What breed should I get?

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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Bruno CGC

Honorary Kelpie
Barked: Wed Sep 19, '12 11:27pm PST 
Since everyone else has beaten to death "dogs aren't children" I'll stay mum on that, other than to say I agree...

I would NOT choose a GSD based on your requirements, is my two cents. They tend to be huge money pits in the vet bills department, and a true heartbreak breed in that it's not just one genetic condition you have to watch for, it's literally dozens (that are more common in GSDs than dogs in general.) There also are SO many lines and types of GSD that a novice can easily end up with too much dog, or the wrong temperament for their situation.

Also, I assume you are young-ish and starting out, (pardon me if that's not true) and it can be hard to find cheap/decent housing with a GSD. They are on a lot of breed-ban lists, plus they are large and many landlords impose weight limits. frown I am running into this, and Bruno isn't even a purebred anything, he just LOOKS like a GSD mix.

Member Since
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 7:17am PST 
The responses are well intentioned but I have to say though ,the overall attitude here is "condescending". Most of the responses are phrased nicely but really reek of "you don't know what you're talking about" and don't take into account reality.

If OP said "I want a puppy", the response from dog enthusiasts is always "you're not responsible enough, don't bother". Now the OP approaches a puppy with the reverence of a baby, the excuse you guys give now is "puppy and baby are nothing alike". It seems like nothing is EVER good enough for you guys except yourselves. Have you ever thought about the fact that maybe people don't adopt or seek your advice if you have that attitude?

Get real. Many couples raise puppies as practice children because it's DUH raising a living thing together! And no other pet requires more attention than a puppy! Both parties have to be on the same page for training philosophies. Both parties have to figure out footing the vet bills. Arrangements made for walking. Schedules changed to accomodate the new addition. Babysitting for a few hours gets you the crying and tantrums but it doesn't get you the experience of figuring out the diet together or footing a thousand dollar vet bill together.

How can you not know that? If you knew that and went ahead and criticized anyway, then you're putting yourself on a pedestal. If you did not know that, you're out of touch with reality.

Oh yes! No breed suggestion from ANYONE! Aside from "Golden Retriever", which is erroneous because Golden Retrievers are one of the most cancer ridden breeds! http://online.wsj.com/article/SB100014240527487043426045752220622082 35690.html

Even the exercising is nitpicked! If the OP did not want to exercise, the criticism is "you don't exercise enough". Now the OP wants to jog, the criticism is "you can't jog with puppies because they blah blah dont grow plates". It's amazing how you guys find SOMETHING to nitpick about every single time.

Not even a thank you for "oh thank you for researching before jumping into this big life decision."

You guys have sincere love and dedication to dogs but really, you guys get out of touch with reality and get too critical. Would not be surprised if OP never came back.
Thor CGC

God of Thunder
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 8:02am PST 
Most of what you posted about are training and raising, not breeding. If you take the pup out and socialize it and work hard on training you shouldn't have any of those issues!

As far as breeds... hmmm. If you want a smaller dog maybe a mini aussie? They have enough energy to be a jogging buddy. A standard Aussie is larger but with close to the same temperament.

There is also the rescue route. There are plenty of fantastic dogs out there that need homes. In my experience mixed breeds tend to have less health issues than purebreds.

And seriously guys, let up. There is no reason to be condescending about things. I know plenty of people who get a dog before they have kids. I can't think of a single couple that rehomed there dog after having the child.

Most that give their dogs up because of children are irresponsible. If she is doing enough research to post on here and whatnot then she obviously is putting more thought into this than the average pet owner.


Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 8:06am PST 
Take it as criticism or look at it as advice. We've all posted suggestions, which collectively insinuate the same thing - perhaps thats a suggestion you shouldn't automatically discount. I don't know anyone on these boards and have no motive to agree with them just for the sake of not arguing.

You're right that many people use dogs to "practice" having kids .... but I've seen enough homeless dogs put to sleep to know what the outcome often is.

Good luck with your future dog.

Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 8:09am PST 
I wanted to end on that note ... but DON'T buy a "mini aussie". I won't go into it, but it's not an established breed so you will be buying from a backyard breeder looking for a quick buck.
Bruno CGC

Honorary Kelpie
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 8:26am PST 
since it's morning and I'm not brain-dead on lack of sleep, I've been trying to think of actual breeds the OP might want to look into (since all I contributed last night was "don't get a GSD").

Some thoughts...

American Eskimo- super cute, I think aesthetically they might appeal to someone who likes GSDs, and are a much more manageable size. Long soft hair, but not super high-maintenance. Very athletic and smart.

Keeshond- similar to the Eskie but even fluffier (and brown/grey instead of white), and a little bigger, still manageable. Sometimes considered the most mellow, novice-friendly Spitz/Nordic breed. Not slouches, just not as temperamental as say, Chows, or as energetic as Huskies.

Rough Collie- can be hit or miss. When poorly bred, they can be overly sensitive and fearful (the "shopping cart" issue) but if you look hard you can find one that is how they're meant to be- sensitive but not neurotic, very willing to please and in-tune with their person. A LOT more mellow than Aussies, still very athletic and trainable. May be too large though.
Angel Lou

Everybody wants- to be a...DOG!- not a CAT
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 8:41am PST 
First, I want to say thank you for looking into your dog breeds before you make a hasty decision of getting a dog. As Bruno said I do not think that a GSD would fit your needs at this point in time. As they are a breed that has BSL law against them and if you plan to move it will make it harder for you being the owner of one. So, just a thought you may want to stay away from breeds that are bashed against.

I agree with suggestions that Bruno gave you. I also thought of a Shetland Sheepdog. They too can be a hit or a miss, but I have met some really incredible dogs of this breed. You have to be sure to socialize them very well, as I have seen some be snarky. Also address to them how often and how vocal they can be.
Rocky *CGC*- With the- angels.

Gone but never,- ever forgotten- xxx
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 1:10pm PST 
Um, excuse me, faceless poster!

I was nothing but nice in my reply and you accuse me of being condescending? I gave breed suggestions and you tore it to shreds! Isn't that a bit condescending??? Considering what you wrote in your post...

I highlighted the puppy jogging issue because generally, new dog owners don't know that! I was nothing but curtious and they majority of people that replied have the dogs welfare at heart!

The only thing similar between dogs and babies is the responsibility... Unfortunately, dogs are more disposable than babies and thus, they sometimes suffer because of it. The dogs in these situations come off badly and the baby never does... THAT is why the concern was voiced. We're dog people after all and any red flag is not going to go un-noticed... Call it a reality check. Some people just need this concern highlighted...

I am a big fan of new dog owners... As long as they do their research puppy
Ava & Nix

Suburban Farm- Dogs
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 1:17pm PST 
Sorry, OP, but I think you're being a bit too sensitive about the responses people gave you. Overall it's just not a good idea to get a puppy thinking "oh, this will prepare me for a baby." Yes, people do it all the time, but that doesn't necessarily make it a good idea. If you realize they're two totally different things though, then that might be different, but you can't blame people here for taking that as somewhat of a red flag when you didn't elaborate on what "practice baby" actually meant to you specifically.

It IS good that you're doing your research, but part of research is not being offended when someone warns you of the negatives. If you want a jogging buddy, a large breed puppy isn't a good idea unless you're planning to wait a couple years before you can jog together, so adopting an adult from the shelter would probably be the better option... but to be fair you DID specify you wanted a puppy, as well as a jogging companion, so it's only reasonable you would get responses warning you of what damage you can do to your puppy if you take it jogging before it's done growing.

I didn't suggest any breeds specifically, because to be honest the "wants" in the first post didn't bring any breeds to mind. The ones I mentioned in my earlier post were just there as examples to say "a golden is a different type of smart than a husky" or "a brittany is a different type of smart than a sheltie" etc. (not necessarily recommending those breeds yet--just using them as examples. I hope that makes sense. I'm not very good at explaining the things in my head sometimes. smile ) because I found the "smart and trainable" thing to be pretty vague and didn't say a whole lot about what you're actually expecting your dog to be like. I didn't mean it to sound condescending, but honestly re-reading through others' posts none of them really seemed condescending to me so much as informative, or at the most warning you of what certain dogs are like.

Edited by author Thu Sep 20, '12 1:29pm PST

Jewel, PCD

8.6lbs of fury- in a bow!
Barked: Thu Sep 20, '12 1:58pm PST 
My post wasn't meant to be useful, just expressing my fear of children. I once looked after my nephew for 5 days and 4 nights and I'm still tramatized. I tried to put him in the yard with Jewel but he'd just open the door and come back in! Sometimes late at night I can still hear him..."Auntie...Auuuuuuuuuuntie". shock
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