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Best type of dog to get for a would be first time owner with children?


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Old 17-04-2012, 07:48
youngmiffmcniff
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I had a dog when I was a lad but stayed with my parents (spaniel) but my girlfriend and I have just bought our first home & were thinking of getting a dog.

I'm self employed & occasionally work away from home but only once a month, if that & my girlfriend is working part time so there'll always be someone there to take it walks etc.

We have a garden but it's not the largest & a 2 year old daughter.
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Old 17-04-2012, 09:15
shirlt9
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We have a cavalier cross bichon (ended up with us as puppy as my friend got him but one of her dogs kept bothering him..)..he came to us by default as my 2 older sons weresaying please can we have him mum..came to stay for a few days at 13 weeks old for a tester and never went back!..he is now nearly 1...

I have 2 older teenagers but also a 4 year old son who is lively and can be a little monkey..Charlie our dog has settled in a treat is not too big,very playful but also wants to snuggle down with you..we had him neutered a month or so ago.

So I can only recommend on my own experiences..over the years we have had a golden retriever when my eldest 2 boys were young..this was OK but she seemed to stay quite puppyish for a long time (longer than smaller breeds),needed alot of exercise which was hard going with 2 small boys in tow and seemed a large dog when she got boisterous for the childrens sake..

We have also had a cavalier king charles spaniel who was lovely natured and very calm,yet playful..obviously walked him but didnt need huge amount of exercisesoif you justgot a quick walk in you didnt feel too bad!

Our little cavalier king charles cross bichon is the best mix of personality we have had..he doesnt need huge amounts of exercise..is happy with playing in the garden and short walks,has not at all been destructive..got toilet training really quickly and even if he jumps up on our little one he cant send him flying..plus bestof all no moulting which I think is why the breeds were crossed in the first place..therehas been no hair anywhere..a bit of a brush every couple of days which my 4 year old lovesdoing and we have had him to the groomers for a trim but I invested in a pair of clippers and have done itmyself since..he is as good as gold be ing trimmed and it is easy..baths are quick as he dires very quickly so from start to finish a good brush,bath and dry is only under an hour..so hesmells fresh too!..beautiful nature does notmind anything being taken off him..just wants to play and cuddle,,cannot fault him at all..

This is what they look like..

http://www.cavachoncove.com/

They are called cavachons..I never setout for a "designer" cross breed and I know many people are aghast at people cross breeding intentionally as at one time they would have been mongrels..if I had been searching for a dog I wouldnt particuarly looked at crossbreeds unlessI was going to a rescue..I would have been researching all the breeds as they are..but look a little further..and look at the crosses..if you arent breeding or showing your dog then it doesnt matter..you can check the health of the parents just the same as you can a full breed..

Just research different breeds and see who you think suits your family life..I am sure lots of people on here will give you information on their own specific breed or cross that they have..good luck
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Old 17-04-2012, 09:41
big_hard_lad
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I'm not going to quote the above post because it's massive....but in a similar vein I'd recommend a Shih Tzu.

We had lots of dogs growing up, from Mongrels to Labs to Red Setters but at the minute we have a 1 year old Shih Tzu.

He's so affectionate, he loves snuggles but he also loves a play and a walk. He doesn't need as much walking as a larger breed and he's also hyper allergenic, and he doesn't cast his hair at all which makes keeping the house clean easy. He's also great with our 5 year old nephew and hopefully he will be with the one my wife has on the way t the moment.

You can get them in lots of different colours, here's a link to many of them.... http://www.abreedabove.net/Coatcolorsofashihtzu.html

Don't let the funny picture formatting and longer hair put you off, you can get them a "puppy cut" which is much easier to keep and our dog definitely prefers it when his hair is shorter.

Here's a picture of our boy Alfie too, for good measure... http://i265.photobucket.com/albums/i...d/d682a40d.jpg (He actually started out as solid black and every time we got him cut he got lighter and lighter, and now he looks like this!!)
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Old 17-04-2012, 09:43
The Janitor
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A golden retriever is ideal for a young family. Moults quite a bit so needs regular brushing but they're very patient around kids and very intelligent.

Next I'd say a labrador retriever (that may be a bit large) or a beagle.
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Old 17-04-2012, 10:51
youngmiffmcniff
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Labradors are what you always see on TV with families but I feel they may be too large. The other ones mentioned look the ideal size.

We'll take a trip to our local rescue centre this weekend and see what they have. I think they'd be friendlier & more loving after what they've been through but on the flipside, they could have lots of problems.
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Old 17-04-2012, 12:10
shirlt9
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Labradors are what you always see on TV with families but I feel they may be too large. The other ones mentioned look the ideal size.

We'll take a trip to our local rescue centre this weekend and see what they have. I think they'd be friendlier & more loving after what they've been through but on the flipside, they could have lots of problems.
Many,many dogs in rescues will say only suitable for older children..I think this is often to safeguard the rescue..you may find you are very limited to dogs the will allow to be rehomed with a 2 year old child...

Also I would be very careful about any internet adverts for an older puppy,adult dog that needs rehoming for whatever reasons..they always say good with children etc but do you want to put your own 2 year old child in the position to test that one out..!!!!

Either a reputable rescue who are honest or start life with a puppy from healthy parents that you can see in a family home enviroment..I know everyone says rescue,rescue and in an ideal world rescues would be empty or not exist at all..BUT you have a 2 year old child and I would certainly be putting her first with any choice you make on a new family member..sure puppies have all the training to go through and its hard work and time consuming but far easier to train apuppy to your way of life from scratch than a dog who has already learnt bad habits or is hiding a problem.
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Old 17-04-2012, 12:25
stud u like
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Beagles, Norfolk Terriers, Border Collies, all rough and tumbly dogs.
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Old 17-04-2012, 12:26
Normandie
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...BUT you have a 2 year old child and I would certainly be putting her first with any choice you make on a new family member..sure puppies have all the training to go through and its hard work and time consuming but far easier to train a puppy to your way of life from scratch than a dog who has already learnt bad habits or is hiding a problem.
If getting a dog for a family with very young children I think that's one time when a puppy is the best idea. Doesn't have to be a pedigree - a mixed mating is just as likely to be a nice-natured dog but young children must be managed when they're with the pup otherwise pup could come in for some unkind treatment from unknowing little hands.

I love beagles but once on a scent they are often very difficult to retrieve. I wouldn't have one for that reason - I like our dogs to be able to free range in the garden and our fields and I would never trust a beagle (or lurcher, greyhound, etc) to reliably stay around. I've seen border collies (lovely though they are) get bored and either become escape artistes or suffer from depression. They're a dog that likes to be occupied most of its waking hours.
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Old 17-04-2012, 13:02
shirlt9
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If getting a dog for a family with very young children I think that's one time when a puppy is the best idea. Doesn't have to be a pedigree - a mixed mating is just as likely to be a nice-natured dog but young children must be managed when they're with the pup otherwise pup could come in for some unkind treatment from unknowing little hands.

I love beagles but once on a scent they are often very difficult to retrieve. I wouldn't have one for that reason - I like our dogs to be able to free range in the garden and our fields and I would never trust a beagle (or lurcher, greyhound, etc) to reliably stay around. I've seen border collies (lovely though they are) get bored and either become escape artistes or suffer from depression. They're a dog that likes to be occupied most of its waking hours.
My feelings exactly..I tell my 4 year old son off more than our puppy when they are together..my son is good with our little fella and they are great pals..BUT I dont even go to the loo and leave them alone together..more for the sake of Charlie our dog than my son.;.my son is not particuarly rough at all..but children are excitable and puppies are excitable and when both are playing it is very easy for it to suddenly turn from funtime to out of control time..our dog is only the second puppy either my husband or I have ever had..other than that we have had 2 older dogs that joined us..but I would have been extrememly wary of bringing an adult dog into our home with my 4 year old son..possibly if I knew the whole history and background..my feelings are still favourable towards a puppy with young children..

WE have a main lounge then kitchen and back lounge that leads into a conservatory..I have a baby gate(dog gate)from back lounge to kitchen..this is really handy when I can see one or the other (dog or child) needs time away from eachother..noone is getting scolded or taken away..there are just times when child wants to do something that dog is spoiling..cutting out,jigsaws on floor etc..and their times when dog just wants to chill and relax and child is getting too much for dog..that is the reality of life with small children and dogs ..so as long as you are supervising all the time,are sensible to see the needs of both and spend time teaching your child how to behave around dogs then it can work well..but it does take more time and affort with a child in the house when puppy arrives than one arriving in an adult/older children household..but thats all part of being a parent..teaching right and wrong and all part of raising a puppy!..makes you a bit hairless at times..but with the right organisation it can be made much easier and safer..
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Old 17-04-2012, 13:15
gemma-the-husky
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small one

my favourite small dogs to look at are West Highland Whites, and Bichon Frise
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Old 17-04-2012, 13:35
JulieD
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A golden retriever is ideal for a young family. Moults quite a bit so needs regular brushing but they're very patient around kids and very intelligent.

Next I'd say a labrador retriever (that may be a bit large) or a beagle.
I have a Golden Retriever and I would disagree with this. They have an ideal temperament to be a family dog but they are huge and boisterous and mature very slowly. They can knock children over without trying to when they are playing and they need a lot of exercise when young. My children were 10 and 13 when we got ours and they found him a handful at times. He is lovely now but he's 7 and has had a substantial amount of training. I'd go for something smaller if I was in the OPs shoes.
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Old 17-04-2012, 14:30
shirlt9
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I have a Golden Retriever and I would disagree with this. They have an ideal temperament to be a family dog but they are huge and boisterous and mature very slowly. They can knock children over without trying to when they are playing and they need a lot of exercise when young. My children were 10 and 13 when we got ours and they found him a handful at times. He is lovely now but he's 7 and has had a substantial amount of training. I'd go for something smaller if I was in the OPs shoes.
We too had a golden retriever when my older boys were just 3 and 5 and Icouldnt cope..if you read my first post on this thread you will see I sad exactly as you..they are puppies for so long yet big and boisterous..lovely,lovely nature but I found myself seperating dog and children constantly which defeated the object of a family dog..lots of exercise needed and with 2 children of an age you really need to watch on the road it was all just a nightmare!..

I too strongly recommend a smaller breed dog..by this I dont mean tiny yorkshire terrier..but just be honest with yourselves in the beginning about how much walking you are prepared to do,how long you want the puppy stage to last and how big a dog your daughter can cope with running right past her and sometimes into her!..

Alovely scenario of family dog can in reality turn into an absolute nightmare..and not to do with temprement or behaviour..just wrong choice of breed,size or amount of exercise a dog needs and isnt getting.

Do you have any friends with dogs and children?..why not look after their dog for a day or talk to them..you would at least get a feel for how life will be at home with a dog and your daughter.
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Old 17-04-2012, 15:09
gemma-the-husky
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make sure you get a "kind, friendly" breed though.

eg, even for a small dog, i would not get say a corgi, as i think they can be snappy. get something placid.

a springer spaniel might be good if you want something slightly bigger. I am pretty sure they are good natured.
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Old 17-04-2012, 15:14
ejm
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Beagles, Norfolk Terriers, Border Collies, all rough and tumbly dogs.
I would never recommend either a Beagle or a Border Collie for a first time owner.

Greyhounds are good first time dogs. Only need minimal exercise and tend to be real couch potatoes. Rescue centres tend to be quite reluctant to rehome a dog to a home with such a young child, but depending on the dog, it isn't always an open and shut case. My advice would be to be patient and spend some time looking at different breeds, visit many rescue shelters and let the perfect dog find you. It really does pay to spend a bit of time researching and researching some more as well as exploring all the different options. The right decision can mean many wonderful years of having a family companion.

I feel like a one-woman PR for DP but it really is a great resource when considering a rescue dog.

http://www.dogpages.org.uk/forums/index.php?act=idx
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Old 17-04-2012, 15:18
gemma-the-husky
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Old 17-04-2012, 15:53
Fizzee Rascal
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I'd suggest a staffy. Seriously. Don't believe everything you read, they are ideal family pets.
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Old 17-04-2012, 16:19
pugamo
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Firstly I would say as obviously you are busy with work and a child, so don't get anything that is going to have to be taken to the groomer once a month if you don't want to spend the time and money on it (spaniels, shitzu, shnauzers lhasa apso, poodles, bichon frise are all dogs that need regular grooming). I have two pugs and while they don't need a lot of grooming and exercise, they are prone to health problems and can cost a lot of money so I wouldn't take on a pug if I were you either.

I'd say the perfect dog for you might be something like a Jack Russell. They are small, hardy, full of character and love children. I had one when I was a child and she was a great friend to me. They are inexpensive and don't need grooming. As long as they have a ball they are pretty much happy. The only thing is it might dig holes in your garden!
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Old 17-04-2012, 16:22
2shy2007
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make sure you get a "kind, friendly" breed though.

eg, even for a small dog, i would not get say a corgi, as i think they can be snappy. get something placid.

a springer spaniel might be good if you want something slightly bigger. I am pretty sure they are good natured.
Corgis are only snappy if spoiled,like any breed. we had a corgi and she was the most gentle creature ever, her herding instinct used to cut in if you ran with her but she never ever nipped anyone.She just loved the thrill of the run.
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Old 17-04-2012, 16:53
susie-4964
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Beagles, Norfolk Terriers, Border Collies, all rough and tumbly dogs.
I like Beagles, but I wouldn't recommend one for a family - we had a Beagle cross, and he was a sod to train, kept running off, and everyone said it was the Beagle in him. Lovely nature, just not obedient! Border Collies are lovely, but need plenty to do, as they're very intelligent dogs.
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Old 17-04-2012, 17:29
Order
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I would never recommend either a Beagle or a Border Collie for a first time owner.
Our first dog was a Border Collie and he's great. We got him when he was a pup (10 weeks) and trained him. Very fast learner and wouldn't hurt a fly.

We had two cats before we got him, and he's never bothered with them - he knows who's boss

He walks at the side of you without a lead, sits before crossing the road etc., doesn't bother with other dogs unless he knows them (ie. family and friends who have dogs).

He's very gentle - even if another dog attacks him he will roll over and let them and he'd rather lick an intruder to death than attack them!

Basically, what I'm saying is if you've got young children, I think Border Collie's are a great breed to own.
Obviously we all have different experiences with different breeds, but for me and my family, Border Collie's are the perfect dogs to own.

My other dog is a complete nightmare (not a pedigree, can't remember what he's crossed with). Can't control his bladder, jumps up and barks at everyone who enters the house, runs off if he sees another dog or human and generally doesn't listen to a word you say. He's only a pup though, and he is starting to improve bit by bit now.

I'm sure you know this, OP, but a lot of time is required with them. Learning them commands, walking them, grooming them etc. and if I were you, I'd question how much time you want to put into those things, and then eliminate the dogs that are too much work for you.

I'll always stand by the fact that the viciousness of a dog is down to the owner, not the breed. As long as you treat it right and do the above things, your dog will respect humans and would never hurt them.

Good luck with your search, OP. Sorry my post is so long!
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Old 17-04-2012, 17:44
TWS
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before settling on a breed you need to look at two things, one how much exercise you plan on giving it, then two the kind of size dog you want - then go from there really
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Old 17-04-2012, 18:34
Normandie
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I'll always stand by the fact that the viciousness of a dog is down to the owner, not the breed. As long as you treat it right and do the above things, your dog will respect humans and would never hurt them.
But it can also be down to the breeding, imo. Put two beautiful but highly-strung dogs together for looks and you can end up with puppies who are, by nature, more difficult... or simply neurotic as adults, no matter how good the home is.
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Old 17-04-2012, 18:46
Butcher Bill
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Whatever you get don't expect it to just be a good, well trained and well behaved dog without you having to do anything to achieve that.

Every dog needs to be trained and treated correctly in order for us to get what we want out of them.

If you want a more sedate dog then look for a more sedate puppy. No matter what the breed you will have dogs with different personalities. If you are getting one from a litter then go along and observe the dogs and how they behave.

If you have never owned a dog I would highly reccomend you doing some research on dog behaviour & simple training - and attend training classes with the dog and the whole family.
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Old 17-04-2012, 23:55
Aarghawasp!
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I would never recommend either a Beagle or a Border Collie for a first time owner.

Greyhounds are good first time dogs. Only need minimal exercise and tend to be real couch potatoes. Rescue centres tend to be quite reluctant to rehome a dog to a home with such a young child, but depending on the dog, it isn't always an open and shut case. My advice would be to be patient and spend some time looking at different breeds, visit many rescue shelters and let the perfect dog find you. It really does pay to spend a bit of time researching and researching some more as well as exploring all the different options. The right decision can mean many wonderful years of having a family companion.

Totally agree on collies, mine was fab, lovely natured dog but they are highly intelligent and on the go 24/7. They need a huge amount of mental stimulation and physical exercise or they can become destructive. Research the breed carefully before taking one on...too many end up in rescue because folk don't realise how demanding they are.

Also agree on greyhounds/lurchers. Fabulous pets! Gentle, affectionate, undemanding, lazy hounds who don't need a huge amount of exercise. Although they aren't the smallest of dogs you'd hardly know they were there. It's amazing how small a long legged hound can curl up!

Collies are the marathon runners of the dog world, greys and lurchers are the sprinters.

Check out the forums at Lurcher Link. A well established rescue who will cat test and child test all their dogs.
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Old 18-04-2012, 01:29
Carlos_dfc
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I'd suggest a staffy. Seriously. Don't believe everything you read, they are ideal family pets.
Yup - If they are brought up in a family, they are great - nothing like the media reputation - real 'people' dogs.
And there are tons of young ones in rescue centres.

When my kids were growing up, we had a Golden Labrador (Butch) and he was an absolutely fantastic family dog - the only caveat was that he did moult a lot, and the light hairs were very prominent - MUCH brushing (dog) and hoovering (floor) required.

Now we have a Staff-x-Lab mix (Stig) - and he is even better.
Same brilliant temperament - he is great with the grandkids.
He has a brindle 'Staff' coat, and hardly moults at all - doesn't smell like many dogs do - has never chewed anything he wasn't given - is super-friendly, with absolutely everybody - will do anything for a pet-up - A real attention-tart.
Have had dogs all my life - some great ones, but Stig is easily the best one.

Whatever you go for though - If you want a family dog, then 'socialisation' is the key.
Make sure he's used to people, including children, from a young age - If you are going to have a dog, as well as children, a friendly dog who is comfortable and placid around people will be the number one consideration.
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