The Friendliest Dog Breeds That Love People

golden retriever on a sofa

The Spruce / Kevin Norris

Dogs are generally friendly animals. After all, it was in their best interest as they evolved to woo humans for food and shelter. And while every dog has a unique personality, certain breeds tend to be a little more sociable than others. Here are 10 of the most friendly dog breeds to ever call themselves human's best friend. 


A well-socialized dog is typically a friendly dog, regardless of breed. Getting your dog comfortable in many different settings can help it become more outgoing.

  • 01 of 10

    Pembroke Welsh Corgi

    A Pembroke Welsh Corgi

    The Spruce / Kevin Norris

    Corgis are known for being highly sociable dogs that love spending time with their families. They were bred to be at attention as herding, guard, and companion dogs, which perhaps explains why they’re always so focused on their humans. They tend to be very affectionate and need lots of playtime.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: Up to 30 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Low-set and long; colors include black and tan, fawn, red, and sable with white markings

  • 02 of 10

    Labrador Retriever

    A chocolate labrador retriever

    The Spruce / Kevin Norris 

    With their warm eyes and cheerful grins, Labrador retrievers are the picture of friendliness. Labs were bred to be companions—first to fishermen and then to hunters. They adore being around people, and they maintain a sweet, carefree nature. But they are high-energy dogs that need vigorous exercise every day.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 22 to 25 inches

    Weight: 55 to 80 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Athletic build; short, dense coat; colors include black, chocolate, and yellow

  • 03 of 10

    Golden Retriever

    A golden retriever

    The Spruce / Kevin Norris

    Golden retrievers often exude friendliness as they engage with people and other animals. Part of this comes down to confidence. Goldens tend to have a cheery outlook that helps them navigate the world with ease. Moreover, a golden is almost always willing to sit for pets for as long as a person wants.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 22 to 24 inches

    Weight: 55 to 75 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Well-balanced body; straight or wavy coat; light to dark golden shades

  • 04 of 10

    Boston Terrier

    A Boston terrier

    The Spruce / Kevin Norris

    Boston terriers are affectionate dogs with a silly streak. They love to make new friends, and they're usually up for a play session. They also have a tendency to be adaptable, meaning they’re at ease in many situations. If that isn’t enough, that goofy smile will definitely win your heart. 

    Breed Overview

    Height: 15 to 17 inches

    Weight: 12 to 25 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Short face; smooth coat; colors include black and white, brindle and white, seal and white, and more

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Irish Setter

    Irish setter sitting on sidewalk near grass and purple flowers.

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    Irish setters are friendly dogs with carefree, spunky attitudes that many canine lovers find appealing. They are a very active breed, and if their energy gets pent up, they might engage in unwanted behaviors, such as excessive barking or chewing. So regular exercise is a necessity for an Irish setter.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 25 to 27 inches

    Weight: 60 to 70 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Long, silky feathering and fringe; colors include red, chestnut, and mahogany

  • 06 of 10


    Beagle on a leash outside smiling

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    Beagles are a cheerful breed that truly enjoys spending time with people. They are fairly active and love playing fetch or going on long walks with their humans. They’re always down to have some fun and are happy to snuggle with their favorite people at the end of the day.

    Breed Overview

    Height: Up to 15 inches

    Weight: Up to 30 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Solid build; colors include black and tan, brown and white, and more

  • 07 of 10

    Border Collie

    A border collie

    The Spruce / Kevin Norris

    Border collies aim to please. They are constantly in tune with their humans, which helps them succeed in dog sports, such as agility and flying disc, as well as everyday training. But minimizing a border collie's desire to herd everything in sight is a must, as this can cause them to nip people.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 18 to 22 inches

    Weight: 30 to 55 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Rough or smooth coat; can be solid, bicolor, tricolor, merle, or sable

  • 08 of 10


    Boxer smiling in front of brick wall

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    Boxers are suckers for attention. These affectionate dogs want to be social, and the more positive attention you give them, the more you’ll get back. For this reason, boxers can make excellent pets for families with children. But training is essential to curb their desire to excitedly jump on people.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 22 to 25 inches

    Weight: 50 to 80 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Short coat; colors include brindle, fawn, and white with a black mask or white markings

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Staffordshire Bull Terrier

    White and brown Staffordshire bull terrier surrounded by fall leaves with big smile

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    Staffordshire bull terriers, a breed under the umbrella of pit bulls, have mammoth smiles that instantly give away their sincerely sweet personalities. They're intensely loyal to their humans, which unfortunately is why some are trained to fight. But many Staffordshire bull terriers who have been hurt by humans are still eager to love and trust.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 14 to 16 inches

    Weight: 24 to 38 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Muscular build; colors include black, blue, brindle, fawn, white, and more

  • 10 of 10

    Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

    Cavalier King Charles spaniel standing on top of rock smiling

    Purple Collar Pet Photography/Getty Images

    When it comes to Cavalier King Charles spaniels, their main purpose throughout history has largely been to serve as companion animals. These dogs truly love people, so they demand ample attention and don't like being left alone. But much of that attention can simply be cuddling with your dog on the couch.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 12 to 13 inches

    Weight: 13 to 18 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Silky coat; colors include black and tan, black and white, and more