Top 11 Most Popular Dog Breeds in Singapore and Their Characteristics

Dogs are great companions. They are the ever loyal friend that you can count on to brighten your day no matter what else is happening in your life. They are the perfect addition to any family.

If you’re thinking of getting a dog, you may be wondering which breed to get. There are over 300 different dog breeds in the world. However, not all of them are suitable for your family. In fact, if you live in a HDB, your choices for breeds will be even more limited.

The cost of owning a dog in Singapore

A dog is a great pet to have. They are cute, always joyful and terribly loyal. However, they can cost you a pretty penny depending on the breed you choose. As a general rule of thumb, the larger your dog, the bigger the expenses. It’s also important to note that some breeds are more prone to certain medical conditions that may increase the cost of care.

If you’re planning to adopt a dog, you should consider costs such as the adoption fee, the cost of purchasing the dog, veterinary fees, vaccinations, micro-chipping, food, bed, bowl, toys, licensing and training.

Dog owners in Singapore spend anywhere between $20,000 and $80,000 throughout the lifetime of their dogs.

Most popular dog breeds

There are various factors to consider when choosing a dog. These include the size, activity requirements and temperament of the dog. The following is a list of the most popular dogs amongst Singaporeans that are HDB-approved and their characteristics.

  1. Shi Tzu

This breed originated from China. Its name means ‘lion dog’. It’s easy to see why people love this breed so much. Its furry silky double coat and flat face make it look like an Ewok from Star Wars. Many people who adopt these dogs opt to keep their coats short for easier maintenance. They are a friendly and sweet breed that is both affectionate and trusting.

The only downside of having a Shi Tzu is that they are prone to heat stroke.

  1. Jack Russel Terrier

If you were a fan of the movie ‘The Mask’, you’ll be familiar with this breed. They are small in stature and very playful, making them great family pets. They’re sure to give your kids a lot of exercise and tire them out for you.

This breed requires a lot of exercise. You should therefore not bring this dog to your home if you can’t provide a high level of activity on a daily basis. Failure to train your dog properly will result in havoc in your home.

  1. Maltese

When you see this breed, it won’t be surprising why Singaporeans love it so much. This small sized dog is not only friendly, but also quite cute. It has long soft white hair that flows to the ground. Despite this, they don’t shed very much. You therefore don’t have to worry too much about cleanup. They are a great companion and have enjoyed royal status for hundreds of years.

  1. Golden retriever

This working and hunting dog is a family favorite all over the world and in Singapore too. It features a gold coat in various shades. Their coats darken as they grow older. It is an excellent dog for families with young children especially. Just like the Jack Terrier, the Golden Retriever requires a great deal of exercise.

  1. Miniature Shnauzer

This dog is known for its intelligence and big heart. It is a fun loving dog that was initially bred as a guard dog. It is a small dog that is fairly active. It is easy to train. However, you will need to invest in a great leash for walks outside with this dog.

  1. Chihuahua

This is the world’s smallest dog. It is known for having a long life. Some live for as long as 18 years. These dogs often become very attached to their owners. They are also great watch dogs as they are very suspicious of strangers.

They are a great choice for those living in HDB flats because of their small size. However, you will still have to take your dog out for a walk every day for 20 to 30 minutes.

  1. Labrador Retriever

This is a large dog. However, it is very friendly and loyal. They make amazing companions and are great as working dogs. They were initially bred for physically demanding work. They therefore require a lot of exercise in order to vent all their pent-up energy. They will otherwise turn to destroying household items including anything that can fit in their mouths.

They are otherwise mild mannered dots that are energetic and intelligent. They are also good natured.

  1. Poodle

This is yet another small dog. Though it was originally bred for hunting of fowl, it is widely known as a high-end dog.

They have thick coats of fur that require regular grooming. You will therefore have to consider the cost of a professional groomer if you adopt this dog. You will also have to ensure proper training of your dog. They are highly intelligent.

These dogs can be destructive when bored. You should therefore ensure that your dog gets enough exercise daily.

  1. Pomeranian

Also known as ‘Pom Pom’, this breed is a popular family pet. The small dog features a foxy look. It is has a delicate structure and is therefore suitable for families with older children that can handle it gently. It has a thick coat, making it prone to overheating.

  1. Pug

These small dogs originated from China. They are known for their wrinkly faces and large round eyes. Their small size makes them a perfect pet for those living in HDB flats. They come in a variety of colors including black, silver, apricot and fawn.

These dogs are incredibly sociable. However, they can be stubborn sometimes. They love to get attention from people and often want to cuddle. They can’t be left alone for long periods of time.

You will therefore have to consider some sort of care for the dog while you’re at work and the children are in school.

These dogs are not suitable for families with very young children. They are shy and defensive. Rough play can scare them.

  1. Yorkshire Terrier

This breed is originally from England. Though small in stature, these dogs often live for a long time, with some living as long as 16 years. They feature long coats of fur that flow to the ground. Despite this, they are hypoallergenic and hardly shed any hair even when brushed or bathed. They require professional grooming. For this reason, many owners opt to keep their fur short.

These dogs are attention seekers and tend to be overprotective of their owners. They are prone to digestive issues, low blood sugar and bronchitis. This breed is not suitable for families with small children. However, they can make great companions for the elderly. They adjust quite well to living in the confined space of a HDB flat.

Be sure to select a breed that you can afford to care for in the long term. The breed you select should also suit your personality. Choose a dog that can be your companion for the long term.

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