simply for its expressive eyes and long floppy ears. The Basset Hound is of short stature and likes to lounge around.
If you looked up the definition of couch potato in the dictionary, you’d see this low-maintenance dog peering at you from the page. This breed is really good with children and other dogs and will do well in any size home.
However, it can be stubborn when outside, especially if its nose picks up a scent it wants to track. When it comes to grooming, the Basset is easy to care for, and its shedding level is low.
8. Brussels Griffon
|Weight||8 to 12 pounds|
|Height||7″ to 10″|
|Fur and Color||Short, smooth or wiry coat; black and tan, beige, red, or solid black|
|Lifespan||12 to 15 years|
The Brussels Griffon packs a whopper of a personality into a small package. One look at its beard, and it’s hard not to compare the Brussels Griffon to an Ewok.
The description just fits. The Brussels Griffon is a calmer dog, though, one that loves to be with its owner and lounge about. They don’t require much exercise. In fact, a daily walk or two is all it takes to keep your Brussels Griffon satisfied.
In terms of grooming, the shedding level of a Brussels Griffon is moderate, and their beards will need regular brushing and trimming. Other than that, the Brussels Griffon is very easy to care for.
9. Italian Greyhound
|Weight||7 to 14 pounds|
|Height||13″ to 15″|
|Fur and Color||Short, smooth coats; many colors and combinations thereof, including fawn, red, blue, black, sable, seal, white, and brindle|
|Lifespan||14 to 15 years|
If you want the Greyhound in a toy form, here’s the Italian Greyhound, its much smaller counterpart. Italian Greyhounds are highly affectionate dogs who love to be around their people.
Italian Greyhounds have a moderate shedding level, so daily sweeping is a must, but they don’t require much grooming to keep their coat healthy, if at all.
10. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
|Weight||13 to 18 pounds|
|Height||12″ to 13″|
|Fur and Color||sleek, silky, long coat; tricolor, black and tan, ruby, or blenheim|
|Lifespan||12 to 14 years|
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is one of the sweetest pups on our list of best low-maintenance dogs. Cavaliers are darling creatures who haven’t met a person they don’t like.
Sometimes, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can develop separation anxiety, but with proper training, this can be fixed.
Cavaliers are extremely loving dogs with longer coats, but despite this, they have minimal grooming needs and don’t shed as much as one would think. Regular brushing can help keep the tresses of these companion dogs silky and smooth.
|Weight||Two sizes: 16 to 32 pounds (Standard); up to 11 pounds (Miniature)|
|Height||8″ to 9″ (Standard); 5″ to 6″ (Miniature)|
|Fur and Color||Smooth or wire-haired, long-haired or short coat; black, fawn, beige, chocolate, rust, red, blue, tan, or a combination thereof.|
|Lifespan||12 to 16 years|
When it comes to Dachshunds, I always fall down rabbit holes of videos on social media. Those who have Dachshunds love to show them off, and for good reason. Not only are they sweet and cuddly lap dogs, they’re spunky.
If you own a Dachshund, you can expect that you’ll be entertained daily. They’re playful, and while they do get along with children, because of their size, they should only be in homes with older kids.
Dachshunds come with either short or long coats, and the latter will require a bit more grooming than the short-haired Dachshund. They don’t shed too much, though, and regular brushing can help remove loose fur before it hits the floor. When it comes to exercise, daily walks or indoor games are enough to keep them sated.
|Weight||7 to 13 pounds|
|Height||8.5″ to 11.5″|
|Fur and Color||Double coat that’s long and silky; many colors and combinations thereof, including white, black, blue, chocolate, cream, fawn, gold, red, silver, sable, and brindle.|
|Lifespan||14 to 16 years|
The Havanese pup is one that falls into the toy group because of its size, but don’t let that fool you. As one of our highly recommended low-maintenance dog breeds, this friendly dog is cheerful and known to have pep in its step.
They’re very intelligent and easy to train. The best part is not only are they adaptable, they’re very social, so they’ll fit in anywhere and make great companions.
Havanese are considered low maintenance because though they have long, silky tresses, they require minimal grooming. Regular brushing is enough to suffice. They also don’t have extensive exercise needs.
|Weight||60 to 80 pounds|
|Height||25″ to 30″|
|Fur and Color||Smooth, short coat; many color varieties, including brindle, black, fawn, white, red, blue, and variations thereof|
|Lifespan||10 to 13 years|
Known for being the fastest dog in the world, you’d be surprised to learn that Greyhounds love to be couch potatoes. When outside, Greyhounds may get a burst of energy, but inside, they are content to laze about.
This low-maintenance dog is also very gentle and does well with children and dogs, though it has a strong prey drive, so smaller animals may draw their attention.
Greyhounds don’t shed a lot and don’t require much exercise despite their racing nature. They also don’t need a lot of grooming, making them one of the easiest dogs to care for in this respect.
|Weight||under 7 pounds|
|Height||7″ to 9″|
|Fur and Color||Long, silky coats; white, may contain lemon or tan accents|
|Lifespan||12 to 15 years|
A member of the American Kennel Club as part of the Toy Group, the Maltese doesn’t take up much room in your home. It’s a small yet charming pup that is known for being exceedingly gentle.
These well-mannered dogs also draw attention with their stunning long coats that will require brushing, but if you’re looking for minimal grooming, just keep it cut short.
The Maltese loves to be everybody’s friend, though they can be a little standoffish at first with strangers. They also have watchdog tendencies, but all in all, they’re a very adaptable, low-maintenance pup.
15. Skye Terrier
|Weight||35 to 45 pounds|
|Height||9.5″ to 10″|
|Fur and Color||Long double coats; black, blue, fawn, cream, silver, platinum, or gray|
|Lifespan||12 to 14 years|
The Skye Terrier is a gorgeous dog that resembles the Scottish Terrier and actually originates from the same country. They are very good-tempered dogs that were originally bred as working dogs but became companions and don’t have lofty exercise needs.
They are easy to train, but they are willful, so you’ll want to make sure you put your foot down. Skye Terriers have long coats and will require regular brushing, but you can easily do this while it’s lying on your lap.
The shedding level for this low-key pup is medium, so you will likely be sweeping up regularly, as well, but it’s minimal effort for these lovely companion dogs.
How to Select a Low-Maintenance Dog?
The most important part of choosing a dog, whether you’re looking for your first or adding to a house full of pups, is that you find one that fits your lifestyle. Do your research on the breeds and determine which one has the qualities you’re looking for.
For example, low-maintenance dogs don’t require a lot of grooming or exercise or need lifelong obedience training.
Breeds To Avoid
When you’re looking for low-maintenance dog breeds, there are some you will definitely want to avoid. Any herder dogs, for example, are a no-go. These dogs have boundless energy levels, and you will need to keep them busy.
What Dog Breed Requires the Least Maintenance?
One of the dogs that requires the least maintenance is the Chihuahua. It’s a small dog breed that doesn’t take up much room, requires minimal grooming, and is content to be alone when it’s used to being so.
What Are the Cuddliest Low-Maintenance Dog Breeds?
The Dachshund and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels definitely fit this criteria. Both are very sweet dogs that love to cuddle with their owners and don’t need a ton of exercise.
Which Dog Breed Can Be Left Alone for 8 Hours?
Any dog that is used to being alone and is trained properly — meaning you start them out slow, such as an hour alone and build up to eight hours — can be left alone. It’s important that you pay attention to distress clues, such as destructive behaviors, and work hard to alleviate them through training.
When evaluating what types of dogs will fit in with a low-maintenance lifestyle, it’s also important to keep in mind that despite a breed being known for its calmness and easygoing nature, sometimes you might end up with an anomaly. That is, a hyper dog when you expected a calm one.
Every dog is unique, and sometimes, that shows through in the most unexpected ways. If you’re looking for other low-maintenance dog breed suggestions, consider the miniature schnauzer, Boston Terrier Dog and Field Spaniel.