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Best Duck Breeds for Pets

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There are more than 100 breeds of ducks, so choosing the best one to keep as a pet can be challenging.

However, most people want ducks that will be friendly and produce delicious eggs they can use for cooking.

Ducks aren’t dogs, so you will not likely be cuddling with your ducks or sharing your house with them.

However, your duck’s temperament will determine whether you can get close to them to get eggs, treat them if they get sick, and have them close to your other animals.

A woman holding a duck with flowers posing outdoor

Thankfully, some breeds of ducks are well-suited as pets, and you can develop a good relationship with them that will last for years. They can be a fun family pet, along with cats, dogs, chickens, peacocks, and other animals if you have the space.

Here are seven of the friendliest breeds of ducks and some helpful information to make keeping them as pets more fun.

Learn as much as you can before you start getting ducks to increase your odds of success!

Pekin Ducks

Pekin duck floating on a lake

Pekin ducks are the quintessential pet duck. They’re the breed most people think of when they envision a duck.

They have bright white feathers, a unique yellow beak, and orange feet sticking out underneath.

These are so popular because they’re calm and friendly. They typically socialize well with other animals if they’re introduced at a young age.

They also live around ten years, which makes having them around more fun!

The Pekin duck is a wonderful pet if you have kids on a homestead.

Your kids can roam around ponds and grass fields, often with a duck or two in tow.

They respond well to treats, and you can teach them certain behaviors by incentivizing them with food.

Pet owners like Pekin ducks because they don’t fly too much, so you don’t have to worry about clipping their wings.

However, they do tend to make a lot of noise, so they may not be the best choice for people with close neighbors.

Buff Ducks

Buff Duck resting on the ground

Buff ducks are a larger duck breed that also lives around ten years. They’re intelligent, calm birds that typically enjoy interacting with people and other animals.

They stand taller than many other duck breeds because they have long, craning necks that rise above their golden plumage.

Buff ducks love kids. They’ll often form a strong bond with younger children and will even protect them from perceived threats.

This is a great breed if you want something your kids can get up close and personal with.

They are in high demand, though, and you’ll likely spend a lot of money buying ducklings of this breed.

Buff ducks do well in warm or cold weather, but they’re also a bit noisy. However, if you have some space around your house, this is easily one of the best duck breeds for pets you can find.

Call Ducks

Female white call duck drinking water

Call ducks are a very small duck breed that descended from Mallards. Their small size and stunning white feathers have made them a popular show bird for decades, but they’re also fantastic pets.

Families with children love Call ducks because their small size makes the birds less intimidating for small kids.

You should raise them from birth if you want them to bond with your children.

They’re almost the same size as chickens, so your kids can walk around the yard and pick them up as they please.

Call ducks have a high-pitched call that makes them unsuitable for residential areas.

You can also find them in different colors like blue, silver, apricot, etc. if you want something different than a white duck.

Mallard Ducks

Mallard duck swimming on a pond

Domesticated Mallard ducks are wonderful to have on your property because of their color and calmness.

These birds like to fly, so you may need to keep them in a covered enclosure until they feel comfortable calling your place home.

They’re small birds, so you can hold them much easier than some of the other large duck breeds on this list.

One of the best things about Mallards is that they have a lot of energy.

They’ll happily range around your grass all day or swim in your pond. They will also jump in a pool with your kids for some swimming fun!

Khaki Campbell Ducks

Khaki Campbell Duck on blurry background

Khaki Campbell ducks are a great choice if you’re looking for something quieter than the noisemakers on the list.

These ducks are closely related to Mallards and typically live anywhere from 10 to 15 years.

They adapt well to new environments, but it can take longer to develop trust with humans.

If you’re adopting them or buying adult ducks, you shouldn’t expect to hold them the first day they arrive.

This is one of the best duck breeds for owners who worry about noise regulations where they live.

They’re also smaller birds, so they’re good for families with young kids. However, they do fly a lot, so clip their wings if you’re worried about them getting lost.

Rouen Ducks

Female Rouen Duck on the farm

Rouen ducks are calm birds with shorter lifespans. They have dark heads and grey bodies.

Their even personalities make them fantastic pets because kids can come around them without startling the birds.

They’re also heavier, which makes them less likely to fly away. You typically won’t have to clip their wings to keep them on your property.

However, they weigh more than a lot of birds on this list, and their size will make it difficult for some children to carry the ducks.

Rouen ducks are one of the most popular pet ducks because they’re pleasant and quiet.

When they’re not playing with your kids, they’ll be looking for bugs in the grass or swimming in nearby creeks.

Their size means they’re not as easily frightened, so noise isn’t as much of an issue with Rouen ducks. Plenty of people keep these as pets in suburban areas.

Muscovy Ducks

Muscovy Duck resting near tree trunk

Muscovy ducks are another breed that people love having as pets because they’re quiet. In fact, Muscovy ducks don’t quack, so they’re different from almost every other kind of duck.

They make much less noise. So much so that many people call them whispering ducks.

They are, however, very good flyers, so you’ll need to clip their wings to keep them grounded at home.

It’s easy to spot a Muscovy duck because the drakes have large red warts on their head and faces. It almost looks like a rooster’s crown but it’s around their eyes.

They’re also very good at hunting bugs and insects around your lawn, so you’ll save money on pest control bills with a few of these as pets.

Usually, Muscovy ducks are friendly toward humans. They can become very attached to whoever is caring for them, so raising them from birth will pay dividends down the road.

Final Thoughts

Ducks are a wonderful addition to any family, as long as you have enough space and know how to give them proper care.

Be aware that if you buy a proficient flyer your ducks could go missing.

Learn as much as you can to keep your ducks healthy and safe for as long as possible. They’ll give you plenty of delicious eggs and make life around the house a lot more fun.


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