Choosing the Dog Breed that Is Best for You

Are you thinking of buying a dog but don’t know what breed to choose? There are several important things to consider when choosing a breed, such as size, activity level, and maintenance requirements.

Read over these guidelines for some tips on choosing a breed.

Size. You may not mind a large dog, but a 200-pound mastiff might not be very happy in the closet of a tiny one-bedroom apartment. Also, a large dog may take up what minimal floor space you have. Think carefully about how much dog will fit into your allotted living space.

Activity level. A jogger would be advised to choose an energetic breed, such as a border collie, as his jogging companion as opposed to the more laid-back bulldog. On the other hand, if you wish to recline on the couch watching television, you won’t necessarily want a golden retriever dropping a tennis ball into your lap every few minutes.

Maintenance requirements. If you work full-time and run five kids around to school, sporting events, and friends’ houses, you won’t want to spend excess time every day brushing out a Lhasa Apso’s long fur. A shorter-haired dog or even a hairless dog like the Chinese crested hairless may be a better choice. If you love long fur and have the time to groom it, consider a dog like a Chow Chow or even a Komondor.

Costs. Initial costs of a dog vary widely among breed and breeders, but on-going costs vary between breeds. A working Anatolian Shepherd will require more food than a five-pound lapdog. Some dogs have breed-related health problems that have the potential to raise vet bills; think of the back problems Daschunds deal with.

Laws. Most people forget about laws when they choose a breed. You could find the sweetest tempered pit bull in the world, but if your city or apartment doesn’t allow pit bulls, it is pointless to invest time and emotions into one just to have to give it up.

Temperament. If you want an easily trained dog who is dying to please, choose a golden retriever or labrador retriever. If you have more time for training and a calm, determined personality, go ahead and try an Akita or other breed that requires experience.

Maybe you just can’t find a breed that suits you or you don’t have very many strict requirements for your breed. In this case, a shelter or rescue is a great place to find a dog! Keep in mind basic factors such as size, and pick the dog that fits your personality best.

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