Can you please advise on suitable breeds for a family?(77 Posts)
I would like a smallish, non-smelly dog for a family home. If it could sort of be my oldest DC's dog that would be nice but I don't know how easily a dog can be told who it belongs to!
I am home a LOT during the day so it wouldn't be left.
We have 2 cats.
Any suggestions? <dog virgin>
I'm a labrador person, and if I can't have a labrador, I won't have a dog.
Which is why we don't have a dog.
But I know one of these and he's adorable.
Lynette, the Bedlington Terrier looks so adorable!
How would we get one?
I know that sounds a bit impulsive and I'm not actually planning on getting one right now but it would be interesting to know how to acquire this or any kind of dog. I know you don't go to pet shops. Is it a bit like adopting a DC...
Ok, you need to ask yourself some questions first..
How old are your DC? Children love the idea of a dog but soon grow bored of the reality, the dog will be the adults responsibility and you need to understand that.
How much exercise are you prepared to commit to? In all weathers? Snow. Rain. Wind. With DC if they are too young to leave. Do you mind a muddy dog in the house?
Training, will you commit to a structured, ongoing training program?
Puppy or rescue? Be aware that puppies are bloody hard work at times, they nip, wee, poo, chew, jump up. They need a lot of input. A rescue may have issues that need working on, or may not.
Can you afford the insurance, food, toys, crate etc? Medical bills etc.
Grooming, do you want a dog that needs a lot or a little etc?
What arrangements will you make when you have to leave your dog or for holidays etc?
There's lots to consider when getting a dog!
My friend went to a specialist breeder recommened to her by a relative.
My freinds dog really does have the most amazing personality even though
he's a bit funny looking he looks like a sheep when he's had a haircut.
Some look more sheep like than others
thank you needastrongone -
don't worry, we have considered many of those points. I'm aware I have sounded a bit flippant,
DC: 16,15 and 13. I'm prepared to commit to taking dog out every day regardless of weather, but not for really really long walks.
Yes I DO mind a muddy dog in the house. I am hoping that while it's really muddy it stays in the kitchen. Can come into rest of house after a clean.
Probably not upstairs though.
We do not want a Rescue, despite recognising that this is a very good thing to do. DH had a bad experience with a rescue many years ago. I would commit to a training programme but would that mean the dog would end up being more devoted to me than anyone else? (I wouldn't mind, because as I say, I'm home most of the time, but on the other hand we would like it to be DD's dog).
Not so sure about how much grooming we can commit to. How much is a lot, and how much is a little?
Presumably when we go on holiday dog could go to kennels (cats already go to cattery) but we only go away once a year.
Financially, yes it's a lot with vets and so on. We are prepared to afford it though...
We've got Yorkipoos (pics on profile).
Yorkie sized so small, don't shed, and lovely personalities - cheeky, friendly, intelligent and love cuddles.
I would definitely advise looking at your list of needs and finging dog breeds that match rather than finding a dog you like the look of. For instance, you say you don't want to do long walks. Bedlingtons are lovely but like most terriers will need a long walk. There are websites where you can put in what you can give grooming and exercise wise etc and it will suggest breeds to consider.
Thanks fanoftheinvisibleman - I've looked on the kennel club and it says this about Bedlingtons:
Breed Group Terrier
Vulnerable Native Breed No
Size Medium How much exercise? Up to 1 hour per day
Length of coat Medium
How much grooming? More than once a week
Supposedly sheds? * No
Town or Country Either
Type of home Small or Large House
Minimum Garden Size Small/Medium
So, it says up to one hour a day exercise, That doesn't sound like much to me? When I say I don't want to do long walks, I mean I don't want to go rambling through forests and fields for hours on end. I suppose it's quite subjective. DH would do very very long walks at weekends however. Also it says "supposedly sheds, No" which I am assuming means it's better than some breeds with regards to allergies. We don't really have any serious allergies, but i have one DC with mild eczema in winter months.
But you are quite right, I mustn't just find a dog I like the look of!
Empress your Yorkipoos are gorgeous! Looks like you have a lot of fun with them! I have however realised that it's a medium size dog we are after, rather than small
I'd be a little sceptical of 'up to an hour' to be honest. I've yet to meet a working type terrier breed that would suit 'up to' an hour.
I have a Border Terrier and out of interest I have just looked on KC site at BT's and it says the same thing of up to an hour.Mine can get by on around 1 and 1/2 hours of which is a combination of 2 or 3 miles brisk walking or a lot of energetic playing with an other dog. He can also be out for 6 hours and will still bring a ball when he gets back. A pair on my street go for regular long walks and she told me that they cover 17 - 20 miles with ease.
I know you haven't said you are getting a bedlington, please don't think I am having a go. But I would take those estimates with a huge pinch of salt. When I say mine gets by on an hour and a half, if is a get by, and he'd be a pain in the arse if it was regular (illustrated on friday when he had just over an hour and was on pins all night!). Two to three hours would be his preferred.
A cocker or a cockerpoo is a lovely family dog. They need a bit more grooming, but a bit less exercise I think than a terrier.
I so have my heart set on one, once our kids are a bit bigger. DS2 gets up at 6 every day, so he will be on morning shift, and I will do the afternoons . . . .
Empress, your yorkipoos are gorgeous!!
Hmm .. I've just checked my dog's supposed exercise requirements on the kennel club site and it also says 'up to one hour' - there's no way an adult Toller would be happy with that little exercise so def take with a very large pinch of salt ...
well I did think "up to an hour" sounded a little odd - basically, that means anything under an hour, doesnt it! Which can't be right.
Maybe they missed the 4 times a day off the end <eyes tiny terrierist who was out for 2 and 1/2 hours today who is currently trying to eat his way through dh's slippers whilst he wears to get at a toy>
Scratch that...he has shot off down the room chasing his own tail now!
regardless of what actual breed we are discussing, would you say the best place to find a breeder is actually the KC website?
The easiest way to find a well respected breeder would be to find the breeds you are most interested in and then approach the relevant breed club for personal recommendations.
Don't let me put you off terriers, I am a huge fan. I don't think I could have anything else but it is important to know what you are taking on. You know the phone ad 'Be more dog'? They are more dog...heartstoppingly so at times. They need a cats 9 lives as they do before they think half the time and and are brave beyond their size. They will reward you if you are up for all that, but you do nwed to be up for it with all it entails. For me that has meant walking miles and laying on my belly in the mud to fish the daft mutt out of the river
Good luck whatever you go for though and enjoy the search. The best way to get a good match is to be brutally honest with yourself and ask lots of questions of other owners.
I found the breed club more helpful than the KC website when we got our mini Schnauzer (great family dogs btw, but small not medium).
KC website or champdogs for websites or get in touch with the breed club. But anywhere you find a breeder you need to have researched what the wanted health tests are for that breed yourself so that you know what to ask and be prepared to pass on a breeder if you're not happy about something.
Just another thing to add to all the wise advice you've already been given - you can also find puppies in rescue centres. They are usually fostered with families so you will be given a very good assessment of what each puppy is like. They will have been well socialised within a family situation, have been exposed to lots of different things which will help give the puppy a great start to life.
However hard you look, it may be hard to distinguish a decent breeder from a not-so-good one, even if they're KC registered, it doesn't really mean anything. It can just mean that they register some litters, and not the other litters in between, but the poor mother may have been bred a lot... just be wary.
I didn't mean to come over as patronising at all , just that we have a 13 month old Springer, he is absolutely part of our family now, but it's also been incredibly hard work at times, and I wanted you to be very much aware of this.
How about a show cocker, NOT a working cocker? Small, super temperament, gentle, fun, I don't think they shed overly much (all in context with dogs!). They don't need as much exercise as their working relations but have many of the attributes, but you must get health checked pups, as cockers are very much in vogue at the moment (Kate and William have a black one!!!), and I think the show type are slightly more prone to health issues.
Both of our breeders I found on Champdogs, not Preloved, Pet4homes etc. 'Breeders' get a very bad press, but I seem to have struck lucky with both of ours. Or maybe I did the right amount of research. I did email a few others on that site though, if you get an email back saying you are suitable, then discount, no genuine breeder would agree to selling a pup via an email. I was telephone interviewed then invited to be vetted for both (the latest being particularly stringent as the demand for his pups outstripped supply, so to speak, vastly, his pups are black cockers, like Will and Kate's, and most had been pre booked anyway to working homes).
I discounted any advert that said '£100 deposit secures' etc.
Expect to see all relevant health related paperwork and pedigree paperwork and expect that, should anything unforeseen happen, the pup goes back to the breeder. Expect lifetime support and advice. Our Springer goes back to the breeder for our holidays for a fiver a day, but that's unusual I think.
The breeder should also be breeding to gain another pup really and have the health/continuation/wellbeing of his/her particular breed as their main priority. Few breeders should breed more than one type of dog.
Pups should be raised in the home and well socialised to all household noises and people. Our second breeder has working dogs, who do live outside, but mum and pups were inside and the room was spotless. I met all the dogs (all 7 I think, and was loved to death , the kennels were also spotlessly clean)
Try to see both mum and dad and mum with her litter if you can.
Just get a good vibe from your breeder, but expect a grilling too.
Can I steer you away from poodle or poodle combination dogs if you don't want the dog upstairs. They are really great family dogs, but they really need people and for the vast majority of them sleeping downstairs is not close enough to their people.
I would suggest looking at breeds like Norfolk Terriers and Border Terriers you will have to wait for a pup from a reputable breeder, but they are low shedding, tend not to indulge too much in mud and are fairly independent characters.
I have a poodle cross and grew up with those breeds of terrier. I didn't like their independent nature and wanted a dog who needed me more.
needastrongone get away with you, you haven't been patronising at all - where did that come from? I really appreciate your input!And a show cocker sounds good....
thank you everyone else for input. Perhaps I should reconsider a Rescue then, LadyTurmoil...
I will clarify about not wanting the dog upstairs....
I don't want it in my room or any other rooms upstairs other than DD's (age 16) bedroom. [but is that even hygienic/advisable]??
We want it to be "her" dog, although really it's mine because I'm here in the day (and obviously I won't be leaving home for uni in 2 years time)! so I will be doing most of the exercising, handling and so on. But we would like dog to have a special bond with DD. - and with me & DH of course. (But other DCs aren't bothered but DD has always wanted a dog and we are only in the right "place" now to actually have one).
Therefore, Lonecat, possible a poodle combo is ok?
There is no guarantee about the non shedding with a poodle x , why not just get a poodle ,they're lovely intelligent dogs and unless you choose to have a ridiculous haircut look perfectly normal .
Another thought - you could register your interest in adopting with several local rescues and see what comes along. Their websites are often not very up to date, but sometimes they have FB pages which are better. Often the more popular dogs are rehomed before they've even appeared on a website.
Also, you could talk to those rescues about fostering perhaps? It offers help to the rescue and gives you a "taste" of what it's really like to have a puppy/dog. If you fall in love, you can always adopt...
We have a 2nd generation miniature labradoodle who's parents were a labradoodle and a miniature poodle. DH chose her and got her. I grew up with labs and him with cockers but he's developed an allergy so our girl is perfect for that. She meets your no shedding and non-smelly requirements, sleeps downstairs
unless it's cold and I'm in a particularly good mood and has a 15min morning walk, lots of runs around the garden, an hour at lunchtime and 15minsin the evening. I love her but she is completely bonkers, bloody difficult to train, a food thief and noisy and so I probably wouldn't get another one, despite her being amazing with DD. I want a poodle, a bedlington or an Airedale terrier for our next dog, all the good points but a bit less crazy.
A large number of poodle combos are like poodles only really happy with their people - mine sleeps on my bed. When he is home alone he is fine, but today when I have had to leave him in my office alone while I go and do some other work he has cried. I really wanted a dog that was totallly mine and totally bonded to me so I like these features of his character, but know they are not for everyone.
Next time I will have a standard poodle.
We have a show cocker. Very friendly, loyal but quite possessive of me. She is good with the 2 cats. I would be concerned about having any terrier if you have cats. She does shed but we keep her hair short to minimise it. They do need a good walk and she often goes for a run with DH.
Thanks, Sally and Nigella. They are pretty gorgeous .
Ours both sleep downstairs and are fine when we go out as long as they've got kongs when we go, but that was partly why we got two. Maggi was in our room until we got Milo and I think if he hadn't come she'd still be there.
Would someone please tell me at how many weeks old do breeders let the puppy go to a new home?
Does it depend on the breed?
How old would a show cocker spaniel need to be
because I would quite like a blue roan one
Usually 8 weeks. Some will allow their pups to go at 7 weeks, but it is important that they don't go earlier than that, they learn so much from their mother.
Our first breeder let us have Ddog at 7.5 weeks and because it was the weekend. I also think she was heartily sick of the litter by then, 13 pups and two adult dogs would drive me a bit loopy too .
The socialisation window is small too, from 8-16 weeks you need to expose the puppy to as many different people and situations/noises/other dogs as you possibly can, before fear sets in. If you bare in mind that your are restricted to where you can take the puppy while it is having it's vaccinations, then it doesn't leave you all that long.
We carried our puppy everywhere we could and took him everywhere that was safe, and let him play with as many fully vaccinated dogs as we were able.
Good luck, I like show cockers too, we have chosen a working one as we have a Springer already, so needed something to keep up!
What about this little girl? Aba
We've got a cavapoo - similar to a cockapoo but a bit smaller. Very good with the kids and cats and she sleeps downstairs too.
Cockapoo and cavapoo - yes, lovely, but bloody expensive and hard to find reputable breeders. Why not go for a mutt?
What about Sabina?
Bloody hell lady turmoil, seeing them with a death date written next to them brings tears to my eyes, so sad
Agree Kitsmummy, it really does get the heartstrings doesn't it?
Honest question here, I am not having a dig at anyone. Why do folk adopt dogs from Eastern European countries when there are so many in rescue here in the UK, and you can gain the back up and support here, if the rescue is reputable.
I am not criticising any choices here, anybody adopting a rescue dog deserves praise but it would worry me I guess, if it was my personal decision and it's good to understand the reasoning behind rescuing from abroad.
I was about to foster from a UK rescue but had my heartstrings pulled by the dog that was on death row in Croatia so I fostered her for 7 weeks. I know other people have had variable experiences with rescue dogs from abroad, but Action Aid for Animals gave me v good backup and support.
Just have a soft spot for them as they're living really horrible lives in Eastern Europe for the most part - poisoned, run over deliberately by cars, kept on chains for all their lives. I would foster ex-breeding dogs from the UK but they nearly always need an existing dog at home to copy and learn from, which I don't have. Also, nearly always arrive already spayed, all vaccines done, pet passport which costs a hell of a lot to do here so £200ish adoption fee is very good value.
I know they're euthanised here in large numbers too but there are lots of breeds in rescue here that I just don't want - staffies, labs, retrievers, lurchers, greyhounds. All lovely dogs but not my kind of dog (apologies to all those dog owners shouting at me now!).
I just love the mixed mutt kind and I reckon if they've survived the streets and the shelters they're pretty damn hardy dogs who would hopefully not be needing to see the vet a lot in their lifetimes!
As well as Sabina, there are about six or 7 dogs on Death Row who would make fab family dogs, I reckon. www.helpforcroatianstrays.com/#/death-row-dogs/4577578072
Update - going to look at a couple of cocker spaniel pups next Tuesday. We could come home with one!
I've ordered a crate which should come any minute now (according to parcelforce website) and some nylon bones for teething as recommended by the breeder/owner.
I'm excited but a bit nervous..... have started enquiring re. training classes - I do want to train him very well!
Sounds like a good call, showing strain cocker. Anything with 'poo' in the 'breed name' is actually a mongrel, nothing AT ALL wrong with that, but just be aware that it wouldn't be guaranteed in any way that the resultant puppy was non - shedding etc. I've got a Portuguese Wate Dog, labradoodles look like them and he's fab but possibly too high energy for your needs.
I was going to suggest cocker, or possibly Norfolk/Border terrier, or if you like the 'look', something like a Boston terrier?
good suggestions Noodles!
and your Portuguese Water Dog sounds like fun... but I'm sold on the idea of a cocker now.
Oh stop it LadyTurmoil I am now worrying about all these rescue dogs and whether they will find good homes.... she looks so sweet!
Yes, NTG all those ikkle, bikkle puppies with their big, sad eyes in rescue centres ALL over the country and abroad! And at Christmas too, ooh how could you? Feel better now?
Or a bedlington cross lurcher cross of course..
Someone I know has lurchers and a bedlington and the bedlington always trails along at the back and would be quite happy to stay at home in the warm...
Happy Christmas LadyT
<sobs into pedigree chum>
Only kidding! Have a wonderful Christmas and 2014.
If you do go for a puppy, I'd wait until about March/April. You'll be doing a lot of popping outside and hanging around while the puppy pees/poos. Much nicer to do that when it's a bit warmer, not in the Arctic cold and winds of deepest winter
aaghh - a bit late for that!
we are visiting a pup next week, and may well bring him home!!
[dog with santa hat smiley]
Then hop over to the new puppy thread and join us there!
Will the breeder let you come home with him? Any names?
Our new puppy is going to be called Hector
Love the persistence Lady
what about a rescue puppy? Rescue centres get lots of puppies too.
I wouldnt support private dog breeding
Persistent (annoying?!) but unsuccessful need
Personally, I just couldn't justify paying about £500-800 for a puppy when there are so many dogs in rescues. I also prefer slightly older dogs anyway - have great respect for those who invest such a lot of time into the very intensive puppy months - I know I just couldn't handle it.
I know there are obvious drawbacks - you can't do all the health checks etc when it's a rescue, can't see them with mum and dad etc, but it's a fact that perfectly good dogs are mistreated, left to die or put to sleep in this country and others because of over-breeding and lack of neutering.
I am not sure that I have 'supported private breeding', or at least not in the way that you mean bran .
We are getting a working Cocker in January. The breeder works his dogs, he has 6 in total. He breeds when he wants another working dog, the bitch he has mated he feels is one of the best workers he has ever had and he was keen to have a pup from her lines. So, he's keeping a dog, three were pre booked to working homes.Her previous litter was small, so he didn't advertise the 'spare' pups until birth.
I have been interviewed by telephone, then invited to be vetted and meet the parents. I saw all relevant paperwork. Then I was offered a puppy. Any money he makes from breeding pays for his dogs for the year, and to work them.
Am I giving money to the breeding industry? Yes, of course I am. Could I have got a dog to suit the intelligence and energy needs of our current Springer? Probably. But I can't help but feel that there are good, honest, decent folk out there that breed for the right reasons too.
And a lot of dodgy ones on Pre-Loved too
I guess it's personal choice isn't it?
And I also can't argue with your points above Lady
Definitely personal choice and everyone has their (usually valid) reasons.
I meant to say that it's a bit different if you're looking for a working dog, rather than "just" a pet. Then there are specific needs, traits that an owner would be looking to match up with a breeder, as you have done, need.
I just wish the govt / Kennel Club etc would get their finger out about legislation against puppy farming and backyard breeders, the KC registered crap and really crack down on dodgy breeding.
Agree, I was looking at the KC breeders list while researching the puppy. It has a facility to show if they have visited the Assured Breeder, not the registered breeders mind, just the Assured. The amount visited is pitiful.
As I said, a short google or flick on preloved just shows how many dogs are being 'bred', and probably not for the right reasons either.
Mind you, met a guy today who had taken on a privately rehomed Springer, who was absolutely lovely (the dog). He had paid £100 for her, from a family that lived in the city centre, whose husband was away all week and she worked full time, so the dog got one hours walk a week, on a weekend. A Springer!! I know private rehoming's are not generally recommended, but I know where that dog is happier.
There's some shit owners out there too
I'm pretty certain the lady we are visiting next week has bred her litter for the right reasons - she asked me a lot of questions on the phone and was insistent that we visit. You never know though, do you.
Very exciting but slightly unsure that they are allowing u to take a pup home a week before christmas - not usually best time for breeders to release pups. Maybe they just want to reserve pup for u to collect a bit later.
Well I did tell her that as we are getting the Christmas tree this weekend I wanted all that sorted first, so that things would be calmer at home.
Just usually breeders don't like to give out pups this close as it become more of a puppy for a Christmas pressure sort of thing. Exiting tho
Nigella - I was just thinking it through, if the pups are older than 8 weeks, given that you are restricted for 21 days until your dog is fully vaccinated, just make sure you are extra vigilant with the socialisation process.
If you have cats, and have never owned a dog before, I honestly would not start with a working terrier breed. They are active intelligent dogs, but not for the inexperienced IMO. Many end up in rescue at 18 m because they get get chosen for their cute looks, and not their feisty personalities. I love terriers, but Bedlingtons can be possessive and stroppy with other dogs, like most terrier breeds. A breed association website will give a much more balanced view of a breed than the kennel club website. Terriers in general are very active and boisterous, if you want a calmer breed then think of something other than a terrier!
A late reply to needa - my rescue boy has come from overseas, the culture there is to kill dogs very quickly. Perhaps wrongly, I felt that I was doing a good thing by taking a dog into my home and freeing up his no-kill space where he was living for another dog at risk.
Giveit - its good to rescue dogs - but there are loads of dogs being pts in the UK - and often (but not always) there is better support from uk rescue groups. Some countries seem to be setting up puppy farms to provide cute fluffy puppies specifically for the UK 'rescue' market which hardly seems a satisfactory situation. So you need to choose any overseas rescue set up with care.
I hadn't heard of puppies being bred for "rescue", what a terrible thing!
PS ItDog is not fluffy or a puppy, if that helps!
Giveit - I was not suggesting that what you did was wrong or anything - its just that puppy farmers have seen the situation and are breeding to order - they don't get much money but as they've not put anything 'in' to the puppies apart from a bit of food for their mothers, they're not getting a bad deal.
And it makes me sad that there are dogs no doubt being kept in horrid situations to produce the puppies - then some of the puppies will have problems as they've not had any socialisation etc... and dogs in the UK are being passed over because a fluffy puppy is being 'rescued' from abroad.... Its wrong on so many levels.
needa don't worry - will be full on socialising! I will take him out in my arms, plus lots of visitors with dogs coming over christmas period. I've got a crate in the utility room now - just off the kitchen so close to all the action but still tucked away for a bit of peace and quiet. I've been in contact with, and received a reply from, what seems like a nice place for puppy classes as soon as vaccinations completed. They also can visit us at home for support before vaccinations are completed and I might do that too. I really want to train him carefully.
I think the pup gets lots of socialising where he lives as well.
Going to see him tomorrow!
BTW he's a cocker spaniel, helly, not a terrier...
just thought - perhaps friends' dogs shouldn't visit until our pup has had vaccinations?
I hadn't read through the whole thread when I posted, as was distracted by a small child! I was going to suggest a cocker, strangely, as my last dog had two cocker chums, and they were both lovely dogs, and fitted your brief well. Good luck with your puppy!
thank you Helly! today is the big day...
Nigella - as long at the visiting dogs are fully up to date with their vaccinations, it's perfectly acceptable, and a good idea in fact!
Keep us posted
No criticism from me either Giveit, I was just trying to understand the motivation re rescuing from abroad
We need puppy pics to coo over.
Nigella - did you pick up your puppy? Hope all goes well
Yes we picked him up and he is LOVELY!
He did very well last night - cried a little in his crate but Radio 5Live settled him nicely. He travelled in the car for 2 hours without a peep.
He is friendly and happy, but scared of our cat!
I will upload a pic soon...
no clue how to upload a photo into a post, but I've put some on my profile.....
i think you need to change privacy settings on your profile and then we'll be able to see pics <drums fingers impatiently>
can you see the photos now?
Aww, lovely. Can't believe how different show and working Cockers look! Glad it's worked out for you guys.
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