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Choosing the right breed...

625 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  parus
Hi everyone,

My 6 year old son has been asking for a dog of his own, and I'm having some difficulty coming up with a suitable breed.

I live in a single family home with a decently sized, fenced back yard, with 6 foot tall wooden fences.

The biggest obstacle I face are the two dogs that live with us right now: my wife's 9 year old male Chihuahua, who weighs about 12 pounds -and is pretty easy going as far as Chihuahua's go- and a 7 year old male Lab/Terrier mix that was my mom's, he weighs about 22 pounds, and is a docile, sweet pup.

I'd like the new dog to meet the following criteria:

-pure breed, open to a mixed or cross breed
-medium to large in size
-good with children
-good jogging companion (for me)
-halfway decent guard dog
-low wanderlust, if at all possible
-young or young adult (so I can jog with him/her right away), but open to a puppy
-most importantly, one that won't kill both of the other dogs

I had my heart set on an Akita, a Rhodesian Ridgeback or a Black Mouth Cur (or all three!), my son loved those breeds as well, but they don't seem like good choices if I am to keep the Chihuahua alive. I've read that Chihuahas don't fare well with Hounds, large Terriers or Spitz-type dogs.

I also have two parrots, which I imagine would rule out most of the sporting group breeds as well?

So, indeed, this seems to be a tall order. Any guidance would be most appreciated.

My thanks in advance
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First of all - you might not be able to find a dog or breed that fits ALL of your requirements. You may have to decide which are priority.

Three dogs is a lot of work. How much time do you have to dedicate to individual training, exercise, etc? A larger breed will likely need more exercise than your other 2 combined (triple or quadruple that for a puppy). How responsible is your son for his age? He's only 6 - do you think he will stick with the long-term commitment of looking after a dog?

I would agree with the suggestion of either a lab or a golden. Or perhaps a Boxer might be a good fit. I would not recommend any of the breeds you listed, for a house with young children.

Keep in mind that if you get a puppy you will likely not be able to jog with him/her until she has fully grown (1+ years old).
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