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23 Most Difficult Dogs To Raise [2022]

Dogs may have been domesticated over 30,000 years ago. The attachment between humans and dogs was not just for hunting purposes. Dogs were also seen as wonderful companions. However not all dog breeds are easy to raise and this can create a difficult situation for new dog owners. Let’s have a look at the most difficult dogs to raise.

most difficult dogs to raise

10 Most Difficult Dogs To Raise, Large Breeds

Some dogs simply require more attention; that means more time is needed to care for and teach them. Any dog breed that does not fit human lifestyle, expectations, and easy temperament might be considered a difficult dog breed for those without experience. Several other characteristics can make some breeds seem difficult as well such as size, energy level, dominance, aggression, noise level, and maintenance. Although, some dogs are more likely to become biters than others if not treated or trained properly. Check out the dog breeds that bite the most.

1. American Pit Bull Terrier

american pit bull terrier Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

This dog breed can be aggressive and is considered by some to be vicious. Although many Pit Bulls are loving, friendly dogs, some are quite temperamental. Also, this breed is often used by cruel people who train them to be vicious. This dog has great strength and historically it was used for fighting in the ring. If you are a potential dog owner and you have limited time to train a dog please don’t choose a pit bull terrier. A pit bull terrier requires a person who will have time to train the dog properly. However, with proper socializing and training, it can be a good family dog.

2. Bullmastiff

young bullmastiff Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

This dog breed is massive in size and can weigh up to 130 pounds. A bullmastiff has been known to overwhelm the pet owners and injure them at times. They have also been known to drool a lot and this translates to a lot of cleaning by the owner. This breed has a strong dislike for some other dogs and this means you cannot keep another dog in his presence. A bullmastiff should not be your choice if you will not have time for obedience training.

3. German Shepherd

German shepherd Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

This can be one of the difficult dog breeds to raise because of its enormous size and its enthusiasm for the activity. German Shepherds have also been known to attack their owners on occasion if not trained properly. If you are not committed to train this breed, please avoid it. German Shepherds are very intelligent and they know when they are being mistreated and not taken care of. This can make them angry and turn to their owners and attack when they are frustrated. German Shepherds are very delicate when it comes to their health and they may need extra vet care.

4. Siberian Husky

siberian husky Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

Bred mostly in cold weather, this breed is lively and requires dedicated obedience training. It is difficult to keep a Siberian Husky because it can be highly predatory. Historically, it was used to pull sleds in snowy areas; this breed is a working dog. This requires a lot of time for the owner to train them making it a difficult breed for a less committed owner. This breed acts out when it’s bored and this is another reason why it can be difficult to keep. Huskies could also be among the worst dog breeds for families with small children.

5. Chow Chow

chow chow Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

The dominating breed Chow Chow can be very stubborn while in training, craves a lot of attention, and can be very jealous. Chow Chow’s can be quite aggressive and sometimes outrageous when new visitors or new pets are around. This breed can be difficult to have as a pet because of the constant attention it seeks and extensive training it needs.

6. Akita

Akita inu Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

The Akita likes to prey on potential food, so it’s a good idea to keep it on a leash. You have to be alert when walking the Akita which requires around 30 minutes of walking daily. The Akita sheds heavily and it can be very difficult to train for a novice dog owner. Also, the Akita can weigh up to and over 115 pounds and with it being such a big dog, it can be difficult to raise.

7. Alaskan Malamute

Alaskan malamute Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

A talented artist when it comes to escaping, this breed can be very difficult for new dog owners. This breed sheds a lot and can be at risk for heat injury because of its heavy fur coat. Though it can make a beautiful family pet, it can also be difficult to raise at times.

8. Rottweiler

rottweiler Most Difficult Dogs To Raise

A big dog breed, a Rottweiler can be really dangerous when in the hands of the wrong owner. This dog requires a committed owner, hence a great deal of time for training is necessary. A Rottweiler is loyal and can be very aggressive and dangerous while protecting if it’s poorly trained socially. This breed can scare away visitors because of the stories of Rottweilers biting children and adults for no apparent reason.

9. Chinese Shar-pei

chinese shar pei in grassfield

Quite the territorial breed, this dog can be very aggressive towards your visitors and other pets and can be very dangerous if poorly trained. Owners with no knowledge about this breed will have difficulty raising them because of the health conditions it could develop. These conditions may be due to its skin fold which might lead to eye and chronic skin issues. This breed can be difficult to raise as it requires a lot of time for training.

10. English Bulldog

English bulldog on grass field

This breed can be difficult to raise for new owners because of potential health problems. Bulldogs cannot usually swim making it difficult for owners to always keep them away from the pool to prevent drowning. A Bulldog is sensitive to stress, exercise, and heat due to its heavy build. What puts this breed in the most difficult dogs to raise category is that it can also be very stressful for owners with inadequate training time and it is therefore not the easiest dog to have.

13 Most Difficult Dogs To Raise, Small Breeds

1. Beagle

beagle on house floor

As another hunting dog, this breed requires extensive training. This is a common breed of dog for security purposes due to its talent at searching for a scent. You may see these dogs working in airports trying to sniff out contraband. Though, due to its keen sense of smell, when a Beagle catches a scent it can be very stubborn and not let it go until it finds it; this means the dog is likely to disobey its owner when on the trail. Another difficulty in Beagles is its hunting capabilities in terms of killing small animals. The Beagle can be very aggressive in these cases. What puts this breed in the most difficult dogs to raise category is that if they aren’t socialized well they can become aggressive towards owners and strangers as well.

2. Manchester Terrier

Manchester terrier in white room

As with most terriers, the Manchester Terrier was bred to assist in hunting. Due to it’s occasionally aggressive nature, this breed was very good at its job, though it’s also considered dangerous to have this breed around other small animals whether they are dogs or not. It’s entirely possible that, as a sign of affection, this dog will bring you a surprise that may not be to your liking: a dead squirrel, bird, raccoon, etc. Be sure to keep this breed leashed at all times when outside to prevent a harmful encounter with another dog or animal. This breed is generally good with adults and children, so long as it’s well-trained, but it also appreciates it’s alone time so excessive playing will likely get on its nerves and cause it to be aggressive towards owners or guests.

3. Lhasa Apso

Lhasa apso in white room

Though very intelligent, obedient, and adorable, Lhasa Apsos can be a very tough and aggressive breed. This breed is commonly confused with a Shih Tzu but it has an entirely different temperament so be careful when dealing with the Lhasa Apso. They were not bred to be hunters so their potentially aggressive temperament comes from their role as guard dogs in ancient Tibetan civilizations. They have a tendency to be hesitant around strangers and if they are approached too aggressively, they will return the sentiment. They can be extremely loyal so long as you understand their temperament.

4. Jack Russell Terrier

Jack russell terrier in white room

This breed is very energetic and generally great with kids who can keep up with it because they were bred to be working dogs. As a working farm dog, this breed needs constant attention and exercise every day otherwise they can become spiteful and wreak havoc around your home. This breed is also hard to train, despite its working-dog ancestry, and it does enjoy hunting on its own even though it was not used for the sport. This breed is also known to have a sort of Napoleon complex so watch out for interactions with larger dogs because it can get itself hurt. Be sure to start training early on and make sure the dog knows its place, even compared to children.

5. Cocker Spaniel

Cocker spaniel holding two food bowls

This breed, though commonly purchased as companion dogs, has a bit of a split personality. Due to over-breeding and popularity this dog has developed some behavioral issues including something called “rage syndrome.” This means that the dog’s attitude can flip on a switch and become aggressive and dangerous to its owners then suddenly switch back and be affectionate. If the Cocker Spaniel is not subject to this disorder, they can still become aggressive if they aren’t well-socialized and will become very territorial over the property and its owner.

6. Bull Terrier

bull terrier in brown room standing on pillow

As a member of the terrier family, this breed is very strong, energetic, and a great hunter. Though this breed has lineage to the pit bull family as well, so keep in mind that their strength and energy means extensive daily exercise as well as vigorous training. Easy to groom and hard to train, so they say, means this breed requires a lot of time and energy to ensure it will grow to be a loving member of the family rather than back-tracking to its ancestral roots of being aggressive, hostile, and dangerous.

7. Pekingese

Pekingese in yellow room

Due to its roots as a companion to Chinese royalty, this dog can be a great companion. But also a bit stuck-up in terms of its behavior towards unfamiliar people and animals. Aside from its loyalty and companion qualities, this breed is known to be very aggressive towards other animals and may try to pick a fight with an animal that is far bigger than itself, though it is never fearful. This breed is quite territorial and if they are not well-socialized they can be cautious and aggressive towards other animals and dogs who do not approach it properly; they were bred to be pampered and expect to be treated that way. This breed blends into small families best and can be a great companion.

8. Papillon

Papillon in white room

Today, Papillons are most commonly used as show dogs due to their ability to learn advanced and complex tricks as well as their talent in agility. Although, this breed is extremely aware of its size and susceptibility to injury so ensuring the Papillon feels safe is a must. What puts this breed in the most difficult dogs to raise category is that a nervous Papillon can become very aggressive and they are highly sensitive to the way they are treated. This means that if there are many small children pulling at them they are likely to become scared and bite them, though they are only doing it to defend themselves. As with most smaller dogs, it’s important to socialize this breed to ensure optimal behavior results.

9. Dachshund

Two dachshunds near lake

Affectionately known as the “hot dog,” this breed was bred this way for one reason: to hunt and kill animals that burrow into tunnels. Due to their unique shape, they are prime candidates for searching these habitats and killing whatever is hiding inside. This breed has a tendency to become attached to one person and will be very protective of this person due to their loyalty and protective nature. Due to this temperament, it is not recommended to have this breed with small children. Not enough exercise will not only cause this breed to become dangerously overweight but it will also bring out their aggressive side so ensuring that they get enough exercise is a must. Did you know that Dachshunds were originally bred to fight badgers?

10. Chihuahua

Chihuahua in white room

Though this breed is known as one of the smallest dog breeds, they are also known as one of the most aggressive. A desire to cuddle this dog and smother it with affection can prove to be a very bad decision. Chihuahuas are very aware of their size and susceptibility to injury so they will go on the offensive if they fear they will be crushed by you. This also means that they will be on the offensive around other dogs in fear of them hurting them. Chihuahuas are very protective of their owner, but not because of loyalty; Chihuahuas have a tendency to believe they are the Alpha of the household and will believe that they own you rather than the other way around. What puts this breed in the most difficult dogs to raise category is that it’s imperative that you keep your Chihuahuas attitude in check or you will end up being bossed around by a dog that is less than ten pounds.

11. Shih Tzu

shih tzu grass against blue sky

Due to this breed’s long, beautiful coat of hair, it’s important to note that they can be difficult to groom. Their curly hair is prone to matting and knotting up so they need to be brushed, shampooed, and conditioned constantly–generally every three to five days. Another way this breed is difficult is by way of its extreme Napoleon complex. Shih Tzu literally means “lion dog” so it’s important to keep in mind that their temperament includes excessive nipping and biting. What puts this breed in the most difficult dogs to raise category is that they don’t respond well if they feel even slightly threatened though this behavior can be managed if socialized well and socialized early. On the plus size, this breed is hypoallergenic so it’s great for those with bad allergies.

12. Poodle

Poodle in white room

Most people don’t know that Poodles were originally bred in Germany as hunting dogs. Their commonly known curly, hypo-allergenic coat makes them easily recognizable. Their temperament is sweet and loving though they maintained many of their working dog qualities which can make them a difficult breed to keep up with. They have a constant slew of energy and need daily exercise to maintain a happy demeanor. The toy breeds are known to be quite the little biters so it’s important to remain firm when training them.

13. Boston Terrier

Boston terrier in white room

We’ve made the point that terriers are difficult dogs to own, and this one is no exception. This breed has a bad habit of becoming very territorial and they are incredibly strong considering their size. Although, their hunting capabilities are not what is most notably difficult about this breed; they have a very high risk for health problems so regular trips to the vet and proper health care are a must. They are prone to deafness, inability to breathe, and cataracts. If you want to have other animals in your home it’s important to socialize this breed early on and you may want to get a “beware of dog” sign because they can be very hostile towards mailmen due to their protective nature.

The most difficult dogs to raise are not bad dogs

These breeds can be difficult to raise because of the time they require to train. All dogs need attention and care, but these dogs tend to require a bit more than the average dog. Make yourself familiar with the dog bite statistics. All dogs require a commitment to training, but if you want an easier time these breeds should not be your first choice for a family pet.

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