What Are The Most Affectionate Dog Breeds? Let’s Meet 5 Cuddly Dogs

While some dogs prefer play to pats, almost all dogs love the occasional kiss or cuddle. But today we’re focusing on some of the most affectionate dog breeds. Their motto? Bring on the sports, but also prioritize smooches!

1. Toy Poodle

Toy Poodle.

The Toy Poodle is one of the most affectionate dog breeds. Photography courtesy Sandy Mainardi.

Que je vous dise sur moi! France claims me and, of course, the French are celebrated for romance and kisses. But on to some history: we Toy Poodles are beloved by the French, but the early ancestors of the Standard Poodle were bred for water retrieving in Germany. Keep in mind that my three varieties (the Standard, Miniature and Toy Poodle) were only grouped together in the mid-20th century. We social and energetic Toy Poodles have provided companionship and warmth to families for centuries. Natural learners, we rock out in obedience work. Just don’t underestimate our enthusiasm for snuggle-time. Most of us (if allowed) will cuddle you all night long.

2. Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever.

Golden Retrievers are, unsurprisingly, an affectionate dog breed. Photography courtesy Geri Yaccino.

We’re renowned family dogs these days, but we were developed in Scotland as exceptional gundogs for fowl retrieval. Lord Tweedmouth bred us for water work, strength and yellow shades of coat. I often carry my tail merrily, evidencing my bright outlook on life. Our soft mouths, developed for retrieving, offer tender and delightful kisses. While we save our greatest affection for family, we also typically bestow love on newcomers, too. Come for kisses! I’ll leave that barky guard dog behavior to another breed.

3. Basset Hound

Basset Hound.

Basset Hounds lavish their humans with affection. Photography courtesy Jennie Hibbert, Maple Street Bassets.

Laid-back, congenial and approachable, I give and gather smooches readily. I hold mankind dear to my heart. But don’t let my sweet disposition fool you. I’m distinguished for my sensitive hunting nose. Developed in France for hunting, we trailed small game slowly so we wouldn’t leave hunters in the dust. I thrive on exercise (May I suggest tracking rather than obedience?), but I welcome closeness once we’re home. Along with my slurpy kisses, be prepared for my barks, bays and howls: They’re all basic to the Basset!

4. Vizsla


Vizslas are one of the most affectionate dog breeds out there. Photography courtesy Mandy Heintz.

We’re passionate about both sports and people. Developed to hunt and retrieve in forest, field and water, we’re extraordinary athletes. One of the oldest sporting breeds, my forefathers hunted with Magyar tribes. The Hungarian aristocracy fine-tuned our hunting abilities and cherished us as companions. Our warm natures were cultivated by families who kept us in the households, rather than putting us out to kennels. Today, I’m as eager to give you a smackeroo as to run with you. At only about 50 pounds, I’ll also try to fit on your lap for an extra dose of affection.

5. Bulldog

Bulldog. Photography courtesy Shelby Stewart.

Bulldogs are a very loving dog breed. Photography courtesy Shelby Stewart.Photography courtesy Shelby Stewart.

Although originally bred for hard work, I’ll confess that we’re more tender than tough. In particular, we crave interaction and affection. My ancestors were bred in England to drive cattle and work on farms. In modern times, we’re committed to the sport of companionship. We still boast our beloved under-bite, as well as a trace of lovable stubbornness. But we’re calm and kindhearted with the family, often especially with little children. Together with smooches, we offer snorts, snuffles and occasionally slobber to those we love.

Tell us: Do you have one of the most affectionate dog breeds? Is your dog a snuggler but not on our list?

Thumbnail: Photography courtesy Shelby Stewart.

Why read breed profiles?

Dog breed profiles help everyone, whether you have a mixed breed or purebred dog, to better understand and improve the quality of your dog’s life. If you have a mixed breed dog, read up on all of the breed profiles that make up your dog. Not sure what breed your dog is? There are a number of easy DNA tests out there to help your find out.

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