Having a dog is like having a best friend that won’t ever leave your side, and that will love you more than they love themselves, which is more than you can say about most human friends. Some dog breeds are more prone to extreme loyalty than others, though, and for the person or family that dreams of a loyal life partner and furry companion – this is a list worth having a look at.

Keep in mind that all dogs are different and that a dog’s breed does not guarantee certain personality traits (such as loyalty and devotion), but these breeds may (or may not) be more likely to display the type of affection you are looking for.

Golden Retriever

For anyone who has ever seen the old movie Homeward Bound; where a Golden Retriever and hos two friends make their way back to their family – without letting anything stop them – probably has the perception of a Golden Retriever being incredibly loyal. There are dozens of movies out there that feature Golden Retrievers in the role of man’s best friend, and it is no coincidence that casting crews tend to prefer the breed for important movie roles. The Golden Retriever is incredibly trainable, attentive and easy to work with, and much of that has its roots in the loyalty of the breed towards their owners and family members.

A Golden Retriever has a way to make you feel like they are listening to your every word; which they are, even though they might not always understand. They are loyal to the point of putting humans they love before themselves, and once you have a Golden Retriever in your life that has chosen to love you – there is almost no way to get that Golden Retriever out of your life again! They’ll follow you, and they will spend their lives wondering what they did wrong if you don’t let them.

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Beagle

The Beagle is a very pack-oriented dog breed; that loves spending time with the family (it can be one person or an entire family) and to know where everyone in their “pack” is at. They are always eager to cheer up their human friends, and they are known for their kind, friendly and cheerful personalities. Beagles are often used in fields that require a good nose and a strong sense of smell, but it is ultimately the breeds desire to please and their merry ways of being that make them easy and pleasant to work with.

For the Beagle, their whole lives revolve around their owners; in a good way, and while they tend to do well being left alone for a couple of hours – you can bet that they spent the whole time waiting for you to come back. A Beagle is better off when with the people they love the most, and they are loyal enough to be patient when they need to be.

German Shepherd

A healthy and balanced German Shepherd will often see it as their duty or job to protect their family members, and they won’t hesitate to stand between their owner and a potential threat. Their loyal nature is one of the reasons to why they are often used by military and police; because once they have chosen you as their person – they’ll stick with you until their last day in this world. Despite their tough exterior, the German Shepherd is a dog capable of both feeling and displaying complete devotion to both young and older pack members; they are gentle with kids and other animals, and they love to be taken along for everyday family outings.

German Shepherds can become possessive of their favorite people, though, which is something you must work to prevent. It takes training, socialization and set boundaries to make sure their love and devotion does not cross over to possessiveness, because while they mean well; a large dog acting possessive is stressful both for the dog himself and the people in the dog’s life. This can happen because of the loyal streak in the breed, and it is a dog for the person or the family who has enough knowledge and experience to keep it at bay; because if done right – the German Shepherd is the poster dog for a loving and loyal canine companion.

Border Collie

As a working dog, the Border Collie is genetically prone to always look to their favorite person for direction, which means they will keep a constant eye on the person they feel the strongest connection with. Many Border Collie owners experience their dog following them around everywhere; sometimes even to the bathroom, which could be explained by how the breed was bred to herd sheep and other animals.

A Border Collie isn’t the first breed to come to mind when thinking about exceptionally loyal dog breeds, possibly because they sometimes show their loyalty in more subtle ways than other typically loyal breeds. They aren’t always glued to you, but they are always watching. If they follow you to the bathroom, as mentioned before, it is probably because they can’t see what you are doing unless they go with you. Border Collies are observant and they like to know where their pack is at, and they have that loyal streak deeply embedded in their working dog genes.

Akita

The Akita is an old Japanese dog breed, and it has become a symbol of canine loyalty thanks to Hachiko – the Akita that waited for his deceased owner for 9 years without ever giving up hope. Hachiko was used to meeting up with his owner at the train station every day; as he came home from work, but one day the owner suffered a health emergency while at work and passed away, which means he never returned home. Hachiko never stopped waiting, even though years passed, and he stayed in the same spot until he himself had to cross the rainbow bridge. This type of loyalty says a lot about the Akita breed because there is almost nothing that can make them leave their loved one’s sides.

Akitas can be somewhat wary of strangers and people they do not know well, and they have a reputation for being aggressive towards other dogs of the same sex if not socialized properly, but when it comes to loyalty to their own family – it is a dog to which few breeds can compare. Looking at the story of Hachiko says a lot, but it is not until you have spent time with the breed that you fully understand the bond between an Akita and its owner.

Kuvasz

Not everyone is familiar with this large and furry dog breed, but it is known to be very patient and loving towards their family members – a breed worth investigating if you are looking for a very loyal dog breed. It is a large dog, but they are generally more active, agile and playful compared to other dogs the same size, and they always put their owner(s) before everything else. The breed is not ideal for families with other types of pets since they have a strong prey drive and can sometimes pose a threat to smaller animals and even cats. This depends on the individual dogs, however, and socialization and training from an early age go a long way.

The loyalty shown by a Kuvasz towards his or her family is both interesting and a joy to watch, and they will many times be almost fanatically loyal to the people they love. They get along well with strangers and new people but don’t expect them to get too enthusiastic. They will tolerate them and behave well, but it will be obvious that they prefer their owner above all else.

Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retrievers are known for their loyalty and their devotion to their loved ones, and they are often used for important tasks like guiding the physically impaired, for search and rescue missions, by the police and the military and much more. Their bubbly and playful personalities combined with their extreme work ethics and dedication to given tasks make them the perfect breed for someone who wants a dog that will thrive when accompanying their families on everyday adventures and activities. The Lab is eager to please and to impress and is always up for a challenge to prove to you how much you mean to them.

Training with your dog is another way to strengthen the bond, and Labrador Retrievers are easy to train and fun to be working with. They know how to stay focused and to listen; especially if trained by their family members, and they are committed to demonstrating that they will remain by your side no matter what. When a Lab turns to look at his or her owner, you can see the love and loyalty reflected there, just as clearly as that brown and warm eye color. If you want a dog that is loyal and that demonstrates it every day of its life – the Labrador Retriever is a breed worth taking into consideration.

Boxer

If you are ever in trouble, a Boxer will quickly be there to protect you and help you feel better. They are very perceptive of their owner’s emotions, which makes them a great doggy shoulder to cry on. The Boxer is also somewhat wary of strangers and will protect their family members from potential intruders or other threats. It is an intelligent dog breed with overall good intuition, and they become very in sync with the person they love the most. Loyalty is one of their most prominent traits, and they prefer to spend time with their family and to get to be a part of everyday life. It is a breed that is driven by its instinct to keep family members safe and happy, which makes it a great dog breed for owners where loyalty and a strong dog-owner connection is important.

The boxer is strong-minded and often somewhat stubborn, and they need strong leadership and guidance to reach their full potential. A person that is willing to put in the time and work to train the Boxer and to socialize it from an early age, will without a doubt end up with a faithful companion that won’t ever leave their side voluntarily. For a boxer – their owner is their world, and while they might look tough and proud on the outside, they are really just dogs that want to be there for the people they care about.

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Yorkshire Terrier

Picture this miniature dog looking up at you with big eyes full of love and devotion, and to have that tiny fur ball follow you around everywhere (because they will follow you around no matter where you try to go) with a frenetically wagging tail. That’s the Yorkshire Terrier, or the ‘Yorkie’, and they have earned their spot as one of the 10 most loyal dog breeds due to their incredibly devoted personality, and how they seem to have a heart way bigger than their small bodies.

The Yorkie is a big dog in a very small package, and it is capable of loving you more than many much bigger dogs ever could. Once you earn their trust (which usually isn’t too hard) – you better love that Yorkshire Terrier, because they will never stop loving you. Fuel your lovely loyal Yorkie with these dog foods.

St. Bernard

There are few better ways to describe the St. Bernards than as the gentle giants they are, and they are known all over the world for being loyal and devoted to their families. They are great with children; patient like few other breeds and very gentle in their ways of being. They are playful in their own ways but move slowly due to their large bodies and impressive weight. It is one of the best family dogs, both for being compatible with young family members but also for being a loyal dog that is always looking out for everyone. They are known to protect their family when they need to, even though they are generally kind and easy-going around strangers (unless they pose an obvious threat to someone they love).

St. Bernards were once used for rescue missions and for carrying supplies, and they love being given important tasks such as pulling a wagon with the youngest kid in the family, or to just get to hang out with their owners while they work in the garden or watch TV. They love a good cuddle, and they will be the last to let you down or to make you feel alone. A St. Bernard is in it for life, and all you need to do is to take one look at them to know how much they love you.

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