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Many people ask the question: "Should we get a purebreed or a mutt?"
Why is this question so controversial? Is one dog the same as another? Is there a benefit to 'getting what you paid for'?
The truth is that one dog is like another - at least in many respects. What is not true is that every dog is equally suitable for your family. Dog rescuers may tell you to look beyond the breed and breeders tell you that you won't know what you're getting with a mixed breed. They're both right.
If you want a family dog the responsiblity is the same regardless of whether you rescued an abandoned dog from the shelter or paid upwards of $1000 for a puppy with registration papers. What is different is how you can predict the suitablity of a dog for your children.
What You Know and What You Don't?
While each individual dog has it's own personality, there are strong traits that can be breed related such as energy requirements, size, determination (a factor to consider when training your dog) and general disposition. I say general because there are always exceptions to the rules. Getting a pure bred puppy can answer some of those questions for you and help you select a good match for your family.
On the other hand you can never absolutely predict a puppy's temperment and if you are not at all concerned with size, energy or trainability then you can find a loving, good natured puppy with any genetic background. Being able to identify these traits is possible although there are still no guarantees.
What About Mixed Breed Dogs?
If however you are looking for a grown dog rather than a puppy you can find many dogs in shelters that have basic training and are already 'settled' into their temperament. Unless the dog has no traceable history and has shown aggressive behavior you should be able to visit with the dog and determine how well it would do with your family without too much concern.
Having even a bit of understanding of the breed groups and requirements will also help you know what to expect since even broad groupings (like terriers or sporting dogs) often have predicitable traits that even a mixed breed dog is likely to show if the genetic history is identifiable. In fact you may find a unique mix that suits your family better than any other dog you could find in a purebreed.
Take time to get to know the puppy or dog before buying or adopting and get your children involved!
Shannon Emmanuel is a freelance writer and the author of 'Choose the Best Dog for Your Child'. Find out more about family dogs at http://www.choosing-a-dog-for-family.com.
ABC Action News
FDA: Your pets' flea and tick medicine could cause them neurological issues
ABC Action News
The FDA said that these products can and have been safely used in the majority of dogs and cats, pet owners should consult with their veterinarian to review their pets' medical histories and determine whether a product in the isoxazoline class is ...
Flea, tick pills can cause nerve reactions in pets, FDA warns
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U.S News & World Report Money
How to Build an Estate Plan for Your Pets
U.S News & World Report Money
Account for the pet in your will. You can use your will to leave your beloved pet and some money to a trusted caretaker. Providing for your pet in your will is more like disbursing furniture, artwork or jewelry after your death than, say, providing for ...
Pets fleeing Hurricane Florence rescued by SPCA of Brevard
Nearly two dozen pets from South Carolina have a new chance at life. The SPCA of Brevard rescued the animals from shelters threatened by flooding and overpopulation in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. The society took in 11 dogs ahead of the storm ...
Pets displaced by Hurricane Florence arrive at NE Ohio SPCA
Pets of the Week: Energetic Reba, friendly Kujo need new homes
JACKSON, MI - The Jackson County Animal Shelter, 3770 Spring Arbor Road, has many pets available for adoption. Here are two of them. Energetic, happy, gotta-follow-that-nose girl Reba loves to run. Reba is a spayed female bluetick hound/Labrador ...
WKRG News 5
Woman may face charges for sheltering pets in unregistered shelter during Florence
WKRG News 5
A Wayne County woman could face charges after sheltering more than two dozen pets as Hurricane Florence impacted North Carolina. Continue Reading. Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, ...
North Carolina woman may face charges for sheltering pets during Hurricane Florence
NC woman may face charges for sheltering pets in unregistered shelter
North Carolina woman may face charges for sheltering pets during Florence
5 pets that need a home
These animals are available for adoption at the Virginia Beach Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, 3040 Holland Road. Call 757-427-0070 or visit www.vbspca.com. The adoption fee is $80 for adult cats and $150 for adult dogs, and includes ...
The mistake owners make when having to put their pets down
Vets have begged owners to stop making a simple mistake with their pets in their precious, last moments. “The hardest thing to do as a veterinarian is putting a dog or cat down,” Dr Robert Zammit, a vet at the Vineyard Veterinary Hospital in Sydney's ...
Vets say addicts are using pets to get opioids
People suffering from opioid addiction are using their pets to get their fix. In some cases, injuring their own animals. A vet in Branford said a pet owner wanted pain med re-fills for his dog, quickly. He would go to the animal hospital during ...
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