14 Best Dog Breeds For Hiking

helloBARK!
By helloBARK!
Updated on 10 October 2022

Do you want a dog that can match your enthusiasm for hiking?

If you’re thinking about getting a dog that can join you on your adventures, you’ll need to carefully consider the breed that best suits your lifestyle.

So if you’re someone who likes to hit the trail as much as possible, you’ll want a versatile dog breed that can handle the peaks and troughs of hiking.

Some dog breeds are natural-born explorers and will thrive on challenging adventures whatever the weather may be.

In this article, we spoke to a number of experts, ranging from dog trainers to veterinarians, dog behaviorists to experienced dog owners, to find out some of the best dog breeds for hiking.

With the introduction over, let’s take a look at the 14 best dog breeds for hiking.

Bernese Mountain Dog

Bernese Mountain Dog (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Bernese Mountain Dog (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Bernese Mountain Dog is a large breed that was originally bred in the Swiss Alps to help farmers with herding and pulling carts. They are incredibly strong and have boundless energy, making them great hiking companions. They weigh between 80-120 pounds, making them a larger sized dog breed.

Bernese Mountain Dogs are also known for being very friendly and good around other people and dogs. They are easy to train and generally obey commands well. However, their size can make them difficult to control on hikes, and their thick coats only make them an ideal hiking buddy in cooler weather.

Suggested by Jeff Netzley, Dog Trainer And Creator of Dog Training Near You

Jack Russell Terriers

Jack Russell Terrier (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Jack Russell Terrier (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Jack Russell Terriers are energetic and playful dogs that love sniffing and exploring. Your dog will enjoy the hiking trip as much as you do. Plus, they have the energy to handle a long and sometimes demanding hike.

Statistics will tell you Jacks need 90 minutes of high-quality exercise daily to keep them happy. Now imagine how much energy your Jack will have once you get out in the wild? Plus, Jacks are small, so even if your dog eventually tires out, you can easily put him in a backpack and continue walking. Or if you need to go through high bushes that can be problematic for dogs, Jacks can easily be handheld for 10 to 15 minutes.

The most important part? Jacks are extremely loyal, they will never leave you or run away from you. Yes, he might follow a scent and sniff, but you can bet your life that a Jack will come back to you.

Suggested by Aleksandar Mishkov, Editor And Owner Of The Daily Tail

Great Pyrenees

Great Pryrenees (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Great Pryrenees (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Great Pyrenees are powerful hunting dogs with a strong desire to protect their families. They are happiest when working and playing alongside humans. Because they tend to get excited easily, they require socialization. That way, they won’t startle easily or chase anything off.

Suggested by Alex Romilly, Editor And Pet Expert Of Mydogbreed.com

Poodle

Poodle (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Poodle (Photo: Adobe Stock)

If you’re looking for a dog to accompany you on your hikes, then you might want to consider a Poodle. They are a very active breed, which makes them perfect for hiking. They also have a very keen sense of smell, which is perfect for a hike where the terrain is full of scents. The poodle is also very intelligent, which means that it can easily learn the commands and tricks that you need it to perform.

Suggested by Aaron Rice, Expert Dog Trainer At Stayyy

Blue Heeler

Blue Heeler (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Blue Heeler (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The reality is most dogs can out-hike a normal person effortlessly, but if hiking were a competitive sport where a dog was put to the test against the most extreme demands one could possibly face hiking, I’d probably go with a Blue Heeler.

Why? They’ve got elite endless stamina, exceptional tolerance for both the heat and the cold, with a weather resistant coat. They’re agile and can evade predators and navigate any obstacle. Their compact size means they can easily run up and down hills.

They’re alert with those pricked up ears, along with their intelligence, so this dog will detect any wildlife quickly, whether a bear or a venomous snake. They have an unusual knack for safely killing venomous snakes. They’ve got resilient feet and generally tough and durable.

Suggested by Dr. Amanda Takiguchi, Veterinarian And Founder of Trending Breeds

Weimaraner

Weimaraner dog in a grass meadow on a summer day (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Weimaraner dog in a grass meadow on a summer day (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Weimaraner is a large hunting dog that was originally bred in Germany. They are incredibly athletic and have seemingly endless energy, making them perfect hiking companions. They typically weigh between 70-85 pounds, making them best suited for an owner who can handle their size.

Weimaraners are also known for being very obedient and easy to train. They are good around other people and dogs, although they may try to chase small animals they come across on the trail. Weimaraners need a lot of exercise, so they’re best suited for experienced hikers who can provide them with the physical activity they need.

Suggested by Jeff Netzley, Dog Trainer And Creator of Dog Training Near You

German Shepherd

German Shepherd running with a stick (Photo: Adobe Stock)

German Shepherd running with a stick (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The German Shepherd is a sturdy breed with a high-energy level, making them well-suited for hiking. These dogs love to have fun and are great at training people and kids, even if they’re young. Their friendly demeanor makes them perfect companions for people who need a little extra motivation while out enjoying nature!

Suggested by Alex Romilly, Editor And Pet Expert Of Mydogbreed.com

Border Collie

Border Collie (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Border Collie (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Border Collie is another herding dog that was bred to work all day in the Scottish Highlands. They are incredibly intelligent and have boundless energy, making them ideal hiking companions. They love to run and play, and will happily walk or run for miles. They weigh between 30-50 pounds, making them manageable on hikes.

Border Collies are also known for being very obedient and easy to train. They generally do not like to pull on leashes, making them a pleasure to walk with. They are also generally good around other people and dogs.

Suggested by Jeff Netzley, Dog Trainer And Creator of Dog Training Near You

German Shorthaired Pointer

German Shorthaired Pointer (Photo: Adobe Stock)

German Shorthaired Pointer (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The best hiking dogs are according to dog trainers and pet behaviorist breeds that would thrive with this activity and who tend to enjoy all the physical aspects of a good hike. They are natural athletes who enjoy running, sniffing, and traveling to different terrains.

Bred to be an all-purpose dog, you can expect German Shorthaired Pointers to be up for any adventure! Amongst one of the healthiest dog breeds, the German Shorthaired Pointer is known as a canine triathlete due to his love for hunting, pointing.

Suggested by Leonardo Gomez, Founder of Try Runball

Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retriever (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Labrador Retriever (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Labrador Retriever is one of the best dogs for hiking. They are big enough to traverse the rocky terrain of the hiking trail, they are intelligent, and have good stamina.

They are strong, and, depending on their age and condition, are generally able to walk the whole day on a hiking trail.

Suggested by Hilda Wong, Founder of Bark Posts

Siberian Husky

Black, tan and white Siberian Huskies (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Black, tan and white Siberian Huskies (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Siberian Huskies are highly athletic sled dogs that are not only protective but also extremely affectionate. If you want to take them hiking or camping, you may find yourself having to carry a lot of equipment. However, huskies are wonderful family pets. They’re independent yet incredibly sensitive and loyal.

Suggested by Alex Romilly, Editor And Pet Expert Of Mydogbreed.com

Doberman

Doberman (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Doberman (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Dobermans are intelligent, strong-willed, and protective. They are well suited for hiking due to their size and stamina. They are able to climb trees and swim, making them perfect for exploring nature.

Suggested by James, Founder Of Neurodoglux.com

Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Golden Retriever (Photo: Adobe Stock)

I am an experienced dog owner and occasionally hike with my dogs. But, I particularly like hiking with my Golden Retriever – Oosh. He makes the perfect companion especially during a hike.

The Golden Retriever is the best and most popular choice for hiking because it is a large breed that has a lot of stamina. It also has an easy-going temperament and is very friendly with people and other animals. They can be a little too enthusiastic about checking out their surroundings, so they may require a gentle hand to keep them in line.

When hiking with a Golden Retriever, they are content to follow you and do what you ask them to do (if well-trained)! Keep in mind, however, that they are a large breed with a lot of energy so they need to be given plenty of space on their walks. If you find that they are happily trotting along at your side and not overexerting themselves, then let them do what they want.

Rule of thumb: never let your dog roam off-leash in wilderness areas because they may injure other wildlife.

Suggested by Carole Murphy, Experienced Golden Retriever Owner And Creative Content Designer At SewingThis.com

Beagle

Beagle with tri color coat (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Beagle with tri color coat (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Beagles are often eager to accompany their owners on adventures, including hikes. Beagles have plenty of stamina to keep up; just keep their smaller stature in mind if you’re really putting in the miles.

Beagles are legendary for their friendliness, so they won’t cause you any problems when encountering other hikers, but they are apt to chase small, furry critters that cross your path. Fortunately, their vocal nature means that they’ll scare off most critters before you even get close.

Suggested by Jack Williams, CEO and Founder Of HandymanReviewed

Black Goldendoodle (Photo: Adobe Stock)
Mini Goldendoodle Pros And Cons
Kaffe the Curly-Coated Retriever (Photo: @kaffegram / Instagram)
Curly-Coated Retriever Pros And Cons
Mini Bernedoodle Bernie (Photo: bernie_dood / Instagram)
Mini Bernedoodle
Belgian Malinois in the woods (Photo: Adobe Stock)
Belgian Malinois Pros And Cons
Shiloh Shepherd vs King Shepherd (Photo: Adobe Stock)
Shiloh Shepherd Vs King Shepherd: What’s The Difference?