Its time to get one, Please help me decide on a dog!


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jon1996
January 9, 2006, 04:50 AM
First off let me say this, I have had dogs all my lifel grew up with them and around them, I have not had a dog in about 8 years, I want one now, Here are my Must have qualitys:

Great with Kids(I have 2 little kids)
Good with cats(I have two of them in the house)
Will protect his homestead if invaded by unknown
Dont shed to much
Easy to train and house break
Not to hyper

Thats about it I have eliminated the following breeds so far, I do not want one:

Little Dogs(Chiwawas all the way to ????zoo)
Border collie(to damn hyper)
German shepherd (Certified cat killer)
Rottwieler(Never did like these)
Pit(no need to tell why)
St bernard

Thats about it, Not much huh, But please recomend me a good dog that will protect my family while I am not there, I dont care to go to more unheard of breeds, But a pic of whatever one you recomend would be nice,
Thanks,
jon

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chaim
January 9, 2006, 05:02 AM
First off let me say this, I have had dogs all my lifel grew up with them and around them, I have not had a dog in about 8 years, I want one now, Here are my Must have qualitys:

Great with Kids(I have 2 little kids)
Good with cats(I have two of them in the house)
Will protect his homestead if invaded by unknown
Dont shed to much
Easy to train and house break
Not to hyper

Thats about it I have eliminated the following breeds so far, I do not want one:

Little Dogs(Chiwawas all the way to ????zoo)
Border collie(to damn hyper)
German shepherd (Certified cat killer)
Rottwieler(Never did like these)
Pit(no need to tell why)
St bernard

Thats about it, Not much huh, But please recomend me a good dog that will protect my family while I am not there, I dont care to go to more unheard of breeds, But a pic of whatever one you recomend would be nice,
Thanks,
jon


How about a Great Dane? They are huge, smart, loyal, they will certainly defend the family if there is a need, and they are incredibly gentle creatures most of the time. Heck, even if it doesn't try to defend you (and it probably will) a dog as big as many people should be enough to scare off any potential intruder. Just be sure you have the money to feed it. Definately on my list of dogs for when I consider a dog in the future.

Now except for the defense part (I have no idea if they'll be likely to defend your home or not) Greyhounds are known for making great pets. Very child friendly and mild mannered dogs. Another on my list for when I get a dog sometime in the future.

As for the German Shepherd, I have a friend who has a mutt that is a cross between a German Shepherd and a Husky. Both breeds are known as cat killers. This dog absolutely LOVES her two cats. In fact, I think this dog would attack any person or animal that it thought was a threat to these cats. Point being, you never know (and maybe you should consider a mutt).

Then there is the family friendly, fairly large, but somewhat hyper, Golden Retreiver or Black Lab. Very popular family pets, and there is a reason for that.

jon1996
January 9, 2006, 05:04 AM
I used to have 6 danes, A Harlequin, Brindle, fawns, and others, I love that breed but it is just to big for the house, I had the male dane in the house and when you would come home he would break anything his tail would hit, thier tails will leave a whelp from hell when you are hit by them, I should have mentioned this,
thanks,
jon

fjolnirsson
January 9, 2006, 05:23 AM
How about a Great Dane? They are huge, smart, loyal, they will certainly defend the family if there is a need, and they are incredibly gentle creatures most of the time. Heck, even if it doesn't try to defend you (and it probably will) a dog as big as many people should be enough to scare off any potential intruder. Just be sure you have the money to feed it. Definately on my list of dogs for when I consider a dog in the future.

Ya beat me to it.
If the tail is a problem, why not have it docked? So long as you aren't planning to show it. Myself, I'd prefer to live with the tail(in fact, I do), but to each his own. My dane is the best dog I've ever had. I don't intend to ever own another breed from here on, except perhaps a Mastiff.

jon1996
January 9, 2006, 05:40 AM
I love the danes dont get me wrong they are just to big for a house dog, been there, and they are short lived dogs at tat 10 yrs is usually tops to to the large breed health problems, when I had my danes I was always worried about bloat, I fed them on tv tray tables around neck level, it seemed to work fine, But if I cant find a breed that suits me I will go back to the dane,
thanks,
jon

1911 guy
January 9, 2006, 06:51 AM
I'd vote for a Lab for all the reasons you mentioned. Good with kids, intelligent, sociable, etc. Also swaying my opinion are/were: Molly, Maggie, Stinky (don't ask), Jake, Astro and Rosie. All Labradors I've had since childhood. My wife and I will be getting our son a pup when he's about two or three, to grow up with.

ulflyer
January 9, 2006, 07:43 AM
Jon1996: I know you've read Tuner1911's many articles on the gunsmithing column and I have the pleasure of knowing him personally. He has a number of Collies, several of which are especially protective of children. The only downside to your requirements is the long hair and the need to groom them a fair amount. Email Tuner, maybe he can hook you up with a nice one.

dmftoy1
January 9, 2006, 07:46 AM
I'm a lab/golden retriever guy, but they don't qualify for the first 3-4 years due to the hyper thing. :)

If shedding will be a big issue then I'd probably grab a choculate lab. The coloring could make people mistake them for something else (security wise) and they'll still love your kids and protect your family. The only caveat I have is that it takes quite a bit of exercise to keep these dogs in good shape. I don't know if you live in town or not, but I'd personally plan on budgeting an hour a day if you live in town to work the dog outside, more would be better. (just my .02)

The big plus for me of the labs/goldens is that if you are a bird hunter you can use them for one more fun thing. :) Even if you're not a bird hunter it's alot of fun to take them out and have them flush roosters.

Have a good one,
Dave

dpesec
January 9, 2006, 08:02 AM
I love labs, never had a problem. But my GF is a dog trainer and said that today there's many "wierd" labs caused by Inbreeding.

Right now I have a German Shorthair, good dob, loyal, easy going. But he's very high on prey drive. Also, his name is Hooch. Yes he suffers from that problem.

I don't know where you live, but I have a few suggestions. One, you might contact some of your State Prisons. Many have dog training programs. These dogs are already housebroken and trained. The second, contact some rescure organizations. The GF has an ex-racing Greyhound, good dog but tood some time to adjust to being a house dog.

cz75bdneos22
January 9, 2006, 08:07 AM
you don't like em'...:neener:

mwpslp
January 9, 2006, 08:14 AM
Actually the only down side to my dog would be size, if you want a big dog. I have a Beagle. They meet every other criteria and some of yours were pretty important to me when I did my research. Beagles are short haired and shed very little. Great with the family......have you ever seen a mean one? When I researched them I found that they are one of the few dogs that do not produce a natural body odor. She is great at alerting me to things but at 25 or 30 lbs. I don't know that she can chew your leg off or anything like that. Now if I could just teach her to shoot..................

Kurush
January 9, 2006, 08:37 AM
Consider a soft-coated wheaten terrier. They're extremely good with kids/cats, don't shed (at all), and generally are very smart and extremely friendly. As far as size they run about 35-40 pounds, my current (2nd) wheaten is unusually robust at about 43 lbs. They aren't especially territorial but can easily be trained to alert at movement near the house.

Wheatens aren't necessarily hyper, but they're active dogs and they need to be walked or allowed to play with other dogs more-or-less daily or they'll become hyper.

oneshooter
January 9, 2006, 08:41 AM
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=33647&stc=1&d=1136810234 Got one word fer ya" Wiemeranier". Have had them for the last 25yrs and will not have another breed. Kinda hard to find, but worth it.:D

Oneshooter
Livin in Texas

LaEscopeta
January 9, 2006, 08:48 AM
Great with Kids(I have 2 little kids)
Good with cats(I have two of them in the house)
Will protect his homestead if invaded by unknownI donít think you are going to get this combination in the same dog. A dog that will actively protect your homestead is going to have to be bred and raised to be aggressive. This is especially true if you want the dog to protect your property outside your house, or protect your house when you are not home. A dog aggressive enough for protection is going to be too aggressive for kids pulling its tail, etc.

A watch dog, that will bark when someone it doesnít know comes into the yard but does not attack the person, is a different matter. Just about any breed will make at least a fair watch dog by instinct alone (no training required.) But some hunting breeds, like hounds and spaniels, and some sled pulling breds can be watch dog wash-outs.

Wiley
January 9, 2006, 08:50 AM
Cardigan Welsh Corgi. Big dog in a small package. (My favorite)
Smooth Collie. A collie with short hair.

AKC.org will give you descriptions of just about any purebred.

There was a book, 'Picking the Perfect Puppy' that I found very helpful. You may have to search out of print book sites.

JamisJockey
January 9, 2006, 08:52 AM
Off topic.
This is what APS is for
www.armedpolitesociety.com

dfaugh
January 9, 2006, 09:22 AM
I donít think you are going to get this combination in the same dog. A dog that will actively protect your homestead is going to have to be bred and raised to be aggressive. This is especially true if you want the dog to protect your property outside your house, or protect your house when you are not home. A dog aggressive enough for protection is going to be too aggressive for kids pulling its tail, etc.

Have spent 15 years bredding/training/competing with German Shepherds (Schutzhund Sport)...Have worked with some of the best trainers in the world. Pretty much any decent GSD will protect the home/family, no training required (they are just built that way)...You do not WANT an "aggressive" dog as personal protection dog...We would never use a truly aggressive dog (in fact I would put it to sleeep) for the training we do.

If you saw some of my dogs doing protection work, you'd think they were killers...Until you saw them playing with little children (this is what we call "clear in the head"--they understand a real threat vs. play)...Also mine have always been fine with cats (although a few aren't).

They do, however, shed--ALOT---LOL

dfaugh
January 9, 2006, 09:36 AM
Many, many homeowners insurance companies have effectively "banned" certain breeds from coverage (Shepherds, Rottweillers, Huskies, Akitas...varies with the company)...I have switched to Farmers which doesn't do so...but if you're asked tell 'em "mixed breed", if you decide on one of the ones' they don't like...

Other good dog owner info can be found at the American Dog Owners Association: www.adoa.org

EZ CZ75
January 9, 2006, 09:42 AM
I would say this dog can fit the bill, as well. My whole family has them and has raised them. They are naturally as nice as any other dog out there. The mean in the bad ones is learned. Of course, there are exceptions to that, but we yet to run into one. Most people that don't want a pit haven't had much if any experience with one from a puppy on up.
My neices and nephews jump on ours, pull tails, ride, pinch, hit, and love the dogs. The dogs just love them right back and are as docile during play as a stuffed animal.
Flame retardent undies donned.

Stand_Watie
January 9, 2006, 09:53 AM
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=33647&stc=1&d=1136810234 Got one word fer ya" Wiemeranier". Have had them for the last 25yrs and will not have another breed. Kinda hard to find, but worth it.:D

Oneshooter
Livin in Texas

Excellent choice. Also consider blackmouth cur. This was the only dog we ever had who would literally "guard" my wife when strangers were around.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v426/Stand_Watie/miscelaneous/Nick.jpg

sumpnz
January 9, 2006, 10:10 AM
I would highly recommend you go the Humane Society or similar and find a lovable mutt to take home. Growing up we had a beagle/dachshund mix who did very well with my sister and me, and also would bark like a dog 4-5 times his size (~20#). Now, my wife and I have a 3/4 German Shepherd 1/4 Chow mix who is equally good with our daughter (not quite 2 y.o.). Used to have another dog, a litter mate, but we had to put her down last June due to Valley Fever (a respiritory fungal infection).

Personally I've never been too hung up on any particular breed. I have usually found the mix breeds to be a better for temperment, usually with fewer health problems and consequently longer lived.

As far as the cat issue goes, that is entirely a matter of upbringing. If you can get the dog young enough, and have it around the cats all the time it won't be any threat to them. I'm sure that there have been some cat slayers that were around them from birth, but that would be rather unusual.

Flyboy
January 9, 2006, 10:24 AM
English Springer Spaniel. Get one that's field-bred; the show dogs are pretty, but dumb as a post. Field dogs may or may not be pretty, but some of them are scary smart. My family's had springers since before my little brother was born, and they have all been great. They're also surprisingly defensive, if they need to be--I was downright shocked to see them when we had somebody prowling around our yard, as they're usually among the gentlest dogs I've ever met. For pictures (I don't have any handy), go scare up a copy of "Spaniels in the Field" magazine. (For pictures of my parents' springers, look for "Spaniels in the Way." :neener: )

Krenn
January 9, 2006, 10:29 AM
Academically, I reccomend the Giant Schnauzer. Very similiar to german shepherd, and used for a lot of the same purposes by European Police.

more wiry coat. SLIGHTLY different temperament, but that's probably just because Schnauzer breeders are more specialized... not as much demand for puppy-mil level production, so less poorly raised, poorly trained dogs bringing down the average.

Disclaimer: my family is allergic to dogs, so I have never HAD one as a pet... that's simply my plan when I have a family of my own, and a Giant Schnauzer is the dog I've chosen ahead of time.l

hso
January 9, 2006, 10:30 AM
Lab or Golden or mix of the two. The neighbors and my family have had one of these types for nearly 40 years. They've all been great with kids, fine with cats, family dogs that raised a ruckus whenever a stranger even got within 200 feet of our houses.

We've also had Collies and they were great dogs. They did require grooming that the Labs didn't require.

We have an elderly CockaPoo and she's the bravest thing I've ever seen. Not the least bit reckless, but she's afraid of nothing and will alert if anyone sets foot on the property. Grew up with cats, loves kids, doesn't shed.

The neighbors had Poodles. Not the puntable variety, but the large dogs. They were always great as well. Smart, friendly, playfull without being hyper, did fine with cats.

Zundfolge
January 9, 2006, 10:36 AM
I would highly recommend you go the Humane Society or similar and find a lovable mutt to take home.

+1

Some of the best dogs I've ever had where mutts.

I currently have two dogs, one is a Pembroke Welsh Corgi (no, don't even think about one for any sort of "guard dog" unless you need a food bowl guarded :p ) and the other is a Border Collie / Golden Retriever mix ... he's been the best protector and yet is very laid back (basically he's got a Golden's personality and body with a Border Collies intelligence and coloring).

Personally I've never been too hung up on any particular breed. I have usually found the mix breeds to be a better for temperment, usually with fewer health problems and consequently longer lived.
+1 again ... our mutt has had zero health problems. The corgi has had numerous (mostly because he's a klutz) including a torn ACL which set us back a bundle to fix.



Oh and another thing ... if you want a dog, any dog, to be a good protector, make sure they are a solid part of the family. Don't just think you can get a dog, chain it up in the yard and it will "do its job" and protect the house. If it doesn't feel a part of "the pack" then its not going to do much to protect it.

hso
January 9, 2006, 10:37 AM
I donít think you are going to get this combination in the same dog. A dog that will actively protect your homestead is going to have to be bred and raised to be aggressive. This is especially true if you want the dog to protect your property outside your house, or protect your house when you are not home. A dog aggressive enough for protection is going to be too aggressive for kids pulling its tail, etc.

We may be in disagreement on a question of degree, but my personal experience with this contradicts this statement. We've had dogs that would alert, but let someone that they don't know try to enter the house without being introduced they've blocked them and raised hackels and bared teeth and backed the person off the porch. This from a Collie, a Lab and a Golden.

I do believe that a family dog with all the protective characteristics comes from the herding breeds.

Matt G
January 9, 2006, 10:44 AM
I'm afraid that I'm going to disappoint some of y'all, by finding that this is off-topic.

Sorry.

-Matt G.

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