Red dog breeds are fantastically beautiful animals, but when we use the color red to describe a dog’s coat, there are a great many shades we could be talking about!
Red dogs can be pure red in color, they can be auburn, they can be ginger, or they can be golden. Red dogs are wonderfully diverse in their size, their breeding, and their character. There are large red dogs, little red dog breeds, medium size red dogs, red hunting dog breeds, and many more!
Red dogs might be red all over; they might have patches of red mixed in with white, black, brown, or grey; or they might just have a few whiskers of red on their chin or a streak of red in their tail.
In this article, we explore the best red dog breeds out there, from the Cocker Spaniel to the Irish Setter. Keep reading and be inspired by these beautiful red animals!
What Dogs Are Red?
There are so many red dog breed types to consider. They are united not by any particular character or temperament, but simply by the color of their fur coats.
Owners often believe red dogs can be overly angry or aggressive (humans say ‘we see red’ when we are angry), but this simply isn’t the case. Certain breeds of red dog have become well known as hunting dogs, gun dogs, or guard dogs (the Irish Setter, for example), but the color of their coat has absolutely nothing to do with their personality.
We’ll go into depth below as we pick our favorite red dogs, but here’s a quick list of dog breeds that have red coats:
- Irish Setter
- Labrador Retriever
- Golden Retriever
- Cocker Spaniel
- Shiba Inu
- Red and White Setter
- Redbone Coonhound
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Irish Terrier
- Norfolk Terrier
- Australian Shepherd
- Australian Cattle Dog
- Miniature Pinscher
- Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
- Australian Kelpie
Remember, not all red coloured dog breeds are always going to produce puppies with a full red coat. The Poodle, for instance, can be black, white, grey, brown, and so many more colors in between. One litter may contain pups that are red and pups that are also black. Some red colored dogs may only have red mixed in with other colors!
Here are our favorite red dogs in more detail.
#1. Irish Setter
The Irish Setter is one of the larger red coated dogs on our list, and this fluffy dog’s athletic prowess has ensured it’s always a firm favorite on the hunting scene.
Irish Setters were bred to be gundogs; their keen sense of smell and sheer stamina made them perfect for chasing game across the Irish countryside.
While their thick red-brown coats might get easily tangled in the bushes, they love the outdoor life. They’ll make for a wonderful family dog, but their high energy means they need lots of opportunities to run outside!
Average height: 36 inches
Average weight: 50 - 70 pounds
#2. Golden Retriever
The Golden Retriever is a classic family dog that’s often as red in color as it is golden. This lovely breed of dog can be found in many shades of golden-red, of course, but we aren’t picky!
Golden Retrievers are large dogs that take well to training and commands (they were bred to retrieve things, after all), but because they’re so full of energy, they always need lots of attention. For families, they are excellent, as they’ll quickly become protective of the kids and double up on guard duty all through the night.
Average height: 23 inches
Average weight: 50 - 70 pounds
The Poodle is a famous breed of dog, but more often than not, the cliche image of a Poodle is one with black or white fur. However, many poodles have a fabulous red coat, and if you let their red coats grow out, they can be one of the best curly haired dog breeds to welcome into the family.
Poodles are bred in a number of different sizes, from the tiny toy poodle through to the large, full-size Poodle. They vary drastically in terms of their height and weight, but they all have similar temperaments and characters.
There’s one for every household and lifestyle, and they are famously intelligent, hard-working, and conveniently hypoallergenic.
Average height: 10 - 20 inches
Average weight: 10 - 60 pounds
#4. Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniel is a fun-loving family favorite that’s bursting with raw energy. It’s a real handful, but if you live a frantic lifestyle, it’ll fit in perfectly!
Cocker Spaniels are bred in a huge range of colors, but they commonly have deep red coats that are verging on mahogany or brown. Their coats are revered for their silky softness (they do need some grooming to be at their best!).
This mid-sized red dog breed is perfect for a fun-filled household, but you’ll need plenty of outdoor space for them to run around in, and you’ll need to be prepared to brush all those leaves and twigs out of their thick fur.
Average height: 15 inches
Average weight: 25 pounds
#5. Shiba Inu
Shiba Inu colors can range from a bright red coat to a thick, dark red and black hue. This Japanese spitz is usually always some shade of red, though!
Shiba Inus are so red, in fact, they are often mistaken for wild foxes when seen out in the park. They have red, bushy tails, pointy ears, and a fox-like face to match.
Shiba Inus are a mid-sized dog, and while they were originally bred for hunting small game, these days they’ve found their place as cuddly companion dogs.
Average height: 15 inches
Average weight: 20 pounds
The Akita is another Japanese dog that’s also well known for its often red colored coat. The Akita is a spitz, meaning it has thick fur coats, pointy ears, and wolf-like independence.
These dogs’ coats are designed to beat away the cold weather, and they are often red on top and white underneath. Akitas aren’t for first-time owners, though, because these dogs can grow to a very large size!
Akitas regularly reach 28 inches in height and can weigh well over 100 pounds. They are difficult to train, but they are famously loyal once they take a liking to you (Hachiko, one of the most loyal dogs of all time, was an Akita. Hachiko famously waited for years outside a train station for his master to return).
Average height: 28 inches
Average weight: 70 - 130 pounds
If you raise a Pomeranian, you’ll need a bed ramp for dogs to help it get around the home, because this small pup is tiny!
Pomeranians, though, are full of character, and they are blessed with beautifully bushy red coats. A Pomeranian is like a tiny toy lion, with a huge mane of hair that swamps their compact stature if left to grow out.
They love life, they love running around, and they’ll bring joy in miniature form to your household for the rest of their days.
Average height: 7 inches
Average weight: 3 - 7 pounds
#8. Australian Cattle Dog
If you’re looking for a red coated working dog, then look no further than the Australian Cattle Dog. These mid-sized dogs were bred for a life in the tough outback, and they are incredibly hard-working, energetic, and intelligent.
Australian Cattle Dogs are bred in a huge range of colors, but they are commonly found with red or auburn coats. They live long lives, particularly when they have a life outdoors, and they are famously loyal to their masters.
If you live on a ranch, the Australian Cattle Dog will be herding your sheep in no time at all. But even if you live in the city, they’ll guard your family fiercely – no questions asked!
Average height: 18 inches
Average weight: 35 - 50 pounds
Red Dog Breeds: Last Word
Red dog breeds are beautiful creatures, whether their red coat is full or their tails are simply tinged with ginger!
From spaniels and setters to terriers and retrievers, there are a lot of different red dogs just waiting to be given a new home.
If you’re planning on raising a new dog at home, then why not bookmark our guide to red dog breeds for inspiration?