45 Cutest Dog Breeds That Will Make You Say 'Awww!'

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There's a reason that dogs are known as man's best friend. Actually, there are probably no short of a thousand reasons, as evidenced by the cutest dog breeds.

Whether you appreciate their cuddly companionship or active nature, there are unlimited things to love about dogs. For example, dog lovers know that there is nothing better than seeing the excitement in a dog's eyes and their wagging tail when you come home from a long day's work.

Between their playful personalities and undying loyalty, the question isn't "should I get a dog?" but "what type of dog should I get?" Thankfully, from lovable lap dogs to energetic work dogs, there is no shortage of adorable breeds to fall in love with.

While cuteness is subjective, below is a list of dogs that are especially known for their adorable looks.

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45 Cutest Dog Breeds (With Pictures Of Cute Puppies & Dogs)

1. Golden Retriever

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The Golden Retriever's loyal, obedient and friendly nature makes it the ideal family pet. They are extremely trainable, trustworthy, and intelligent.

Characterized by their luxurious golden coat and playful personality, the eager-to-please dog grows from 55 to 75 pounds.

2. Bernese Mountain Dog

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Bernese Mountain dogs may be big and powerful, but they are also sweet, gentle, and affectionate.

The beautiful dog with a thick and silky tri-colored coat can grow up to 115 pounds. As the breed hails from Switzerland, cold weather is ideal.

3. Australian Shepherd

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Known as the cowboy's herding dog of choice, the Australian Shepherd is hardworking and intelligent.

Even if they aren't working on a ranch, the lean breed exhibits an unrelenting impulse to herd anything from birds and fellow dogs to children. Australian Shepherds grow from 40 to 65 pounds.

4. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

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This toy dog, which weighs between 13 and 18 pounds, is the epitome of beauty and grace. Their large, round eyes and silky coat give off an undeniable air of regal aristocracy.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are both athletic and affectionate, meaning they are adaptable to their owner's lifestyle. Whether they spend their days on long walks or cuddling on the couch, they will be content.

5. Yorkshire Terrier

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This cute, seven-pound dog may look dainty, but its feisty and tenacious personality is far from small. A big and bossy attitude is hiding within the tiny body of every Yorkshire Terrier.

The toy size terrier craves close companionship and is perfect for those living in an urban setting.

6. French Bulldog

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The spirited French Bulldog is quite the charmer. Between its identifiable "bat ears" and irresistible personality, it's hard not to be infatuated by the adorably playful puppy.

Since French bulldogs are extremely adaptable and grow to be no more than 28 pounds, they make the perfect pet for city dwellers.

7. Bichon Frisé

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These happy-go-lucky dogs are the comedians of the canine world. Though they make nice watchdogs, in the end, they are lovers, not fighters, who live to perform.

The 12-to-18-pound Bichon Frisé features a velvety white hypoallergenic coat that is usually trimmed into a rounded head.

8. Labrador Retriever

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According to the American Kennel Club, the Labrador Retriever was the most popular dog breed in the United States in 2020. Their friendly and outgoing disposition makes it clear why this dog breed is so beloved.

When considering getting a Lab of your own, it's important to remember that the fairly big dog — they can grow to be around 80 pounds — is extremely high energy and athletic. From swimming to marathon games of fetch, they require lots of exercise.

9. Siberian Husky

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This pack dog is extremely energetic yet graceful and dignified. As sled dogs of medium size, they have great endurance and are the perfect canine partners for long hikes and other workouts.

Their black and white coat, and deep brown or piercing blue eyes, makes this dog breed effortlessly stunning.

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10. Cairn Terrier

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The small and shaggy Cairn Terrier is constantly cheerful and curious. Though they are only 14 pounds, they are as brave and alert as any big dog out there, loving to explore and dig.

11. Pug

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The charming and mischievous pug was originally the companion of Chinese emperors. The small yet muscular dog weighs between 14 and 18 pounds, and is known for its big eyes and wrinkled brow that allows them to show off a large range of emotions.

Pugs are very adaptable and will be happy in the city or country, and with kids or old folks, as long as they get the cuddles and attention that they deserve.

12. Havanese

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These intelligent, outgoing, and sociable pups have funny and human-like personalities. The most notable feature of the small dog — they grow up to 13 pounds — is their big brown eyes that seem to convey endless emotions.

Havanese is the only dog breed that is native to Cuba, and because of this, their long and silky double coat actually serves to keep them cool under the heat of the sun.

13. Portuguese Water Dog

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President Obama's choice dog breed was initially bred to be a fisherman's helper, swimming between boats, diving fish into nets, and retrieving lost tackle. Even today, Portuguese Water Dogs love the water and even have webbed feet to help them swim.

The affectionate, adventurous, and incredibly smart dog features a curly coat and grows to be between 35 and 60 pounds.

14. Dachshund

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Dachshunds are famous for their so-called "hot-dog" like appearance, specifically their long, slow silhouette and short legs. The 16-to-32-pound dogs are known to be friendly, curious, and exceedingly spunky.

15. Samoyed

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The graceful yet powerful pooch works well with others, as Samoyeds are friendly and gentle creatures. The white dogs grow to be between 35 and 65 pounds and have a perpetual smile on their face.

Interestingly, this charming grin actually serves a purpose: to keep the Samoyed from drooling, thus preventing icicles from forming on the face.

16. Shiba Inu

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This ancient Japanese breed was brought to America just 60 years ago. The Shiba Inu is the most popular companion dog in Japan, and its active and attentive personality makes it clear why.

They may be small, at only 23 pounds max, but Shiba Inus are surprisingly muscular, as they were once hunting dogs.

17. Pomeranian

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This fluffy puppy has been a favorite of royals and commoners alike for a very long time. They may be small — weighing between three to seven pounds — but they have a large personality and abundant coat of fur.

Pomeranians are inquisitive, bold, and incredibly intelligent.

18. Shetland Sheepdog

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If you're in search of the perfect guard dog, consider a Shetland Sheepdog. They both love to bark and are reserved towards strangers, making them the ideal choice to protect your home from intruders.

Hailing from Scotland's remote Shetland islands, these pups are playful, intelligent, and very trainable. When fully grown they can weigh up to 25 pounds.

19. Cockapoo

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Cockapoos may have been the first "designer dogs," dating back to the 1960s.

They are a cross between the Cocker Spaniel and the Poodle, meaning they are intelligent, affectionate, and undeniably adorable. They grow to be between 12 and 24 pounds and hardly shed.

20. German Shepherd

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The confident and obedient German Shepherd is considered to be the best all-purpose canine worker.

They are smart, courageous, and loyal pups that excel in almost everything including disability assistance, search-and-rescue, police and military roles, and even acting. German Shepherds can weigh as much as 90 pounds when fully grown.

21. Beagle

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This friendly, curious, and all-around adorable pooch is both a loyal companion and ideal family pet. Beagles can grow up to 30 pounds and require lots of play time.

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22. Poodle

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This intelligent and eager dog somehow manages to be both elegant and athletic Poodles come in three sizes — standard, miniature, and toy — and feature a curly, low-allergen coat.

23. Boxer

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Boxers are another incredible family pet, as they are patient and protective towards children and yet will meet any threat fearlessly. They are bright, fun-loving, and intelligent dogs that can grow to be up to 80 pounds.

24. American Pit Bull Terrier

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Although American Pit Bull Terriers have a bad rep as a so-called bully breed, in reality, they are simply misunderstood. They are gentle, loyal, and obedient pups that when trained properly can even make excellent companions for children.

Sadly, these 30-to-85-pound dogs often find themselves in the care of shelters and rescue groups because of their negative reputation.

25. Great Dane

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Great Danes may look intimidating because of their size (they are taller than most people when standing on their hind legs!), but really, they are gentle giants. These huge pups are friendly, dependable, and patient with kids.

Although they can weigh up to 175 pounds, Great Danes look elegant rather than menacing.

26. Pembroke Welsh Corgi

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Pembroke Welsh Corgis are affectionate, smart, and athletic. They may be small — they can weigh up to 30 pounds — but they have powerful legs that make them surprisingly quick and agile.

27. Boston Terrier

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This friendly and amusing pooch looks exceedingly bougie with its so-called tuxedo jacket coat. What's more, they're even nicknamed “The American Gentleman” because of their impeccable manners.

Considering they're named after a city, it's only fitting that they make the perfect urban pup, weighing between 12 and 25 pounds.

28. Border Collie

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This energetic, affectionate and remarkably bright breed tends to be a workaholic.

They are natural herders and athletes, so anyone who is adding a Border Collie to their family must have the time and energy to keep it occupied. When fully grown, Border Collies weigh between 20 and 55 pounds.

29. Basset Hound

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With their mournful eyes and wrinkled brow, Basset Hounds may look perpetually sad, but in actuality, they are patient and low-key charmers. They have an instantly recognizable look and weigh between 40 and 65 pounds.

30. Saint Bernard

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Saint Bernards may be big (they can weigh up to 180 pounds), but they are also playful, inquisitive, and extremely friendly. Moreover, this handsome breed is watchful, patient, and careful with children.

31. English Setter

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If you're looking for a sweet-tempered, friendly, and mellow dog, an English Setter definitely fits the bill. The beautiful breed weighs between 45 and 80 pounds and is elegantly beautiful.

32. Dalmatian

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This dignified pooch has a long history of work, from hunting and accompanying horse-drawn carriages to assisting firefighters.

Considering this intelligent and outgoing breed gained popularity after the release of Disney's "101 Dalmatians," it's sure to have a comeback this year in the wake of the release of "Cruella" starring Emma Stone. Dalmatians weigh between 45 and 70 pounds and are known for their eye-catching spots.

33. Cocker Spaniel

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Best known as Lady in Disney's "Lady and the Tramp," Cocker Spaniels have an elegant and graceful look to them.

Their big, dreamy eyes and long, luscious ears make the gentle, happy, and trainable breed irrefutably endearing. The small pooch can weigh up to 30 pounds and loves playtime and long walks.

34. Italian Greyhound

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Italian Greyhounds look graceful, elegant, and sleek when comfortable on the couch, but their playful and alert nature comes out when they get a chance to run around.

They have an instinct for pursuit and need lots of time to play. At 7 to 14 pounds, they are the miniature version of a Greyhound.

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35. Rottweiler

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Rottweilers may be big — they can weigh up to 135 pounds — but they are completely unaware of their size, often plopping down on your lap for a cuddle. Rottweilers are loving, loyal, and surprisingly silly. The strong working dog is also an innate family protector and confident guardian.

36. German Shorthaired Pointer

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If you're looking for an active pup to join you in all your physical endeavors, consider a German Shorthaired Pointer. The enthusiastic breed thrives on vigorous exercise and loves to walk, run and swim.

German Shorthaired Pointers weigh up to 70 pounds, are extremely trainable, and are known for their power, speed, agility, and endurance. Although they love a good workout, they are also very friendly, smart, and need lots of love.

37. Shih Tzu

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Also known as the "lion dog" for their fluffy head of hair, Shih Tzus are affectionate, playful, and outgoing. These tiny pups (they weigh from nine to 16 pounds) love to cuddle and relax on your lap.

38. Dogue de Bordeaux

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The Dogue de Bordeaux is the most ancient of all French dog breeds. Weighing 99 pounds and up, this breed makes an ideal guard dog.

They are loyal, courageous, and very protective of their family. The sweet and sensitive souls also tend to be slightly stubborn.

39. Maltese

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Known for their floor-length, silky coat, Maltese are show-stoppingly beautiful. These tiny white dogs weigh under 7 pounds and are gentle, playful, and charming.

40. Akita

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This ancient Japanese breed is a symbol of good health, happiness, and long life.

While Akitas are wary of strangers and don't work well with other animals, they're very affectionate and loyal to their human friends and family. Akitas weigh between 70 and 130 pounds.

41. Alaskan Malamute

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These affectionate, loyal, and playful pups were originally bred for their strength and endurance as sled dogs.

Alaskan Malamutes require firm and loving training. They are pack animals, and you need to be the alpha. Alaskan Malamutes grow up 85 pounds and have a dense, weatherproof coat.

42. Chow Chow

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This ancient Chinese breed is aloof with strangers but bright and loyal to their loved ones. Chow Chows grow up to 70 pounds and are known for their lion’s-mane ruff around the head and shoulders and deep-set almond eyes.

43. Goldendoodle

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Goldendoodles are a cross between the Golden Retriever and the Poodle. From their parent breeds, they inherited an affectionate, intelligent and gentle nature.

This social breed makes ideal guide, service, and therapy dogs. Goldendoodles weigh between 50 and 90 pounds

44. Jack Russel Terrier

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Originally bred for foxhunts, Jack Russel Terriers are eager and tireless workers. The upbeat, inquisitive, and friendly pups weigh between nine and 15 pounds.

45. Tibetan Mastiff

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The Tibetan Mastiff is the ultimate guard dog. Weighing up to 150 pounds, they are undeniably intimidating. Moreover, they are aloof and territorial with strangers, yet mellow and loyal to family.

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Audrey Jaber is a writer living in Boston, Massachusetts. She has had bylines featured on Modern Luxury DC, Boston Common Magazine, Capitol File, Affection Magazine, among others, and covers a variety of topics related to lifestyle, entertainment and travel.