Help me narrow down my choices!

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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Member Since
Barked: Tue Oct 30, '12 7:17pm PST 
I am pretty flexible as far as if I find a dog (or breed) that clicks with me, I would be willing to make some comprimises as far as grooming, ect. So far I think I am leaning towards a greater swiss mountain dog. They seem like such a good all around breed, they can work, are protective of family, but can be around people/public settings and seem to have a pretty healthy life expectancy for such a large breed. They shed a good amount, but I guess I just need to be extra anal rententive lol.

Please, be nice - ... or else!
Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 6:31am PST 
Swissies are another of those "great dogs on paper".
Needless to say, choose your breeder VERY carefully
(although that can/should be said of any breed) ...

Many (most, actually) of the Swissies we come across
are, to put it as tactfully as possible,
"not the nicest".

Edited by author Wed Oct 31, '12 6:35am PST


Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 8:18am PST 
Standard Poodles meet all of your criteria...Low shedding, people friendly but is also protective...not in an obvious aggressive way, large but not a heart break breed, super smart and very trainable as well as versatile.

Star BN RN- RA

Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 10:25am PST 
I agree with BRT on the Swissies being "great dogs on paper", Im sure there are some great ones out there however most of the ones I have meet are not the nicest towards people or other animals....I would choose a breeder very carefully as not only does the personality of the parents need to be great but health issues (especially cancer) are a huge issue with Swissies
Mishka &- Luna

Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 2:11am PST 
A very good friend of mine owns, shows, and breeds English Bull Terriers. They are very stubborn and hard headed dogs but incredibly smart. So early training and consistency for the training is the key and a MUST! With the right training they can be trusted off-leash. But beware they do have a HIGH prey drive. You must be a firm owner for this breed as they will test you and see what they can get away with. I suggest getting one from a bull terrier rescue or from a reputable breeder. Please be aware of the health issues that they can have. I find the female bull terriers to be very sweet and loving. While the males especially if they are intact can show a sort of possessiveness over an object or another pet. They also can be a little neurotic. So if you go with this breed, your best bet is to get a female. They are very tenacious and aloof with strangers. They make great watchdogs.

"Stubborn" dogs- don't need- corrections
Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 4:33am PST 
I think it's good that you've narrowed it down to some breeds.

Now, take those breeds, and study them. Read everything you can about them. Talk to owners of those breeds. Go to shows, meet with breeders, express your interest, have the breeders and owners talk to you about the good, the bad, and the ugly. It's important to know all of the pros and cons of a breed, and decide if the pros outweigh the cons.

For instance, my "perfect breed" is the Akita Inu. Pros: They're extremely loyal, protective only when necessary, and quiet. Cons: They aren't normally dog-friendly, same-sex aggression is common in the breed, they blow their coat twice a year(and that means practically eating fur as a side dish with every meal, although otherwise, the shedding is virtually nonexistent), and training? HA! Loyal does not necessarily mean they're going to ignore that wonderful smelling bush just because you called their name. They ARE trainable, and I've seen some in Agility before, but it requires hard work and patience. And making sure to understand that they're very unlikely to listen if you try to use dominance tactics or punishment-based methods.

But, for me, the pros outweigh the cons. I love them for their difficulty. I'm an Aries. Challenges excite me. laugh out loud

Obviously I'm not suggested an Akita for you. From your description, this is not the breed for you. In fact, it's almost the complete opposite of what you want, lol. I was just giving an example of the pros and cons.

Ultimately, no one can really tell you what your breed is. It's up to you to do your research and decide which breed(s) meshes well with you.

Member Since
Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 5:58am PST 
@BRT- I totally agree with you about the swissies! I posted that once on a thread here, and someone with a cavalier king charles spaniel avatar corrected me and said that per their breed club, they were basically supposed to be lap dogs.

I've always heard they were guardy and intense, pretty much the opposite of the laid back bernese mountain dogs. I've heard they're handler sharp and not always great with other dogs.
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