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The essentials

  • Choosing the right size dog for your lifestyle — Matching your lifestyle with a suitable breed and considering your living space will help you find the best furry companion for your home.
  • Pros and cons to different sized breeds — Small dogs tend to live longer, while large dogs are historically easier to train.
  • Understanding the different sizes of dog breeds — Conduct thorough research on the specific breed’s temperament, needs, and potential health concerns before committing to ownership.

Dogs come in various sizes, from tiny teacup breeds to massive giants. Each size has its unique pros and cons, making it crucial to consider carefully which size dog would best fit your lifestyle.

When choosing the right-sized dog for your lifestyle, consider your daily routine, living space, and activity level. If you lead an active lifestyle with lots of outdoor activities, a medium or large breed may be better suited for you. If you live in an apartment or have limited space at home, a smaller breed might be a better fit.

Dog size chart

  • X-Small breeds: Under 20 lbs
  • Small breeds: 20 to 30 lbs
  • Medium breeds: 31 to 50 lbs
  • Large breeds: 51 to 90 lbs
  • X-Large breeds: Over 90 lbs

Extra small dog breeds

Extra small breed dogs typically weigh under 20 pounds and are known for being petite and compact. Despite their small stature, these dogs have a big personality and make great companions.

One of the most notable characteristics of extra-small breed dogs is their high energy levels. They are often described as being spunky and playful, making them a great choice for active individuals or families. Due to their small size, extra small breed dogs may be more suitable for apartment living or those with limited space.

These pint-sized pups can be prone to some common health issues, such as hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), dental issues, respiratory problems, and fragile bones.

Small dog breeds

Pet owners can enjoy many benefits of living with a smaller dog, between 20 and 30 pounds. Small dog breeds are easy to manage, suitable for apartments, and usually live longer than larger breeds.

Despite their size, many small dog breeds have big personalities and excel in various activities such as agility training, obedience classes, or even just playing fetch in the backyard. Similar to the extra small dog breeds, evidence also shows that small and toy breed dogs are more likely to experience dental disease than larger dogs — and it may happen at an earlier age.

Smaller breeds also aren’t as prone to conditions such as hip dysplasia that can limit their mobility and increase their risk for obesity and other health conditions.

Medium dog breeds

While some people may prefer small breeds for their compact size, others may gravitate towards larger breeds for their strength and presence. However, there is a middle ground that shouldn’t be overlooked – medium-sized breeds between 30 and 50 pounds.

One of the main benefits of medium-sized breeds for pet owners is their versatility. They aren’t too small to be fragile and easily injured and aren’t too large to be overwhelming in terms of space and resources. This makes medium-sized breeds suitable for both apartment living and larger homes with yards. The weight range varies with medium-sized dogs so health issues can include everything from obesity to joint issues.

Large dog breeds

Larger breeds weighing between 50 and 90 pounds may seem intimidating at first glance, but they often have gentle temperaments and make great family pets. However, their size can also be a disadvantage as they require more space and exercise than smaller dogs. They may also have higher maintenance needs like grooming and veterinary expenses.

Large dog breeds, especially those between 50 and 90 pounds, can provide their owners with a great sense of security and protection. And owning a large dog breed means having a built-in exercise partner!

There are a few things to consider though as larger dogs need more space to move around comfortably, both indoors and outdoors. This may not be suitable for those living in smaller homes or apartments. With a larger breed, there are also larger expenses — from food to grooming products, medications to vet bills, owning a large breed can cost significantly more than owning a smaller dog.

Extra large dog breeds 

Living with an extra large dog breed over 90 pounds can have its pros and cons. On the positive side, these dogs often have a gentle and calm demeanor. This can make them great companions, especially for families with children.

One major consideration is the amount of space they require. These extra-large dogs need plenty of room to move around and exercise, so living in a small apartment may not be best for them. They also tend to eat more and grooming can become more challenging, which can add up in cost.

Overall, while living with an extra-large dog breed can bring many joys and benefits, it’s important to carefully consider the responsibilities and accommodations that come along with it before deciding to bring one into your home.

Frequently asked questions

What are the different dog breed sizes?

There are generally five recognized dog breed sizes: extra-small, small, medium, large, and extra-large.

What breeds fall under the extra small size category?

Some examples of extra small-size breeds include Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, and Yorkshire terriers.

What breeds fall under the small size category?

Some examples of small-size breeds include Boston terriers, beagles, and silky terriers.

What breeds fall under the medium-size category?

Some examples of medium-sized breeds include Dalmatians, basset hounds, and border collies.

What breeds fall under the large-size category?

Some examples of large-size breeds include golden retrievers, Labrador retrievers, and German shepherds.