There’s just something about fluffy canines that makes most dog lovers smile. But while there are tons of tiny and medium-sized dogs that have fluffy coats, there are only a handful of large fluffy dog breeds.
While definitions of “big” and “fluffy” may vary, there are seven breeds that clearly meet this criteria, and make good pets for families. So, if you are in search of a 90-pound ball of fluff, be sure to consider the breeds detailed below.
Great Pyrenees are very large, yet gentle dogs, who were originally bred to guard sheep and other livestock. In fact, their sheep-like appearance helps to make them especially well-suited for this kind of work, as it appears to make the sheep more comfortable in the presence of these large dogs.
While they are usually very good with children, Great Pyrenees are not always an ideal pet for families. They tend to be independent and headstrong, and they are happiest when provided with a large territory to patrol. First time owners may become especially frustrated with their stubborn nature, but experienced owners will often fall in love with the breed.
The Old English Sheepdogs are not only adorable, they’ve got a personality and zest for life that makes them easy to love (and hard to ignore). They are energetic, enthusiastic and they fall deeply in love with their families. It is important that you are prepared for a dog that bonds so strongly with their people, as they commonly experience separation anxiety when left at home for long periods of time.
Old English Sheepdogs can be wonderful pets for first-time owners, but you’ll need to be prepared to provide these dogs with plenty of exercise to help prevent destructive behaviors. They also require frequent grooming to keep their long fluffy coat looking its best.
The Chow Chow is one of the fluffiest dogs in the world, but they are not gigantic by any stretch of the imagination. But while they only weigh about 50 to 80 pounds, they look much larger than they actually are, thanks to their dense, long coat. Remarkably, Chow Chows don’t shed as badly as you may expect and they are pretty easy to groom too.
In fact, Chow Chows are really low maintenance dogs, who don’t require much from their owners. They don’t require a lot of exercise, they usually tolerate being left alone and they won’t keep you up all night barking. However, this self-sufficient personality means that they aren’t terribly affectionate, and they aren’t very friendly with strangers, either. They aren’t the most difficult breed for novice pet owners, but they are better suited for those who’ve had several dogs before.
Tibetan mastiffs are very big dogs, who occasionally exceed 150 pounds in weight and stand up to 26 inches tall at the shoulder. Fortunately, these gigantic and intimidating dogs are generally big softies, who love nothing more than smothering their people with love. They may not greet strangers very warmly, but they usually get along well with other dogs and are gentle with children.
However, these are very intelligent dogs who like to think for themselves. They are not very easy to train, and they are often difficult for novices to control. Like some of the other long-haired breeds listed here, Tibetan mastiffs are not well-suited for hot weather, so they aren’t a good option for those living in the Sun Belt.
Most malamutes can probably be described as fluffy, but some have genetic mutations that make their hair incredibly long. These dogs are often quite striking looking, and they look even bigger than normal malamutes, thanks to their long coat. Just be sure you can deal with mountain-sized mounds of shed fur before you add one of these dogs to your family, as they shed profusely.
Malamutes are rugged, tough dogs, who were originally developed to hunt and drag sleds across the frozen Alaskan landscape. However, despite this tough exterior, malamutes are big softies on the inside. Malamutes tend to love everyone they meet, and they become very attached to their owners. However, thanks to their stubborn nature and penchant for mischief, they aren’t always a good choice for novices.
Bernese Mountain dogs are well-rounded canines, who have a great collection of personality traits. Unlike a number of other big-and-fluffy breeds, these dogs are actually a pretty good option for first-time dog owners. They are very affectionate and love to hang out with their families, and their high intelligence makes them easy to train. Just be sure to socialize them early to ensure they get along with people and other dogs.
However, it is important that you obtain any Bernese Mountain dog from a high-quality, reputable breeder to avoid obtaining a pup with congenital health problems. These dogs have a fairly small gene pool, which means they frequently suffer from a variety of health problems.
Newfoundlands are another good choice for those who are new to the world of dogs. They have a remarkably sweet and laid-back disposition and they love to spend time with their families. They are usually quite sharp, and they pick up commands and routines very quickly. And while they may look intimidating because of their size, Newfoundlands usually greet strangers with a wagging tail and smiling face.
The biggest challenges Newfoundlands present include their tendency to pack on the pounds and the gigantic clumps of hair they shed on a nearly constant basis. So, be sure to watch your Newfoundland’s weight carefully and invest in a good vacuum to make it easier to clean up after your pet.
Again, because the words “big” and “fluffy” can mean slightly different things to different people, you may be able to think of a few other examples. We’d love for you to share them in the comments, and while you are at it, let us know about your experiences with big fluffy dog breeds.