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6 Calm Dog Breeds Known for Their Relaxed Personalities: King Charles Spaniel, Bulldogs and More

Some of these chill dog breeds may surprise you

One of the most important aspects of owning and interacting with a dog is to be aware of their temperament. Dogs are intuitive, sensitive, intelligent creatures, and every canine has its own character and behavioral traits. This is partly due to training and environment, and partially stemming from their genetics and breed standards. Yes –  some dogs are just naturally friendlier or more reactive than others. So, if you want to know what kind of dogs are most likely to have a laid back demeanor, you’ll want to start by looking at generally calm dog breeds in terms of attitude and energy level. Of course, even the breeds most popular for being easy going or low maintenance may sometimes become stressed, stubborn, bored or needy (especially during younger years).

These dog breeds are regarded for their calm nature 

Jacqueline Brister, a veterinarian with Embrace Pet Insurance, notes that even though the breeds listed below don’t demand extensive physical activity, they still need adequate exercise to maintain health and wellness, though “they don’t necessarily mind being couch potatoes.” 

  1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 
Tri-color cavalier king charles spaniel laying on couch
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Even though they have athletic capabilities due to their sporting spaniel heritage, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are known for being gentle, affectionate and friendly. These dogs tend to get along well with other dogs, people and children and are not often reserved, anxious or fearful. They’re also pretty adaptable, so if their humans simply want to snuggle and sit around together, they are happy to do so, but they’ll also take the opportunity to be active outside. 

  1. Basset Hound 
Basset hound laying on couch
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As those droopy, sleepy-looking faces would suggest, Basset Hounds are known for being low-key and patient, but they’re not shy either. Basset Hounds are very devoted to their beloved humans, mild-mannered and even sociable around other animals. Bassets are celebrated for their keen sense of smell, so they’re typically most active when they’re following and investigating a specific scent.

  1. St. Bernard 
Tri-color st. bernard laying on the floor
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Despite growing up to be very large and strong dogs, St. Bernards are one of the most calm dog breeds. They’re quiet, tolerant and adaptable. They only need moderate exercise and are quite easily trained. They are loyal and have a strong desire to be around their humans, whether that be playing or napping. 

  1. Greyhound 
Brindle Greyhound laying on mat outside
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Perhaps the most shocking addition to this list, Greyhounds are known for their speed, which is owed to their long, skinny legs and flexibility making them born racers and chasers. However, these are dogs with calm dispositions, fairly low energy and stamina. They are also gentle and kind by nature, and perfectly content sleeping most of the day away. 

“Greyhounds are probably the biggest surprise on this list, but as a greyhound parent, I can assure you they belong!,” says Sean Prichard, certified canine fitness coach, president and head canine fitness coach of dog fitness and adventure company Pant & Wag. “All of these dogs have physical limitations which prevents them from being active and they have a temperament which matches their lack of physical prowess. The result is an extremely calm dog that excels at doing absolutely nothing!”

Greyhounds only have about 2% body fat versus 15 to 25% body fat of other dogs, Prichard explains, and less fat equals less energy for these pups to move for long periods of time. 

“Their predisposition is to rest, rest, and then get more rest,” he says. “They generally sleep between 18 to 20 hours per day (versus 12 to 14 hours for other dogs) and then spend another two to three  hours just lounging around.”

  1. Bulldog
English bulldog laying down
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Bulldogs are naturally very tranquil and even-tempered. French Bulldogs in particular only need minimal exercise and are playful but not athletic. With the exception of alerting their humans of a knock on the door, they don’t bark often and are well-behaved. English bulldogs are also very mellow, docile and people-oriented. While their physical features certainly reflect their strong, courageous nature, bulldogs as a breed are not aggressive. 

  1. Mastiff
Bullmastiff laying on couch
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Another potentially unpredictable addition to a group of calm dog breeds, Mastiffs are gentle giants who are described as dignified, well-mannered and willing to follow instructions. They are not needlessly aggressive, but they are bred to protect their families if they sense a threat. 


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