Top 10 Dog Breeds for Active People

Published: April 3, 2014

Some people want a dog that can sit in their lap and just watch TV. Some want one they can take on a few runs and maybe to the park. Then there is the rest of us. Those that want a canine companion that keep up with the most grueling physical activity. These dogs can, how about you?

  1. Brittany (dog)

    This hunting dog is known for being wild and highly energetic, but that's not a problem! This dog was meant to hunt and cover large areas. It's compact body means it won't frequently tire, which is great if you're up for a long workout. Despite its short coat, this breed also loves to swim, even during the thick of winter. Link to AKC Breed Standard

  2. Labrador Retriever

    This quintessential hunting dog is known for being able to both run and swim for hours. Used primarily as a sight retriever, labs also have great noses enabling them to find wounded game. These dogs love to run, swim, play and tend to gain weight easily if not kept on a strict exercise and diet routine. Link to AKC Breed Standard

  3. Rhodesian Ridgeback

    Originally a lion hunter, this south african breed tolerates heat and exercise better than most humans. A large and muscular animal, its short coat does well keeping its body temperature regulated. Just be careful when letting small children or the elderly take the reigns, this beast can drag an unwitting handler. Link to AKC Breed Standard 

  4. Husky

    This breed is part of a long standing history of work and epic physical feats. Regularly used in the annual 1,000 mile Iditarod race from Anchorage to Gnome, this pup can handle the toughest of your endurance tests. Just beware, they were bred for colder temperatures, Texas and Florida natives might consider a short-haired breed more suitable to their climate. Link to AKC Breed Standard 

  5. German Shorthair Pointer

    This fine sporting dog is praised for its ability to point, flush, and retrieve. It, like the brittany was bred to work large fields tirelessly and its short coat helps it regulate its temperature in hot weather. It's compact size makes this an ideal workout companion you can load up in the car, and its intelligence makes animal games fun and rewarding. Link to AKC Breed Standard

Whether you pick a regal Brittany or a rough and tumble lion-hunter like a Rhodesian, be sure that your lifestyle and energy/activity level can keep up with these breeds. A dog that does not get enough proper exercise will misbehave, act out in frustration, become depressed, and in general not make for a happy member of the family. Conversely, an appropriately fed, well exercised active breed like those above can be just the snuggle partner you desire after a long, hard workout.