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6 Top difficult dog breeds

Maria Mora is a freelance writer and single mom fueled by coffee, questionable time management skills, toaster oven waffles and the color orange. She lives in Florida with her two young sons. If you see her on Twitter, tell her to stop p...

Dogs that are worth the extra effort

Think you have what it takes to train and love a high-maintenance dog? These six dog breeds are known for being difficult, but each breed has its own rewards. Check out the top six difficult dog breeds.

What makes a dog difficult? Is it temperament? Grooming requirements? Energy? Health? When it comes to these six dog breeds, each poses a unique challenge. Find out why these six popular breeds can test your mettle.

1

German shepherd

German Shepherd

Image source: bowernm

Striking to look at, the German shepherd is a highly intelligent breed known as a working dog. Because of the German shepherd’s large size and need for structure and activity, this can be a difficult breed for anyone who isn’t committed to serious training and exercise. German shepherds are sometimes prone to health problems. Always buy from a reputable breeder and follow up with your vet.

2

American pit bull terrier

American Pit Bull Terrier

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Fiercely protective, the American pit bull terrier is characterized in popular culture as an aggressive, mean breed. While some studies have shown this breed to be responsible for more bites than other breeds, that statistic is likely the result of failure to train and socialize the individual dogs in question. The difficulty in raising a pit bull is overcoming the stigma surrounding the breed. With proper training and socialization, American pit bull terriers make excellent family dogs.

3

Beagle

Beagle

Image source: jordie1245

Wonderful family dogs, beagles are a high-energy breed with a compact physique. While friendly and very loyal, beagles present challenges for those who are looking for a dog to train for obedience. You will get the best results if you’re an experienced trainer or work with a trainer. Many beagles are also prone to howling and barking, and may have weight issues if not properly exercised.

4

Greyhound

Greyhound

Image source: jkahlin

Bred as race dogs, greyhounds are sleek, large dogs that can run very fast. Contrary to popular belief, greyhounds do not require extensive exercise throughout the day. Though they’re very fast when sprinting, they don’t crave running for extended periods of time. The difficulty in raising greyhounds, which are most commonly adopted as rescue pets, is that they have a tendency to sprint away and must be firmly leashed when walking.

5

Siberian husky

Siberian Husky

Image source: shinjie_rim

Wolf-like in appearance, the Siberian husky is a particularly beautiful breed of dog. These strong, hardy dogs were originally bred to pull sleds in winter climates. While loyal and intelligent, a Siberian husky requires a serious devotion to training and exercise. The difficulty in this breed lies in the dog’s tendency to act out when it's bored and hasn't been properly trained.

6

English bulldog

English Bulldog

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Bulldogs are characterized by unmistakable traits including underbites, rolls of skin, heavy jowls and stocky build. Bulldogs are lovable and docile dogs that are great for families and those who live in apartments. Because they’re prone to health issues such as hip problems and problems with temperature regulation, however, bulldogs make this list of top difficult dogs.

More dog breeds

Meet the breed: Herding breeds
The truth about aggressive dog breeds
Why your next dog should be a mutt

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