The Top 10 Happiest Dogs in the World

Written by Abby Parks
Updated: October 3, 2022
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Here at AZ Animals, we’re all about scientifically-sourced research that helps our readers better understand and connect with the animals in the world around them.

But sometimes, we just need to enjoy the beauty and joy that animals can bring us. And they say a picture is worth a thousand words. Our top choices are based on the happiness captured in still photographs. So today I present for your consideration: The top 10 happiest dogs in the world.

While humans define certain expressions in animals by our own perceptions, we can certainly ask the question from a scientific standpoint: Do dogs smile? Animal behaviorists believe that dogs do indeed smile in response to the same behavior they witness in humans. Some experts think that dogs adapt smiles for key benefits. For example, dogs are often rewarded when humans are happy, whether the dog does something we approve of, or makes us laugh or smile. They may be rewarded with a treat, a hug, or a pat on the head. To receive more of that positive affirmation, dogs may try to mimic our facial expressions, such as smiles. When dogs are relaxing, being playful, or just contented, humans are more likely to catch what some term a “submissive grin”–in other words, an adorable doggie smile!

Each of these dogs is sure to make you smile!

10. German Shepherd

I can’t tell which part of this German Shepherd is happier. His mouth or his ears!

©Happy monkey/

9. Pit Bull Terrier

I hope we can find a ball big enough for this Pit Bull Terrier to play with! What a smile.

©Mary Swift/

8. Labrador Retriever

This Labrador Retriever is happy to let you in on his secret!

©Pavel Hlystov/

7. Dalmatian

Normally associated with firehouses, I think this Dalmatian would be happy to play with you anywhere!


6. Chihuahua

This chihuahua looks like he’d be equally happy cuddling with you or taking a nap right about now.

©Jan Dix/

5. Alaskan Malamute

Even dogs that are normally kept indoors need to roll around in the grass, like this ecstatic Alaskan Malamute here.


4. Pug

Speaking of taking a nap, this pug reminds us dogs need recharge time just like we do.

©David Charles Cottam/

3. Australian Shepherd

Just like humans, this Australian Shepherd shows you can smile with your mouth and your eyes at the same time.


2. Pomeranian Spitz

This Pomeranian is more floof than actual dog, but that doesn’t make him any less happy! Me either.


1. Golden Retriever

2 seconds after this picture, this Golden Retriever puppy was definitely happy to eat that dandelion.


Summary of the Top 10 Happiest Dogs in the World

Let’s recap that dogs that made our list of the 10 happiest dogs in existence:

1Golden Retriever
2Pomeranian Spitz
3Australian Shepherd
5Alaskan Malamute
8Labrador Retriever
9Pit Bull Terrier
10German Shepherd

Up Next…

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Gelpi/

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About the Author

Abby Parks has authored a fiction novel, theatrical plays, short stories, poems, and song lyrics. She's recorded two albums of her original songs, and is a multi-instrumentalist. She has managed a website for folk music and written articles on singer-songwriters, folk bands, and other things music-oriented. She's also a radio DJ for a folk music show. As well as having been a pet parent to rabbits, birds, dogs, and cats, Abby loves seeking sightings of animals in the wild and has witnessed some more exotic ones such as Puffins in the Farne Islands, Southern Pudu on the island of Chiloe (Chile), Penguins in the wild, and countless wild animals in the Rocky Mountains (Big Horn Sheep, Mountain Goats, Moose, Elk, Marmots, Beavers).

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