Note: This article contains affiliate links (hyperlinks, widgets, or through images), which means I receive compensation if you purchase a product through them. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and/or believe will add value to my readers. Visit my disclosure page for more information.
For many homes, a dog isn’t just a pet but a four-legged extension of your family. And some families might have needs that require help from special pets. Conditions like depression, anxiety, PTSD, or other cognitive disorders occur in more families than most would think. So, emotional support animals can be incredibly effective at easing the symptoms of these difficult conditions.
In a world with hundreds of breeds of dogs, various qualities make each one undeniably lovable in its own way, making it difficult to choose the right one as an emotional support animal for your family.
With the proper training, any breed has the potential to make a stellar ESA animal. But to help with the decision-making process, here are a few breeds with a long history of being effective (and adorable) ESA animals for families.Emotional support animals provide their humans with therapeutic benefits. Check out some of our favorites!Click To Tweet
BEST EMOTIONAL SUPPORT DOG BREEDS
It’s no secret that labs are some of America’s favorite dogs. These high-energy helpers live up to their names as “retrievers.’ They are loyal, loving, and joyous.
Labs are happy to serve up some cuddles or sloppy kisses whenever their owners let them. Plus, they’re ready to curl up with any member of the family at any time.
These dogs can vary from around 50 to 80 pounds, and these gentle giants can be very helpful to those with cognitive disorders.
Before opting to get a labrador of your own, make sure to check the laws for emotional support animal registration in Texas or other regions to ensure your family qualifies.
It’s also worth noting that ESA animal laws aren’t limited to just dogs! Therapy animals can come in all shapes and sizes.
Pugs are a charming little breed. The ability of these expressive dogs to spark joy is almost without match. They are incredibly friendly and known for their love for children, which could make them a fantastic addition to your family.
This breed is fun, even-tempered, very friendly, making it an excellent pet to have if you would like to bring your ESA animal with you for trips outside of the home.
Bulldogs are a true delight. These dogs are small, kind, and affectionate, making this a breed perfect for those in apartments or with less active lifestyles.
With bulldogs, owners should be aware of some of their medical issues that could cause unfortunate problems down the line. They are, however, terrific and adorable companions.
Best Emotional Support Dogs that are Hypoallergenic: Poodles and Doodles
Poodles, or any of the variants of poodles, are hypoallergenic breeds that are perfect for those in need of a service animal that won’t cause allergies.
In addition to being a sneeze-free companion, poodles are famous for their calm temperament and their intelligence. They are friendly to humans and other dogs and are easy to train.
These loving, protective dogs could make the perfect ESA animal for your family if you’re looking for an active dog with an instinct to defend its family.
German Shepherds are a high-energy breed that needs a lot of training. However, these highly motivated and agile dogs can help your family emotionally and physically if needed.
While Pitbulls are a controversial breed, they are highly misunderstood creatures. Despite the various stories you may have heard, you can train this breed to be anything you want.
Pitbulls are an affectionate and kind breed that might love cuddling more than any of their counterparts.
A bonus to adopting one is that you can be a part of ending the stigma of such a lovely breed that could be very supportive for your family.
This list can help guide you to the perfect pup for your lifestyle if you are considering bringing an emotional support animal home to your family.
Still, it’s important to remember that any breed could be the perfect one to support your home with enough love, training, and guidance.
What do you think are the best emotional support dog breeds for anxiety and depression?
Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.