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Which breed for our family?

(16 Posts)
mehbridezilla Fri 22-Jan-16 16:51:52

I'm hoping for a little advice as while a lot of my family have dogs, I've never actually had one myself. We're considering getting a rescue dog, but I need some pointers to which breed would be best. It's me and dh, 12 yo dd, 7yo ds1 and almost 4 yo ds2. Ds1 has asd. I'm lucky enough to be a sahm so could be with the dog all day to settle them in. We'd like a dog so the children can experience growing up with a pet, but also to help us get a bit more active, ds is definitely calmer when he has lots of exercise. A big consideration is ds with asd, though he actually loves the dogs we know, is far happier in their company than most people tbh. Those are on the whole quite small dogs, terriers mostly. There's the added complication that I seem to be quite allergic to some dogs, so I've been advised to get a non shedding one. I met a dog while we were out walking that was just beautiful, the owner told me he was a King Charles spaniel and bichon frise cross, that he was placid and non shedding. I've been looking those kind of dogs as a possibility. Also to ask a very stupid question, is there any real reason to choose a boy or a girl?

Wolfiefan Fri 22-Jan-16 16:55:39

I would avoid designer crosses. That way puppy farmers and potential HUGE health issues lie.
No dog can be guaranteed hypoallergenic.
Try kennel club breed selector?
Or visit a rescue? (One that fosters dogs out will be able to advise better which dog would suit you.)

mehbridezilla Fri 22-Jan-16 17:01:15

Wolfe, that's why we want to adopt rather than buy, I don't want to support puppy farms, there seem to be an awful lot of them around here and it makes me quite cross really.

Wolfiefan Fri 22-Jan-16 17:07:21

Me too!
Spaniels, collies, Dalmatians, setters bit mad for me. (But beautiful!)
Greyhounds are lazy couch potatoes for most of the day!
Terriers are often feisty (HUGE generalisation!)
How much grooming and exercise can you commit to? How long would dog be left?
Can you guess what dog I want from my name? (May be slightly obsessed and been researching nearly a year!)

mehbridezilla Fri 22-Jan-16 17:18:57

Realistically, the dog would be left for short periods. We live 2 minutes from school, I am concerned what we'd do if we went shopping for a day, for eg. We do have a big enclosed garden but wouldn't want to leave them too long at first. We live just two minutes from two separate large parks that are popular with dog walkers so I'd feel perfectly safe taking the dog there even if it was a darker time of year. Grooming shouldn't be a problem either unless I'm just being really naive. The problem is the dogs advertised at our local rescues seem to get snapped up quite quickly, or else not be suitable for a home with children. I understand these animals may have had a bad start and many of the ones that might seem a good match are the ones that say no dc!

legalalien Fri 22-Jan-16 17:33:52

Don't get a pug or a pug cross. They shed like anything!

Wolfiefan Fri 22-Jan-16 17:38:35

Yes you can't leave a dog all day. Even when settled. I think 4 hours max. Dog walker? Doggy day care?
Whereabouts are you? People may know specific rescues.

mrsjskelton Fri 22-Jan-16 17:53:27

So many dogs at shelters are cross breeds so it's really tricky to say what you'd come away with! I think you'll fall in love when you see the right dog and you've met him/her and assessed their personality!

ScattyHattie Fri 22-Jan-16 20:24:12

Can be allergic to saliva too not just dander on coat, in which case even the low shedders wouldn't help.

With crossbreeds like bichon x cavalier there's no guarantee it will be low shedding. Those that don't shed, will need to factor in grooming costs & brushing time to keep matt free.

There's specific breed rescues & many rescues home out of their local area, those with dogs in foster homes are useful as its easier to get a clearer idea of what dogs like in a more normal environment than kennels, but some rescues are better than others at assessing their dogs.

SixtyFootDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 20:27:29

I'm allergic to dogs.
We have a border terrier, she is wire haired so sheds very little.
She has a lovely temperament, likes long walks but is naturally lazy so if she can't get out is happy to snooze by the fire.

bimandbam Fri 22-Jan-16 20:28:37

Havr you looked at whippets or whippet crosses? Lovely family dogs generally. They do shed but are very short haired so not too bad. No grooming requirements other than the odd brush when shedding and occasional bath. Like nice long walks but equally happy curled up on the sofa.

Don't get one if you don't like dogs on the sofa though. They are terrible bullies for a warm, comfy spot. grin

WeevilKnievel Fri 22-Jan-16 20:45:28

Op, if you did decide on a cavachon (cavalier cross bichon) there's a Facebook group called 'Cavachons from health tested parents' as cavaliers especially are prone to genetic health problems.
They have a strict list of breeders who health test the parents, and no 'puppy farmers' on there!

Claraoswald36 Fri 22-Jan-16 20:54:53

I second the border terrier I really hanker after one. Exp had one she was an amazing. Loving, non chewing teddy bear of a dog. I consider one as a companion for my bonkers cocker.
In your op there are so many positives for getting a dog I think you should. My kids (6 and 3) were forced (as was I) to get very outdoorsy and we haven't looked back. I have noticed this winter they are a lot less snotty too. I walk my cocker about 40 mins a day week days but sat and Sunday the kids accept that half of each day is spent rambling on the beach or a nat trust place with the dog getting dirty - once the mammoth walk is complete they get to go swimming or do craft or whatever - they just accept it grin
I'm not breed expert apart from personal experience but your family set up sounds fine for a dog if you are a sahm. Amazing in fact - think a dog would be spoilt grin. Ido recommend kitting out the kids though - decent comfy wellies and waterproofs and softshell waterproof trousers - you will need them!

SixtyFootDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 21:03:06

Oh look....

Claraoswald36 Fri 22-Jan-16 21:05:58

Envy!!

mrsjskelton Sat 23-Jan-16 16:35:00

I can vouch for Border Terriers! They have fantastic personalities!

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