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10 Dog Breeds That Get a Bad Reputation

Pit bull smiling in the grass

No matter how much you love dogs, finding the right breed for your needs and lifestyle is essential. And although every pup you meet is unique, some breeds have better reputations than others. Training a dog is always hard work, but a few breeds take more time to train than others, Manitoba-based pro dog trainer Kristi Benson explains. “It doesn’t matter if you’re a first-time pet owner or have more experience with dogs. Any dog breeds within the working group need more exercise and enrichment,” she says. “People are often surprised about how intelligent active dog breeds are and how much excess energy they have when their needs aren’t met.”

Unfortunately, dogs that aren’t adequately trained or are bred to do specific tasks (like herding cattle) often have a bad reputation due to their high energy, territorial nature or for simply being too intelligent and stubborn for their own good. Read on to learn more about the most commonly misunderstood dog breeds.

See also: All the dog breeds you’ve never heard of before.

Dalmatian dog smiling



We hate to crush your childhood dreams, but Disney may have led you astray once again. Unfortunately, Dalmatians aren’t often the best breed for family life because of the amount of training, exercise and mental stimulation required for them to be happy and healthy. They’re brilliant dogs, but after the breed spiked in popularity in the 1950s, many owners weren’t prepared (or aware of) the extra attention Dalmatians required day-to-day.

See also: 10 adorable dog breeds you’ve seen on ‘Vanderpump Dogs’.

Husky with blue eyes smiling outdoors

Siberian Huskies

If you’ve ever lived in a cold climate and wondered, “what dog breed should I get?” chances are Siberian Huskies are top of mind. As gorgeous as these fluffy dogs are, they’re are known to be incredibly destructive if they don’t have enough attention, mental stimulation and plenty of walks. Canadian winters are no joke, and having a snow dog like the Siberian Husky might seem like the perfect fit. Just make sure you have the energy for it.

Related: How to prepare your pandemic puppy for your return to work.


Worst Dog Breeds: Pit bull smiling in grass
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Pit Bulls

You don’t need to spend a lot of time with a pit bull to question why they get such a bad rap. While many Pit Bull owners train great family dogs and happily praise how sweet and caring they can be, this breed has a reputation for being aggressive and violent due to the fact that they were once explicitly bred for dogfighting. Over the years, defenders have argued that Pit Bulls are not, in fact, inherently dangerous and are actually misunderstood. Regardless of where you stand on the debate, these pups unfortunately still carry a bad reputation.

Related: The most and least expensive dogs to insure.

Yorkshire terrier in the grass looking up towards the sky

Yorkshire Terriers

When you think about small yappy pups, Yorkshire Terriers often come to mind. Although they are an excellent breed for condo living, Yorkies usually take longer to potty train and aren’t exactly great with small kids.

Related: The richest pets in the world.



Rottweilers are one of the most recognized breeds, but they’re also pretty misunderstood. These muscular dogs have a natural territorial instinct, and many owners experience issues with Rottweilers if they aren’t appropriately socialized at a young age. They also get a bad rap because they don’t always get along with cats, but it’s important to remember that every dog is different.

Related: All cat breeds as zodiac signs.



Chihuahuas are often no more than six pounds, but this petite breed is known for its dominant personality. As one of the smallest dog breeds out there, Chihuahuas are also known to be quite aggressive and aren’t recommended for families with young kids.

Related: Adopting dogs increases popularity, OkCupid study says.


Side profile shot of an Afghan Hound in the park
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Afghan Hounds

Afghan Hounds are known for their thick, silky coats, making them an incredibly Insta-worthy dog breed. While they make for great couch potato dogs, this breed can also be pretty stubborn and defiant, making training quite tricky. If you’re interested in bringing an Afghan Hound into your family, days at the dog park aren’t likely to be in your future. Experts say this breed shouldn’t roam around off-leash due to their habit of simply ignoring commands.

See also: 15 golden retriever characteristics that make them perfect.

St. Bernard dog lying on the hardwood floors at home
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Saint Bernard

These gentle giants were bred as a working dogs to help rescue people travelling through the famous trails of Italy and Switzerland. And, as much as you loved the popular Beethoven movies from the ’90s, Saint Bernard dogs are often considered one of the worst breeds for people with allergies due to the amount of hair and dander they shed.

Related: 9 times I thought my dog was warning me about my partner (and what he really meant).

Goldendoodle running on the beach



If you’ve ever watched TikTok videos of breeders and doggy daycare owners, you know that many dog professionals confess that Goldendoodles aren’t their favourite clients. Like many other breeds, Goldendoodles are often seen as a great starter pet for first-time dog parents, although they might not realize how much socialization the puppies need. Additionally, Goldendoodle parents need to be prepared to budget for the frequent grooming sessions they require.

See also: 12 signs your cat secretly hates you.

 Shiba Inu being scratched

Shiba Inus

Shiba Inus can be hard to resist for wanna-be dog parents because of how much these adorable breeds look like giant teddy bears. Although they are incredibly loyal, this Japanese dog breed is also one of the most challenging types of dogs to train because they’re so emotionally intelligent and strong-willed.


You may also like: 10 questions for anyone who thinks they’re ready for a pet.

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