The best dog breeds for busy people

Getting a dog is a life-enhancing experience, but it’s also a time-consuming one. While you rely on them for comfort, company, entertainment and someone to lick your face every morning, they rely on you for just about everything. 

You are the centre of their universe, their absolute everything, apart from when they see another dog or a squirrel, or smell a cheese sandwich. When they wake up in the morning, they look to you for food, exercise and stimulation. It’s a responsibility equal to having a child in our opinion.

If yours is a busy life, you need to think about all this. We’d never tell anyone not to get a dog (madness), but we’d always ask them to think carefully about what it entails. Part of that thinking might be to choose a relatively low-maintenance dog breed. 

Please note the word ‘relatively’. All dogs have needs. They all need to be trained, groomed, stimulated, exercised and, of course, loved. But some breeds, even some mixes, have traits that allow us to predict, within margins, how much of the above they’ll need*. So, we’ve listed seven of the best dog breeds for busy people.


1. Dachshund

Dachshunds are great dogs for busy people. They need some stern training early on, but they’re extremely affectionate, have fairly low exercise needs due to their little legs, and short-haired varieties are easy to groom.

2. French Bulldog

These muscly chunks of fun get tired out pretty quickly and love a nap. They’re also super friendly, less prone to separation anxiety, easy to groom, and smart, which helps with training. 

3. Chihuahua

For many, Chihuahuas are the ultimate low-maintenance pooch. They expend energy in short bursts, they’re happy to chill out, OK being left alone and, best of all, with proper training you can take them anywhere. 

4. Greyhound

Greyhounds are sprinters, not distance runners. They love a walk but prefer to do their running in short bursts and then lounge around all day. They and the smaller Whippet are both fairly easy to train, too. 

5. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

These dogs are incredibly affectionate. They’re quite small, very responsive to training, only require a moderate amount of exercise, and will be happy lying next to you as you work. They do require some grooming, though, especially those lovely ears.

6. Mastiff

If you want a relatively low maintenance dog on the larger side, Mastiffs and Bullmastiffs could be the breed for you. They tend not to get separation anxiety, don’t have a lot of endurance, and are happiest lounging around. 

7. Newfoundland

Another gentle, affectionate and loyal giant known for their calmness and willingness to be trained (they’re also amazing with kids). And they need less exercise than many breeds to keep them healthy. The lovely thick coat will need looking after, though.


*Remember, these are broad generalisations, and every individual dog is different. They all need enough exercise and grooming to keep them in shape, and enough stimulation and love to keep them happy.