Planning ahead-looking for the right breed

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

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Carly- Rosebud- *2001-2012*

Red Headed Pork- Chop
Barked: Sun Sep 2, '12 9:18pm PST 
Someone mentioned Flat Coated Retrievers and I second that! smile They are so gorgeous and loving and I think you have a better chance of getting a healthy one than with a lab or golden because they are less popular. I am a groomer and I work out of a doggy daycare and from what I see on a daily basis (others here could have different experiences) I rarely see healthy young goldens and labs anymore. Lots of my customers went to very good breeders too. I see an insane amount of very severe allergies, bone cancer, arthritis, hip problems, etc, etc, etc with labs and goldens. I also have a lot of them that seem to be aging very fast (goldens with white face masks and arthritis at three years).

I was just discussing this with the rest of the staff last week. We were going through and naming all of our goldens that come to daycare weekly (there are about 30 total who are very regular customers). We could name ONE healthy one. He was actually from a golden rescuesmile It is so sad because they are such great dogs.

Just something to think about based on my experience, but like I said others may feel differently.

Black dogs rock!
Barked: Mon Sep 3, '12 3:10am PST 
No one mentioned a Standard Poodle ? shockwink

Akita Pals- Always.
Barked: Mon Sep 3, '12 6:35am PST 
I would first recommend an honest assessment of exactly what you want in a dog and are able to handle,then try some breed selector sites to narrow choices,in all honesty what we would like to have,or think we want,isn't always the best choice for our lifestyle and situation. From that point start looking into specific breeds first by profile,then by doing as you are,asking people who actually deal with the breed to get information. I applaud you taking the time and effort to research and plan ahead for the right breed to fit your needs. I may sound harsh or critical but that is not my intent,I really do want you to find the dog who fits your needs and whose needs you can honestly fill so that both of you are happy with the years you will share.
Thank-you again for taking the time to do the work and research into getting the right pup.hugwishes


The Muddy- Princess
Barked: Mon Sep 3, '12 6:53am PST 
While Flat-Coats are FANTASTIC dogs, I would never say they are healthier than Labs and Goldens. Cancer is so much more rampant is Flat-Coats than even in Goldens and a long-lived Flat-Coat is one who lives to be 10, as opposed to a long-lived Golden which is 14 and a long-lived Lab which would be 15 1/2.

Barked: Mon Sep 3, '12 8:11am PST 
I love Flat Coated Retrievers ... they are a GREAT breed. But finding one in rescue?? Not likely at all and even less likely that you'll find one that has been well cared for, socialized, has no major issues, etc. If this is a breed you truly want, you should seek out reputable breeders who may have retired adults, returned dogs, or grown-out young adults available.

I think anyone going the rescue route with uncommon breeds should be open-minded to mixes and dogs that have the right temperament over what breed they are. IMO if they want the true representation of everything the breed should have, you're much, much, much more likely to find that with a reputable (using that word to cover every quality) breeder than a rescue.

It's all about- me.
Barked: Mon Sep 3, '12 10:20am PST 
shh Bunny wink laugh out loud

I'm also a fan of the Am Staff or Pittie types. There are so many in need of a good home. I've never met one that had a mean bone in their body. Lovable lugs, happy, athletic but mellow. A foster mom can give you a lot of information on any possible rescue (personality wise).

The Muddy- Princess
Barked: Wed Sep 5, '12 6:37am PST 
Also be very careful about getting a Flat-Coat from a shelter or a non-Flat Coat rescue. Any dog is all black, has drop ears and longer hair will be called a Flat-Coat or a Flat-Coat mix and 99 out of 100 times, they will not have Flat Coat in them.

Flat Coats ARE rare and the chance of one being at a shelter is so rare as to be almost non-existent. Most people at shelters and resues have never seen a pure-bred Flat Coat and cannot don't know the detail of the breeds look. Plus black is the dominant color in dogs and a solid colored coat is dominant to a spotted coat so if you breed any long coated dog (short hair is dominant to long coat) to a Golden lets say you will wind up with a dog that most people would confuse with a Flat Coat. Many times it will be something like a Golden Border Collie mix.

NOW, that non-Flat Coat is likely to be a GREAT dog and in temperament should be very like a Flat Coat (plus it will herd). Plus it will probably live longer than a pure-bred Flat Coat.

Retrieverman http://retrieverman.wordpress.com/2011/10/18/new-genome-wide-study-s heds-light-on-dog-breed-relationships/ discussed the genetic relationship between breeds and proposed the idea that genetically current Flat Coats are merely a subset of Goldens which is interesting because originally Goldens were a subset of Flat Coats.

Sorry to ramble, but I love retriever history.
Savannah Blue Belle

A Heart of Gold!
Barked: Wed Sep 5, '12 7:13am PST 
Our Samoa is one of those "flat coat" types. In fact he is probably a BC or Aussie/Retriever mix. He is a great dog, and he came from a Humane Society.

His entire family had been dropped off, so I could see the parents and the litter mates. Unfortunately, this happens but in this case the pups and parents all got rehomed and are good to great dogs. Go shopping at a rescue or shelter.

You will be amazed at what you might find there.
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