Brown Dog Breeds

Reviewed By Kyoko •  Updated: 01/12/21 •  11 min read
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There are so many dog breeds and coat colors to choose from! The variety is dizzying when you think about it! But what if you happen to love brown dog breeds? Are you thinking about adopting a brown dog? If so, then you’ve come to the right place!

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We’ve done the research and come up with a list of brown dog breeds! You’ll find brown dogs of from breeds that are large and small! Let’s get started!

Big Brown Dog Breeds

Irish Water Spaniel

The Irish Water Spaniel is one of the tallest of the brown dog breeds! Along with their large size, these dogs are also famous for their huge personalities! These dogs are also very active and make great companions for joggers, hikers, and other active people.

These are dogs that love swimming and water sports. They were bred to be retrievers, especially waterfowl. In fact, this brown dog breed’s coat protects the dogs from the cold and wet. What’s more, these dogs have webbed feet! Yes, you read that correctly! Their webbed feet help them swim better and run/walk in the mud.

Some people mistake Irish Water Spaniels for poodles; however, these two breeds are completely separate. However, similar to a poodle, these brown dogs are extremely intelligent and are known to be clowns from time to time! They’re eager to please and can be a little silly, making this a very adorable brown dog breed!

Chesapeake Bay Retriever

The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is another large, brown dog breed. They have curly hair, which is waterproof and protects the dogs from the cold and wet. These dogs are also intelligent and stubborn, which means they’re extremely independent. They can also be somewhat dominant. Due to these traits, the dogs are not the best choice for first-time pet parents. These dogs need a pet parent who understands how to handle them in the right way.

Expect to exercise this dog every day for at least 60 to 90 minutes! They’re filled with energy and need to work it off every day. They do well with walks but also enjoy other activities.

These dogs are not well-suited for apartment life. They do better with a larger home and a large backyard. They don’t do well kept indoors all the time; the Chesapeake Bay Retriever must be active outside at least part of the day. This is a dog who will love to run, hike, and more!

While they can be stubborn, these dogs are very affectionate and protective of their families. They do require consistent positive reinforcement training and socialization from a young age.


Newfoundlands are commonly called gentle giants as they are famous for being loving and gentle. These large dogs are another working breed, which thrives when they have work to do. They’re loyal and intelligent dogs yet make a calm, loving companion, too. However, they do tend to drool quite a bit!

These dogs are also great swimmers; they’re often used as search and rescue dogs. They have long been used to help rescue the crews of fishing ships that have foundered off the Newfoundland coast. This is another dog that has webbed feet! Their feet help them swim and deal with mud and sand. Their double coat is thick and water-repellant.

One thing to keep in mind with a Newfoundland. If the dog believes you or someone else is drowning, they will do everything necessary to rescue you! These strong dogs were created to help pull people from the water, and they have a strong instinct to help.

These dogs also require plenty of training and socialization; however, they are considered nanny dogs, even for young children. But remember, these dogs are really huge!

Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retrievers are one of the most popular dogs in the US! And no wonder, as they’re very loving, intelligent, and can be a lot of fun. Labs originated back in the 1800s in parts of Newfoundland. They were bred to help fishermen and retrieve waterfowl for hunters.

These dogs also have a water-resistant coat, though it seems thinner and is not curly, as other water dogs’ fur. Labs’ fur keeps them warm even in the coldest water. And these dogs also have webbed feet! The webbing in their paws makes it easier for the dogs to swim.

Brown Labs (also called Chocolate Labs) are very loving, highly intelligent dogs. They are also very patient and kind, which is why they’re used as therapy dogs. What’s more, they don’t tend to bark very much, though they do like to get attention. If they don’t get the attention they seek, expect the Chocolate Lab to come up with his own mischief!

German Shorthaired Pointer

The German Shorthaired Pointer is a hunting dog that is very athletic and very loving. While they’re still used for hunting, these dogs also make great companions for families. However, they are full of energy, which indicates they require plenty of exercise every day.

Like the other brown water dogs in this list, German Shorthaired Pointers also excel at swimming. They’ve even been known to track their prey into the water. These dogs have coats made to keep them warm in cold water, as well as webbed feet for better swimming.

As well as being used for hunting and therapy, these dogs are also used as bomb-sniffing dogs. Military and law enforcement use these dogs to find bombs and other illegal items.

Great Dane

Great Danes aren’t just grey—they also come in the chocolate brown variety! Great Danes are large dogs, weighing up to 175 lbs and standing up to 44 inches tall! This is one of the largest dogs in the world.

Great Danes are descended from Mastiff-type dogs, which accounts for their large size. In spite of their size, Great Danes are one of the most loving dogs around. The history of the breed is thought to go back all the way to ancient Egypt, where they are depicted in scenes from the time.

Another interesting note about Great Danes is that they’re not even Danish! Instead, the dogs are thought to have bloodlines that come from Babylon as far back as 2000 BC. However, Egyptians have depicted these dogs as long ago as 3000 BC. Great Danes also are thought to have come from ancient Tibet and China.

The dogs, in ancient times, were originally bred to hunt boars. However, in the 1500s and later, Great Danes were highly prized by the Germans, who kept them as amazing, unique family companions. These dogs lived in luxury with their noble families!

English Mastiff

The English Mastiff is another very large brown dog breed! While Great Danes are large, Mastiffs are even bigger! They can stand up to 30 inches tall and weigh up to 230 lbs! Are we talking about an elephant? No, we’re pretty sure this is a canine!

The English Mastiff also has very ancient ancestors, which have been documented all the way back to the 6th century BC. These dogs were originally bred to be hunters, war dogs, watchdogs, and family companions. They were once even used to fight lions as a sport!

These are very powerful dogs that can also be very gentle and loving. They also make great guard dogs. When it comes to kids and Mastiffs, these giants are truly gentle, even with young kids!

Small Brown Dog Breeds


Chihuahuas can come in a variety of colors, including brown! These diminutive cuties usually weigh no more than 6 lbs. We’re talking small and just the opposite of a Mastiff! The dogs are known for their apple-shaped heads and pointy, erect ears. They’re also famous for their large personalities!

Chihuahuas are smart, alert little dogs, which makes them excellent watchdogs. They will be fierce in protecting their property and their home, even though they’re small. These dogs can be very sensitive, however. They can be shy and nervous, too. However, with the right training and socialization, a Chihuahua can have a well-balanced personality.

These small dogs are extremely smart and easy to train. However, they do become bored pretty fast, so they need plenty of mental stimulation. If they become bored, they can do a lot of damage to a home and belongings, in spite of being so small!

Cavalier King Cocker Spaniel

The Cavalier King Cocker Spaniel is one of the most popular of the Spaniel dog breeds. They are prized for their sensitive, calm natures. These dogs also have a regal bearing. They were originally bred to keep royals company. They still make wonderful companion dogs today!

These dogs were bred to be companions, which means they need to be with their pet parents constantly. They also need plenty of attention every day and don’t do well when left alone for long periods. Cavalier King Cocker Spaniels have a tendency to develop separation anxiety if apart from their pet parent for too long.

Cavalier King Cocker Spaniels are also very active dogs. They have plenty of energy and need a lot of exercise every day. They also have a strong prey drive and have been known to leave their yard to chase after another dog or small critter!

French Bulldog

The French Bulldog is another small dog that was bred to be a companion. These are not working dogs; they want nothing more than to be with their favorite pet parent. If you’re looking for a dog to stay with you while watching TV for hours on end, this is the dog for you!

French Bulldogs are very laid-back, easy-going dogs; however, they can be quite demanding. They not only demand your love but also your attention! You might say these are Velcro dogs who need to be constantly attached to your side all day long. For this reason, this dog breed is best for individuals rather than families.

These dogs are brachycephalic. This means they have short noses and wide faces, making it difficult to breathe. The dogs also tend to drool quite a bit for this same reason. French Bulldogs are known for breathing loudly, especially when they get excited.

Scottish Terrier

Scottish Terriers, also called Scotties, are small dogs that originally come from Scotland. They were bred to dig out small animals that live in dens. Scotties also love water; however, their short legs make swimming too difficult. These dogs may sink like a rock if not supervised in the water.

These dogs are extremely loyal and may choose one member of the family as their special person. They are known to be overly protective of the favorite person, even to nipping or biting at anyone who comes close! For this reason, Scotties are not recommended for families that have young children.

Scottish Terriers also have a wide stubborn streak and can be independent. These traits make them a little more challenging to train than other dogs. What’s more, they are also very protective of their territory and will bark (loudly) to fend off intruders!


Pomeranians are another very popular dog, ranking closely to Labradors and other favorite dog breeds. These dogs are small, Spitz-type dogs that make wonderful companion dogs. They’re full of energy and usually keep going when you’re ready to drop!

While small, Pomeranians have large dog personalities. They’re always on alert, too, which makes them great watchdogs. With a large dog in a small body, they protect their home and family with no problem.

Pomeranians originally come from Pomerania, which is a region between Germany and Poland. They are descended from German Spitz dogs. Queen Victoria also loved Pomeranians!

Summing It Up

There you have it! We’ve put together a list of small and large brown dogs from various dog breeds! Each of the brown dogs on the list is special and unique in their own way.

We hope you were able to find just the right brown dog companion for you and your family!

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Kyoko is from a family of 3 and moved to New York with her parents and siblings when she was 13. Kyoko is fond of spending a great amount of time with pets, specifically her beagle Luna and cat Missy. Her boyfriend often complains that she spends too much time giving attention to their animals. Kyoko has written dozens of articles concerning pets and is aiming at owning a pet shop one day!