If you love being out in nature and want some company on your adventures, you might consider bringing a dog along. There are many dogs that would love to be your sidekick. They all have unique traits and characteristics that make them wonderful companions. Check them out below to find one that is a great match for you.
Outdoor Dogs: A Breed All Their Own
All dogs descend from the same ancestry.1 But, over thousands of years, they have been bred for very different purposes and for different environments. Some small dog breeds come from a life of luxury in royal courts (ehm, pugs), while others grew to be work dogs in the outdoors.
This is important to keep in mind when choosing a dog to bring along on your outdoor adventures. If the call of the wild is strong in you, then you’ll want a dog that feels that same energy. Fortunately, there are plenty of outdoor dog breeds born specifically for that purpose.
Find The Right Furry Friend For You
Consider what type of activities you plan to do with your canine friend. Then, choose a breed that has attributes that are compatible with your lifestyle. Your dog needs to have certain characteristics that make them both capable and eager to tag along on your next outdoor adventure.
Qualities To Consider
A dog’s body and personality are important factors to think about when picking your companion. You need to keep your dog’s health in mind to ensure they have the energy and build for outside activities. Here are a few questions to ponder to help inform your decisions:
- Can they handle long periods in cold weather? Hot weather?
- Do they have the stamina and dexterity for prolonged activity?
- Are they natural hunters, herders, or retrievers?
- Do they like the water?
- Do they love to run, explore, and play?
The Best Dog Breeds For People Who Love The Outdoors
Here are some of the best dogs for people who love the outdoors. These pups all have different qualities and personalities. But, the one thing that unites them is a shared love for the great outdoors. Learn about their specific histories and traits below.
Siberian Husky – Fun In The Snow
The name says it all. These husky pups love life in the outdoors. They hail from the far reaches of the Arctic where they were used as sled dogs. That means they’re plenty strong and packed with stamina. Huskies also boast a thick, double coat of fur that keeps them warm in the snow. That makes them exceedingly good matches for anyone that snowshoes or cross-country skis.2
Their résumé also includes a penchant for digging, running, and hunting. These behaviors may not always be welcome and can be tough to train away. Keep this in mind if you live in a small home or have small pets like cats.3
Great Pyrenees – A True Mountain Dog
These hulking pups used to call the Pyrenees mountains home. It was there that they served as guard dogs for sheep. Today, those same skills make them watchful and vigilant pets. And, because the mountains are in their genes, they make for great hiking companions.4
Additionally, their thick, weatherproof coat makes going outside in the cold a cinch for them.5
Border Collie – The Playful Outdoor Dog
If you like to spend your days playing outside and interacting with your canine, then the border collie may be for you. These pups are great herding dogs. As such, they are incredibly smart and eager to work/play.
You’ll want to keep this pooch busy with highly interactive outdoor doggo games like flyball, frisbee, and maybe even some herding exercises.6
Alaskan Malamute – A Wild Child With A Golden Heart
The malamute comes from the cold-weather reaches of Alaska. And they look the part. These gorgeous pups are wide, furry, and strong.
Their history as powerful sled dogs makes them a great pet for anyone looking to explore and play outside in cold weather. Their pedigree as a working dog means that malamutes have plenty of energy to keep up with you during your outdoor adventures.7
However, keep their past work experience in mind when you put that leash on them. In other words, hold on tight, and be ready for lots of pull.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog – The Jovial Giant
The greater Swiss mountain dog is another working dog from the mountains. But, like their fellow canine companions, the Swissy is mostly retired from pulling carts and guarding flocks. That means all their natural energy can now be channeled towards the pursuit of fun. They are particularly well-suited for hiking and for anyone who spends lots of time in the mountains.8
Golden Retriever – Graceful, Elegant, and Ready to Fetch
These dazzling darlings make a great addition to any day outside. Their golden coats attract almost as much attention as their boundless energy and eagerness to play.
As implied by their name, these fun-loving furry friends were born to retrieve. That means that they love to fetch. Prepare yourself to throw dog toys all day. Every time you look up, that ball or stick will be right back at your dog’s feet (or yours).
Goldens are highly versatile in what they can and want to do. Take them on a walk or run. Teach them to trot along your side while you bike. Take them swimming at the lake or ocean. Or, play just about any dog sport with them. All that matters to them is that they’re with you and having fun.9
Labrador Retriever – A Dog of Many Talents
The Lab is ranked by the American Kennel Club as the most popular breed in the U.S.10 That says a lot about the temperament and personality of this pooch. But, are they good outdoor dogs? You better believe it.
These dogs are famed for their versatility. They are game for just about any outdoor activity that you take them to do. They can hunt, guide, jog, swim, hike, boat, sniff, and retrieve. Or, they will sit happily by your side. Their main objective is to be a good friend. But be prepared for a bundle of energy.11
Outdoor Fun With Dogs: Finding The Right Pooch
Choose your furry friend based on the types of activities you plan to do and how demanding they are. You’ll also need to make sure you can accommodate the unique needs of your breed. This means, if you choose a high energy dog, like the breeds on this list, you’ll need to give them plenty of exercise each day.
Note: There are many adorable and loving dogs that need homes and care. Start your search at an animal humane society to give one of these pups a chance to get back outside and receive the love they deserve.