Life is usually without challenges, meaning that we all need someone besides us, be it a human or animal friend. History also teaches us that man and dog have always been best friends. Dogs are not only the best companions, but they are also a source of emotional needs. For this reason, they can be useful in bringing smiles to people who are struggling with mental disorders such as anxiety and depression.
This leads us to the concept of emotional support dogs. But you have to note that not all dogs offer the same level of emotional support. Some (spaniel breeds) breeds are somehow docile, while others are total legends in helping people with mental issues.
So, the question is: who are these legendary breeds? People often engage in serious debate when it comes to choosing the support dog with the right temperament. But the truth is that most breeds can be trained to offer emotional support.
With that said, some dogs offer better support than others. In the next section of this article, we will shade more light on this topic and what role they play in bringing your joy back. Without wasting any minute, here are the top 13 dog breeds that may satisfy emotional needs:
- Labrador Retriever
- German Shepherd
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Golden Retriever
- French Bulldog
Let’s now have a deep dive into emotional support dog breeds’ list.
1. Labrador Retriever
Labrador Retrievers are generally outgoing, active, and friendly. They can live up to 12 years. Males weigh about 65 – 80 pounds, while females weigh 55 – 70 pounds. In terms of height, male Labrador measures about 22.5 – 24.5 inches, while females are 21.5 – 23.5 inches tall.
So, why should you consider a Labrador retriever as an effective emotional support animal?
This breed of dogs is a loyal companion, a comforter, and an honest reflection of your joy. Most people consider labs to be born to be human companions. And true, this breed is extremely gentle and friendly when they are around people. They are probably more playful than most of the breeds listed here. This in-born feature of labs helps to boost your mood and mental state.
Apart from being friendly to humans, labs are also easy going with other dogs. In fact, they are likely to bond with your neighbors and their dogs before you even realize. What they lack in terms of the coat is compensated by their endless affection.
How can a Labrador retriever help you improve your overall health?
- First, these dogs are very active, meaning that they won’t get bored accompanying you on adventure trips, which will lead to an improvement in your physical and mental wellbeing. This also means that they need a lot of walking or exercise. So, you should also be ready to keep them active, for instance, taking them on a quick walk. They are the perfect ESA to travel with.
- Secondly, they are flexible and adaptable. You won’t find it hard to train labs to travel on flights. Moreover, they will adapt to your new environment with ease.
- More importantly, they are friendly and outgoing. So, they can be the best companion to hug and cuddle during your low moments.
One peculiar thing about labs is that they are more food-motivated than other breeds, making them easy to train.
2. German Shepherd
German Shepherds are generally agile, loyal companions, and courageous. They can live up to 10 years. Males are a bit heavy weighing about 65 – 90 pounds, while females weigh 50 – 70 pounds. The former is also taller measuring 24 – 26 inches, while females are 22 – 24 inches.
What makes them good for emotional support?
German shepherds are probably the finest dogs. They are rated highly as an exceptional breed because they can fit most roles. Another notable quality of this breed is that they possess noble character and are extremely intelligent. Given that they are relatively taller than most dogs, they have more smooth curves than sharp angles.
Furthermore, they are highly trainable, so you can personalize how you want to interact with you. Given them affection, and they will give you even more. Walk with them to your favorite places, and they will love you even more. They will also protect you no matter where you are.
With all these qualities, what more could you ask from your dog? They make them the most suitable emotional support animal.
How German Shepherds Support Your Emotional Needs
- German Shepherds are courageous, meaning they can handle the most dangerous situations. They are willing to bet their life to ensure you are safe. They are among the few breeds that are ready to obey their owner’s commands at any cost.
- Their loyalty is unquestionable. Don’t expect them to let you down in offering the much-needed comfort.
- Like labs, German Shepherds are also agile, so they can keep you active when together. Moreover, they are muscular enough to radiate strength and large enough to offer a big hug. Such white dog breeds make it easy for you to cuddle them.
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While German shepherds are more popular for their defensive qualities, they are extremely calm and composed when there is anything alarming. For this reason, you can train them to respond to different situations.
3. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is obedient, friendly, and good looking. Their life span is about 9 – 14 years. Interestingly, they are short, with a typical height of about 13 inches. Their weight ranges from 13 – 18 pounds.
What Makes Cavalier King Charles Spaniel an ESA?
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a member of the English toy spaniel and is the exact definition of a lap dog. As you would expect, this breed has all the attributes of the ultra-shining British royalty. Their charming nature and appealing looks make them one of the most efficacious support dogs. After all, fewer people will resist those huge, glossy eyes.
This breed possesses several positive attributes, top of them being the ability to learn easily. It is also obedient and always ready to take instructions and to be taught the right manners. These are the top qualities required for an ESA. Your Cav should learn how to behave in public, especially in crowded places and during places.
How Can Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Help You Relieve Stress
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is always ready to cuddle you even when you are sitting still, making them the best caterer for your emotional needs. Just don’t hold them back from showing you their affection. The good thing is that they won’t embarrass you when in public places.
- They are exceptionally cute, which will contribute to improving your mood by just looking at them.
- They are flexible and obedient. They will accompany you to most places, be it a new public area or overseas trip. Cavs are also affectionate towards both outdoorsy and homebodies’ owners, hence, they are considered one of the most affectionate dog breeds.
If you already love cats or own one, then you will have an easy time connecting with Cavs, as they tend to like other smaller beings. In fact, they are more likely to befriend your cat on their first encounter.
4. Yorkshire Terrier
Yorkshire Terrier weighs about 7 pounds and is 7 – 8 inches tall. Besides this, they can live for about 11 – 15 years. General qualities include low-allergen, energetic, Feisty.
Why Choose Yorkshire Terrier as Your Companion
This shiny breed possesses a gusty, feisty hearth. If you prioritize looks and style, then its rich golden tan makes it the right candidate to carry around. In any case, it is a tiny dog. This cute terrier can play a great role in improving your mental peace.
But don’t be misled by their small body. While they often flick their innocents, sometimes they can be bossy. These exceptional traits will melt your heart. You will definitely laugh at their interchangeable attitude. On the brother side, these attributes render them trainable.
How Yorkshire Terrier Improves Mental Health
From history, we can learn so many things about Yorkies. They played a significant role during World War 2, as they were used to propel the morale of injured soldiers. This example is a clear indication that Yorkshire Terriers can make the best ESA. Persons with mental disorders can spend their time with this energetic dog to uplift their mood. Besides showering you with lots of affection, Yorkies will entertain you during your dark times, therefore, offering a companionship that you will cherish for years.
Perhaps one of the silent qualities of this dog breed is that it can adapt easily to changing environments. They are, therefore, a great travel companion. In fact, Yorkies are the best choice if you are planning a journey with an ESA.
On top of the above, these terriers are low-allergen and possess a coat with human-like fur. With their ease of bonding and their high intelligence levels, Yorkies possess a true personality for someone looking for an animal that provides constant love, companionship, and laughs.
Corgi is an ESA with sturdy, affectionate, and loyal qualities. On top of this, this breed can offer your companionship for about 12 -13 years and relatively small. In terms of weight, Corgi dogs weigh about 28 – 30 pounds while their maximum height is 12 inches.
What Makes Corgis Right for Emotional Companionship?
Weigh almost 30 pounds and relatively long lifespan, corgis possess all the qualities of a mighty dog in a shrug package. Corgis are short but have strong legs and thighs. With a deep chest, these dogs are completely equipped to sustain extensive exercises. So, they will not tire away if you engage them in long journeys because they can give you company for hours.
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Their overall shape is even-keeled, making them quite agile. They come in several colors, including red, sable, black, fawn, and tan. What makes them special is that their golden heart is filled with unending love for their owners. That is why they made it into this list of top ESAs.
How Do Corgis Help You Manage Stress?
This breed is really good at forming bonds with their owners. Their playful nature and adorable demeanor make them stand out from other dog breeds. Persons with mental disorders, such as anxiety, can seek help by walking along with their corgis.
The good thing about them is that they are loyal and friendly. So, expect them to extract stress out of your dull days with their affection. Since they are adaptable and fast learners, you will not find it hard to train them to suit your needs. For this reason, they are ideal as a safe travel companion.
So, you can easily rely on this breed to have your back every time you are going through an emotional outbreak.
You will rarely regret having this dog for an ESA. They are extremely watchful, independent, and courageous. In fact, in the past, herders use corgis to move their cattle. So, you will not only rely on them for companionship but also for protection.
6. Golden Retriever
Golden retrievers are generally loyal, lively, and outgoing. Male retrievers are about 65 to 75 pounds, while females are 55 – 65 pounds. In terms of height, females are 21.5 – 22.5 inches, while males are 23 – 24 inches.
What Makes Golden Retrievers So Great
Probably that gold of these retrievers is what your mind needs. Golden retrievers are almost similar to Labrador retrievers, so they are also lively dogs. Their muscular, sturdy structure with a dense gold coat is what gives them their identity and name. Other than this, Golden retrievers are intelligent and friendly. So, if you are seeking to be mesmerized by friendly gazes and innocently captivating expressions, then this is an ideal breed for you.
What is important to these dogs is to have a playful company and probably some strenuous exercises. With this knowledge, we can confidently say that these retrievers are perfect as ESA for anyone who needs exercise sessions to keep their thoughts under check.
To get the most out of this breed, you need to keep them active. It will stir their up-to-the-brim energy levels. Their typical pastimes are swimming and fetching.
How Can Golden Retrievers Relieve You of Mental Disorders
- Golden retrievers are famous for their loyalty and protection. They will keep you safe no matter how threatening the situation is. And that is not all, and their peaceful demeanor is enough to lighten your heart.
- While they are energetic and active, they also have a calm side to help relax and ease your anxiety issues. If you often encounter anxiety in public areas, then Golden retrievers are the ideal companion.
- They are not hard to follow instructions, so they are easy to train. Quite frankly, they are eager-to-please, so they are perfect for a family. What is even impressive is that their joyful nature seems to grow with age.
This lovely breed is clever and elegant. Standing at over 15 inches tall, an adult male poodle weighs about 60 – 70 pounds, while females weigh around 40 – 50 pounds. Their lifespan is about 10 -18 years.
Why Poodle Is Ideal for Your Emotional Support
While poodles are usually considered as a luxurious dog, they are actually friendly dogs that can offer protection and companionship. In fact, they are very smart and get along easily with their owners. Due to their incredible intelligence, these dogs are easy to train. So, they can be tamed to offer emotional support.
Additionally, they are kid-friendly, which makes them an even stronger candidate for ESA.
Sometimes, their primped-up expression might mislead you into thinking that they are not active. To friend them, just offer them some physical and mental stimulation, and they will give you friendly gestures.
How Can They Help in Mental Stability?
Initially, poodles were seen as being sissy, but the truth is that they are quite energetic and athletic. This breed is ideal for people who are always on the move. Since they are versatile, you can train them for new places, long journeys, and immense crowds.
Keep in mind that poodles require a lot of grooming. If you aren’t ready for it, then they might not be the best investment for your mental health needs.
An adult Chihuahua weighs around 4 – 6 pounds. Height-wise, they can reach 8 inches. Generally, this breed is loyal, intelligent, and a bit cuddly. The good thing is that they can survive for about 14 – 16 years.
What Makes Chihuahua an Effective ESA?
They are a small package with a huge personality. In fact, Chihuahuas are the best in their category, combining both comfort and style. If you are looking for a dog to offer emotional support at the same time carry it around as a fashion statement, then they are your ideal type.
These dogs stand tall among American ancient breeds. With their charm and unwavering loyalty, Chihuahuas have the right amount of punch if you need emotional support.
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With that said, note that this breed requires a lot of training and socializing. Otherwise, they will slowly turn into a ruler in your home. The good thing is that this compact breed is highly adaptable, so you can take it with you anywhere without much stress.
How Does Chihuahua Help in Reducing Stress?
They are one of the neediest breeds ever. So, if you are looking for an ideal breed that will uplift your mood in an instant, then Chihuahua is the real thing. In fact, they can sense your sadness and try to cheer you up by snuggling in your laps. Basically, they are the perfect antidote to your depression.
You will have to provide enough lap time if you want to enjoy relaxation time with your pet, therefore, providing a simple solution to relieve your mental stress with ESA.
Given that he is extremely loyal, you can trust chihuahua to meet your emotional needs. Its small body structure makes it hard to handle tiring adventures such as long walks. Nonetheless, you can enjoy the companionship of this dog if your pet and groom it well.
Chihuahuas love attention, so you should create plenty of time to stay with them. They also dislike noisy children and might find it hard to stay with them. So, you should train your little chihuahua before letting them into your house.
9. French Bulldog
An adult French bulldog weighs about 28 pounds or even less. In terms of height, they won’t pass the 13-inch mark. They are playful, smart, and adoptable dogs that can live up to 12 years.
How Can French Bulldogs Support You As ESA?
With their big bat years and steady disposition, these dogs are not only extra protective, but they are also one of the most popular dog breeds in the world. They are also adaptable, making them great companions for long trips without being concerned about their tantrums. Their irresistible charm will suppress your stressful situation.
Frenchie’s are ultra-affectionate, so they are likely to leave you charmed, even when there is enough reason. While this breed doesn’t bark as much as other dogs, they are super alert. So, you can have them as your emotional support animal or your watchdog.
How Can They Help Restore Your Mental Instability?
Whether you are a couple or single and looking for emotional support, a French bulldog is your answer. Because of their friendly demeanor, these dogs can get attached to most people.
Anyone with a little love for dogs or cats in their heart can befriend French bulldogs in an instant. Choosing them as your ESA can help you check your anxiety and other mental instabilities by generating warmth from their limitless cuddles.
Frenchie’s don’t require much more than just a human company. They will settle easily even in large families.
Dachshund is quite a friendly and curious dog. With a life span of about 12 – 15 years, this breed can grow up to 9 inches. The miniature ones are about 5 – 6 inches tall. When it comes to weight, Dachshunds will rarely go beyond 32 pounds.
What Makes Them Suitable for ESA?
Most people call it a hotdog or Weiner dog. These names were inspired by Dachshunds’ elongated body structure and short legs, which make them one of the cutest creatures. Another positive trait of Dachshund is that they are super tenacious in achieving their goal, which makes them a superstar among the low canine kingdom.
Their boldness and effervescent spirit make them a good candidate for an ESA. These dogs come in two sizes and three different coat types, which include long-haired, smooth, and wirehaired), so you choose what suits your taste.
If you are searching for a smart, big-dog bark dog with dial-up vigilance, then this breed might be the answer. Besides offering emotional support, Dachshunds are fine to watchdogs.
How Can They Minimize Mental Instabilities?
If you are struggling with anxiety and depression, this breed is the best for snuggles, thus satisfying your emotional needs. This makes these dogs a delightful family addition because they are also friendly with kids.
Due to their elongated bodies, these dogs are not fit for long-distance walks, leaping exercises, and strenuous swimming sessions. But on the indoors, they are great partners to cuddle with. You can choose them as your main source of affection.
These dogs are loving and charming, but they can be mischievous. With a height of up to 13 inches, pugs can live for about 13 – 15 years. In terms of weight, Pugs weigh around 14 – 18 pounds.
Why Choose Pugs As an ESA?
Having been chosen as the favorite dog by a majority of people worldwide, these dogs perfectly fit their motto ‘love and let love’.
Well, pugs are literally like packages because of their minute yet muscular bodies. Their sparkling colors and round eyes can easily charm you and lower your stress level. Likewise, their wrinkled forehead will let you find a strong connection with their humanlike expressions, such as surprise, happiness, curiosity, and many more.
No matter your living situation, whether you are staying single or with a family of 10, living with kids, dwelling in the city, or have other pets in the house, pugs have no issue being a new addition, as long as you keep them company. What is likable about these dogs is that they are always ready to shower you with deep affection and a genuine companion when you are going through tough periods.
How Do Pugs Heal Your Mental Disorders?
If you are looking for an ultimate source of real affection to cure your mental issues, then you should consider keeping a pug. It will supply you with an endless pool of love and friendship.
They are not only cheerful when you are feeding them, but also eager to please you even when you are just sitting on the couch. Furthermore, they can survive in a variety of conditions, but they do best in moderate temperatures, so you can walk with them outside, take on overseas trips, or even just sit together in the house.
Playful by nature, this breed is very outdoorsy. They are also a great company for children, which can charm you to peace even more.
These dogs are genuinely friendly, quiet, and adaptable. In terms of height, males can extend to up to 23.5 inches, while females will grow up to 21 inches. They are also relatively huge, where males can weigh up to 23.5 pounds while females can grow up to 50 pounds.
What Make them Right To Be Used As An ESA
Samoyed is one of the top ESAs because they have beauty, brains, and everything it takes to be flaunted around.
Samoyed possesses a luscious thick coat robust that keeps them warm from the cold. They are powerful and tireless pets, which can over maximum protection during your journeys. More importantly, these dogs are just beautiful and affectionate. Their warms plus their high functional level will make it hard for you to resist their emotional support.
Besides their beauty, their mesmerizing smiles seem pretty cool. These dogs often smile while facing up to prevent drooling. It also helps them fight icicle formation on their small faces.
Another positive training of samoyed dogs is that they are intelligent with graceful demeanor, therefore, making them ideal to be a furry companion by your side.
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Samoyeds Can Improve Your Mental Health Through the Following Ways:
What makes these dogs a good candidate to be considered as an ESA is that they are extremely smart. They can sense your moods and respond accordingly. In fact, they are eagerly ready to offer hugs and affection when they sense you are unhappy. Their social nature means that they are good for big families. Samoyed is also your dog if you are staying in a busy neighborhood.
Worried about being in a crowd? Well, Samoyed is always ready to do the job for you, as they aren’t afraid of people, and they rarely leave you. On top of this, they can give you all the love and attention. To alert them to smother you with love, just give them a snuggle.
Make sure to leave Samoyeds with somebody; otherwise, they will start being destructive. They need some attention to keep active and loving. So, you might need to train them to follow instructions.
Huskies are relatively heavy animals, with females weighing 35 – 50 pounds, while males weigh 45 – 60 pounds. In terms of height, males can grow up to 23.5 inches while adult females are 20 – 22 inches tall. Other than that, these dogs are generally outgoing and loyal, only that they can be mischievous. Most of them will live for about 12 – 14 years.
Why Are Huskies Considered One of the Top Emotional Support Animals?
If you are yearning for a dog that is friendly and fast, with some personality, then you should consider getting yourself a husky. With Their high endurance and lush thick coat, huskies believe in working in packs. Perhaps their best trait is their ability to charm and smile at you. Their beauty will sway you in an instant.
This breed is often famous for their effortless gait. Huskies are generally quick to obey commands and act when necessary, making them ideal for a travel buddy. Besides this, they will always be on guard no matter your situation. Huskies are ready to help you deal with light loads.
How Can Huskies Improve Your Mental Health?
The huskies are best as a family breed. These dogs love to stay around people and even other dogs. This reason alone will make them the best source of affection and love if you are lonely. Furthermore, huskies are extremely upbeat. They love chasing around smaller pets.
What is best with these dogs is that they are a naturally clean breed. In fact, they don’t have any dog smell. So, get ready for great hugs and long snuggles.
Now that you have an idea about each of the above breeds, let’s discuss something about emotional support dogs.
What Is the Need for Support Dogs?
The main aim of staying with dogs is to spread love, joy, and affection. That is why human beings normally tag along these creatures to offer them emotional support. They are usually used by people with mental disorders. The good thing is that they don’t need so much training like service dogs. The mere presence will help someone who is going through a rough situation. On the other hand there are some of the best service dog breeds who don’t require much training and serve the same purpose as service dogs do.
With the above knowledge, these cuddly pets help their owners by offering the right amount of attention, which help them cope up with various mental conditions, which include the following:
The fact that these dogs can be extremely effective for supporting humans to manage their mental instabilities, they can be taken along anywhere these people go. In fact, most people who rely on dogs for emotional support often travel with their dogs to crowded places and overseas trips. This liberty can be obtained with a valid Emotional Support Animal certification. Just make sure to get the right source of an ESA letter to move around with your pet. Emotional support dogs are usually people-friendly. That is why they love being in a family environment.
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Dogs are all about attention, affection, and loyalty. They are rarely concerned about your designation, personality, or financial status. Their innocence and pure hearts are open to spread smiles to their faces and protect them.
This reason, together with a bunch of useful features, has made them one of the best emotional support animals. Any of the above-listed dogs can offer you the best love and affection, as long as you train them well. Hopefully, You have identified one of them as your emotional support partner.