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Opinions needs - choosing the right breed

Loves Labs
March 8th, 2007, 12:17 PM
Hi All,

I am posting this on behalf of a friend. I, personally, prefer to give rescue dogs a home and am not so picky about breeds. However, I know you guys are a great source of information - so I said I would ask for her.

They are looking for a small-medium sized dog that sheds minimally. She has allergies but has found in the past that some dogs have been tolerable.

Does anyone have any ideas of what breed would be suitable?

Oh yes - I forgot to add, she mentioned a Basenji. I had never heard of these before - does anyone have any experience with this breed?

I really don't know why she doesn't just get a lab...hehehe.

Thanks in advance.

March 8th, 2007, 12:26 PM
Basenji? med size (aprox 25lbs), and tend to be less irritating for those who have allergies. no dog smell. virtually no shedding. virtually no barking. (they do make plenty of other noises though!). very CLEAN dogs. virtually no grooming needed except nail trims.

that said, they are NOT the dog for everyone. they are sighthounds, and should never be trusted off leash. they can be destructive. they need to be trained, in a positive manner. as all dogs, they require work to be sure their needs are met, and to keep them safe.

your friend should research this breed if interested. there are key things to know before taking one home.

** my dog is a basenji-mix. your friend can ask any questions she wants, I'll do my best.

edited to add pic...(this isn't my dog, just to show what the breed looks like)

Loves Labs
March 8th, 2007, 01:00 PM
Thanks jessi - I have just been looking up Basenjis...they are definitely a good looking dog.

I appreciate your warning. I should also mention that these people have never had a dog before and do I say this nicely....aren't what I would call dog-lovers. It sounds to me like they are looking for the "perfect" dog, that doesn't shed, bark, make a mess, etc etc. I am doing my best to offer my advice and guidance without being too harsh but I find it difficult to hear that "they don't want a dog that smells".

I will do my best to help guide them as to whether or not they should really have a dog. However, if anyone has any suggestions on a "first dog" dog with minimal shedding, it would be much appreciated!

March 8th, 2007, 01:16 PM
a basenji is NOT a good choice for a "first dog" IMO. as with all things, there is a trade off... a basenji may not smell, may not bark, may not shed, but one might completely shred the couch....

maybe a maltese would be a better choice? a friend of mine as one, and he is darling! no shedding, barks very little, very clean, easily trained, but he does require regular grooming. great little dog though!

March 8th, 2007, 01:48 PM
If they are determined to get a dog, I sure hope you'll be able to convince them to research dog care and training. With my experience, I'd probably recommend a Shi Tzu or Maltese, or a similar mixed breed. I have met and gotten to know quite a few that were wonderful family additions when raised properly. Because Shi Tzus are often professionally groomed, this would most likely take care of any doggie smells they might be concerned about.

After doing some research, your friends ought to visit different shelters and rescues to meet a variety of these pups. Because of her allergies, I hope she'll spend enough time with a dog to see if there's a reaction before bringing it home. In the past two months, we've had three Shi Tzus at the shelter I volunteer at and they were the most amazing, well-behaved little guys. The families who eventually adopted them have all come back to visit and share their happy experiences. They just couldn't believe people gave these dogs up.

I, too, am in the process of trying to convince family friends to not get a dog until they've done more thorough research. They are absolutely determined to get a puppy from a breeder. This will be their first family pet (their daughter is 4 years old) and they are adamnent about getting a Border Collie. I've tried to explain the breed's needs but they figure their small yard (in the city too) is big enough to exercise it. Both parents have full-time jobs and active social lives. :yell: They are SOOOO stubborn and it gets me so frustrated.

Anyhow, do your best to guide them. In the end, it'll be their decision and hopefully they will seriously consider your advice .