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Family dog recommendations

(27 Posts)
TeddyIsaHe Tue 15-Nov-16 12:06:25

Thinking very far ahead in the future, but wanted some opinions on dogs for families? I've always had spaniels (all working - 2x cockers, a Springer and a welshie - not at the same time!) fab dogs, but possibly slightly too mad for small children? My dh has never had dogs, so I will be training and the one at home. I'm used to gundog training, but the welshie never worked so also pet dog training if that makes sense!

Don't mind about exercising, obviously with spaniels I spent more time outside with them than in, just more temperament than anything. Something slightly calmer when they reach adulthood would be good with little ones. Any thoughts?

oklumberjack Tue 15-Nov-16 12:50:14

We have a border terrier. Great little dog. Gentle but spirited. Needs a good walk ever day though and lots of attention.

On my walks I've met lots of cockerpoos which really playful. My dogs 'bestie' is a younger cocker spaniel. However my favourite to meet are miniature Schnauzers (I like a terrier).

goldleaftea Tue 15-Nov-16 12:51:01

We have a Shih Tsu - she's cheeky but amazing!

Wolfiefan Tue 15-Nov-16 12:52:06

How about size of dog? Would a Golden Retriever work? Lab? Or smaller dog?
How old are kids? Walking long distances with younger kids could be an issue.
How much grooming and shedding are you prepared for?

1004Rise Tue 15-Nov-16 13:08:45

If you an cope with the size a Golden Retriever or a Labrador Retriever will be ideal - same training as the spaniels you've been used to just calmer and less bouncy (she says with a 10 yr old lab that still thinks he's a puppy) however, they both shed A LOT! Be prepared for a daily hoover to remind yourself of the carpet colour or dog hair tumble weed on a daily basis on hard floors! Don't be under any illusion that the short hair of a Labrador means less brushing grin Having said that they're both worth it and they're always happy to see you, and will learn anything for a bit of food so also easy for the kids to help train. smile

CMOTDibbler Tue 15-Nov-16 13:28:12

We have lurchers - both rescue, one is saluki x greyhound, the other whippetish x doberman possibly. Both are utterly fabulous family dogs, calm and loving but full of fun outside.
My younger dog was born in rescue, so don't discount a rescue dog if you want a puppy - EGLR unfortunatly have several litters a year

VilootShesCute Tue 15-Nov-16 13:36:25

Cavalier King Charles spaniel grin. Easy to train. Lethargic or exuberant depending on what you want. They're the best family dogs in my opinion. Plus they're preeeeetty.

ohmygodyouguys Tue 15-Nov-16 13:42:46

My family got a Welsh springer when I was about 4, never had any problems. When I was really little we had a big mongrel dog called Ben that died when I was 11. There were two others that I don't remember but there are pictures, a lab and another spaniel, both called Sally and we had them at the same time (long story.....). Think it depends on the dog really.

TrionicLettuce Tue 15-Nov-16 14:02:25

Whippet? Admittedly they can be completely batshit as puppies but as adults they're wonderfully chilled out in the house. Flexible with their exercise requirements (happy to make do with a quick blast in the fields but will also go as long as you give them the opportunity to), incredibly loving and very playful.

If you can cope with potentially very high prey drive and can give them regular (preferably daily) opportunity to really stretch their legs they might be a good option for you.

Noitsnotteatimeyet Tue 15-Nov-16 14:16:24

If you like gundogs, would like something slightly less scatty than a spaniel (sorry spaniel owners!) but a similar size then have a look at Tollers. Our boy is 3 now and is a fabulous family dog. He's gentle and playful, adores children, has been pretty easy to train, is infectiously happy, super-energetic on walks but chilled at home, sheds much less than his goldie or lab friends and is gorgeous too! They are working dogs so need a 'job' to exercise their brains as well as bodies - ours loves agility and obedience and has done gundog training too. The only downside is they're still quite rare in the UK so you'd have to wait at least a few months for a puppy

ginauk84 Tue 15-Nov-16 14:31:58

How about poodles? Come in all sizes, easy coat as they just get clipped. Friendly happy dogs. Non shed. Or a Miniature Schnauzer.

Wolfiefan Tue 15-Nov-16 14:33:35

Tollers are beautiful!
The massive health issues with cavaliers would put me off I'm afraid.

Setterlover Tue 15-Nov-16 14:34:33

I love gundogs too. Am getting an Irish setter but my children are older
I've never known a bad one

mintthins Tue 15-Nov-16 14:37:17

I would struggle to see past a lurcher. They are in our experience wonderful family pets.

ginauk84 Tue 15-Nov-16 15:32:45

Are tollers better now, I know when I looked at getting one there were quite a lot of temperament and health problems but that was about 10 years ago and there weren't many breeders. Have things improved?

Whereabouts are you, have you thought about going to Discover Dogs (London) or Crufts (Birmingham) as they have a Discover Dogs section which has dogs from every registered breed and you can meet the owners/breeders. Not all the stands are breeders, some are owners so you aren't always going to get sales patter and I have found most people to be quite honest there.

Sinuhe Tue 15-Nov-16 17:56:55

We have a lovely Tibetan Terrier. He can be a bit stubborn at times, but our boy has lots of character! He is fantastic with the kids & my DD was 3 when we got him- 4 years later & they still sit together in his basket watching telly! They are meant to be quite lively, but our boy is a total slop and chooses the sofa over a walk any time!

Noitsnotteatimeyet Tue 15-Nov-16 20:06:03

Tollers are absolutely fine - ours has a lovely temperament as do all the others we know (bar one who's occasionally a little snappy with other dogs, she's fine with people though). Mine is just fabulous and is a therapy dog too. They are one of the breeds more prone to autoimmune problems but having said that the vast majority of Tollers are unaffected (and autoimmune conditions can affect all breeds - I know a cockerpoo and a goldie who have both had SRMA, and both made good recoveries).

chosenone Tue 15-Nov-16 20:40:44

Cavachon. King Charles Cavalier X Bichon frise. Nice temprement. Lapdogs. Like a bit of exercise and play.

VilootShesCute Wed 16-Nov-16 06:37:57

We've been lucky so far with our Cav. Nearing 13 and no health probs at all part from lack of hearing now he's old.

ChilliMum Wed 16-Nov-16 06:49:16

We have a springer (as a pet not working). We had her before the kids and she was 2 when the first dc arrived.
She is a great family pet very lively but great with the kids; never snapped and seemed to just know she needed to be gentil when they were toddlers.
The kids are as lively as she is so a good fit all round grin

Fishcakey Wed 16-Nov-16 06:52:43

Springers, Labs and Cavaliers here. All amazing family dogs. We have had loads of health problems with the Cav and she is so lazy but she and my son are devoted to each other.

GazingAtStars Wed 16-Nov-16 06:58:25

Tibetan terriers are fab little clown dogs who love to make you laugh. They're intelligent, quick to learn and have a mind of their own.

The cons? They have a mind of their own! They can be very stubborn (ignorant). We can be standing at the back door shouting our boys name when he's sitting 10 feet away and he won't even flick an ear in your direction. Whisper "biscuit" and he races in! Grooming requirements are insane if you keep them in full coat. As a breed they love their family so separation anxiety can be a big problem.

Mine was really good at agility though, they love to climb up things and are lovely dogs for experienced owners...just make sure you know what you're getting yourself into!

madgingermunchkin Wed 16-Nov-16 07:04:48

Labs, Retrievers, or Borders here. Can't beat them. Clever, quick to learn, and seemingly made of elastic!

TheGiantSausage Wed 16-Nov-16 10:13:40

Bassets are funny and clever and charming. I'm biased though.

tinymeteor Thu 17-Nov-16 11:07:25

They are not for everyone but beagles are really great family dogs. Not too big, very tolerant and cuddly and totally trustworthy with small children (though not with food. Ever).

They are INCREDIBLY hard work to train, bonkers as puppies, and do need about 90mins walking per day. But if you can do all that you get a lovely soppy dog who will chill on the sofa for much of the day, and will join in with whatever the family are doing.

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