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Hello,

My wife and I are just about at the point of adding a puppy to our family. First, of course, we need to be out of the condo we are living in and into a new home with a large yard, but these are things we are starting to consider. I have always had a dog growing up and I miss having one. That said, I am seeking a dog that is friendly but does not necessarily look friendly. What I mean is that I want a good watch dog but not one prone to attacks or aggressiveness. One who looks meaner than he or she is I guess. I also need one who is good with children and relatively easy to train. A few I have looked at are an Australian SHepherd (I know they do not look mean at all, but I used to have one), a Canaan Dog, Samoyed, and (and this is a dark horse candidate) a Czechoslovakian Wolfdog. I love German Shepherd, but one tried to maul my mother one time so I would never get her to come to visit if I had one.

Thanks
ben
 

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Pretty much any large (40# and over) dog will deter anyone thinking about messing with you. All dogs have teeth and I think that is what most people who are wary of dogs are wary of. Darker colored dogs are also more discriminated against when it comes to people judging “friendliness”. The breeds you mentioned are somewhat similar in features (prick ears, larger than 40 pounds, etc) but their individual breed traits are vastly different.

Firstly, if you are getting homeowners insurance, figure out what breeds may be banned or not covered. Dobermans, Rottweilers, Huskies, Pit Bulls, and other “fierce looking” breeds are regularly banned.

Ask yourself how much time and commitment can you devote to this dog? Dogs need structured walks, play time, training time, etc. How much time can you devote to a new dog as far as exercise? Most bigger working breeds require hours of exercise a day to be happy and not destructive.

Keep in mind that pretty much any dog will protect their owners if they are adequately taken care of and loved. Not many criminals will mess with a dog, despite the way it looks, because all dogs have teeth and can cause a lot of potential damage.

My suggestion is to rescue a young dog, maybe a year old. There are plenty of dogs that match your description there. Is there a reason you want a puppy versus an adult dog? A puppy is the work of a young adult x10.
 

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Like Nil said, you must first consider how much time and energy you have to devote to a puppy. All dogs are going to require regular exercise -not just a romp in the yard-, training, companionship, etc, but some more than others.
You also have to consider that most dogs with an intimidating appearance won't be covered by most insurance companies. Some places won't allow you if you have those sorts of dogs. They don't care about the dog as an individual, just the way it looks.

check out some shelters/rescues. You'll probably be able to find just what you're looking for.
 
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