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Old March 8th, 2010, 12:53 PM
placid placid is offline
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Need opinion on breed selection

Hi all. I'm in a bit of a funk here. We're looking at adding another dog to our family. We currently share our home with 2 cats (brothers and 13 going on 14), and my other baby, my German Shepherd who is 12.5 yrs. old. Unfortunately I'm having a very hard time deciding on what would be the best "fit" for us.

Yes, I'm aware that each dog has it's own personality, but some breeds are more inherrant of certain characteristics. I'm a very experienced dog owner, have worked with dogs, and have even dabbled in training in the past. I grew up with constant dog companions - a good number of which were German Shepherds, although I can also say I've had the pleasure of sharing house with a couple of rough collies, a golden retriever, and a number of mutts.

Because we are a family of 5 - my spouse, my 13 yr. old, almost 6 yr. old a a new baby, I need to careful in my selection. Which is why I'm shying away from adopting/resucing at this time.

I'm a big-dog kind of gal. Medium sized is also okay, but I must admit that I like a dog that looks both intelligent and powerful. Prob. has something do do with being raised around GS's. Hubby would love for me to agree to getting a Rotti, but I must admit that I'm skeptical of them being the right "family" dog, and they are personally not at the top of my list.

Some breeds we've considered, and have been on our "short-list" at one time or another are as follows;-

German Shepherd (although we're thinking we may want to try on another breed this time around)
Bernese
Doberman
Weimaraner
Newfie
Vizsla

To be honest.........the list could go on, and on!

I guess I should give you an idea of what we are looking for in terms of character/temperment traits, etc.

I don't want a dog that has a long list of possible health issues (which prob. rules out the Berner). I want a dog that would be a good guardian dog, high tolerance for kids, active, but not to the point of needing hours of exercise per day, affectionate, very intelligent, and possibly does not shed too much. Ummm..........I must admit that I'm not too fond of excessive drooling either, which again prob. rules out the Newfie.

With this being said, I do know that the Vizsla, on paper, would appear to be the perfect fit. Unfortuantely I don't know anyone that has one, and probably have only come into contact with one vizsla for more than a few minutes. They may not have the "look" that I tend to gravitate towards, but I'm warming to them.

I've been doing some "research" on local breeders (Ontario). They all seem to be priced around $1,500.00, which I find is somewhat steep for an average, but maybe I've been out of the "game" for a while???? I do know that there are several breeders state side that offer pups for far below that mark.

Any way, I'm just looking for some opinions here. Are there breeds out there that you think would "fit" my criteria, or most of it? Would you recommnend, or not, any breeds of listed. Are there any owners of these breeds that could offer some personal opinions?

I've also been told that the German Short-haired Pointer might be a close-fit to the Vizsla. Any opinions????

Lastly.........if anyone could recommnend a good website that has a good database of dog breed information - looking for one that offers more than just a basic paragraph on temperment. I'd appreciate something that offers a little bit more in-depth info. I absolutely love the Animal Planet's t.v. show Dogs 101 for this. A website molded after this would be ideal!

Thanks in advance for any input folks!
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Old March 8th, 2010, 01:40 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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Both GSPs and vizslas might be more high-energy than what you're looking for. Most of the hunting-type dogs require a lot of exercise as pups. We have setters and the two we raised from small pups trashed a backyard to the point of having to relandscape before putting the house on the market when we moved.

Just remember that any breed description is just an 'average' of characteristics for the breed and not every individual will follow the game plan. So once you've finally decided on a breed, you need to do some further homework and go visit. You can tell a lot about the temperament of a pup from the dam and sire.

But please don't totally count out a rescue. Rescued dogs are often evaluated at foster homes for their behaviors toward other dogs, cats, babies, children and adults, so you have a pretty good idea of temperamant before you bring them home. Might be just the ticket--plus the added advantages are having a dog that's probably already house-broken and maybe a little more laid-back than a wee puppy would be.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 02:14 PM
aslan aslan is offline
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welcome to the forum,,, the doberman and weimeraner are also going to need a fair amount of exercise...The Newfie isn't quite as high energy but makes up for that with shedding and goober.. If you google rescues for any of these breeds you could give an animal a home and as pointed out they would probably already be housebroken and tempermant tested..

If you're going to go the breeder route, please research the breeder carefully, one thing you really want to watch out for is are the dogs titled and registered this gives you better odds they are ethical and not just mass producing puppies for money, thus making the possibility of health problems less likely.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 03:26 PM
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Marty11 Marty11 is offline
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I totally recomend the Boston Terrier they are excellent with kids, patient, somewhat a guardian and do not shed or drool and are not a hyper terrier. I have mine in a daycare situation and she is excellent. Another breed that I've heard is a lot like a German Shephard is the Corgi. I never met one personally.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 04:01 PM
BenMax BenMax is offline
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[QUOTE=hazelrunpack;
But please don't totally count out a rescue. Rescued dogs are often evaluated at foster homes for their behaviors toward other dogs, cats, babies, children and adults, so you have a pretty good idea of temperamant before you bring them home. Might be just the ticket--plus the added advantages are having a dog that's probably already house-broken and maybe a little more laid-back than a wee puppy would be. [/QUOTE]

Hazelrunpack is absolutely right. I have had dogs from shelters and pounds that have been such wonderful dogs..I could not have gotten better.

If you could only see my latest boy Maddox (a bi-colored GSD) - you could put him into any home, under any circumstances and he would prove to be so sound. I acquired him through rescue.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 04:28 PM
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LavenderRott LavenderRott is offline
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I rescued an adult rottweiler six months before I gave birth to my now 12 year old son. They were best friends until the day we lost her to cancer. She was inordinately gentle with him - she laid very still when he felt the need to use her head as a steppy stool, slept on his bed at night when he went through the "nightmare" phase as a toddler, and waited patiently when he filled her food bowl in the morning. I can not imagine him growing up with a different dog of any breed.

There are many, many rottweilers in rescues that are equally wonderful with children and would love to have a forever home. Yes, they are a strong, powerful breed and they do need an owner who knows the importance of making rules known and keeping them from being broken - in a firm and consistant manner.

I know several women involved in rottweiler rescue who would be thrilled to help you find a tempermentally sound dog to fit in with your family. If you are interested - let me know.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 04:55 PM
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Frenchy Frenchy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by placid View Post


Lastly.........if anyone could recommnend a good website that has a good database of dog breed information -
here : http://www.petfinder.com/dog-breeds

you choose a breed and it will tell you the energy of the breed , grooming etc ...
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Old March 8th, 2010, 06:31 PM
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MyBirdIsEvil MyBirdIsEvil is offline
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Actually rottweilers make pretty good family dogs with experienced dog owners.

As far as berners health problems. have you considered any other sennenhunds? Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs and the others don't have nearly as many of the health issues the berners have.

1500 is about average for a dog from a reputable breeder. That's what I paid for my swissy. Remember that it takes a lot of money and time for the breeder to ethically breed a female and raise a litter of pups until they're ready to go home.

There's no reason you have to get a puppy. Rescues have dogs that have already been assessed and should fit in just fine in your home. Also if you really want to buy from a breeder, look for retired adults. They will be fixed and have already been socialized and the breeder can tell you about the personality of a dog.

I personally would not want a puppy if I had small children. That's a lot of responsibility on top of caring for a new baby and other kids. Not to mention puppies can get pretty rough and not be very gentle with the kids.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 06:50 PM
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happycats happycats is offline
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Sorry but I believe RESCUE all the way!! You already know there temperment, and what they look like when they grow up

my son was 7 at the time I got my rescue,( Buddy) and the wonderful rescuer was completely honest about him.
He had to be great with kids of all ages (as our neighbourhood has alot of them and my son has many over all the time)
good with strangers, good with cats and other dogs.
My rescue is that and so much more!
He is amazing, and everyone, I mean everyone always tell us what an amazing dog he is. So many wish they would have gone the rescue route after meeting Buddy
He's totally obedient, with amazing recall, we never leash him out front of the house and he never leaves the property.

the great thing is you find a great rescue group (there are many right here ) and you tell them exactly what you want, and they will get you your perfect match.

I would only ever get a rescue.
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