Choosing a Dog Breed

DECISIONS, DECISIONS, DECISIONS

TEMPERAMENT

Some breeds are nervous and skittish, some are laid-back and easy going; some are wary of strangers, others are friendly toward everyone. Determining which temperament you prefer will go a long way towards narrowing your choice of breeds. A breed that tends to be a bit more high-strung, for example, will likely make a better watchdog whilst a breed with a docile temperament may be perfect if you have young children.

When you are out looking at prospective family members be sure to ask about each breed’s temperament and what would best suit your lifestyle. If you are looking at getting a puppy ask to see the parents or an adult of the same breed, this will give you a much better idea of your four-legged friends temperament once they grow up.

SIZE

Dog breeds come in a wide array of sizes and this can have an impact on everything from exercise to sleeping arrangements.

Do you live in apartment? Or perhaps you live in a house with a large back yard? Whilst your home can be a factor in determining the size of dog you choose you need to make sure your living situation meets all of the breeds needs. For example, just because you have lots of room doesn’t necessarily mean you should go big with your choice of breed. Remember that a really big dog will eat lots of food – and quality dog food isn’t cheap!

It’s also important to note that not all traits related to a dog’s size are intuitive. For example, choosing a smaller breed because you have less space may not be the right choice as many small breeds still need lots of room to run because they are so energetic. Ironically, the Great Dane, one of the largest dog breeds, is best suited to apartment living because they have lower exercise needs and don’t require a lot of space.

COAT

Will your dog be living indoors? Then you probably won’t want a breed that tends to be a shaggy shedder – particularly if any family members suffer from allergies. In that case you’ll a dog with hypoallergenic coat like a Poodle or Samoyed.

It’s also worth noting that whilst some breeds shed year round, others malt for only a few weeks each year. Long haired breeds, in particular require, lots of regular grooming to keep them looking their best. Before you choose a particular breed its important you know whether you have the required time each week to keep their coat well brushed and tangle free, using specific grooming products and dog brushes.

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