Most Difficult Dog Breeds to Train

20 Most Difficult Dog Breeds to Train

Implementing appropriate training for a particular breed of dog is always necessary. This is the best way to modify the dog’s behavior towards more positive habits. However, some dog breeds can be challenging to train.

Here we have analyzed the 20 most difficult dog breeds to train. We also mention many tips on how to achieve excellent training success with the following breeds.

Why are some breeds harder than others?

One of the main reasons is the particular personality of each dog breed. Many dogs have a much more developed hunting instinct than others. Dogs tend to follow their instincts above all else.

So, the personality of each dog breed is what mainly interferes with training. However, this does not mean that training a particular breed of dog is impossible. With the proper knowledge of a dog breed, efficient movement can be applied.

20 Most Difficult Dog Breeds to Train

Most Difficult Dog Breeds to Train

1. Beagle

This breed can be one of the most difficult to train due to its natural hunting instinct. When it comes to tracking prey, this dog can be very efficient. However, when this dog chases a scent, its concentration is somewhat weak. To avoid these weaknesses, an excellent level of authority is required.

At the same time, the training and the trainer must be applied with time and patience. Given enough time, this dog can become an excellent, efficiently trained companion. Obedience commands should be used every day and not just in daily training sessions. To this can be added some mental and physical stimulation.

2. Basset Hound

This is a dog that has been specially designed to be able to hunt hares. There are some difficulties in training it, and it is due to its remarkable ability to track a scent. His level of concentration is one of the highest when he is chasing prey by smell.

This can cause him to be a stubborn and distant dog, even though he is very affectionate and friendly. An adequate level of authority is needed before training begins. In turn, consistency along with patience are essential factors for any activity of these dogs. A social movement can also be implemented as a compliment.

3. Chow Chow

This is a dog that is aggressive and strong enough, in addition to its highly majestic appearance. This is a dog that has been specially created to protect and is one of the oldest breeds. This allows it to make a dog that feels superior and adopts the role of alpha very quickly. This is why training can be somewhat tricky.

This is not a dog that seeks to please its owner all the time. It is a selfish dog that protects its territoriality. Negative reinforcement should be avoided because of this dog’s behavior. Positive reinforcement and training and socialization is the best way to train this breed of dog.

4. Pit Bull

This is a breed of dog that has been specially designed as a fighting dog. However, it is also a breed of dog that is eager to please its owners and friends. Training with treats and praise can be implemented as a reward for obedience.

However, their attention span is limited because they are easily bored. They need constant attention and daily exercise. They also require a socialization process as they can be very aggressive with other dogs. 

5. Pomeranian

This is one of the most famous dogs that come from an arctic working dog breed. However, this dog can quickly become somewhat aggressive and shy without early socialization. This type of dog can be challenging to train due to its small size. In general, the use of cages is implemented as they feel more secure.

Positive reinforcement and rewards are required for regular obedience training to be practical. Exercise may also be necessary to reduce constant barking. All of this can be solved with consistent and robust training, along with an excellent authority figure.

6. Pug

This is a dog that mainly emerged for monks and royalty in different areas of Asia. It is a very lovable dog that can be an excellent companion for anyone. It is a breed that is difficult to train despite its playful, loyal and intelligent temperament.

It is necessary to implement positive reinforcement and praise rather than the implementation of punishment in training. They can also get bored quickly, so constant energy is required in the activity itself. One way or another, a trainer with sufficient patience is needed for training this dog.

7. Fox Terrier

This is a dog that initially emerged to support fox hunting. In addition to continuing to use these dogs for hunting, you can also see these animals in different dog shows. Many dogs of this breed can be trained to develop excellent agility as well as learning tricks.

These types of dogs are curious and self-confident, which can interfere somewhat with training. They also require a lot of mental and physical exercise as they are outgoing and active. Therefore, an authority figure is required and a strong bond between the dog and its owner.

8. Pekingese

This dog is one of the breeds with the most stubborn personality but also very loyal. It was a great companion for Buddhist monks and royalty in China. Its adorable face and long hair make it one of the most beautiful animals in existence. However, it is a dog with a stubborn personality that always wants to be in command.

Therefore, it is essential to train them with an authority figure that exercises dominance over these dogs. Treats may be the best way to develop efficient training along with praise. It is also a dog that can demonstrate obedience with the right words. It is recommended to socialize this dog along with exercise.

9. Chihuahua

This is one of the most miniature breeds in existence today and is a dog originating from Mexico. They are highly protective and fierce, as well as being very loyal. It can be effortless to overprotect this dog which generates an aggressive personality with everyone in general. So it is recommended to socialize this dog from a young age.

Most of the time, it requires professional experience with this breed of dog. Otherwise, it would be somewhat difficult to obtain concrete results in their personality and behavior. Once proper training is implemented, this dog can be very attentive and friendly. 

10. West Highland White Terrier

Here is another small dog with a stubborn, independent, and intelligent personality. When this dog is not entertaining, it can rely on a comfortable and safe place like a crate. That is why implementing a crate to this dog’s training can be a good idea. Rewards are required for the training to be efficient.

At the same time, daily training sessions will not be enough to see concrete results. In general, daily reinforcement is required throughout the day. Training should also be implemented to be quiet, as this is a very barky dog. With proper training, they can be excellent pets and companions. 

11. Afghan Hound

One of the most challenging dogs to train is undoubtedly this Afghan Hound. This is a dog that comes from the mountainous regions of Afghanistan. A superior intelligence complements their almost feline personality. However, they do have an exceptionally emotional and physical sensation that can interfere with training.

Their high level of independence can also be another factor that can impair or delay training results. This is a dog that requires persistent, patient, and gentle exercise. It is best to have a professional in this breed of dog to obtain adequate results. 

12. Bloodhound

This dog has an excellent tracking ability when it comes to missing persons, wild boars, or servants. This dog is usually associated with a superb detective ability. Its high concentration when breathing can be a significant obstacle when it comes to implementing any training.

With the proper training, this dog can demonstrate a significant predisposition, tranquility, and companionship with its owners. It only requires a professional who can avoid stubbornness.

13. Dalmatian

This is one of the most distinguished dogs that can demonstrate nervous or very energetic behavior. Its personality can be somewhat disruptive and disobedient because it is an intelligent dog breed. This is a dog that needs a significant expenditure of mental and physical energy.

A set of rewards is recommended for training to take effect. Some of his toys could be an obstacle to distract him and get his attention.

14. Basenji

Today it is a trendy show dog and pet in various parts of the world. This hunting dog of Central African origin has some difficulties when it comes to training. It is a dog that gets bored very quickly, which decreases its attention span.

It is not recommended to apply punishments but positive reinforcements such as praise and treats. In turn, training with a professional and a crate may be the best way to obtain a good result.

15. English Mastiff

It is one of the most popular dogs in various parts of the world and can be an excellent family member with proper training. This dog can respond well to owners’ commands if some aspects of its personality are considered.

Gentle yet firm training is recommended. This way, this dog can respond to commands in the right way.

16. Jack Russell Terrier

Here we have a dog created by John Russell, an English person in the 19th century. This dog has an adventurous, active, and independent personality. Even a dog has been created to work, so this can be an obstacle in training.

A good level of consistency and discipline are more than enough to complete the training of this dog. At the same time, its hunting instinct should be avoided with socialization training.

17. Siberian Husky

This dog can easily assume the role of alpha. It is a breed from the cold areas of Siberia in Russia. So its hunting dog instinct is combined with its pack dog instinct.

It is recommended to implement training with rewards and a strong authority figure. It is also recommended to modify their digging, chewing, jumping, and biting behavior. 

18. Dachshund

This dog of German origin has been a breed used as a relative of hounds and hunting burrow-dwelling animals. An authority figure is required since these dogs have the characteristic to please.

Punishments in training should be avoided. Instead, it is recommended to use a set of positive reinforcements, such as praise and treats. Also, the attention spans of these dogs are pretty limited in a day.

19. Boston Terrier

People who enjoy dogs of English origin undoubtedly consider this dog for its loyal, friendly, intelligent, and eager to please personality. However, this is an overly energetic dog that needs exercise and behavioral boundaries.

Therefore, the trainer must represent an authority figure. Some verbal commands can be combined with positive reinforcement.

20. German Shepherd

These dogs are characterized mainly by their great looks and level of intelligence. This breed of dog is often chosen for military purposes, rescue, guard dogs, or police dogs.

These animals can be overly protective and loyal, which is combined with a certain level of aggressiveness. This can be a problem for training, as bites and attacks on people or strange dogs should be avoided.

Tips for Training Difficult Dog Breeds

  • Training and coaching should be combined with a good level of patience.
  • Little rewards should be incorporated in response to minor successes.
  • Training should encompass small steps and commands.
  • Some environmental distractions should be eliminated.
  • It is recommended that other animals or the dog’s toys be kept away.
  • Consistent training is necessary to see results.
  • Different rewards, such as praise and treats, should be implemented.
  • It is recommended to apply training along with a good level of socialization.


Although some dogs and dog breeds are challenging to train, these tips can be handy. Different dogs and breeds may require other times to complete their training. However, there is always a way for each dog to modify its behavior towards a more positive set of habits.

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