A lot of us are single and loving it — but that doesn't mean we don't want a strong partner by our side. We'd just prefer said partner wasn't human.
If you're rollin' solo or live alone, these 10 dog breeds make for great companions. If you adopt one, they're sure to be your new BFF.
1. Top dog for apartment-dwellers: English Bulldog
The English Bulldog is relatively docile (dare we say lazy?). While diminutive compared to a traditional guard dog, the stocky build, fearsome face and general demeanor will give potential aggressors pause. But because they're so agreeable, it takes a lot (like someone attacking Mommy) to really set them off, so while some (especially males) may be somewhat dog-aggressive, you have less to worry about when walking them in public areas of the complex, even if children are around.
Next Up: Top dog for the go-getter
Updated by Sarah Long on 3/2/17
2. Top dog for the go-getter: Retired racing Greyhound
A racing Greyhound retires at the tender age of 2 to 5 years, but will live as long as 14. They lived their racing lives in kennels, so they're accustomed to behaving when unattended for long periods. They need a good jog once a day, but their exercise can double as yours. Just make sure they're always on a leash when they're not in an enclosed area — even the retired ones can run up to 45 miles per hour, and you can only hit about 12 to 15.
3. Top dog for the 'fraidy-cat (large breed): Boxer
Boxers are fiercely loyal with a sweet disposition. If anything did happen to you, rest assured, they're more than capable of holding their own — but with an intimidatingly broad chest and bully-like face (think Bulldog and Pit Bull breeds), it's unlikely they'd have to do more than stare intently.
4. Top dog for the 'fraidy-cat (small breed): Chihuahua
A Chihuahua's bark is bigger than its bite — waaay bigger. Nefarious figures rarely appreciate the loud, imploring, attention-grabbing temper-tantrums they're capable of. But don't think for a second that's their only guard-dog trait. They're courageous and difficult to intimidate. You can't expect the same level of physical protection as from a Boxer, but you shouldn't be surprised if they try, either.
Next Up: Top dog for the sneezer
5. Top dog for the sneezer: Labradoodle
Labradoodles were specifically bred as hypoallergenic guide dogs. A cross between a Poodle and a Labrador, they can also be specially bred for other traits like lower shedding or less aggression using multigenerational breeding techniques (don't worry, that doesn't imply mating dogs in the same family tree — at least not where a reputable breeder is concerned).
Next Up: Top dog for the coed
6. Top dog for the college student: Pug
Pugs are small dogs, so they're perfect for college students who tend to live in cramped quarters. Better yet, they're adaptable, so your constant moving won't faze these little guys. They need to be walked for toilet time, but indoor play meets their exercise requirements just fine. They snore, but it's adorable.
Next Up: Top dog for the mature maven
7. Top dog for the mature maven: Schnauzer
Schnauzers are great dogs for older or retired singles. They're great companions, make great watchdogs and (bonus!) don't require a lot of grooming. After all, you've got grandkids to spoil rotten. They also come in miniature and standard, so you can have your choice of sizes.
Next Up: Top dog for the single supermom
8. Top dog for the single parent: Standard Poodle
Not only are Standard Poodles great with children, they make wonderful watchdogs. As an added bonus, they're the hypoallergenic component of the mixed Labradoodle. They're good-natured and gentle and make excellent playmates for kids. An active poodle is also a good running companion for you.
Next Up: Top dog for the fearless freelancer
9. Top dog for the fearless freelancer: Great Dane
When you work from home, dogs can be a challenge. Even if your clients know you work at home, you still don't need dogs barking their heads off to get attention while you're trying to get things done, or worse, when you're on an important call. Great Danes are gentle giants. They're calm and rarely bark. But a word to the wise: While they don't bark often, when they do, it's loud and deep, so it will surely be heard on the other end of a call.
Next Up: Top dog for the fitness-obsessed
10. Top dog for the fitness-obsessed: Border Collie
Border Collies were bred for herding, so it's no surprise they're active and love running. You can bring your Border Collie on your daily run or take him on a good, long hike. He's a sure-footed companion for anyone who is active.
Before you go, check out our slideshow below.