What Is The Hardest Dog To Train (25 Hardest Breeds)

When it comes to dog training, there are a lot of things that need to be taken into consideration. Before we begin this article, we just want to state that all dogs can be trained in a positive way.

While some dogs are naturally more stubborn than others, this doesn’t mean that they are untrainable. 

25 of the hardest dog breeds to train

Training requires a lot of patience and perseverance. As an owner or a dog trainer, you need to have the correct attitude and the drive to teach your dog in the correct way.​

A lot of owners assume that their dog is untrainable, when in fact, they are not training the dog in the correct way. It is always important to carry out the correct training techniques and carefully research before training your dog.

Positive reinforcement is important and something that should always be practiced. 

In addition to this, you will need to ensure that you have a good understanding of the breed you are looking to purchase or train. This will help you significantly.

Some breeds are naturally better suited to owners that have experience with training and have the time and willingness to work on commands and training with a dog. 

In this article, we will be discussing 25 dog breeds that are often seen as hard to train due to their personality types. We will be providing encouragement on how you can overcome the difficulties of training them to help improve their commands and obedience. 

25 Of The Hardest Dog Breeds To Train

1. Harrier

A harrier is a fairly difficult dog to train due to its high activity levels and their love for hunting and exploring. As a hunting dog they are very prey driven.

As this is a natural instinct, it is something almost impossible to prevent.

2. Spanish Water Dog

Spanish Water Dogs are notoriously known for the amount of exercise they need.

If you are not able to keep up with the exercise they need, this can have a knock on effect on the training process, and they will have a lot of excess energy.

3. Husky

Huskies are often linked to being difficult to train due to their stubborn nature and strength. When trained and handled correctly, they are both a responsive and loving dog to own.

4. Labrador Retriever

You may be surprised to see Labrador Retrievers on this list. They are rather energetic dogs, and people often mistake them for being easy to train.

Due to their energetic nature and size, you need to have a good understanding of the correct training methods.

5. Irish Wolfhounds

These are fairly large dogs, in fact, they are the tallest breed that can be owned! As a result you need to have a good idea of how to correctly train and handle them.

This is especially true when it comes to walking and their manners within the home. 

6. Rottweiler

Rottweilers are often seen as an aggressive and reactive dog, which is often down to incorrect training, rather than the breed itself.

Due to their stubbornness and shear strength, it is often recommended that experienced dog owners purchase this breed, rather than a first time owner. 

7. Akita

While Akitas are a beautiful breed, they are known for their stubbornness, which can present itself during training. As they are a loyal breed, when trained correctly they are both loyal and obedient dogs

8. Malamute

Malamutes are a large and strong breed of dog. They do tend to have stubborn tendencies, which can be difficult when it comes to training.

Patience and perseverance is needed when training a malamute. Even so, the training is entirely possible.

9. Beagle

Beagles are a beautiful breed of dog that many first time owners will choose.

However, they can be quite mischievous, and a lot of patience and time needs to be put into the training process. Once they are trained correctly and positively, they are a great breed to own. 

10. Border Collie

This is another breed you may be surprised to see on this list. Border collies can be more difficult to train if you do not carry out the training from a young age.

They are known to herd as this is instinctive, and they need a lot of exercise. Without the exercise of mental stimulation, they can become destructive, which is something you need to know how to handle correctly. 

11. English Foxhound

As their name suggests, foxhounds are natural hunters. They have a natural instinct to chase after their prey.

This can potentially be an issue when it comes to smaller animals in the home. The correct methods and training is needed.

12. Wire Fox Terrier

Again, wire fox terriers are known to be difficult to train because they enjoy independence, and they have a high prey drive. 

13. Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell’s are a popular breed of dog to own, especially for new pet owners. Many people don’t really understand how much training they need.

They can be slightly aggressive with other dogs, and the correct socialization from a young age is needed to help prevent this.

14. Bulldog

Bulldogs are a surprisingly strong dog that is quite independent in its thinking. A lot of time and patience is needed during the training process. 

15. Pitbull Terriers

This breed of dog is often seen as a dangerous, and sometimes illegal, dog to own. They are known to have potentially aggressive tendencies.

They should be owned and trained by those who have a good understanding and experience of the breed. 

16. Chow Chow

While chow chows look adorable and fluffy, they are known to be wary of strangers. They can potentially become defensive.

As an owner you need to have a good understanding on how to correctly deal with this, through using the correct training methods.

17. Bullmastiff

This breed is often linked to being stubborn, and they are very strong. They tend to pull on the leash, and the correct training methods are needed to help prevent this. 

18. Basset Hound

This is another breed that people are shocked to discover can be difficult to train. They are a very stubborn breed that is not always responsive to training to begin with. 

19. Bloodhound

Bloodhounds are another breed of dog that are known to be particularly stubborn. A lot of training is needed from a young age to help prevent this from occurring. 

20. Dalmatian

Dalmations are another breed that many new dog owners purchase. However, they are known for being mischievous and playful. This is due to the amount of energy they have.

The correct amount of exercise and training is needed to combat this. 

21. Irish Setter

This is another large breed of dog that needs the correct handling and training from a young age.

22. Pug

Pugs are goody and loving, but they can often be difficult to toilet train. This is something that needs to be worked on when they are puppies to help ensure that they go outside to go to the toilet. 

23. Basenji

This is a very interesting breed of dog that typically only true dog lovers have heard of. The correct research and training is needed when owning this breed due to their often aloof personalities. 

24. Afghan Hound

These hounds have beautiful coats, but are known to be very stubborn. This matched with their size can cause them to be more difficult to own and train correctly. 

25. Kerry Blue Terrier

Lastly, we have the Kerry blue terrier. This breed is very stubborn, even though it is a quick learner. A lot of patience is required. 


We hope you have found this article useful and insightful. As we have already discussed, no dog is impossible to train.

As an owner you have a duty and responsibility to put the correct amount of time and energy into training your dog in a positive way.

While the majority of the dog breeds included in this article can be quite stubborn, with the correct methods and experience they can be trained well. ​They are all fantastic breeds to consider, especially when you have carried out the correct research on what it entails to own them.

Daniel Johnson