This Dog Breed Is Considered 'The Sassiest' By a Pet Behavioral Expert

Sassy dogs including a shih tzu and a chihuahua

"Sassy" is often reserved for two-year-olds, three-nagers and teenagers. Indeed, these age groups are a whole breed. 

Yet, dogs can be sassy too—especially dogs of a certain breed. Perhaps you've encountered the type. Dogs who aren't afraid to let you know how they really feel. These pups walk down the sidewalk like it's a catwalk, and they own it. Like humans, dogs have distinct 'tudes and lifestyle needs.

"Different dog breeds have different temperaments, traits, grooming needs, energy levels and behaviors," says Nicole Ellis, CPDT, a certified professional dog trainer and pet lifestyle expert with Rover.

Of course, breed isn't the only thing that shapes a pup's personality. Just like we can't paint specific generations of humans with one broad brush, there will be differences between dogs of the same breed. However, knowing about common breed traits is a great first step when you're considering adding a dog to your family.

"Understanding these traits can help you choose a dog that fits with your lifestyle, living situation and household," Ellis adds. "For instance, if you live in a small apartment and prefer a calm and low-energy dog, a Border Collie might not be the best choice, whereas a smaller, less active breed like a Bichon Frise might be more suitable."

OK, so which breed brings all the sassy vibes? Ellis shares her pick for the sassiest dog breed with Parade.

Related: These 30 Super-Fast Dog Breeds Are So Quick, It’s Almost Im-Paw-Sible To Believe

"The Sassiest" Dog Breed, According to a Pet Behavioral Expert

The Chihuahua.

"Chihuahuas are a super sassy breed," Ellis says. (This writer and Chihuahua mom 100/10 can confirm she's right.)

"These small pups have very bold, outgoing personalities and act bigger than they are, making them sassy yet charming," continues Ellis.

The big energy Chihuahuas bring is extra funny because of how small they are. A toy breed, grown Chihuahuas are 5 to 8 inches and no more than six pounds, according to the American Kennel Club (AKC).

"Due to their size, they can do great in small or large homes," Ellis explains. "They just want to be busy with you and may want to be the head of the household."

The AKC also says that Chihuahuas are very vocal (if you know, you know) and one of the higher-energy breeds. They're very affectionate with family members, though they aren't great with young kids (generally). Keep these likely traits in mind when considering this so-sassy little breed.



"Chihuahuas are curious and energetic dogs," Ellis says. "They are also quite social dogs that love companionship and attention from their families. A home where they can spend time with their family members and receive plenty of love, affection and social interaction is ideal for their well-being."

While Chihuahuas do swimmingly in active households, you'll want to keep their size in mind when planning adventures—especially when the temperature drops.

"They can be sensitive to cold temperatures due to their small size, so Chihuahuas do best as a dog that is mostly indoors," Ellis says.

That doesn't mean daily struts down the sidewalk or in park settings in the spring are off the table, though.

Related: 30 Cutest Dog Breeds of All Time

3 Other Sassy Dog Breeds

Curious about what dog breeds come close to Chihuahuas in terms of sassiness? Ellis calls out a few others:

  • Pomeranians. The AKC calls the Pom, another toy breed, “lively and bold." They're very vocal and affectionate—so expect lap dogs who are unafraid to tell you all about the highly dangerous leaf blowing by the window.

  • Boston Terriers. Friendly and funny, Boston Terriers are generally more welcoming of kids and other pets than Chis and Poms, according to the AKC.

  • Shiba Inus. Want a bigger dog? Shiba Inus grow to be up to 16.5 inches and 23 pounds, per the AKC. The ancient pups that are native to Japan are becoming more popular in the Western world for their fox-like appearance and spunky personality.

Related: What Your Dog's Personality Says About You, According to Pet Behaviorists

How to Use Personality to Pick Your Pup

Personality is an important factor when choosing a furry family member. You'll want to ensure the dog jives with everyone in the home.

"Bring all family members to meet the dog," Ellis suggests. "Some dogs are more nervous around smaller children, and it's great for the dog to meet all potential members of the pack."

Like humans, dogs often hesitate to show their whole selves at a first meet-and-greet. However, with Ellis' pro tips, you can channel your inner dog trainer and get a better idea.

"Try things like seeing if a pup follows you around, interact with them and see how they respond," Ellis suggests. "Maybe even bring a toy or two and see if they want to bring it back to you or run away and be independent. You can learn a lot about a dog's personality through play."

Next: 30 Low-Maintenance Dog Breeds for First-Time or Busy Pup Owners


  • Nicole Ellis, CPDT, a certified professional dog trainer and pet lifestyle expert with Rover