Am I asking too much in a 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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Black dogs rock!
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 4:05am PST 
First off , let me say that I realize any individual dog may have these traits and that I could well find an adult mixed dog in a shelter with these traitssmile That said, is there any breed out there with high potential to meet this situation?

Medium to large size ie Lab, Spoo, GSD. Not giant size.

Not necessarily non shedding but if it sheds, it sheds clumps, not annoying individual hairs that stick to everything.

Able to do therapy work with seniors, which means a temperament more on the friendly side and not so much a reserved temperament. However, a bouncy breed wouldn't work too well.

Possibly sledding/carting/backpacking. Not a deal breaker, but something I definitely could get into.

*Excellent* with other dogs but not so soft of a temperament that a Chi telling him/her to get out of her face/away from her daddy will scar them for life.

Highly trainable for off leash and boundary training.ie stays in the yard with their person once shown the boundaries and will stay close by off leash during walks in appropriate places.

Low tendency towards reactivity. This one should actually be at the top of the list!

Low prey drive, ie if something interesting is going by , looking at is OK , fighting an instinct to chase is not.

Calm in the house.

Not a big barker.

Doesn't have to be a stellar OB prospect but can learn basic OB, manners and maybe a few cute tricks, fairly easily.

Can tolerate extremes of weather. It can get pretty hot here in the summer and pretty darn cold in the winter.

I kind of like a dog with a bit of a naughty streak or a sense of humor, I know that sounds contradictory and it's hard to explain. Like Princesse sitting on the arm of the couch when she knows she is not allowed on the couch and looking at us as if to say "What? I am not on the *couch*, I am on the *arm* of the couch" laugh out loud And yes, we let her get away with it smile

It doesn't have to be a one person dog but if it picks me as its favorite person, that is a bonus. As in, Bunny gravitates towards me and Princesse to hubby, although they are always happy to see either one of us or visitors for that matter.

I also like a dog that tends toward the Velcro side. I want my dog where I am. But I also want it to sleep in its crate at night and tolerate being left alone a few hours a day.

Oh and as long as I am asking for the impossible wink my favorite looks are the wolfy or foxy look. Fluffy dogs are pretty cute too smile I would be willing to overlook that for the right breed thoughwink

I realize I am asking a lot but bear in mind its taken me years to figure out exactly what I want and don't wantlaugh out loud Also, I am asking about a breed with high potential for the majority of these things. I realize I probably can't have it allsmile

The Monster
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 5:24am PST 
Sounds like a S. Poodle would fit the bill. Would just have to watch for individual temperament re: reactivity and some solid 4-on-the-floor training to prevent jumping.

Spooky Mulder
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 6:24am PST 
Bunny, I think you know... its always been a Spoodle way to go


Serious Face
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 8:41am PST 
Oh my goodness, when I worked at a alzheimer home one time these ladies brought these big fluffy dogs in and they were amazing. Quiet, sweet, aware of their size, gentle with the seniors... I wish I had asked what breed thet were. They were very people friendly, but attached to their handler. The only thing they didn't have was that naughty streak...maybe at home when they weren't on the job. Might try to track them down...it was only like a year ago.

bitches love- pantaloons
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 10:20am PST 
Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 10:32am PST 
You know... I can't help but think, other than the extreme weather thing(and possibly the short life span too)... Bernese Mountain Dog would fit nicely.

I do have to agree with others. Spoo seems to fit the bill pretty nicely lol.

Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 11:49am PST 
Don't fight it Bunny...a Spoodle is for you. You can teach them not to jump on people. Neither of my Spoos jump on people. I can't promise no jumping because they do like to bounce in the air like a kangaroo...or what I call "kanga-poodle" when excited.

Sonja and Jasper are stellar therapy dogs! Most of what makes them so wonderful at it came natural to them...I didn't teach it. The only thing I see on your list that may be an issue is prey drive. I know Spoodles are suppose to be bird dogs...but mine are much more into chasing and killing vermin.

I would think you may be able to train a Spoodle to "leave it" when it comes to prey drive plus mega amounts of socialization around other types of animals including birds and rodents.

As I've said before...one of the best qualities of a Spoodle is their versatility and adaptability to many types of lifestyles. With that being said, Spoodle pups/teens do have a lot of energy. A good hike/walk/run a day will do the trick.

If you choose to get a pup...tell the breeder exactly what you want. A GOOD breeder knows her pups and which one will most likely fit the bill. I got EXACTLY what I wanted with Sonja and Jasper...energy wise and all.

The Snuggler
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 12:25pm PST 
Charlie: The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog would be a good one too. Basically a Bernese without all the hair! big grin

Will Work For- Food
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 12:41pm PST 
Roman, a GSMD is not just a Berner without all the hair. Besides the Swissy being much larger of the two breeds, they are very different dogs in temperament and not really exchangeable.

The Snuggler
Barked: Wed Jul 17, '13 12:56pm PST 
My sister GSMD gets mistaken for a Bernese x all the time. That's where I get that from. As for temperament, my sisters dog is a good boy, very calm, except when the mailman comes around. My sisters almost year old grew up with him and regularly uses him as a drum and he just lays there. My sister does have some leash problems with him though.
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