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Should we get a dog, What Breed?

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by Leam1307, Nov 5, 2012.


  1. Leam1307

    Leam1307 PetForums Senior

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    Hi there,

    Sorry for the long post in advance. My OH and I would like to get a puppy/young dog in the future and was wondering if you think this would be fair, if so what other things have we missed and what sort of breed do you think would suit us best.

    We are currently looking for a new house which would be better suited to having a dog as our current home is small with virtually no garden. It would have a large garden where a dog could run around we would also build a dog run adjoining the house where the dog could have free access to during the day when we are at work (doggy door in the kitchen etc) We both work full time but my mum who no longer has a dog of her own has said she would walk/check on the dog during the day as she doesnt work and we are only looking to move a short distance away. I have agreed to this only if she lets me pay her the going rate. I have also looked into a local dog walker for the days she can not do, if she changes her mind etc. The dog walker runs their own KC training classes and is only 2 doors away from my parents so they know her and say she is very nice and friendly with her dogs. (she walks them all individually) We have worked out a budget for food, toys regular vet treatments etc and we dont really go on holiday, usually just to somewhere in the UK that we could take a dog with us. Any emergancy vet treatment will be put on credit card etc so we could pay it off monthly if anything does happen. I have horses too so im very used to the going out in all weathers, being muddy etc

    So thats the first part, does that sound ok?? The type of dog we are looking for would be: Max size of a German Shepheard but also not too small. Not too high energy levels such as a ESS or BC but would enjoy walks and training. Would be ok with a 30min walk in morning, 1hr walk in afternoon, 1hr walk in evening and 30mins last thing. With time for off lead activities at the weekends/days off, bearing in mind it would have access to the garden during the day also. We are looking for something that doesnt need to much grooming, possibly a quick brush each day after walks and a good groom once a week. We have 3 cats currently but i believe if we had something puppy/young dog we could teach them to be ok with the cats?? I know some rescues have older cat friendly dogs but then im not sure if i would trust this as some might be alright with cats they know but mine will be strangers to them.

    Also, with having the cats is this enough company for them during the day when my mum/dog walker isnt there or would it be better to get 2.. either at the same time or one first?? We are not looking for maybe another year but i wanted to do this early so i could research breeds and breeders etc. Oh and save up of course :D

    Again sorry for the long post.
     
    #1 Leam1307, Nov 5, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  2. BumbleFluff

    BumbleFluff PetForums VIP

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    Well done for doing your research first!! You've come to the right place and there are lots of people on here who can advise you on different breeds.
    Your situation sounds great, and the first breeds that come to mind are greyhounds and staffies.
    There are plenty of greys and staffs in rescues! There are retired greys who may be a few years old, or younger ones who never made it to the racing industry. I actually know of a couple of greys that will be needing homes soon. They generally have calm temperaments, and are known as "Couch potatos" because they will sleep for most of the day! But are happy to have walks, whether theyre 10mins round the block, or 2 hours!
    Staffies are taking over rescues, and there are young/puppies also in rescue if you are looking for a baby. They are perfect family pets, easy to train with a fair amount of energy, but love a good snuggle.
    These are the two breeds that i can think of, im sure people will be along with more suggestions and recommendations of breeders for those breeds.
    When youre ready for your new addition, maybe you could visit a rescue and see what they have to offer, and also ask about the young dogs/puppies they have and see if there is anything for you :)
     
  3. hutch6

    hutch6 PetForums VIP

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    All of that sounds ideal to any dog in my eyes.

    Why not go for a German Shepherd? They are easy enough to train, playful, can be brought up around cats without too much bother, unless you get a long haired one they aren't too much hassle on the grooming front, there are tonnes in rescue that would suit your home and add that extra to it you are after. You can always take it out with the horse as well with a bit of training.

    Have you done any breed research for common traits? Are there any traits you wouldn't want the dog to have other than the cats etc?
     
  4. Dober

    Dober PetForums VIP

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    How about a dobermann? :) They're the best!

    I would never reconmended getting two pups at once, ideally if you want two id say have at least a year or two's gap in between (see 'littermate syndrome')

    Pros:
    Fun, goofy personalities
    Very trainable
    High energy
    Protective
    Velcro, love beig with people
    Low grooming/shedding

    Cons
    Can be prone to same sex aggression
    Not good left for long hours
    Go through 'DOBERTEENS' where they can be a bit of a nightmare through adolescence
     
    #4 Dober, Nov 5, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  5. mrsaxlrose

    mrsaxlrose PetForums Member

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    I'm going to say a Doberman. Now I have two I would recommend them to anyone. They do need lots of exercise but they really are lovely family dogs.
     
  6. Owned By A Yellow Lab

    Owned By A Yellow Lab PetForums VIP

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    Great that you're so organised :)

    One thing to note: you mention that you would put any vet fees on a credit card? Have you looked into dog insurance - really necessary in my humble opinion. If heaven forfend a dog has a serious problem, the bill can be horrendous.

    Re breeds:

    If you get a puppy then it will need someone at home with it 24/7 to start with. An older dog from a rescue would be fine with spending some time alone as long as it is walked and let out into the garden and has some company during the day for an hour or ideally two hours/three hours.

    If you want a dog that is low on grooming, good with people, and can take a fair amount of exercise then how about a Labrador? :D Granted I'm biased but there are SO many gorgeous Labs in rescue - definitely worth a look :)
     
  7. ballybee

    ballybee PetForums VIP

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    Hi and welcome to Pet Forums!"

    Firstly...i would never reccomend getting 2 puppies at the same time, it's twice the work and they can bond better with each other than they do with you which can cause huge problems in training.

    Secondly, you would have to take minimum 2 weeks off your work to settle a puppy in as you'd need to get toilet training, separation training and basic bonding started and going well....u puppy will need the toilet every 15-40 minutes, before and after feeding, playing, naps etc etc...ideally it could be you take 2 weeks and your OH takes 2 weeks so puppy has 4 weeks to get settled.

    Breed wise, i'm going to reccomend an Italian Spinone, they're a large breed, very intelligent and love exercise but aren't mental like spaniels and collies :D

    Here's a couple of pics of my boy, he's 7 months old now :)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Spinones are very easygoing, they require minimal grooming, are easy to train, love being outside or sleeping(my boy is happy to sleep the day away while we're out) and are very clownish. A spinone would be happy with the exercise you're thinking of and as long as you left a few chews/toys for it to play with would be fine with being in the house alone. My boy hasn't ever chewed anything he's not meant to but we have crate trained him as he's bad for pestering my older dog.

    Dan has no interest in my mums cat so i'd imagine your cats would be fine around one. Grooming wise Dan needs his beard combed and sprayed with an antibacterial spray every day(it can get really smelly when they're teething) and once a week i give him a groom using 2 combs(wide and small toothed) and a rubber grooming pad. The combs are just for feet and beard as the fur gets really dirty and tangled. Adult spinones don't moult very much but puppies do as the coat goes through a dramatic change :)
     
  8. Leam1307

    Leam1307 PetForums Senior

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    Oh i did look at Greyhounds in rescue previously but was worried about their chasing instinct with the cats, espec if they have raced before. I was thinking a younger dog/puppy would be better as then i could train then to accept the cats and the horse. We were planning to take the dog walks with the horse but that will require some time as my new horse is scared of dogs!!

    Not too sure about traits? How do you mean? I know huskies/beagles are prone to whining, collies prone to herding, is this what you mean? I dont think the neighbours would like whining and i would have a heart attack if a dog tried to chase a car. I do like GS but the hubby doesnt, i think he sees them too much as guard/police dogs and he wants a ESS but they require to much stimulation i think for what we are realistically able to provide.

    I also like the terrier sorts, borders, patterdales, westies and the like but ive heard these are not too good with cats.
     
  9. Bagrat

    Bagrat PetForums VIP

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    I'm biased but a Staffie would love you for ever. My son's staffie lives alongside three cats but only one of the three accepts her completely ( the newest arrival) but the situation is managed with judicious use of stair gate so cats can retreat if they want to.
     
  10. Dober

    Dober PetForums VIP

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    Any dogs could be fine with cats if properly trained, although it would be much easier to introduce a cat to a breed with lower prey drive I would say (so harder with breeds like terriers ect, but not impossible) It also depends on the cat, if they're already scared of the dogs it doesn't make thinks easier.

    I introduced my 13 month old dobermann and my older collie rescue to a cat with no problems, they sleep together. They were quite excited as wanted to chase at first but were fine after about a week. I set up stairgates so the cat had her own place to go if she felt overwhelmed.
     
  11. Leam1307

    Leam1307 PetForums Senior

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    Lol i think my problem is i love all dogs so dont know how to narrow it down!! I have a soft spot for wolf hounds but would need to buy a bigger car along with the house to fit them in. Thanks for the advice on the two dogs together, i had heard about this so we will get one and wait for it to settle a year or so before getting it a friend.

    We will have insurance in place for vet emergancies etc, same as we have for cats and horses but i meant the credit card for those things insurance doesnt cover, re-occuring problems etc (sorry i keep forgetting that not everyone gets insurance as standard)

    And yes both myself and partner would have a min of two weeks off when the new pup arrives, just try making me go to work when theres a new arrival!
     
  12. 2Cats2Dogs

    2Cats2Dogs PetForums VIP

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    Firstly well done with doing the proper research and also doing the things which some prespective dog owners over look. It is good you have also done the budget for food, toys, etc. May I ask if your cats are insured as by having a new dog might make the going rate slightly cheaper?

    I would also check which large breeds of dog are more compatible with other small animals. GSD seems a very sensible choice given their intelligence and tolerance levels. The only issues to look for with large breeds is ensuring that they are stimulated by physically and mentally. It sounds good yes that your mum would help out and also you are looking for dog walkers, but I cannot stress enough the importance of training the pup early. Rescue dogs are also a good alternative to a puppy, though it can be difficult to find a dog which has been socialised with cats. I know when me and my partner embarked on finding a rescue dog, it was near impossible to find one which had been socialised with cats. 3 months of being on the books of the PDSA and RSPCA we never got a potential match.

    Other than that, I can't add anymore as you have carried out the necessary actions.

    Well done for taking such a responsible route to owning a dog :)
     
  13. manandhisdogs

    manandhisdogs PetForums Newbie

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    I would go for a short haired Collie, i have a collie and she is great with cats, if your worried about all the excitement then get a rescue one or even an ex worker. I got my grandma an ex working collie and she is fantastic not too excitable and happy to just have cuddles after working for a few years. With any dog you have to stimulate them in fact quite a lot no matter what breed it is. I personally think a rescue would be suitable for you.
     
  14. Sarah1983

    Sarah1983 PetForums VIP

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    Labs do seem to fit the bill in most respects. Young ones can be a bit er...loopy though ;) 3 hours of exercise a day sounds enough for most adult dogs to be honest although bear in mind that physical exercise is only a part of what they need, mental stimulation is just as important. And of course a puppy isn't going to be able to do anywhere near that much exercise for a good while.

    I personally wouldn't get a puppy while working full time unless I had someone who could be there pretty much all the time with it. I'd go for an older rescue dog. And I definitely wouldn't get 2 puppies at once, one puppy is hard enough work, 2 is 3 times the work because you have to do walks, training, socialisation etc separately AND together.

    Ballybee, every time I see pic of Dan I really, really want a Spinone :eek:
     
  15. Luz

    Luz PetForums VIP

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    I would recommend greyhounds as an option, being very laid back and gentle and not needing hours of exercise. You say you would be worried taking an older dog on even if it likes cats but to be honest puppies can be a bit too interested in cats too- wanting to play all the time. I am less wary of my older dog with the cat than I am with my pups. Can I reiterate how refreshing it is to see someone doing lots of homework in advance.
     
  16. Leam1307

    Leam1307 PetForums Senior

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    Thank you so much for all the replies! Its good to know we are thinking the right way about this, i have to admit im abit spreadsheet/budget daft and have one for everything. lol

    The dog walker i was looking at that stays next to my parents also runs dog training classes with the bronze, silver, gold good citizien awards. I have already asked them about spaces in classes, they only start with the bronze not the puppy foundation class but take dogs from 14weeks and they said that if they were full we could also do one on one training to begin with and join in on the classes if someone drops out, cant make it etc. Also she has a few dogs that we could "use" to socialise a pup with.

    Are there any good websites..apart from this one of course, which details traits of dogs, what they are good with, bad with etc that is easily searchable? i find the KC site hard to navigate sometimes plus i cant access it at work :mad: Talking of which i better get back to it lol
     
  17. ballybee

    ballybee PetForums VIP

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    Champdogs is a good one, it gives basic detaisl on the breed, and each breed has a section for breed clubs where you can go to find out more about each breed :)
     
    Leam1307 likes this.
  18. Owned By A Yellow Lab

    Owned By A Yellow Lab PetForums VIP

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    If you're anywhere near London this weekend then DISCOVER DOGS is on at Earls Court - 200 different dog breeds to meet :)

    Failing that, I would recommend hanging out at your local park in the mornings and seeing which dog breeds are there, and interacting with them. Most dog owners are pretty friendly and would be happy to tell you about their breeds and there's nothing quite like interacting with the actual dogs, to give you a 'feel' for which breeds you 'click' with :)

    RE PUPPIES:

    As you both work full time, I would urge you *not* to get a puppy.

    They don't stay small for very long and they need a LOT of attention, careful soialisation, training, etc.

    When I was looking for a rescue dog, one of the most common reasons I heard for dogs ending up in rescue was because "We work full time and we simply can't give him the exercise and attention he needs."

    If you get a rescue dog who is about two or three, a lot of the hard work will have been done for you, as long as you ensure the rescue has thoroughly assessed the dog :)
     
  19. Leam1307

    Leam1307 PetForums Senior

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    Ive been on this site awhile although usually in the cat section and it has been a brilliant way to learn what we should be looking for and how much research i should do, i must admit i probably wouldnt have done half of this if it wasnt for PF, i wouldnt have known i should do it. and dont even get me started on the health testing, i will look into that once we have decided on which breeds we like.. it may change our opinions depending on scores, common issues etc.

    I had a lab growing up and she was fab, although she was an outside working dog...and tended to have that outdoor dog smell too! kinda put me off although i know thats not common for indoor dogs.

    I think dobermans might be just abit too big, ive not really seen any small ones. I guess i have to speak to my mum too as i dont think she would be comfortable walking a doberman no matter how well trained it was. (dont you find it sometimes hard to change the opinions of older generations regarding breeds. i.e to my mum all ESS are nutters, staffies are dangerous and dobermans are devil dogs never mind how many good ones we actually know) not my opinion though.
     
  20. Pointermum

    Pointermum PetForums VIP

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    Going by what you have said, you could pretty much have a your choice of dogs. You don't say how experienced you are with dogs ?

    While you could make any dog work with hard work , some are naturally more easy to train ;)

    I know someone who works 9-5 with 2 pointers, her husband spends his lunch brake with them, so it can be done with most breeds but for instants Pointers take a lot of work form a early age to install a good recall or they will run off after a bird or something !

    What breeds are you drawn to ?
     
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