How to

How to Draw a Cute Anime Dog in 7 Steps

This step-by-step tutorial will guide you through the process of drawing an adorable anime or manga style dog. From sketching the basic proportions to adding color and shading, you’ll learn every technique needed to bring your canine creation to life.

Anime dog step by step drawing
Image: Anime dog drawing step by step

Dogs come in various breeds, shapes, and sizes, making it challenging to establish a universal set of proportions for drawing them. This complexity is even more pronounced when it comes to stylized anime dogs. However, there are strategies you can employ to simplify the process. One approach involves starting with the larger proportions and gradually refining the smaller details. Additionally, analyzing the anime style can provide insights into what distinguishes an anime dog’s appearance.

Understanding the Anime Aesthetic

The proportions of anime animals can range from closely resembling real animals to highly stylized depictions. For small dogs, similar to the one featured in this tutorial, anime and manga tend to emphasize larger heads and smaller legs and paws compared to reality. The texture of anime animal fur is often rendered in clusters, mirroring the style typically used for anime hair. Furthermore, anime dogs may have larger, more human-like eyes compared to real dogs. However, in this case, we will maintain relatively normal-sized eyes, as small dogs naturally possess larger eyes relative to their bodies.

Step 1 – Establishing Body and Head Proportions

Commence the drawing process by sketching rough shapes to outline the dog’s head and body. These guidelines serve to establish the overall size and form of each component.

Anime dog head & body proportions drawing
Image: Anime dog head & body proportions drawing

Step 2 – Drawing Legs, Ears, and Tail

Proceed to draw the dog’s legs, ears, and tail, focusing on refining the smaller body parts.

Anime dog proportions drawing
Image: Anime dog proportions drawing

Step 3 – Depicting the Dog’s Face

To enhance the dog’s cuteness, position the facial features slightly lower on the head. When drawing the eyes, emphasize the upper curve, which should be larger than the lower curve. Overlay the eyes with eyebrow shapes that gently curve around the top, resembling a “bean” shape. Use two semi-circular shapes to construct the bottom of the upper jaw and one semi-circle for the lower jaw. The nose can be represented as a rounded triangle. For an added touch of charm, draw the dog’s tongue protruding from its mouth. This tail and tongue positioning evokes a sense of excitement, as if the dog is delighted to see its owner.

Anime dog facial features outline
Image: Anime dog face drawing

Step 4 – Capturing the Dog’s Fur

As previously mentioned, anime dog fur can be represented with small clumps, similar to the style used for anime hair. Noteworthy areas to focus on are the inner ears (particularly in anime), the lower sides of the head, the neck, the lower chest area, and the tail.

Anime dog fur drawing
Image: Anime dog fur drawing

Step 5 – Adding Finer Details

At this point, refine the outline drawing by incorporating smaller details, such as the pupils and reflections within the eyes, as well as the intricate features of the paws.

Anime dog outline drawing
Image: Anime dog outline drawing

Step 6 – Coloring the Dog

If you’re working on paper, remember to leave the highlight areas blank. However, if you’re drawing digitally, you can add them later. Since this dog will be predominantly white, minimal coloring is required. Pink generally complements white and is an ideal choice for this drawing. Apply pink to the tongue and the inner parts of the ears, which are usually not covered by fur. Choose a very dark grey or black shade for the nose. As for the eyes, feel free to experiment with any color you prefer or follow the example and opt for blue.

Anime dog colored drawing
Image: Anime dog colored drawing

Step 7 – Applying Basic Anime Style Shading

Bear in mind that the appearance of shadows may vary depending on the lighting conditions. However, for the purpose of this tutorial, we will use a generalized shading technique that suits most typical lighting scenarios where light originates from above. Add subtle grey shadows to the lower parts of the dog’s head, snout, body, tail, and paws. Follow the contours of the dog’s shape, including the fur, when rendering the shadows.

Anime dog drawing
Image: Anime dog completed drawing


This tutorial provides one approach to drawing a cute anime dog. Naturally, there are countless styles and techniques for depicting dogs in various ways. As suggested in numerous other tutorials on AnimeOutline, consulting reference photos or studying how dogs are portrayed in anime and manga can facilitate growth and inspire diverse artistic choices.

For further guidance on drawing anime-style animals, feel free to explore:

Alexia Young

Hello and welcome to the world of Alexia. I am a passionate and dedicated artist who loves to create beautiful, mesmerizing art for everyone's walls. I believe in the importance of encouraging people to express their creativity and be happy.

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