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You Must Know, 20 Best Emotional Support Dog Breeds

Emotional support animals, which seem to get more popular every day, provide therapy for mental illness. ESA helps improve the health and quality of life of those who struggle with mental illness. Any pet can be an ESA, but dogs make the best emotional support animals because they can support people experiencing mental illness.

Many studies have proven that spending time around your dog helps lessen anxiety, depression, and stress. While every dog can offer support, certain breeds have traits that make them more suitable for the role of ESA. Remember that each dog is an individual, and you need to match your personality to that of your pet.

Emotional support dog breeds

If you’re considering getting a new dog as your ESA, here are 20 Best Emotional Support Dog Breeds. These tend to be gentle, laid-back, and friendly. These dog breeds are also typically made to please their humans and check off all the boxes for the emotional support dog. 

1. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The Cavalier King Charles spaniel is on every list as an ESA. They are happy to be in your presence, whether their owners are on the couch or on a long walk. These are great companions and are quick to learn and eager to please.

Referred to as the cuddle bug, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dogs love to cuddle and have a friendly nature. If you’re looking for a gentle, cute, and affectionate buddy, look no further than the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

 Breed Overview

  • Height: 12-14 inches
  • Weight: 13-18 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 9 -14 years

2. Pugs

Pugs are small, charming, friendly, and good at tuning into the emotions of their owners. They can sense your mood and lift it with their cute, adorable cuddles. These qualities make them excellent at being emotional support animals for those with anxiety.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 10-14 inches
  • Weight: 14-18 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

3. Standard Poodle

Standard poodles are generally intelligent, strong, easy to train, and valued as great mental health companions. They love physical activity and can thrive in any environment. There is a little issue with them; they can be anxious when going out in public.

Breed overview

  •         Height: 15-22 inches
  •         Weight: 45-70 pounds
  •         Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

4. Labrador Retriever

As one of the most popular dog breeds, Labradors are known to be some of the gentlest breeds around. They are trustworthy, dependable, and always there to lick your face. It’s easy to train them and teach them tasks, such as laying beside you, resting their head on you, or providing deep pressure therapy, which makes them a good choice for ESA work.

Breed overview 

  •         Height: 20 – 5 inches
  •         Weight: 55-80 pounds
  •         Life Expectancy: 10-12 years

5. Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire terrier is small and cute in size but energetic, friendly, and domineering is their true personality. Its tiny size makes them great ESAs for owners who live in small apartments.

They can be aggressive toward other animals, but it is possible to train them.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 6-7 inches
  • Weight: 2-7 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 13-15 years

6. Border Collie 

Easy to train and excels in various dog sports such as obedience, flyball, agility, tracking, and flying disc competitions. They will motivate and inspire you to get moving even when you don’t feel like it, which makes them a good choice for those who deal with depression. They may be the best breed for you if you want a loving, brainy dog who will keep you active

Breed Overview 

  • Height: 18-22 inches
  • Weight: 30-45 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

7. Corgi

Watching a Corgi play can bring a smile to your face. These energetic working dogs are intelligent, curious, loyal to their owner, eager, and easy to train. Corgis are also known for being aware of their surroundings at all times, which makes them a good choice for an emotional support animal.

Breed Overview 

  • Height: 10-12 inches
  • Weight: 23-28 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

8. Vizsla

Vizsla is well for being loyal, affectionate, and gentle Vizslas are intelligent, quick learners that carry out any task, and their cheerful disposition makes them an excellent choice for ESA. Like pugs, Vizslas are great family dogs.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 21-23 inches
  • Weight: 45-65 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

9. English Bulldog

They thrive best in moderate climates because they have breathing difficulties in hot weather and chill fastly in cold weather. That temperature quality makes them good apartment pets and does not require a yard. English bulldogs are typically low-endurance dogs and need only a moderate amount of exercise, which makes them for those who don’t spend much time exercising or doing other outdoor activities.

Breed overview

  • Height: 12-16 inches
  • Weight: 40-55 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 8-10 years

10. German Shepherd 

Germans shepherds are herders by nature and tend to lead the way, which is great for someone who needs motivation. They are intelligent, responsible, and love a good challenge. These qualities make them highly trainable for various jobs. Their intelligence and friendly nature make them strong contenders as emotional support animals.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 22-26 inches
  • Weight: 50-88 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 9-13 years

11. Golden Retriever

Golden retrievers are one of the most popular breeds among ESA dogs. They are energetic, loving, and super social with other animals and people. Like the Labrador, golden retrievers are a loyal, lively breed that likes a moderate amount of exercise, which makes them good ESA.

Breed Overview 

  • Height: 21 -24 inches
  • Weight: 55-75 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 10-12 years

12. Bichon Frise

These words can define bichon as active, loyal, and small dogs. Due to its size, bichon is suitable for apartment living. Bichons are not known for barking, which makes them great for city dwellers. Moreover, they are happiest to expend energy spending time at your side or cuddling in your lap.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 9-12 inches
  • Weight: 10-20 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

13. Havanese 

Havanese is a good lapdog and good for cuddles and comforting. They are born intelligent, friendly, and entertainers that learn tricks quickly. Havanese are also known for being attuned to your moods and can make you happy when you’re feeling down. 

Breed Overview  

  • Height: 8 -12 inches
  • Weight: 7-13 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 13-15 years

14. Pomeranian

These loving dogs have a lively and outgoing character and are friendly to everyone, making them a perfect choice as an ESA. If you want a pet to become your closest friend, a Pomeranian is a good choice because they love nothing better than being close to their owners at all times.

Breed Overview 

  • Height: 7-12 inches
  • Weight: 3-7 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-16 years

15. Collie

Collies are known to make great support dogs for mental health illnesses like  PTSD ( Post-traumatic stress disorder), as they are highly intuitive to human feelings. They are intelligent, gentle, and skilled at picking up cues from their humans that something isn’t right, all of which are great qualities for an emotional support animal.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 22-26 inches
  • Weight: 50-70 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-14 years

16. Beagle

They are low-maintenance with lovable by nature and greatly enjoy the company of their owners. Beagles possess a personality that includes either active and energetic or cuddly and calm, which ensures that they make great ESAs.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 13-15 inches
  • Weight: 18-30 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years

17. Chihuahua

Like most smaller dogs, Chihuahuas can live or travel anywhere, and for those who have 24/7 emotional support needs, they will never need to leave your side. Chihuahuas are tiny balls of love, with eyes only for their owners, which is good for those experiencing depression.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 6-10 inches
  • Weight: 4-6 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-20 years

18. Irish Wolfhound

Irish wolfhounds are intelligent, loyal, and calm. Their sensitive nature helps them tune into what their owners are feeling. But two factors that make them different from others are they need a large area to breathe and are irritated easily.

Breed Overview 

  • Height: 32-35 inches
  • Weight: 115-180 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 6-10 years

19. Great Dane

The Great Dane makes quite an impression with its friendly, loyal nature and works well with children. They are good at putting nearly everyone at ease, which may be very appealing for someone experiencing mental illness. They are both massive and protective, which means they stand calm in times of stress.

Breed Overview

  • Height: 28-34 inches
  • Weight: 100-200 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 8-10 years

20. Dachshund

This low-grounded dog is one of the cutest emotional support animals, but don’t go by its size. They are born hunters with a keen sense of smell and are emotionally intuitive. They are friendly, loyal, intelligent, playful, and good with kids, which makes them a good choice for an emotional support animal.

 Breed Overview

  • Height: 8-9 inches
  • Weight: 16-32 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 13-16 years


Whatever breed of dog you choose as your emotional support animal, you should take care of them while traveling, at home, at parties, etc., and create a pet-friendly environment that includes furniture, pet toys, and pet foods; and make sure you consult with your registered medical health professional first. If you don’t have an existing one, reach out to us. Trusted by millions of people and having customers worldwide, we at Fast ESA Letter have plenty of medical health professionals with expertise in ESAs.

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Disclaimer: The information in this article is provided for general education and informational purposes only, without any express or implied warranty of any kind, including warranties of accuracy, completeness or fitness for any particular purpose. It is not intended to be and does not constitute financial, legal, tax or any other advice specific to you the user or anyone else. TurtleVerse does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information and shall not be held responsible for any action taken based on the published information.



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