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Good websites for choosing a family dog

(40 Posts)
mintchocchick Mon 16-Jul-12 22:13:29

We are thinking of getting a dog, having finally settled in a house/area after a few years of moving around. So we are starting our research into the best breed of dog for us.

Our 7yr old has decided to turn this into a 'dog project' over the summer holidays and is going to start by finding out about old English sheepdogs, retrievers and spaniels and 'any others'! I thought I'd give him some websites to start off this project and hopefully get some good advice about what breed we'd be suited to.

Any ideas for websites or books would be great.

TheCunnyFunt Tue 17-Jul-12 21:33:25

Oh and their fur stays really soft like puppy fur, mine is 5 and is sooooooo soft and snuggly smile

Scuttlebutter Tue 17-Jul-12 21:34:04

X post with Cunny!! grin

TheCunnyFunt Tue 17-Jul-12 21:36:43

Scuttle did you catch my reference to cyclists? wink grin

Scuttlebutter Tue 17-Jul-12 21:41:26

Yes, I was very impressed!! grin

TheCunnyFunt Tue 17-Jul-12 21:43:19

I had to google the spelling blush

Puffinsaresmall Tue 17-Jul-12 21:45:26

For your son's 'project', have you got Sky tv? There's a program called Dogs 101 on Animal I think, that has 4 breeds per hour and gives a brief overview of health/exercise needs/family type etc. My dd loves it.

There's also this website that you can do breed searches on. Not saying how good the info is but would be good for a child's project:

and this lets you put requirements in and see 'matches':

We have a Pomeranian and a (baby - 8 weeks today!) Maltese, prob too small for you smile

Scuttlebutter Tue 17-Jul-12 21:46:03

I think it was just an excuse to google him and look at pictures of his manly Norwegian handsomeness.... wink

<fans self and goes off to make a cup of herb tea and calm down>

Omelette Tue 17-Jul-12 21:46:16

If you think a greyhound/whippet may be a bit skinny for you, think about a Rhodesian Ridgeback. Mine is a big lad (54kg, muscle, not fat), very cuddly, will sleep all day next to the radiator in my study, is great with my energetic 2 year old, (and very tolerant whilst we teach said son about respecting other creatures). He rarely makes a sound, although on the rare occasions he does bark (window cleaner), he rattles the light fittings! He gets about an hour a day of walking and mostly plods along, even off lead, with occasional mad sprints. Only thing I would say (and I suspect this is true of other hound breeds also) is that they're very hard work as puppies. Big breeds take longer to mature (sweeping generalisation), so you might want to not get a tiny puppy.
Oh, and if your children remain keen to walk said dog once the novelty has worn off then great, but don't count on it. I love dogs, but our family Labrador got sadly neglected once I discovered boys!

mintchocchick Wed 18-Jul-12 22:50:56

Thanks everyone for the advice. I'll use those websites puffin.

I've shown my DSs pictures of pointy dogs and the youngest freaked a bit as he saw side on shots with greyhounds showing their teeth! (not aggressively, i mean just panting). But DS2 was bitten on his lip by a small terrier when he was 4yrs so is always asking which dogs are the gentlest and is really worried about biting. So he is not sure at all and I'm not sure because I can't get my head round the difference in type of dog I'm now considering! It's a big leap to go from wanting a big, hairy boisterous dog like a retriever to a greyhound! But it really does sound like a pointy dog would match us better.

So I'm going to phone the greyhound rescue centre near us and ask if we can visit to talk to them and meet a greyhound, or perhaps walk one to get a feel for them. They have 20 greyhounds at any one time in the centre, all retired, looking for homes


TheEternalOptimist Wed 18-Jul-12 22:59:17

That sounds like a good plan. How sad that they have so many greyhounds at the shelter though.

We have a Maltese. They are utterly adorable when they are puppies, aren't they?

Wolfiefan Wed 18-Jul-12 23:00:02

Seriously. Greyhounds give great cuddles. Sofa hogging huggy dogs! Tell DS that they are smiling and nothing like terriers.

Scuttlebutter Wed 18-Jul-12 23:08:27

You can reassure your DS about greyhounds and whippets. This American paper reviewed breed differences in canine aggression link here. Dogs with the lowest rates of aggression were Labs, Goldies, Bernese Mountain, Brittany Spaniels and ta-dah, greyhounds and whippets.

Not surprisingly, highest rates of aggression were Daschunds, JRTs and chihuahuas. The only serious bite I've ever had in years of being around dogs was from a JRT!

Most greyhound rescues regularly have open days, store collections, walks etc where you can come along and meet the dogs in an unhurried, relaxed environment, and let your DC get to know them.

Greyhounds also "grin" grin when they are happy and it's quite something!!

TheCunnyFunt Wed 18-Jul-12 23:15:21

Oooh Scuttle I saw Sprocket grin the other day! He was roaching and looking up at me (upside down) and he grinned grin It was brilliant! I whipped my camera out but he'd stopped by the time it came on sad

Mint don't be too sad about all the greys in rescues, it means their old owners were responsible and retired them to a rescue instead of killing/dumping them after they were no longer needed to race. The ones in rescues are the lucky ones really.

Scuttlebutter Wed 18-Jul-12 23:40:08

I love it when they grin grin

And when they roach grin

And do the teeth chattering when they are happy/excited grin

And the helicopter tail grin

But not the satanic bottom wink angry

LostInWales Thu 19-Jul-12 07:58:32

I've put two pictures of my baby Whippet on here because I love showing of my beautiful boy to demonstrate the cuddlyness of pointy dogs.

Going to have a look at a Greyhound rescue is a brilliant idea, I daren't because I worry about how many dogs we'd end up with. They will be able to choose dogs for you that would suit your family situation.

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