The golden retriever’s number one skill set is loyalty, says Dr Choczynski Johnson. “Their classic cuddle involves a heart-melting heavy chin on the lap and an upward gaze. This form of bonding and emotional support, pair with unbridled enthusiasm when arriving home makes the golden retriever a great candidate,” she says. A routine of feeding, walking and grooming a dog provides stability. They are excited to see you, but like all dogs, also eager to stretch their legs and get some exercise – and after you take a pleasant stroll together and a few rounds of fetch, the golden will be content to hang out with you.
In addition to being one of the cutest lap dogs, the Yorkie is a blue-chip candidate as an emotional support dog for many reasons. For starters, Yorkies are portable. They’re petite puptarts at just 2-3kg and 20cm tall – perfect for when you need a spunky and confident sidekick to help you navigate social situations that make you feel uneasy. At home, they’re playful, energetic and oh-so affectionate snugglers. Yorkies aren’t intimidating guard dogs by any means, but by nature, they are very protective of their human. As such, they are first-rate watchdogs and will alert you of anything suspicious with a hearty bark.
There’s no getting around it. Mixed breed dogs are some of the cutest dogs on the planet and often the best of many breeds. In addition to being adorable, a mixed breed can check all your boxes, whether you want an active dog to get you out of the house or a champion napper for cosy nights in. They all have the potential to be loyal and affectionate. Plus, mixed breeds tend to be the healthiest of many breeds because they come from a wider gene pool and are less prone to hereditary issues. Adopting a dog from a shelter has surprising benefits for you too. “Rescuing a dog can sometimes have even greater meaning emotionally, as many times, after some time has passed, it may feel like they actually rescued you,” says Ellis.