Top 7 Hardest Dog Breeds to Train

By Meghan Belnap 



While many dog owners attest to the fact that individual dogs have unique personalities, some breeds feature characteristics that may pose a challenge in terms of training. However, ensuring a well-behaved, mature pet requires starting obedience training as soon as possible.


Afghan Hound

Though intelligent and strong, the breed is often sensitive and shy, which requires gentle, kind handling. However, the hound is known for having a personality similar to a cat and may display indifference and stubbornness. Be patient and kind while adhering to repetition and persistence with their training.


Basset Hound

The stubborn streak found in the breed often make these dogs difficult to housebreak or obedience train. However, being food driven provides an edge as owners often experience success when using food as positive reinforcement when the dog responds correctly to a command. Most scent and food driven dog require a firm, strong hand to show them who is alpha.



Notorious for being stubborn, obedience training one of these lovable dogs requires patience but persistence. Intelligent and sociable, the breed also becomes easily bored and distracted due to their strong scent driven nature. Use brief and frequent learning sessions to instill the desired lessons and behaviors in a myriad of locations to train them that you should be the attention getter.



Active, independent and stubborn, these little dogs require consistency and firmness or quickly learn to dominate their environment in a aggressive manner. The breed also needs adequate socialization with people of all ages and other animals from the time that they enter a home so as to instill good social skills from an early age.


Pit Bull

Affectionate, intelligent and loyal, Pit Bulls are also full of energy and grow into strong and powerful adults and breeders of blue pitbull puppies must be compassionate and well educated. As such, loving, but persistent training with plenty of opportunities for exercise must start early to avoid having to deal with rambunctious, strong-willed large dogs. Understanding how to gain and maintain the dog’s attention early is vital and may spare the animal from danger later, as Pits are prey driven and need to be exposed to social situations often to avoid altercations.



Though highly intelligent, the breed is known for being head-strong and stubborn. While the dogs require firmness, avoid harshness, as they also tend to be overly sensitive. Owners must stay calm and establish an alpha position early on. Avoid giving in to the dog’s self-indulgent personality.


West Highland White Terrier

Considered a very clever little breed with an air of independence, the small dogs require a firm but loving hand for successful training. With consistency and repetition, the dogs eventually learn the rewards of pleasing their owners.


Learning about the inherent traits of a specific dog breed helps owners better understand the techniques needed to successfully train that particular dog. Regardless of the type of dog, commitment to caring for and training the pet ensures a long healthy relationship.

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