So you and your family have made the decision that it’s time to bring a pup into your lives. But what is the best fit for you and your family and your life style. Before we rush out to the local animal shelter or start looking on line at all those cute little faces, let’s take some time to really think about why we are adopting a pet and what we are ultimately looking for in our new four legged friend.
For an elderly person or couple who may be downsizing and moving into an apartment or condominium perhaps we should first start looking at the small breed or toy dogs, as many condominiums have a size and/or weight restriction on pets. You should also pay close attention to the attributes of each breed. Some small breeds such as Pugs, French Bull Dogs, Chinese Crested, Poodles and Havanese are generally very quiet and do not bark too much. On the other hand breeds such as Pekinese, Chihuahuas, Schnauzers or Papillons may fit the size qualification but may also tend to be more vocal. In either case most of these breeds do require regular grooming. As with any dog daily exercise is important but these smaller breeds may be happier with short leash walks.
If you have a young, growing family and space in your home, you may want to consider a larger more energetic breed that would be good with children such as a Lab or Golden Retriever. These dogs definitely require more than just a short leash walk and are well suited to families on the go. With proper training these breeds can be a welcome and fun addition to your family.
For a single person or couple with no children, with time to spend with your dog, you may want to look into the larger or giant breeds of dogs, such as German Shepherds, Dobermans, Great Pyrenees or Greyhounds. These breeds when properly trained also make great pets but are more of a one person type of dog.
And if you are not looking for a purebred dog, you may want to check out your local animal shelter or rescue organization, as there are many great dogs looking for another chance at life and a new forever home. If you are still not sure what the best fit for you would be, why not try doing foster care for a rescue group. In this case you can foster various breeds of dogs in need of new homes and get a feel for the different breeds and sizes of dogs, and I’m sure you will soon find one that is best suited to you and who will become your new best friend.
So before you adopt, do your homework, write down what you are really looking for in a pet and make an informed decision.
Remember this is a long term commitment and should not just be a passing fancy.