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Best breed for young children?

(25 Posts)
ScaryHairyMcSweary Thu 08-Nov-12 16:14:22

After years of promises I have finally agreed to get a dog.
I am now only at work three afternoons a week, we have a secure garden and my eldest DD aged 13 is responsible enough for walking and feeding the pup when needed.
However I also have a dd aged 2 and although I like the idea of her growing up with the puppy am unsure where to start looking breed wise.
Walks are no problem we live right next to a wooded area with a track and river for swimming.
I am out for 5 hours 3 times a week.
Was thinking Lurcher but not sure please help as I have explained that we will not just choose a cute puppy only for it's squishy face grin

GrimmaTheNome Thu 08-Nov-12 16:18:14

No such thing as 'best breed for kids' - it depends on the individual dog. eg dachshunds aren't usually recommended but ours have been great.

toddlers and puppies aren't necessarily a good older dog may be better. If you like lurchers, then a rescue greyhound might suit.

Probably want something not too big, and invest in training if your DD is going to be walking it.

ScaryHairyMcSweary Thu 08-Nov-12 16:22:57

Will be going to training classes and I know no particular breed is a guaranteed match.
I thought that them growing up together might be good but will look into older dogs too, thank you.

TeaTeaLotsOfTea Thu 08-Nov-12 16:24:28

I have to agree with Grimma.

Also I have a dachshund mix and he loves children (but maybe thats the terrier in him).

I would say a mid sized dog would be good but really really investigate all breeds then find one that s best around your 2 year old.

Floralnomad Thu 08-Nov-12 17:02:06

I personally have a X Patterdale and would not recommend them to a young family but lots of people near me with young kids seem to have miniature schnauzers .

flowery Thu 08-Nov-12 17:04:35

Cavalier King Charles spaniel. Absolutely fantastic with toddlers.

drizzlecake Thu 08-Nov-12 17:05:58

I was going to say a schnauzer. Big dogs could pull over a 13 year old if they chase a cat or something.

I don't think schnauzers bark much which would be good.

We got a terrier pup for our small DCs and we had to send him back as he loved me and DH but nipped DCs (and unfortunately their friends which is why he went back).

Floralnomad Thu 08-Nov-12 17:26:48

Personally I'd never recommend terriers for little children , mine is lovely but he can get snappy when excited and my mother has two border terrier x JRT and one of them is really snappy , added to which small children tend to have fluffy toys and my experience of terriers is anything small and furry is fair game ( alive or dead ) .

HoneyDragon Thu 08-Nov-12 17:56:07

I have had puppys and toddlers. It can be done. But stair gates are necessary and also it is much more important to get the toddler trained rather than the puppy!

Dd is nearly 3 and the Pup is now 6 nearly 7 months and the most important rule dd knows is that the dog comes to you, you do not go to the dog smile

MothershipG Thu 08-Nov-12 18:11:02

I think a Mini Schnauzer could work, they are big enough to be fairly robust but small enough to be manageable.

I got mine when youngest DC was 4 and she was a devil puppy, over excitable, nippy and bouncy but she doesn't have a bad bone in her body and is good with kids. Find a good breeder with mellow dogs and cross your fingers! wink

janey1234 Thu 08-Nov-12 18:13:43

Mid sized is perfect - we had a springer spaniel when I was very young and she was perfect. Loads of energy for playing and walking, endless patience and wouldn't have harmed a flea. There have been a few in the family (aunts and uncles had then too) from different breeders and they were all incredibly similar in nature. Gorgeous dogs smile

LST Thu 08-Nov-12 18:28:47

We had a staffy when I was younger and e was the best dog you could of wished for.

I now have a 1yo DS and a 17 wo border collie puppy and they are already great friends. smile

MrsWolowitz Thu 08-Nov-12 18:37:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Scuttlebutter Thu 08-Nov-12 18:49:26

A whippet would be lovely. See Scruples Whippet Rescue for a gorgeous selection. Several MN posters have these with DC and they are a terrific family dog. A lurcher depending on the cross could be good and again, there are MNetters with greyhound/whippet crosses (a "grippet") that are lovely. Alternatively, go large and have a wonderful rescue greyhound - all the benefits of a pedigree (known ancestry, you can look up their racing history etc) but incredibly healthy, laid back, gentle souls. Come over to the thread on " a new cushion for pointies" - there's a whole gang of us there with sighthounds including greyhounds, grippets, a Whiffie (whippet/staffie cross who is GORGEOUS), whippets, lurchers and other assorted pointy nose loveliness. In a survey on dog bites/aggression, whippets and greyhounds were the least aggressive dogs, they are usually very healthy, long lived, and have super temperaments. Ex racing greys often come off the track at around 2 - 3 years, some even younger if they are non-chasers, so you'll be getting a young adult, with many happy years together, but none of the bother of puppyhood.

worsestershiresauce Thu 08-Nov-12 18:51:55

Please whatever you do don't get a border collie unless you are a very active family and have lots of time to devote to giving it enough physical and mental stimulation. I see too many dumped at 12 months because they have become teenager-y and difficult due to boredom. Show bred collies are a bit less manic, but the ones from working stock will herd anything, including your toddler, and need a job!

Go for a breed that has been bred as a pet, not to work, rat, or chase and you can't go far wrong. Older dogs are often better as you can see their personality, and mongrels are often very sweet. My friend has a a gorgeous dog that is a mix of greyhound, husky and collie. He is incredibly lazy, gentle, loves kids and people, and despite looking like a great big wild fur ball is a perfect house pet (which goes against everything you might think).

GrimmaTheNome Thu 08-Nov-12 21:10:18

I think the general advice is that no-one should get a collie as a first dog.

Just delighted DD by telling her that there's a dog called a 'whiffie' - got to search for a piccy now grin

GrimmaTheNome Thu 08-Nov-12 21:15:40

...following which, yet another type of dog added to DDs wish-list!

tipsycat Fri 09-Nov-12 11:02:31

I don't think you can go far wrong with a lab. I lost our lovely lab earlier this year, he grew up with DD 10 and DS11. They used to climb all over him and tried to ride on his back when they were toddlers, and he never even growled at them. I have a lovely picture of all 3 of them asleep in his basket. He had the loveliest nature. Wwe had to have him put to sleep this year when his back legs finally gave up. sad Don't get a Hungarian Viszler, ours is now 12 months old, and lovely, lively and definately not suitable for toddlers!!!

MrRected Fri 09-Nov-12 11:09:11

Whippet - bestest, gentlest and most tolerant breed I have ever come across. They truly are gentle souls smile

MrRected Fri 09-Nov-12 11:11:07

I just read Scuttles' post - she is spot on!!

slipperandpjsmum Sat 10-Nov-12 20:17:45

I would have to agree with tipsycat. Our lab is the most amazing dog. He is so gentle and kind. We have young children and they are all over him and he has never shown any signs of getting fed up or snappy. I have had dogs all my life but he is by far the most patient dog I have ever met.

cathpip Sat 10-Nov-12 20:30:48

I used to own 2 labs and they were great with my baby and toddler but the lab i grew up with was temperamental so in all reality go with suggestions of here and then research and speak to breeders. I now have 2 cockers and they have been by far the best dogs for me with children, once you have chosen a breed and breeder i suggest that you get the breeder to help pick the most suitable pup for your needs from the litter.

UterusUterusGhouli Sat 10-Nov-12 23:35:37


They are so loving and cuddly. Superb with toddlers as they love rough & tumble, but they're so gentle. Short haired. Not too big. They grin grin. They don't need a huge amount of space (they'll sit on your lap). The 13yo will think they're cool, so will love to walk it.

Lots of dodgy breeders about though.

Lurchers, ime are very greedy and will ransack the bin daily.

I'd second the "don't get a paterdale" advice!

BreeVanDerTramp Sat 10-Nov-12 23:44:12

I have a lab with DS aged 4, 2 and 4 months. He is lovely, so affectionate and just a big dope he wants lots of love (and food!) I am amazed by how patient he is, they need proper training though as they are too big, strong and clumsy to be left to rule the roost.

MagratGarlik Sun 11-Nov-12 00:23:03

In my completely unbiased opinion, I'd agree with Scuttle and say a whippet, a grippet or a rescue greyhound would be excellent. Scruples Whippet rescue is a national organisation and they use foster homes, so have a really good idea of how the dogs will be in the home.

We have a whippet who follows ds2 around everywhere (ds2 was 2 when we got whip petty). Our grippet is also great, just like a greyhound, but smaller.

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