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Advice on breeds/getting a new dog

(53 Posts)
Longwalkoffashortpier Thu 23-Mar-17 21:04:25

Evening all,

We lost our beloved jack russell a few months ago and having had time to grieve are looking for a new canine friend.

With our previous dogs we've just gone to a local rescue without a breed in mind, had a chat with the staff and a play with some of the dogs and the dogs usually ended up finding us and not the other way around, however this was pre-DC.

Previously we have had, a whippet x lurcher, a border collie, a collie jack russell cross and a jack russell.

We now have 3 DC aged 2,3,5 and the 3 year old has ASD, he loves dogs and the loss of our JR hit him very hard and she was his best friend. However we've found rescues won't accept us because of DC ages and we are more wary of a dog with unknown background being around DC.

We've looked into an autism assistance dog but currently all waiting lists are closed, though some of them offer classes for existing pets to train them in assistance ways.

Anyway I'm rambling, DP thinks we should get a puppy, a breed with a known good temperament and known history, so we can socialise with the children and train ourselves.

I'm hoping someone might have some advice on breeds to think about, we are pretty open, we are very active and out walking 2 hours a day (DS has suspected ADHD aswell as autism and is much better when he is knackered) we have ruled out another collie as, as amazing as she was, at that time I worked outdoors and she was out for 8/9 hours a day and still wasn't tired and I don't have that much walking in me!

Mamabear12 Thu 23-Mar-17 21:08:50

I would say a labrador or golden retriever! Such good dog for kids, but they need descent amount of exercise.

skinnyamericano Thu 23-Mar-17 21:18:01

Completely agree with Mamabear - perfect breeds for kids. They are so loving and gentle, and if you get them as a puppy they will just slot into the family.

You could get away with a good walk once a day, with a shorter top up, or just out for a wee.

Only get a retriever if you don't mind having your vacuum out as a permanent feature!

Longwalkoffashortpier Thu 23-Mar-17 21:24:00

Would 2 1 hour walks (obviously with constant access to decent sized garden) be enough? Are last couple of dogs were so lazy they would Barely go half an hour before sitting down and refusing to move !

Wolfiefan Thu 23-Mar-17 21:27:30

A puppy and young kids could be a complete nightmare. Dealing with chewing and toilet training and mouthing and puppy training and socialisation. And a young pup can't walk much or be left much so you would be stuck at home.
What about a rescue that fosters dogs out so they can tell you how the dog is with kids? Black retriever x?

Wolfiefan Thu 23-Mar-17 21:28:13

Watch out with labs. A working lab would need much more exercise than a show dog.

CornflakeHomunculus Thu 23-Mar-17 21:28:38

Lab or GR came to mind first for me as well.

I'd also suggest having a look at standard poodles. They're absolutely fabulous dogs, sadly much overlooked these days. I think they're often written off as good for nothing but prancing round a show ring but they're intelligent, very trainable and absolutely love being around people. Their coats do need maintenance but you can keep them clipped short (which needs doing every 6-8 weeks or so and you can learn to do it yourself t home easily enough) and you have the benefit of the lack of shedding.

Another option that might be worth looking into is rehoming a withdrawn guide dog. They're bred with care and a young dog can be unsuitable as a guide dog for all sorts of reasons, many of which aren't much of an issue in a pet home.

Fizzball Thu 23-Mar-17 21:43:45

I agree with Cornflake, consider a standard poodle. I have one and he is an absolutely amazing dog. Very easy going and friendly. He is wonderful with my son and so gentle. Training was really easy and he loves to learn. He loves being active, when I'm not pregnant we often do 10-15 mile walks, but he is also happy with a run around the park and then snoozing on the sofa. He loves being around his people.

skinnyamericano Thu 23-Mar-17 21:46:27

2 x 1 hour walks would be fine.

However, Wolfie is absolutely right - a puppy with small children will be v hard work. I know lots of friends have had puppies recently (DC generally at primary school stage), and most have been reduced to tears. Don't underestimate the impact on your time and stress levels.

A retired guide dog sounds amazing!

SlothMama Thu 23-Mar-17 22:00:14

I grew up with Golden Retrievers and they are a brilliant family dog, we had two who were completely different one had lots of energy but 2 1 hour walks and playing in the garden was enough. The other would refuse to walk longer than 20 minutes and would just stop.

Do make sure the breeder has done the relevant health checks (hips, eyes etc) But they are a wonderful breed, very easy to train although they can be a nightmare for chewing as pups. They do grow out of it though!

Longwalkoffashortpier Thu 23-Mar-17 22:16:01


We have talked a lot about that aspect, which was originally why I wanted to get an autism assistance dog but it looks like the need outstrips supply.

We are in a fortunate position that I work from home with kids at childminder / preschool and DP is home at 2 every day so longest any dog would be left for is 30 minutes for school/preschool/childminder drop offs, our last dog had very serious separation anxiety so our hours etc were tailored to suit that. I suppose we are just so missing a doggy presence at the moment, the house seems so empty without a pooch!

MatthewWigginsWKD Thu 23-Mar-17 22:28:55

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

CornflakeHomunculus Thu 23-Mar-17 23:12:05

This is why we only work with young adults because from temperament to health essentially what you see is what you have for the next ten years.

Certainly as far as health goes there are numerous heritable issues in a numerous breeds which don't necessarily become apparent by early adulthood so (even ignoring the fact that any dog can have accidents or develop non-heritable illnesses which could affect their long term health and soundness) it's a bit disingenuous to suggest that you can rule out inherited health problems by simply assessing health when the dog is still young.

MatthewWigginsWKD Thu 23-Mar-17 23:26:52

With well over 1000 dogs supplied having undergone extensive physical assessment and veterinary checks, 700 dogs now being over 7 years of age and no genetic defect on record I think I'm speaking from a position of reasonable experience.

If you can elaborate on the conditions you mention maybe I can offer a more detailed explanation of my claim.


CornflakeHomunculus Thu 23-Mar-17 23:49:03

Are all your dogs from breeders who fully health test (and I mean fully health test, not basic hips/elbows/eyes) or are they fully health tested themselves? If they are then of course you can give some guarantee of health, at least as far as heritable conditions with reliable tests go.

It's the wording of your previous post which sends a dubious message though, the suggestion that apparent health as a young adult is a reliable indicator of future health. Obviously being symptom free in early adulthood is a very good indicator a dog isn't affected by some conditions but others have an age of onset which can be well into adulthood.

If you can elaborate on the conditions you mention maybe I can offer a more detailed explanation of my claim.

I would hope if you're dealing in dogs you'd have a pretty good idea yourself of the ins and outs of the various heritable conditions which can affect the breeds you're involved with wink

CornflakeHomunculus Thu 23-Mar-17 23:59:20

Anyway, apologies Longwalk I shall derail your thread no further!!

Nancy91 Fri 24-Mar-17 00:15:52

Get another Jack Russell, they are awesome little dogs!

PeachyImpeachment Fri 24-Mar-17 00:48:12

MatthewWigginsWKD. What is your organisation? I'm guessing you're not the vodka people but if you're failing 90% of dogs, what are you failing them for?

Longwalkoffashortpier Fri 24-Mar-17 07:24:19


We did consider it but our previous 2 have been exceptionally yappy and rather lazy.

Our JR. X collie, we'd let her off the lead in the field next to our house and she'd run home and sit on the doorstep!

We did consider a grey hound as they are meant to be good family dogs, if somewhat lazy!

We'd really live something w r could try a bit of amateur agility or flyball with as we did with our collie and loved it...

Don't ask for much do I haha

cowgirlsareforever Fri 24-Mar-17 07:29:12

Boxers are brilliant with children.

Whitney168 Fri 24-Mar-17 08:20:00

Smooth Collie would work well.

Whitney168 Fri 24-Mar-17 08:23:10

(I am assuming by ruling out a Collie, you mean a Border for energy levels? Smooths and Roughs lively, will take all the exercise you want to give, but do have an 'off switch'.)

Frillyhorseyknickers Fri 24-Mar-17 08:29:43

I would also say golden retriever. There are show lines and working lines, mine are working and both require quite a lot of physical and mental exercise. The show lines are lighter in colour and heavier set - they have more associated joint problems and issues with obesity.

I would disagree with skinnyamericano advice on only walking once a day! And would say that's crap advice for any breed of dog. GR as a breed have an issue with weight and regular exercise is a must.

purplecoathanger Fri 24-Mar-17 08:39:09

We have a labradoodle. She's crossed with a miniature poodle, so is quite small. She has a lovely temperament and is brilliant with the children. She does shed but it's minimal.

Goldendoodles look lovely as well and we've considered getting one. Having had dogs and bitches, I would definitely go for a bitch as they seem much more loyal and biddable.

skinnyamericano Fri 24-Mar-17 08:40:17

I did say that 2 X 1 hour walks would be good, however, it is difficult to fit that into a day - I was trying to be realistic. Generally a long walk in the morning and a top up later seems fine for mine.

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