Use the Chinese Zodiac: Find Out the Best Matches for Life and Love for the Dog Sign

Hint: Woman's best friend likes a pat on the head

dog Chinese zodiac compatibility: Madonna, Justin Bieber and Queen Latifah
McKenzie Cordell for PureWow / Getty Images: Mike Marsland (M), Kevin Masur (JB, QL) /

Whether you were born during the Year of the Dog or have a special Dog in your life, you’re probably here because you want to know what Dogs are like in relationships. (Reminder: Dogs are persons born in 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006 and 2018.) Who are Dog’s best matches? Who are Dog’s worst matches? Here’s your guide to all things Dog compatibility.

About the Astrologer

Jaime Wright pens moon missivesan ever-evolving astrology writing project that began in 2016. First as an email zine (2016-17); then a quarterly astro journal (2017-18); occasionally an intermittent horoscope download (2018-21); and now a weekly astro-cultural newsletter (2021-present). She also writes a weekly and monthly horoscope column for PureWow, hosts the good fortune!podcast, and is the house astrologer for Jovian, and Errands.

A Quick Refresher on the Chinese Zodiac Signs and Finding Your Sign

You probably know that the Chinese zodiac is a 12-year continuous cycle based on the lunar calendar. This cycle renews at the Lunar New Year or Spring Festival every late January or early February, marking the transition from one animal sign to the next.

The Chinese Zodiac Signs:

  • Rat (1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008 and 2020)
  • Ox (1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009 and 2021)
  • Tiger (1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010 and 2022)
  • Rabbit (1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011 and 2023)
  • Dragon (1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000 and 2012)
  • Snake (1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001 and 2013)
  • Horse (1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002 and 2014)
  • Goat (1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003 and 2015)
  • Monkey (1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004 and 2016)
  • Rooster (1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005 and 2017)
  • Dog (1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006 and 2018)
  • Pig (1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007 and 2019)

What’s the Year of the Dog Personality?

Dogs are man’s best friend, and those born during the Year of the Dog live up to that reputation. Dogs are known for their affable, loyal and fun-loving personalities. You want a BFF? Find a Dog. Dogs will always be your biggest cheerleader, but they also need a lot of encouragement. Dogs prefer to work on a team rather than truly take the lead. But don’t let that make you think Dogs don’t have star power too! Some famous Dogs include Madonna, Queen Latifah and Justin Bieber. Dogs are reliable and protective, but also are quite frank and aren’t afraid to speak their mind. Even tough love from a Dog feels supportive, and once you’re in with a Dog, you’re in for life.

What Are Dogs Like in Love?

Dogs are as loyal and protective in love as they are in friendships. If they’re into you, you’ll know it. Dogs don’t lie or play games. However, the Dog weaknesses include impatience and emotional turbulence. When Dogs aren’t emotionally mature, they can act out or become listless in relationships. That all being said though, Dogs are usually quite careful when choosing prospective mates, preferring to start as friends or be introduced through their community. A Dog’s slow approach helps them be luckier than most in love.

Who Is Most Compatible with a Dog?

A cheat sheet for compatibility in the zodiac is something called “triangles of affinity.” These are four groups of three signs who are most compatible with each other based on their temperament and other elemental qualities. Dogs are most compatible with their fellow “quick wits”: Tigers, Horses, and other Dogs.

Beyond the animal sign, compatibility can also depend on the element year you were born in (find yours here). Though Dog and Ox might not be the most obvious match, Dogs born in 1994 and Oxen born in 1985 share a Wood element, and thus have more in common than these two signs normally would.

Here's a more detailed look at how the Dog interacts with each sign of the Chinese zodiac:

Dog and Tiger - 10/10

Dog and Tiger are a match made in heaven. Dog brings a noteworthy lack of ego to any relationship while Tiger brings a “protect them at all costs” energy. Both are extremely loyal partners, and while they’re super supportive, they also both have a keen sense of right and wrong. Together, these two create their own utopia of kindness, a place where many would want to live.

dog chinese zodiac compatibility queen latifah
Bruce Glikas / Getty Images

Dog and Horse - 10/10

Dog and Horse are both straight-forward and frank. (That's dog sign Queen Latifah with her longtime partner Eboni Nichols, born in the year of the horse.) There’s no guessing game with these two. All feelings are immediately on the table, and communication just flows. Being extremely loyal, Dog can convince the more freedom-oriented Horse to settle down. Dog in turn is inspired by Horse’s outgoing personality. Together, these two are charming and tender, and love a warm, cozy home.

Dog and Rabbit - 9/10

Dog and Rabbit are another awesome couple. The more introverted Dog is attracted to the Rabbit’s playful charisma. Dogs take things seriously while Rabbits have a more whimsical view on life. Together, Dog and Rabbit build relationships based on honesty and mutual attraction. One thing that could get in their way is that the Dog, who is in awe of Rabbit’s joie de vivre, may not realize how insecure Rabbit can be. Dog’s steadfast loyalty is what lets Rabbit know this relationship is a safe space.

• Dog and Pig - 8/10

Pigs are as honest as Dogs are loyal and together these two make a great match. Both are optimistic and genuine, always willing to cheer each other on. The only way these two might clash is being too alike. They say a little conflict keeps romance alive, but these two will rarely, if ever, fight.

• Dog and Monkey - 8/10

Dog and Monkey are both extroverts who bring joy and excitement to life. These two aren’t just a great romantic match, they also make wonderful friends and business partners. Life is a party when these two get together! The only issue that comes up between them is that the Monkey is sometimes a bit too friendly and can inspire jealousy in the steadfast Dog.

• Dog and Goat - 7/10

Dog and Goat is a lovely match of two honest and trustworthy individuals. Both Dog and Goat have a reputation for being everyone’s friend, and so even if they don’t end up making it romantically, they’ll probably remain in each other’s lives. These two only lose points for lacking an initial spark as both are so easygoing, their attraction often fizzles before it starts.

dog-chinese-zodiac-compatibility: Justin and Hailey Bieber
MEGA / Getty Images

Dog and Rat - 7/10

Dog and Rat (for instance, the dog-and-rat combo of Justin and Hailey Bieber) are an unlikely but interesting pair. Rats are scrappy and used to hustling to get what they want in life. It’s disarming for them to meet a loyal Dog who loves easily and openly. Rats aren’t used to having a cheerleader! If these two can learn to relax and trust each other, they make a great match.

Dog and Snake - 6/10

The sneaky Snake and eager Dog aren’t the most obvious couple, but definitely have a lot to offer each other. While the Dog can be loud and extroverted, the more introverted Snake catches Dog’s eye with their wit and intelligence. These two run into trouble when it comes to the Snake’s jealousy. The Dog is a friend to everyone and the Snake really doesn’t like to share.

Dog and Ox - 3/10

The fun-loving Dog and workhorse Ox aren’t a great match. Though they initially come together in an opposites-attract kind of way, it’s very hard for these two to get past their differences. The Dog can’t believe that the Ox really thinks it’s necessary to work that much, and the Ox wishes the Dog would take life more seriously.

dog-chinese-zodiac-compatibility: Madonna snuggles a dog
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis / Getty Images

Dog and Rooster - 3/10

Roosters are as critical as Dogs are loyal which is why these two make a difficult and unlikely match. (Celeb alert: Madonna is a dog sign, and she's had her reported boyfriend, footballer/boxer Josh Popper, on stage in her recent world tour. Born in 1993, he's a rooster in Chinese astrology.) Both partners can be quite feisty so when arguments come up, neither backs down. Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, but it takes a special kind of understanding for a Dog and Rooster to make it as a couple.

Dog and Dragon - 2/10

Dragon and Dog aren’t an ideal match. Dogs are known for being loyal and popular, and their humble attitude doesn’t usually flag the attention of bombastic Dragons. The Dragon thinks the Dog is dull, and the Dog finds the Dragon condescending. Overall, these two don’t have a lot in common and mute each other’s otherwise warm personalities.

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Jaime Wright is an astrologer and writer based in NYC. She has been writing PureWow’s weekly and monthly horoscope columns since 2019, and also authors the cult favorite...