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Which Dog Breed Should I Choose?

Before you decide which breed of dog you are going to choose you must have made the decision about whether you want a Pedigree or a Cross Breed dog?

  • Pedigree dogs
    Choosing a pedigree dog makes many of your other decisions easier, especially if you intend getting a puppy.
    Pedigree dogs have a "history" helping you ascertain many of the basics :- what they will look like, what size will they be, what their temperament might be like, how active the breed is and when you get the dog from a breeder you should be able to see the parents, a good indication of what to expect.
  • Cross Breed dogs.
    If you choose to get a cross breed or mongrel it usually means that many of the characteristics and temperament are less certain and if you get a puppy what you can expect becomes even more difficult to judge, even the size of the adult dog will be just a guess, although knowing its parentage can help

With over 200 recognised dog breeds it may seem a daunting task to choose one that suits you. By asking a few questions, mainly about how a dog will fit your lifestyle, you can narrow the search dramatically. The first 3 alone, of the questions below leaves you with a much more manageable group of breeds.

  • What size of dog are you interested in: -
    Toy/Small (e.g. Cairn terrier), Medium (e.g. Basset Hound) or Large (e.g. Boxer).
  • How energetic a dog are you prepared to consider, are you active and prepared to spend time exercising your pet.
  • Good with children (most breeds will tolerate children and some positively enjoy them)
  • Good with other pets and unfamiliar dogs.
  • What is your living accommodation, flat, house with garden etc?
  • Is it important that your dog will be easy to train.( some breeds are more suited, willing and capable of being trained)
  • What length of coat do you prefer (smooth, medium or long)
  • What level of grooming would you prefer (daily, weekly, monthly, rarely etc.)
  • Will you need to leave your dog on his own for long periods of time?
  • Are you thinking of having a guard or watchdog.

By doing some research on dog breeds you can find what each breed offers you, what the breed was originally bred for can greatly help your choice. Many breeds still retain their strong drives and instincts.
(A brief guide to breeds/groups and their origins):

  • Hounds - pursuing prey, high sense of smell and great stamina.
  • Gundogs- pursuit and retrieval of game.
  • Terriers- bred to hunt vermin (rats, mice, foxes)
  • Working group- heroic and dependable, guarding, rescue, searching.
  • Pastoral- herding, guiding protecting flocks
  • Toy - developed for companionship or orinally as toys for the rich.
  • Utility- not as specific to any of the other groups but sharing many of their traits

These breed groupings give an indication of why the dog was originally bred and will also help determine what you can expect from a dog you choose from a group.

  • Energetic and lively or calm with a quieter disposition
  • Strong-willed and ambitious or generally easy-going and eager to please.
  • Friendly with humans or shy and reserved with newcomers.
  • Playful with people, other pets and toys or generally not interested in play.
  • Friendly to other dogs or showing little interest.
  • Friendly to cats and other pets or preferring their own company.
  • Generally affectionate and gentle or somewhat aloof
Try to remember when you make your choice that dogs are dogs and ultimately they think and behave like dog. They all require some level of training, socialisation, a suitable environment, some degree of grooming, good healthcare, diet and probably a lot of attention and love.

Finally you must be practical, choosing a dog based on looks is not the right way, Red Setters may be beautiful but as the choice for an elderly person living in a small city flat, probably not.

David Bates

Pettrendy The Pet Dog Information Site

Pet Dog Information.
Advice about dog breeds and
finding the best pet dog for you and your family.


















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