Best first dog- small

(42 Posts)
pinkpanther84 Fri 21-Aug-20 13:21:13

We would like to get a small family dog, we don't have the biggest house so do really want a small one. We have had pets before but never a dog- what dog would people recommend for first time dog owners that and one that is good with children? Thanks

OP’s posts: |
vanillandhoney Fri 21-Aug-20 13:39:40

Miniature or toy poodle.
Mini schnauzer
Border Terrier.

All pretty healthy dogs. They do need a fair bit of exercise but won't take up too much space in your house! Poodles (and I think schnauzers) need a fair bit of grooming so that's another thing to consider as well. Borders are generally hardy little dogs that are just as happy to walk for hours as they are to lie on the sofa, though they do need a lot of socialisation with other dogs when they're young.

RunningFromInsanity Fri 21-Aug-20 13:44:34

The three dogs posted about are all quite high energy.

If you are looking for lower energy, maybe a Shih Tzu? My friend has one and actually runs 10km with it so they aren’t the lazy lap dog people think but don’t need the energy and input that terriers (for example) do.
L

FizzyPink Fri 21-Aug-20 13:46:50

Watching with interest for our first dog

GwendolineMarysLaces Fri 21-Aug-20 13:50:32

Border Terrier. Best dogs in the world.

RunningFromInsanity Fri 21-Aug-20 13:53:37

Anything along the lines of a Shih Tzu/Bischon/Lhasa apso/Havanese - remember they don’t have to have the fancy haircut!
All good natured, calm, small size etc You do have to groom them though so that’s something to consider.

The Papillon is a favourite of mine, they aren’t as delicate as they look and are lovely sweet dogs.

pinkpanther84 Fri 21-Aug-20 14:16:53

Yes a calmer rather than a high energy dog would be preferable! Thanks for all the suggestions so far smile

OP’s posts: |

Advertisement

cinders15 Fri 21-Aug-20 14:28:38

My friends had a shih tzu called pugwash- washy for short - he went with them everywhere! Very bright eyes, very intelligent and very loyal! Beautiful nature
If I turn from a cat person to a dog, I'd get one!

sillysmiles Fri 21-Aug-20 14:35:56

The thing to remember about small dogs, particularly where children are concerned, is that that are still fully grown dogs and that children need to be taught not to pick up the dog and not to treat them as babies.
Other than taking up physically less space (which can be a trip hazard as you don't see them) they still need to be walked and trained to behave properly.

m0therofdragons Fri 21-Aug-20 14:36:52

Miniature poodles seem really calm and friendly (after initial puppy stage). Quite a few of our friends have them. Opinions on dogs are really strange though as we recently got a cocker spaniel and many people tell me they’re nuts and I’m mad. Anyone I know who has a cocker or used to have a cocker says their the best dogs in the world (including my vet). Perception is a strange thing. Don’t get me wrong, I’m expecting a medium to high energy dog but that’s right for our family. The breeders will be able to advise once you’ve narrowed it down a bit.

AriesTheRam Fri 21-Aug-20 14:40:15

Chihuahua.Fiesty,clever,funny and adorable.

vanillandhoney Fri 21-Aug-20 14:56:45

All young dogs should be pretty high energy for the first few years - maybe not constantly but certainly on walks and they should be willing to do a fairly decent amount of exercise once fully grown.

Another breed that comes to mind is a cairn terrier. I walk one and she gets an hour a day and then sleeps the rest of the time! She's very friendly, needs grooming every 6-8 weeks or so and hasn't got a bad bone in her body. She does bark at the postman and when she wants to go for a walk but otherwise she's pretty quiet 😊

KizzyKat91 Fri 21-Aug-20 15:06:18

My dog is a miniature cockapoo (1st dog I've had). I live in a 2 bed semi and she's perfectly happy. She's the perfect size as easily portable (can sit on passenger seat in car) and easy to pick up but still very active and happy spending all day out and about.
She has a 1 hour walk per day and gets to play fetch a few times a day. She's also quite happy sat on your lap being cuddled!

She adores children - she's completely obsessed with them and always wants to play with them. I honestly couldn't ask for a nicer natured dog. The vets always compliment her on how placid and friendly she is. She's been quite easy to train though the puppy stage was difficult (lots of chewing) and she needed a lot of attention.

I have absolutely no regrets and am planning on getting a 2nd one!

Moondust001 Fri 21-Aug-20 15:08:52

sillysmiles

The thing to remember about small dogs, particularly where children are concerned, is that that are still fully grown dogs and that children need to be taught not to pick up the dog and not to treat them as babies.
Other than taking up physically less space (which can be a trip hazard as you don't see them) they still need to be walked and trained to behave properly.

Oh, yes, this Walked, trained and socialised as a dog, not a baby or a toy. I get so frustrated by people who scoop up their delicate flower so the big dog, who is paying not a blind bit of attention to them and is 40 feet away, "won't attack them". Thereby setting up their dog to act totally unnaturally around other dogs and be fearful (and then often provocative). Fortunately my dog is well trained and socialised, so he blithely ignores the six inch high terror who is barking, "yelling" and pulling at the lead to "attack" him, with an owner who does either nothing at all to manage their dog, or worse, starts yelling at me to control my (still totally disinterested) dog! Of course the fact is that if my dog were even vaguely as much as a menace as the little yappy dog, it would make a nice breakfast snack for him.

Alfiemoon1 Fri 21-Aug-20 15:12:17

I have a Lhasa apso i adore him. He’s like a big dog in a little easy to manage body.

fancyfrogs Fri 21-Aug-20 15:12:29

I have a cavapoo - cavalier King Charles x miniature poodle. He is small, only around 6kg at 2yrs old.
Great with kids. Loves to play and would walk for hours if we wanted to (on or off leader) but equally happy with a short walk around the block and day snoozing on the sofa! Very cuddly and very easy to train, we went to puppy classes and puppy socialisation sessions with him as soon as we could and he is great with other dogs. Pic just because grin

Alfiemoon1 Fri 21-Aug-20 15:13:16

Posted to soon sorry my first dog was a cavalier King Charles spaniel also great dogs

wetotter Fri 21-Aug-20 15:18:14

If you are prepared to put the training in, then one of the smaller terriers could be a good choice, and they're usually friendly and readily accepting of children and other pets (except rats/mice). They can however be stubborn, and some are yappy. Good all-round dogs

But one if the smaller makes of poodle might be the best choice. They're clever little dogs, but will need more grooming (no I don't mean you need to frou-frou them up, but it it's daily brushing and regular clipping)

FizzyPink Fri 21-Aug-20 15:30:43

@fancyfrogs he is adorable! Can I ask how you found him? All I’m hearing at the moment is how difficult it is to find puppies and how expensive they’ve got due to demand.
I’d love some tips on finding a great breeder

fancyfrogs Fri 21-Aug-20 15:38:35

@Turnedouttoes we found him just on pets for homes, the lady wasn't a registered breeder as was first litter (don't think there are many registered for cross breeds unfortunately - some larger 'doodle' ones but I personally wouldn't touch them for fear of puppy farming as have heard bad things) but had all paperwork for dad and saw mum with pups along with her paperwork. The prices have absolutely skyrocketed this year though, we had considered getting him a little friend but absolutely would not pay what they're asking everywhere at the moment! There are lots of Facebook pages and groups, I'm in a couple of cavapoo ones where breeders sometimes post so could be worth joining a group like that for advice on the breed you're after smile

Borderstotheleftofme Fri 21-Aug-20 18:18:21

I get so frustrated by people who scoop up their delicate flower so the big dog, who is paying not a blind bit of attention to them and is 40 feet away, "won't attack them"

I think it’s worth acknowledging that for many of these little dogs a bigger one could easily kill them in one swift shake or accidentally fracture limbs by jumping on them in excitement.

I have a bigger dog (roughly Labrador sized) and have been shocked by the number of both aggressive dogs and rude boisterous dogs.
I actually have had dogs ‘40 feet away’ or more come running over to attack her and I have had so called ‘friendly’ dogs knock her over in their eagerness to play.

I don’t allow her to meet and greet strange dogs anymore and I would definately not allow a teeny dog contact with other dogs.

I think that rather than being insulting and referring to them as ‘delicate little flowers’ you should instead acknowledge that if people could be bothered to train and socialise and control their dogs in the first place the owners of the tiny dogs probably wouldn’t feel panicked enough to scoop them up at the sight of another dog...

Borderstotheleftofme Fri 21-Aug-20 18:21:00

And OP, sometimes bigger dogs are calmer and more suitable.
A lot of the tiny dogs can be very high energy.
I wouldn’t write off a bigger dog

Ellmau Fri 21-Aug-20 18:24:31

Bichon frise
Miniature poodle

Wolfiefan Fri 21-Aug-20 18:24:39

Avoid poodle crosses if you want a reputable breeder or lower energy. They aren’t low energy.
Not sure how old your kids are but no puppies are good with kids. Bitey little buggers!
Running has given you a good list.
Avoid dogs which were designed for hunting and running. Look for the lapdog type if you want calmer. Obviously not as a pup but an adult!

pinkpanther84 Fri 21-Aug-20 18:54:15

Wolfiefan

Avoid poodle crosses if you want a reputable breeder or lower energy. They aren’t low energy.
Not sure how old your kids are but no puppies are good with kids. Bitey little buggers!
Running has given you a good list.
Avoid dogs which were designed for hunting and running. Look for the lapdog type if you want calmer. Obviously not as a pup but an adult!


Our children are 6 and 3, thanks for the advice

OP’s posts: |

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in