Small dogs... talk me in.

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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Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 12:53pm PST 
I've never considered myself a small dog person, but I think it's mostly a misinformed ignorant opinion that was kind of forced on me as a kid due to family and friends all having big dogs and most being small dog haters.

I know it sounds silly, but I've just always doubted I could find what I want in a dog in a smaller package. But I'm coming around, especially with my boys being around 33-35# each and they each fit my 'perfect' dog in their own ways... maybe there's a perfect combo somewhere. But I've met so few small dogs that I like and so few that are athletic (Yes, I understand this has a LOT to due with their owners and what they are or are not doing).

So talk me in, I'm looking forward to hearing about all kinds of little dogs. Their personalities, how it is to live with them, pros and cons of their size. I'm most likely going to end up adopting my dog, and he'll probably be a mix breed anyways so breed specific info I guess isn't necessary. But I'll happily take it smile

And for the sake of it, here's a list of smaller breeds I've been more interested in than others:
-Border Terrier
-Boston Terrier
-Jack Russel Terrier
-Irish Terrier
-Miniature Poodle

Miss- Pig!
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 1:36pm PST 
Terriers are hugely underestimated i think when it comes to people wanting a highly active, super intelligent, and full of fun, little dog companion. But remember, these are often little dogs that think they're big, so i find they're quite good for big dog people to accept too wink They are extremely tough and hardy dogs. I can't tell you the amount of times Missy has been knocked down by Tyler to the point she's rolled across the ground. She just gets up, dusts herself down and carries on with what she was doing. They are not really dainty or delicate in their appearance and can out walk many a larger dog. I know with my two, Missy has always had the most energy and even now at 10 years old she's still more than able to keep up on long walks and she just loves playing fetch. If you can accept certain terrier traits than they're really great.
Princesse- Lily CGN

I am RoyalChi!
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 2:17pm PST 
Ok, so Chis weren't aren't your list, but I will take any excuse to talk about themwink

I always thought Chis were yappy little ankle biters. Princesse has changed my mind. OK, she can be barky, but it's always an alert bark. Of course, sometimes it's something I don't need alerting tolaugh out loud However, she hasn't bitten an ankle in her lifewink

She can be good with other dogs who are polite but if they are rude, she will not hesitate to put them in their place. That includes Bunnylaugh out loud She is a one person dog in the sense that hubby is her person, but that doesn't mean she isn't happy to see or be with other people. She can be picky about who she likes though and will air snap if she isn't comfortable. She is defentilty a velcro lap dog but is up for an outing any time. I love to watch her "be a real dog" when she is outsidesmile She has been awesome with cats, rabbits and birds. I love to take her for rides in my bike basket and sometimes she "helps " me deliver flyers. I do have to be vigilent for dogs or other creatures that may want to harm her but it's worth it. She is also tougher than she looks. She has been stepped on, fallen on her head and had a hot pan of grease fall on her. She is like a timex, takes a licking and keeps on tickinglaugh out loud However, don't ask her to put her dainty little paws in cold snow or waterwink

On the training side, she is awesome. It may take her longer, but when learns something, it sticks. She is very good at cues, for instance, when hubby shuts his book at night, she heads straight for her kennel. With Bunny being a bit on the reactive side, it is absoutlely wonderful to walk with a dog who shows very little interest on what is going on around her. All she wants to do is walk or go for a drivesmile

I have found it to be true that a Chi is "a big dog in a little package"big grin


Bark it Loud &- Proud!
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 2:46pm PST 
I love BORDER TERRIERS! They can be a couch potato or a mountain climber, easily fitting into almost any situation. This people-oriented breed happily participates in all family activities but doesn't bounce off the walls in the house.

These compact, whiskery pups have the stamina, intelligence, playfulness, and ratting instinct of the terrier, without the dominance, aggression, barking, coat care, or high energy of many others in their group. Bred to run with foxhounds, they had to be feisty enough to hold their own but social enough to fit in as well. Unlike many terriers, Borders play well with other dogs and often tolerate cats if raised with them.

MINIATURE POODLES are, of course, also awesome! One thing all poodles have in common is a need to be with their people. If ignored, they're miserable (and make everyone else miserable) and not the happy companions they're meant to be.

Extremely adaptable and capable, the poodle tries almost anything that its person wants it to. They're superb obedience dogs, easily trainable, and always watch their handler. Poodles tolerate other dogs and household pets. They are best with intense bonding and are not for ignoring or kennel life.

I too was a large or extra large dogs only kinda gal...until Sumo came into my life. Seriously, I always said I would NEVER have a toy poodle. Well, sometimes the universe has other plans. Never say never. laugh out loud

Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 5:48pm PST 
Missy, I love the sounds of terriers as far as a little dog that doesn't act like a delicate little dog. Rough and tumble is definitely a trait I really can admire and enjoy in a dog. However, training wise I just don't know how the terrier brain is a brain I really want to work with laugh out loud

And Princesse, I just think most Chis are too small. Even with a rough and tumble attitude, they're just too small for me not to feel comfortable worrying about them getting stepped on or another dog playing to rough or a leg getting hurt from jumping. I'm considering going smaller, I just don't know if I want to go that small you know? But it is good to hear how they are when they are not little ankle biters.

Hershey, I've heard a LOT of really good things about Border Terriers. I do like the idea of a more social terrier, and one a bit leggier. And they are very handsome dogs, scruffy with a very genuine character look to them. I'm certainly going to look into them more. And Mini and Toy poodles are definitely on my list. Any dog with good versatility is definitely on my list. Being new to dog training and sports I'd prefer a dog I can dabble with in a lot of things. So the more versatile, the better. The grooming kind of scares me away though. Brushing I can handle, but actual grooming? I don't know if I'd have the nerve to do it myself and so I'd be paying for someone else to do it. Sounds like it can add up if your dog is being cut every 6-8 weeks.
Princesse- Lily CGN

I am RoyalChi!
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 6:05pm PST 
I totally get the "too small" but you did say you were considering a mixwink

14- Years- Young!
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 7:18pm PST 
Lenny, after hounds I think you’d find a terrier a bit easier to work with training-wise. It’s true they’re not biddable in quite the same way as many of the herding and sporting breeds, but they definitely aren’t lacking in the drive department. I picked my younger RT out as a sport/agility prospect and she has exceeded all my expectations, she truly enjoys working and she’s a really fun dog to train with.

And yes, they are definitely NOT fragile dogs. Both of mine were raised around livestock, mostly horses and goats, they know how to handle themselves with large animals (and a clumsy owner!) I love taking mine hiking too, they can go forever, but they settle nicely in the house and are fairly easy to live with. Nobody who knows her would believe it, but my younger girl is positively lazy indoors.

One downside to terriers is the possibility of DA or SSA, but with an adult dog from a good rescue, you should know what you are getting as far as temperament and drive go.
Skipper- a.k.a Skip

Terror terrier
Barked: Wed Apr 10, '13 4:05am PST 
Lenny, I was the EXACT same as you lol... I grew up with Rotties and GSDs. Rocky, my rescue GSD X was put to sleep at the end of October last years and five months or so before that, I rescued Dexter a BC... I was always a big dog person puppy

At the end of Feburary, I brought home Skipper, a Parson Russell Terrier (or Jack Russell if your in the States)... I always liked the 'leggier' terrier look and the broken coat so after much debate, I got one...

What can I say?...

Skip, first and foremost, thinks he's a Rottweiler lol... He's currently fourteen weeks old and is hardy, energetic, feisty, fun and all round, mental... But I love him... He's so intelligent! He's a true problem solver and isn't bothered about working independently which keeps me on my toes when I'm training him...

He loves bigger dogs and people. His favourite play mate is our neighbours Staffie lol... She tramples him, knocks him to the ground, throws him around... Rough plays but by Dog, he loves it!!!

He can keep up with Dexter, my two year old BC and Skip's dad, goes in fifteen mile mountain runs and still comes back ready to go all over again!

He's fun to train, he's constantly trying to outsmart me and is always making me laugh... He's so clever it scares me sometimes but I wouldn't have him any other way puppy

But at the end of the day, he snuggles up next to me on the sofa and sleeps... He loves to be around people and other dogs, especially when cuddles are involved puppy

If you're looking for a smaller, tough, fun and energetic dog... I would definitely recommend a terrier... I've been bitten by the terrier bug and don't think I'll ever look back puppy

I can't wait until Skip is old enough for agility... He'll love it!

Have a look at Skips pictures and you'll see how hardy and leggy he is puppy

Miss- Pig!
Barked: Wed Apr 10, '13 8:24am PST 
I've personally found training to be a breeze with Missy, Lenny. She is a very eager worker and will work for anything, treats, toys, voice praise alone. I know some people say they're stubborn and will get bored of repeated commands etc, but that has never been my experience with Missy. I guess, depending on the temperamant of the terrier, making sure their energy and intelligence is channelled in the right way is the most important factor.

Oh, and yes, much easier to train than Hounds! laugh out loud
Wiggles BN

wiggles is my- name ,digging is- my game
Barked: Wed Apr 10, '13 9:06am PST 
Terriers are easier to train then hounds from my experience also. My doxies are stubborn although Wiggles does compete in obedience (first in 4H where he did very well, we are just starting with AKC). Beagles are great dogs, they are so fun but like you know they are hounds and can be hard to train.

Paps are great to train, they love to learn and are biddable, you would be shocked how great they can be in obedience, rally, agility, etc. They are great little dogs, I went to a show hosted by the pap club in my area and the dogs were all so well behaved and were very active. They are also easier to groom then poodles (consistent brushing and some trimming).
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