7 High-Energy Dog Breeds to Keep You Active

Feb 21, 2023

Dalmatian jumping for toy.

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Dogs truly are man’s best friend, and you want a pup that can match your lifestyle perfectly. When you’re out and about or just want a happy dog to play with, you need one of the high-energy dog breeds that will keep you on your toes. These dog breeds are better suited for owners with some experience with dogs already, as well as a wide-open space like a yard to get some of their energy out when you’re not actively training, playing or exercising with them.

1. Labrador Retriever

If you’re looking for a companion to keep you busy, the Labrador Retriever is an excellent choice. Renowned for hunting and sporting, it’s a great breed for anyone who loves to get outdoors. The Labrador Retriever is the most popular dog breed in the United States, as it’s remained at the top of the charts for over 20 years. It’s a friendly, easy-to-train dog that wouldn’t mind accompanying you on a long, challenging adventure.

2. Greyhound

Greyhounds aren’t necessarily high-energy dogs by default, but they require a lot of activity. These dogs are famous for their high prey drive. You’ll need a secure backyard for them to run around in or sturdy equipment for walks and exercise. They need to exercise regularly, or they’ll turn to destructive behavior. This breed is an excellent motivator to get you off the couch and keep you busy.

3. Siberian Husky

Siberian Huskies are sled dogs, and other breeds have a hard time matching their love for exercise. This breed can run up to 30 miles per hour, and it has outstanding stamina that can allow it to run over 100 miles a day easily. They require plenty of exercise. Unfortunately, Siberian Huskies can be a bit stubborn and unruly, so it takes a determined owner to raise them right. They can be hard to control for first-time dog owners.

4. Border Collie 

Border Collies are among the most intelligent dog breeds because of how quickly they learn and please their owners. This breed will be perfect if you want a dog you can take off-leash hiking, as they’ll likely learn quicker. They might not be as distracted by the noises in the woods as much as other breeds. They quickly pick up on tricks and commands, making them ideal exercise partners. You can teach them how to navigate agility courses, keeping both of you in shape as you go through trials.

5. Beagle

These dogs are energetic and fun-loving. They also tend to love mischief and barking, so they make a lot of noise. Most Beagles tend to calm down as they mature, but their hyperactivity makes them ideal if you want a smaller dog. You can take them anywhere, and they can complete any long walk or tricky exercise with you.

6. Australian Shepherd

Many see Australian Shepherds and Border Collies as the same breed, but they’re very different. You’ll often see “Miniature” Australian Shepherd puppies, too — meaning you’ll have all the energy in a much smaller package! 

About one in five Australian Shepherd puppies will have a naturally bobbed tail, which is a recessive trait after years of breeding them without tails, so they’d be safer when herding. Because these dogs were initially bred to keep livestock in line, you’ll see much of that same determination reflected in any challenge you take on with your Aussie puppy.

7. Dalmatian

While it might be an inconvenient pick, the Dalmatian is a perfect dog to choose for people who prioritize stamina over speed. Dalmatians used to be popular as “carriage dogs” that would follow the horses who drew carriages. The idea was that the Dalmatians could target any robbers’ horses while the carriage’s human security dealt with the robbers themselves. Even today, Dalmatians are famous for their great endurance and high intelligence, even when working with horses, allowing them to be some of the greatest exercise partners.

High-Energy Dog Breeds Keep You Accountable

You should never buy a dog before you feel like you’re ready for one. Puppies are a huge responsibility, and no matter the dog’s age, you’ll have to put consistency and determination into training your pup for whatever you want it to do with you. High-energy dog breeds are some of the best companions because they’ll love you as any animal should, but they’ll also motivate you to get up and go for a walk, run, hike or some other activity. You can keep yourself fit while giving your dog the best life possible.

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Jack Shaw is a senior writer at Modded. Jack is an avid enthusiast for keeping up with personal health and enjoying nature. He has over five years of experience writing in the men's lifestyle niche, and has written extensively on topics of fitness, exploring the outdoors and men's interests. His writings have been featured in SportsEd TV, Love Inc., and Offroad Xtreme among many more publications.