The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief

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Anxiety can be a daunting challenge that affects daily life, but the companionship of a faithful dog can offer comfort and a sense of serenity. This is not just anecdotal; it’s backed by research and experts from the animal behavior field, providing reliable evidence of the therapeutic benefits of having a pet. Specifically, certain dog breeds have characteristics that make them especially suited for relieving anxiety.

Dr. Jane, a renowned animal behavior specialist, affirms, “Dogs have an innate ability to sense and respond to human emotions, making them natural companions for anxiety relief.” This connection between canines and humans positions certain dog breeds as ideal partners for those suffering from anxiety. She further emphasizes, “Certain dog breeds are particularly adept at providing comfort and companionship, often leading to a reduction in anxiety symptoms.” “The act of petting a dog can trigger the release of oxytocin, the ‘feel-good’ hormone, in both the dog and the human, fostering a sense of calm and well-being.

Now, without further ado, here are 18 dog breeds that are cherished for their anxiety-relieving qualities:

Labrador Retriever  

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Labs are known for being super chill and intelligent. They’re like mind readers, picking up on their owners’ vibes and giving that extra support when needed. Plus, their loving nature can help ease feelings of loneliness and anxiety.

Golden Retriever 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Did you know that a Golden Retriever can be trained to offer deep pressure therapy? This technique involves the dog applying gentle, firm pressure to the person’s body, which can help reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calm. According to Medium, it’s pretty cool. They can help ease stress and pain.

Yorkshire Terrier 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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With some dedication and guidance, you can train your Yorkshire Terrier to become a therapy dog for anxiety and PTSD.

German Shepherd 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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German Shepherds are not just super bright but fiercely loyal, too! These guys make fantastic guard dogs and buddies. If you’re feeling anxious, living solo, or worried about safety, this breed can give you peace of mind. They’re all about forming strong bonds and looking out for their humans. However, they can be wary of strangers and other animals, so early and ongoing socialization is essential.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Their small size and affectionate nature make them great lap dogs. A medium-sized Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, which is pretty chill, could be a good fit for someone who deals with anxiety.

Poodle 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Intelligent and gentle, these dogs often do therapy work. Researchers peeked into the brains of 30 people as they groomed, fed, and played with a four-year-old poodle. According to this small study, hanging out with dogs can help you relax and lower stress and anxiety levels.

Border Collie 

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So, if staying active helps you deal with anxiety or feeling blue, a Border Collie might be your ideal buddy. They’re clever and understanding and will nudge you out for a daily adventure! However, they need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation, so be prepared to spend a lot of time playing and training with them.

Pug 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Their clownish and loving personalities bring such a fun vibe! Pugs aren’t just into hanging out with their owners—they need it and hate being left alone for too long. So, if you want to feel super wanted, a pug will have your back!

Labradoodle 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Labradoodles combine the Lab’s friendliness with the Poodle’s hypoallergenic coat. They can help lower anxiety and give you a sense of purpose. 

Plus, they’re super caring and gentle, which can help reduce feelings of fear. Research shows that Labradoodles love hanging out with their owners because they’re social creatures!

Boxer 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Boxers are famous for their endless energy and protective nature. Did you know they can be trained as psychiatric service dogs? 

They’re there to help individuals with psychiatric conditions by doing things like interrupting anxiety or panic attacks, giving deep pressure therapy, and providing emotional support.

Chihuahua 

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They are small but bursting with love and always up for a cuddle! Chihuahuas have this calm and gentle vibe that’s so comforting, especially for folks dealing with anxiety, stress, or feeling down. Having them around makes you feel safe and emotionally grounded.

Cocker Spaniel 

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Their happy and affectionate nature can help folks relax. Dealing with PTSD, anxiety, or depression can be challenging, making it hard to stay calm. But having a Cocker Spaniel around can help when you’re anxious.

Greyhound 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Elegant and calm, they are surprisingly good apartment dogs. One Redditor admits, ‘I have a greyhound and he works wonders for depression and anxiety. His gentle presence and need for regular walks have helped me stay active and manage my anxiety better.

Newfoundland 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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Meet the big, cuddly “gentle giants” that bring a sense of safety. Newfies are perfect for folks in spacious homes or areas of stress and anxiety. However, they’re not the best match for cramped spaces with limited room to play.

Bernese Mountain Dog 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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They are usually very calm, displaying a naturally good-natured demeanor that makes them pleasant companions in various situations.

Australian Shepherd 

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Loyal and good with families, Australian Shepherds keep you active with their playful nature and eagerness to join in on outdoor activities.

Shih Tzu 

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With their friendly nature, Shih Tzus loves being near their owners. Even though they’re small, they have huge hearts! They enjoy human company and are perfect for living indoors. And have you seen those long, flowing coats and those expressive eyes? 

Shih Tzus are top-notch emotional support animals. They’re super caring, attentive, and good at forming solid connections with their humans.

Brussels Griffon 

The Top 18 Dog Breeds Recommended by Animal Experts for Anxiety Relief
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They’re alert and tuned in to their owner’s emotions. Having them around can help you manage your feelings and give you that emotional support and sense of security.

These breeds have repeatedly proven to be more than pets; they are devoted friends and healers. While every dog, regardless of breed, has the potential to offer companionship and anxiety relief to the right owner, these 18 breeds stand out as particularly effective in providing emotional support.

Remember, temperament and proper training are crucial factors in a dog’s ability to help with anxiety. Always spend time with a dog to ensure it fits your personality and lifestyle well. Remember that a dog’s calming companionship can open the door to a more peaceful life for those battling anxiety, but it’s your responsibility to provide the necessary training for it to be effective.

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