It's so fluffy! Here's a quick picture guide of the top small, medium, and big fluffy dog breeds, along with some breed info to help you get started with your perfect fuzzy companion.
Grooming Can Make All The Difference
With most breeds, the best way to maximize your dog's fluffiness is simply done with proper grooming and maintenance. Most often this means growing their coat out, and keeping up with daily brushing to fluff out their coat. A good slicker brush will actually increase the fluffy look by separating individual hairs, while removing mats and tangles.
Small Fluffy Dogs
1. Bichon Frise
Cheerful, loving, and a little trouble maker, the Bichon Frise has plenty of personality to share with everyone around her. They share a lot of characteristics of a toy poodle, with their soft frizzy coat and toy face. The Bichon is described as affectionate, silly, and gentle. They prefer to be your full-time companion, so they do not like being left alone for long periods of time.
Bichon's can be grown out and trimmed in a teddy bear or breed trim in order to achieve that white fluffy coat. Discover more curly haired dogs here.
2. Coton De Tulear
Cotons may have a soft and fluffy appeal, but they're more like Velcro, because they'll be stuck to your side wherever you go. That's because the only thing this dog wants is to be at your side.
Cotons are known for their sweet and calm demeanor, but also for being quite intelligent. This makes them incredibly flexible to your routine, as long as your can accommodate this curious creature following you around all day.
As you may have derived from the name, the Cockapoo is a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle, and share the best traits from each. They're incredibly intelligent and sweet, making them easy to train and a welcome fit for any family.
Their ability to find joy in any situation is contagious, and it's hard not to laugh at their silly behavior. And that thick furry coat? It'll need some daily brushing and the occasional bath, but isn't terribly difficult to maintain.
Havanese have the biggest heart of all, and they're absolutely in love with you. This is the epitome of a lapdog as they're glued to your side and looking for a warm spot to nap at all times.
They're quite adaptable to your lifestyle, but Havanese do not like being left alone and may bark and howl while you're gone, which may make them difficult apartment dogs. They can be overly timid, but some early training and socialization can help curb their anxiety.
The Pekingese is a unique breed originating from ancient China, but even more unique is their soft coat which can be molded into all sorts of lavish fashions.
Pekingese can be very stubborn and independent, and they tend to make up their own rules as they go. Potty training, barking, or training in general are going to require a lot of patience and persistence. With that in mind, the Pekingese are not well suited for families with small children, other dogs, or first time owners.
6. Lhasa Apso
The Lhasa Apso was once used to guard royal palaces in Tibet, and still carry that proud duty to this day. These are very independent dogs that take the position of protecting very seriously. Therefore, they can be very unkind to strangers, while fiercely loyal to their family.
This is a strong-headed breed, and it takes consistent training from a strong leader for the Lhasa to take heed. Because of their protective nature they absolutely must have early socialization. Despite their thick coat, these dogs don't actually shed.
A sometimes overly confident trouble-maker (but it's all in good fun) the Pomeranian is the star of their own show. They can be described as confident, curious, and enjoy being treated like a prince (or princess).
Poms are a perfect accomplice to go on adventures with, as they enjoy spending their days following you around and genuinely enjoy new experiences. Just keep in mind they're sensitive to heat and need to cool off every so often.
Their fluffy coat needs daily maintenance and brushing, and they can shed an impressive amount of hair for a small critter.
8. Shih Tzu
A Shih Tzu's main goal in life is to make you laugh, and they'll usually succeed. Their curious, playful, and lovable attributes make them the class clown. These dogs were originally bred for companionship which becomes quickly obvious with their good natured attitude. All this together makes the Shih Tzu perfectly compatible with your lifestyle.
However, these pups can be quite excitable and full of energy, so playtime, walks, or even another Shih Tzu companion can help burn off that excess excitement.
9. Toy Poodle
You might have already heard that Poodles are incredibly intelligent, and the toy version is no different. Training a Poodle is an absolute joy, and that makes them quite compatible with your family.
But with all that intelligence they can be quite stubborn in other areas, such as barking or being destructive. They're known to be quite noisy, and bark at whatever peaks their interest. Daily training, exercise, and mental stimulation will help curb bad behaviors and keep your little friend content.
10. Yorkshire Terrier
Yorkies are that star of their own show, and they know it. They love to show off their personality and sass, and can be quite silly and entertaining when the mood strikes. However, they can be finicky with who is allowed around their owners, and can be unkind to strangers or children. They also have a very high prey drive, so any little noise or critter can set these dogs into a barking (or chasing) frenzy.
While they can certainly be a handful, they have no shortage of love for their owners. Just be aware that sometimes with all that love comes jealousy.
Medium Fluffy Dogs
1. American Eskimo
Intelligent, affectionate, and excited for life - the American Eskimo is a perfect family dog. These are energetic and curious dogs that are seeking new daily challenges, so they need you to give them physical and mental stimulation. With all that energy and brains you don't want these dogs getting bored, or they may result to destructive behavior.
Furthermore, Eskies are considered "Velcro" dogs, and they'll be stuck to you for the entire day, following you around the house like a curious shadow. These are not dogs you can leave alone for any long period of time.
2. Chow Chow
The "floofiest" of all the breeds, the Chow Chow has an unmistakable adorable look. But these dogs may be anything but cuddly, as they're known to have a very independent spirit. They'll often be suspicious of strangers and other animals, and are known to be very protective.
With early training and socialization your Chow Chow will learn to accept children and strangers. But without that early training this dog's patience will wear thin. Therefore, if you adopt an older Chow Chow it's recommended for older families and experienced owners / trainers.
3. Finnish Lapphund
These cute fuzzballs are actually a hard working herding breed originating from Lapland, Finland (hence the name). But the Lapphund has since retired from reindeer herding into a more comfortable lifestyle of being close to family and friends.
These are incredibly friendly companions, and combined with their desire to please they excel in obedience and agility. However, they do require a lot of exercise and have a strong barking instinct, not to mention they can shed an impressive amount of fur.
This dog loves nothing more than to spend time with his family and loved ones. In fact, the Keeshond is a highly social animal, and cannot be left alone at any time. That will become very apparent as they "Velcro" onto you and follow you everywhere. And that thick coat needs love too, as you'll assume the roll of a full time brusher to control the heavy amounts of shedding.
Keeshonds can be a mouthy breed, and although they have the best intentions, they do tend to bark and yell frequently.
5. Shetland Sheepdog
"Shelties" have a long history of herding and working with farmers, making them incredibly hard working and fiercely intelligent companions. It's no wonder these dogs can always be found in the agility and obedience rings. They also have endless love for their family, and want to please their owners at every turn.
Sheltie herding instincts are still prevalent today, and they'll have a strong desire to bark and herd whenever the situation presents itself. A lot of exercise and mental stimulation is required to keep them happy and calm.
Big Fluffy Dogs
1. Australian Shepherd
"Aussies" are quite literally party animals. They have seemingly endless amounts of energy, and are always up for a good time. Their active lifestyle can be attributed to being a working breed, and they still have all their herding instincts. That means you can't miss a day of exercise (rain or shine) and a simple walk won't be enough, these dogs need to run. There is nothing more destructive than a bored Aussie that didn't get their run. To get the most fluff out of Aussie coats you'll need a good brush.
2. Bernese Mountain Dog
Bernese are big, silly, and lovable dogs that want to spend all their time with your family. While still considered a working breed, the Berner is much more adaptable to a calm lifestyle, and eager to please their owners. Their intelligence mixed with their desire to learn makes them very trainable, and they'll fit in to your family routine quickly.
The only difficult part of owning a Berner is their size, which often exceeds 100 pounds. Sometimes they just don't realize just how big they are and their silly behavior leads to accidents, but it's all in good fun.
3. Bearded Collie
Bearded Collies are known for being quite active, intelligent, and happy! But they can often be a little too smart for their own good, and when bored they'll go looking for trouble. Often times this bad behavior can be curbed with a lot of exercise and mental stimulation, this is a working breed after all. In fact, Collies excel at obedience, agility, and rally and a perfect solution for owners to keep up with their canine's active lifestyle.
4. Bouvier des Flandres
Powerful and fearless, the Bouvier is a true athlete among dogs. They were originally bred as herding and working dogs on farms. They are big and powerful, sometimes weighing up to 100 pounds, yet they can haul that weight around no problem with their fast legs. Daily exercise is absolutely necessary to keep this big guy content.
Despite their "tough-guy" attitude, they are truly gentle and affectionate creatures with their loved ones and are great with children, but wary of strangers and other dogs.
These are a unique breed originating in Germany, but are slowly gaining popularity. The Eurasier is described as curious, calm, intelligent, and affectionate. While rarely aggressive, they are quite suspicious of strangers and new dogs - but some early socialization can help curb their shyness.
Eurasier's are in love with their owners, and their intelligence makes them easy to train. Not to mention they aren't overly active, so their calm demeanor makes them an excellent family pet. That coat needs some extra love however, since Eurasier's are heavy-duty shedders.
6. Great Pyrenees
The word "Great" in Great Pyrenees is no exaggeration; not only are these dogs beautiful, strong, and majestic, but are also physically great, standing 30+ inches tall and often exceeding 100 pounds. Pyrenees were once used in mountains to guard sheep, so they can often be very stubborn and independent (as is their nature). However, they're also known for their calm demeanor and devotion to family, which can lead to being very protective.
Leonbergers are giant, silly dogs with all sorts of personality, and they're always looking for the next bit of trouble. With all that size and energy they can certainly be a handful, and their goofy attitude might test your patience with training. The good news is they make up for it with their hilarious antics and endless affection for their family.
Despite their comedic tendencies Leonbergers are quite intelligent, and with a plenty of training and exercise these dogs can excel in competitions, and become a well trained family companion.
The Alaskan Malamute is a strong working breed often used for sledding, hiking, and backpacking through the rough arctic terrain. They are the very definition of a big fluffy dog.
Because of their tendency to pull, dig, chase, and shed - these dogs are a handful in a family home. They're very independent and it takes years of training to overcome their stubbornness. With that being said, this dog isn't recommended for first time owners.
With great fluff comes great shedding, in which case you may want the best brush to control shedding.
"Newfies" are 150+ pounds of love, and ready to be a big part of your family. They are extremely loyal, calm, and are often touted as being a "gentle giant". In fact, the only challenge to owning a Newfoundland is their sheer size, which also contributes to an incredible amount of drooling and shedding.
Given their temperament and strength, these are multi-talented working dogs, and are even used for rescue missions, human therapy, or to haul equipment in harsh terrains.
10. Old English Sheepdog
There's no mistaking this thick shaggy coat, and just like the name states, this dog was used for herding sheep back in the day. Although still a working breed, these dogs a quite content to live a more comfortable lifestyle. They're affectionate, enthusiastic, and fiercely intelligent dogs. Mix all that with a desire to please their owners and you have a dog that's ready to be your companion for life.
11. Rough Collie
Just like you'd expect from Lassie, Rough Collie's are loyal, intelligent, and always on the lookout for potential danger. They're protective, but not aggressive, making them a great family watch dog.
Despite their guarding duty, Rough Collies are quite emotionally sensitive and sometimes shy. You'll quickly find they're attuned to your emotions, and respond according to how you're feeling, which makes them especially good therapy dogs. It goes without saying, Rough Collies win the award for most family friendly dog.
If you're looking for a big, white, fluffy dog, then look no further. Samoyed's are a lovable, happy, and often "talkative" dog breed that will keep you smiling. They're happiest when with their family, and doesn't take well to being left alone. They're also known to have a high amount of energy, and for always being chatty with an assortment of barks, howls, and grunts.
This can be a problem for some families, as a bored Samoyed will become noisy and destructive. If you can accommodate their active lifestyle and constant need to "talk", then you'll find yourself with a lovable companion.
13. Tibetan Mastiff
Weighing up to 175 pounds and standing 30 inches tall, the Tibetan Mastiff is a beast. Unsurprisingly, these Mastiff's were used for centuries to guard live stock.
Despite appearances, this beast has a huge heart, and can be very fond and cuddly with owners. They're quiet, patient, and want nothing more than to hang out with their family all day.
Getting a dog this big comes with a few hurdles. Training and socialization from an early age is absolutely essential. You want your mastiff to be comfortable around children, other pets, and strangers. But this breed are known to be very stubborn, and obedience isn't at the top of their priorities.