Dogs come in tons of different coat lengths and types, but we generally think of them as short-haired, long-haired, and maybe medium-haired. However, coat types are extremely variable between breeds and that’s most evident when looking at long-haired dogs. Coat lengths vary from shaggy to dragging the ground and coat types can range anywhere from fine like long, straight human hair to corded like dreadlocks. Even the amount of grooming and coat maintenance varies significantly between all these breeds. Here are some of the long-haired dogs you’re probably familiar with and a few that you may never see outside of dog shows!
The Top 17 Long-Haired Dog Breeds
1. Yorkshire Terrier
You’ve probably seen these chipper little dogs bopping around everywhere from dog parks to purses. Generally, you’ll see Yorkies that have been groomed and have shorter coats, but a show coat on a Yorkie is long, luxurious, and pools on the ground around them. Yorkies are pretty fearless, often being accused of “little dog syndrome”, believing they’re much larger than they are. They’re tiny though and have an ideal weight range of 4-7 pounds. They’re usually just under 10 inches tall and live up to 16 years.
This little dog is the national dog of Cuba and, while not common, you will likely see one from time to time. Havanese have a fluffy double coat that makes them look bigger than they actually are. They come in a variety of colors and are commonly confused as Shih Tzus or Maltese. These friendly dogs are sturdy, smart, and compact, making them ideal for city living. They have big personalities packed into a body that usually doesn’t reach taller than 11 inches and a weight that rarely is above 13 pounds. Havanese can live up to 16 years.
3. Coton de Tulear
Known as the Royal Dog of Madagascar, these white dogs are outgoing, bright, and charming. Coton de Tulears may be small but they are not fragile. They have a cottony coat that is fluffy and soft to the touch when kept well-groomed. This is one of the breeds that you’re likely to see with a bow on their head to hold their long hair out of their eyes. They stand at 11 inches or less and weigh up to 15 pounds. The Coton de Tulear has a life expectancy of up to 19 years.
4. Shih Tzu
These double-coated Tibetan “lion dogs” are a very popular long-haired dog breed for their cute looks and outgoing personalities. They were bred to keep royalty company and are happy to sit in your lap all day. You may see this short-snouted dog with hair that has been groomed and cut short, but a Shih Tzu show coat is fluffy and long, just barely dusting the ground. They frequently require a bow or clip to keep their hair out of their eyes. Shih Tzus can be just over 10 inches in height, up to 16 pounds, and can live up to 18 years.
This ancient dog breed has a long white coat that dusts the ground but is less cottony than the Coton de Tulear’s coat. Maltese are athletic and make great pint-sized watchdogs. They have playful, fun personalities, but are also known for their stubbornness, which can make training a challenge. These toy dogs reach up to 9 inches in height and breed standard calls for them to weigh less than 7 pounds. They can live up to 15 years and are sturdy companions.
Bred to be royal lapdogs, the Pekingese has a cute flat snout and a loyal disposition. Their long, fluffy coats often make them look wider than they are tall, giving them an adorable appearance that can melt the coldest hearts. Pekingese may be small, standing under 9 inches and weighing less than 14 pounds, but they can be a handful. Their undying loyalty may make them unfriendly or even aggressive toward strangers, visitors, and anyone they perceive may be a threat to their owner. They live up to 14 years and are content to sit with or near you.
7. Lhasa Apso
Another Tibetan breed, Lhasas were bred to be sentinels or alert dogs at palaces and monasteries alike. Known for their long, floor-length coats, these dogs are intelligent and confident, but also known to be aloof and cold toward strangers. They may need to have their hair pulled back out of their eyes and will happily let you know if they spot something or someone. Lhasas stand up to 11 inches, weigh up to 18 pounds, and can live up to 15 years.
8. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Rapidly growing in popularity, the adorable Cavalier is anything but cavalier. They are playful, gentle, and little tail-wagging machines. Cavaliers have silky, medium-long coats with longer feathers on the legs, haunches, and tail. This breed combines the loyalty of a small-breed dog with the energy of a hunting dog, making them a great pick for an active household looking for a small dog. Cavaliers stand up to 13 inches, weigh up to 18 pounds, and can live to be 15 years old.
An unusual breed you likely don’t spot very often, Pulis are known for their corded coat, but should not be confused with the Komondor. Pulis are small dogs and were bred as livestock guardians, so they have active, energetic personalities. Some people call Pulis “the acrobats of the dog world”. They are intelligent and eager to learn, making them great candidates for farm work, agility, and obedience. Pulis stand up to 17 inches tall, weigh up to 35 pounds, making them stockier than the previously mentioned breeds, and can live to be 15 years old.
Another breed you’re unlikely to spot on your daily walks, the Briard is a large dog bred for livestock herding and guarding. They have distinctive, tall, pointed ears that have long hair cascading from them. Briards are devoted, loving, and intelligent, but it’s important to keep in mind that they are high-energy dogs. These dogs need a job to do or an active lifestyle that burns their excess energy. The size of these dogs and their energy level makes them poor matches for apartment and city living. Briards can reach 27 inches in height, 100 pounds, and can live to be 12 years old.
11. Bearded Collie
Sometimes confused with the Old English Sheepdog, Bearded Collies are lean, powerful dogs bred for herding. Beardies are energetic and require a highly active lifestyle, making them a great companion for activities like hiking and bikejoring. They have amusing, goofy personalities and are exceptionally friendly dogs. Beardies can be willful and difficult to train, but they are trainable with patience and a willingness to help them burn energy. Beardies can be just under 24 inches in height, weigh up to 55 pounds, and live up to 14 years.
This unusual livestock guardian breed has long, corded, white hair that allows it to blend in with sheep, giving it the ability to surprise predators. They are loyal and protective, which can make them difficult to handle, especially around strangers and anything they perceive as a threat, so they are not for the faint of heart. Komondors are powerful dogs that can exceed 100 pounds and 28 inches in height, so their size makes it even more important they have an owner who can handle them. Komondors are athletic and agile and can live to be 12 years old.
13. Rough Collie
Made popular by Lassie, the Rough Collie is a majestic dog with a long, fluffy coat. They are gentle and perceptive, making them excellent family pets. Bred to be herding dogs, they do best when given a job or allowed an outlet for their energy. Otherwise, they may start herding anything and everything they can, including children and other pets. These devoted, graceful dogs can stand just over 2 feet in height, weigh up to 75 pounds, and live to be 14 years old.
14. Afghan Hound
Possibly the most glam in the dog world, the Afghan Hound has long, straight hair that can reach the ground. Their delicate features and thin, curled tail give them an ethereal appearance. Afghan Hounds are sighthounds and can run extremely fast, so they need a large open space to run. They can be laid-back dogs but do need daily exercise and do best in active households. Afghan Hounds can be loyal but independent and should always be kept leashed or fenced since they are sighthounds and may bolt after other animals they spot. Afghan Hounds can be up to 27 inches tall, 60 pounds, and live 15 years.
15. Old English Sheepdog
These shaggy, fluffy dogs are recognizable for their bob-tails and blue and grey coats. Old English Sheepdogs are agreeable dogs that were bred for herding. They are playful, gentle, and adaptable, making them good family dogs. They’re highly intelligent and love learning new things, so you may have to come up with novel games with the Old English Sheepdog. These dogs can reach upwards of 22 inches tall, up to 100 pounds, and can live to be 12 years old.
Newfoundlands are gentle giants that are patient and gentle with people. They can be a little on the drooly side, but they make up for this with their pleasant, loyal personalities and friendliness. A sweet temperament is in the breed standard for the Newfoundland and they are known for liking children. These dogs can reach up to 150 pounds and stand around 28 inches tall, so they are huge dogs, making them generally unsuitable for apartment and city living. Newfoundlands live to around 10 years old.
17. Great Pyrenees
These powerful dogs are known for their gentle, laid-back nature. They were bred as livestock guardians and love having a job. A Great Pyrenees without a job and fenced yard may be prone to walkabouts, disappearing for hours or days at a time. Great Pyrenees can leap into action quickly when needed, but they are usually content to mosey around. These dogs are very tall, able to reach up to 32 inches in height, and they can weigh upwards of 100 pounds. Great Pyrenees live to be around 12 years old.
Long-haired dogs come in all shapes, sizes, and personalities, so there’s something for just about everyone. However, they do all come with some level of grooming needs, so that should be a consideration if you’re choosing a dog for your household. Activity level also plays a part because high-energy dogs will often become destructive or aggressive when not provided enrichment and exercise. Long-haired dogs are a ton of fun, though, especially seeing how uniquely cute all of them are!
Check out a few other popular dog breed lists:
- 14 Black and White Dog Breeds (with Pictures)
- 7 Korean Dog Breeds (with Pictures)
- 15 French Dog Breeds (with Pictures)
Featured Image Credit: Karen Arnold from Pixabay