The 16 Most Gentle Dog Breeds (Calm and Easy-Going)

Gentle, easy-going dog breeds make ideal companions for families with kids and senior citizens. A calm dog will maintain its composure in response to different people, circumstances, or stimuli. This is an especially important attribute in homes with smaller children or other pets.

Many of the dogs on this list today are also some of the most popular breeds in the world. Here are 16 typically calm dog breeds that might make a perfect match if you're looking for a gentle, easy-going canine companion.

1. Golden Retriever

Gentle Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever originated in 19th century Scotland. Its original purpose was to retrieve downed fowl from both water and land, which required great athleticism and agility. Characterized by its lush golden coat, this breed also has an upbeat and friendly disposition to match. Being one of the calmest dogs makes them well-suited for search and rescue operations or as guide dogs for the blind and deaf.

2. Pug

Gentle Pug

The very famous and lovely pet dog, the Pug, is a breed known for many reasons, from loving to eat and nap to being the breed that knows no violence, for it was left out of their genetic code. A Pug will bark only when feeling extremely endangered or very hungry, while his playful barking is usually replaced with heavy breathing due to his corpulent build.

3. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Easygoing Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is small, loving and playful. The typical Cavalier is always happy, trusting and easygoing, a friend to everyone he meets. He will sit quietly with older people or young children and then turn into a rowdy playmate with active children or adults.

4. Bulldog

Gentle French Bulldog

A massive yet compact dog of small but impressive and dignified stature, the Bulldog's fierce expression belies the breed's kind and gentle nature. The Bulldog is an extremely lovable and friendly dog who doesn't know his own strength and can bowl over the unprepared with his enthusiastic greeting.

5. Basset Hound

Calm Basset Hound

The basset hound is a medium-sized dog with long floppy ears and an affable and bright personality. One of the calmest dogs you'll ever meet, she might look woeful, but will light up in your consistent presence, especially if you play to her strengths and train her in scent work, then power down after each "workout" for a leisurely pup-cozy nap!

6. Saint Bernard

Gentle Saint Bernard

These big, lovable, gentle giants originated in the frigid, snow-covered Alps of the 11th century, where they helped monks locate missing travelers. If you have an adult Saint Bernard, who's been well-trained, well-bred, well-socialized, and is getting their physical and emotional needs met, they're generally going to be a lot more calm and relaxed inside the house.

7. Labrador Retriever

Easygoing Labrador Retriever

Labradors are athletic and exuberant, yet patient and easygoing. Like goldens, these eager-to-please pets make ideal service animals. Labs are medium-to-large in size and may be black, yellow, or chocolate in color. They're perfect for families with energetic kids and anyone else looking for active, patient companions.

8. Biewer Terrier

Calm Biewer Terrier

Calm dog breeds and dogs from the terrier group, generally don't go hand-in-hand, but this one does. Pronounced "Beaver," this adorable little nugget looks more like a Yorkie than a beaver. At just under a foot tall and around 8 pounds, the mellow pooch is ultra-portable, with the sweetest disposition that just melts your heart.

9. Borzoi

Calm Borzoi

The legendary Russian sight-hound, an ancient breed with roots that run quite deep back to the Czars' hunting with dogs days. It's one of the fastest dogs on the planet. What makes Borzoi a perfect roommate is that it's very tranquil in the presence of strangers, the exact opposite of a guard dog. They will certainly not disturb your neighbors if you choose to adopt this pooch.

10. Beagle

Gentle Beagle

Beagles are said to make poor guard dogs because of their friendly dispositions. Because they were bred to hunt in packs, they enjoy the company of other dogs and people. They are happy-go-lucky, rarely aggressive, and make great companions for kids and adults of all ages, but their constant curiosity can sometimes also get them into trouble. Most of the time, their merry antics are more entertaining than destructive.

11. Collie

Calm Collie

This is an old sheep-herding breed who comes in long- or short-coat varieties. Collies are smart and sensitive dogs who need calm environments and readily accept training. They are affectionate, loyal and protective pets that known to love children. Collies are full of energy, and they sure need a place to spend it, but they're extremely polite and trainable, meaning utmost obedience.

12. Newfoundland Dog

Calm Newfoundland Dog

Another calm, colossal breed, the Newfoundland Dog, is famous for its phlegmatic behavior. Newfoundland dogs are a perfect choice for introverted owners, those who love to spend time close to their huge companions, and it's certainly one of the quietest dog breeds you can adopt. They're generally friendly and very protective, which is why it's one of the most popular working dog breeds, particularly known for saving missions.

13. Irish Setter

Easygoing Irish Setter

The playful and energetic Irish setter loves company. These dogs are affectionate with their families, gentle with kids, smart, obedient, and, like retrievers, they'll happily play fetch all day long and never get ill-tempered or tired while doing it. Irish setters are also immensely trainable and smart. They have boundless energy, but are sweet and eager to please.

14. Corgi

Gentle Corgi

Among the most agreeable of all small housedogs, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a strong, athletic, and lively little herder who is affectionate and companionable without being needy. Corgis will do fine in an apartment if they are sufficiently exercised. With enough exercise they can be calm indoors, but will be very active if they are lacking. Will do okay without a yard so long as they are taken for daily walks.

15. Great Pyrenees

Calm Great Pyrenees

Great Pyrenees dogs are brilliant animals with a steady temperament. Patient, calm, and smart, the Great Pyrenees makes a wonderful family dog. They are relatively easy to train and will make for absolutely wonderful companions for those living in apartments due to their silent nature and generally not bothered by anything or anyone.

16. Bernese Mountain Dog

Gentle Bernese Mountain Dog

Another gentle giant, the bernese mountain dog is a calm, gentle breed with a sweet nature. Bred to do farm work in the mountains of Switzerland, these dogs are hardy and trainable. Bernese mountain dogs are self-confident, rarely shy, and kind. They are also beloved for their thick, shiny, tricolored coats.

Final Words

There are always exceptions to the rule, but these 16 dogs are generally considered to be some of the most gentle dog breeds. In busy households, especially those with kids, it's critical to find a dog who matches your lifestyle. One of these calm dog breeds may be the easy-going companion you've been looking for—and just might ensure your love-at-first-sight lasts a lifetime!