8 Best Dog Breeds for West Coast Living

The West Coast lifestyle is unique to that of the rest of the country; out here where the sun is constantly shining (except most of the Northwest) things tend to be a little more laid-back than out East. Your choice in pet needs to reflect that. West Coasters need dogs that are easy going, but still adventurous as there are way too many things to see and do here to stay inside for very long.

Labrador Retrieverlabrador retriever

The Lab is America’s favorite pet and that certainly holds true out West; they’re the most owned breed in California, Oregon and Washington. These versatile pups are game for everything, whether you enjoy spending your days soaking up the California sun on the beach of hiking up to the top of Mt. Hood. They’re excessively friendly, easy to care for and pretty darn athletic to boot!

BulldogEnglish Bulldog

They might not be the most active breed of dogs, but these mighty little fellas are some of the most chill dudes on the planet. You can take them along with you to the beach where they’ll happily romp through the sand (for about a minute before they get tired again) or take them with you out to eat and they’ll sit contently under the table waiting for a treat. So what if they’re not natural-born athletes; they make up for it with how relaxed and adorable they are.


The ultimate outdoor dog would be right at home on the West Coast thanks to miles upon miles of mountain trails to explore, sandy shores to swim along, and area’s active lifestyle. There’s no better breed for folks who love embracing the coast’s beautiful expanse of nature than the Vizsla. The only issue you might have is that these guys need room to run, so if you’re living in cramped quarters in say, LA or Seattle, you might find yourself with more dog than your house can handle.

American Water SpanielAmerican Water Spaniel

Out west water can be found pretty much everywhere you go, so having a dog that enjoys getting wet is essential. That’s why the American Water Spaniel is a great option. These medium-sized dogs are active and love to swim, but also have a wavy coat that is great for getting them dry. They prefer to be on the move a lot so you’ll need to do a little more than just sit at the beach all day to keep one of these fulfilled.

Border CollieBorder Collie

Walk along the beaches of Southern California and you’ll find loads of people hanging around tossing Frisbees along the sands. Which breed is synonymous with catching those flying discs in mid-air? The Border Collie. These pups are highly athletic and agile and love nothing more than trampling through the water and sand during a game of fetch. Collies are often praised for their intelligence, so they can be a little difficult to train.

Airedale TerrierAiredale Terrier

The Airedale Terrier is a great choice to people living up north in Washington and Oregon thanks to an abundance of energy and the ability to easily adapt to changing climates. These guys do well in the hot summer heat but are also cool during the winter and rain. Their endurance is top-notch so they make great running and hiking buddies, but they do require a bit more exercise than the average pup. Only very active people should own one of these.

Golden RetrieverGolden Retriever

Golden Retrievers were born to live by the water, whether that be ocean or lake doesn’t really matter. These guys are an affable breed and get along well with everyone, making them great family pets and easy to take with you out and about. They love to explore and are never short on energy, but also don’t require so much that raising one turns into a pain. They’re a great middle-of-the-road breed that works well with both moderately and extremely active households.

German Shorthaired PointerGerman Shorthaired Pointer

If you’re in need of a pup that can handle the massive mountains found along the West, look no further than the German Shorthaired Pointer. These beastly dogs are top-tier athletes with the muscle and paws to handle trekking over large rocks and hills. They also have a penchant for leaping into the air at random, which is pretty entertaining and definitely helps them when it comes to climbing over boulders. They need a lot of room to run, but they’re easy to care for thanks to a sweet temperament and fun-loving nature.

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