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Hi, it's me again. I'm still yet to have my first pet dog. I've been thinking about what type of dog breed I should buy/adopt from a breeder/humane shelter. Here are my ideas,

cardigan welsh corgi, shetland sheepdog, smooth coated collie, long-haired whippet, labrador retriever, schipperke, australian sheepdog,

I'm a 49 year old couch potato that is five feet(and one inch) tall.

Would any of them love water, and the beach? And apartment life?
 

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Of the ones listed, the Long-haired Whippet (or a Windsprite, which is quite similar) might be the best option, along with a Schipperke. Cardies can be tough little dogs (the were originally bred to herd cattle, after all), and pretty high energy. Shelites tend to be very... um... vocal, which isn't always a good idea in an apartment, and require a surprising amount of mental and physical activity. Collies, Labs, and Aussies would probably need more physical exercise than you would be happy providing, since you describe yourself as a couch potato.

If you can find one these days, an off the track Greyhound is frequently a good apartment dog, requiring a lot less exercise than you'd think.
 
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On average - there are always exceptions - a corgi or sheltie would be problematic, particularly for an apartment, because of yappiness, and corgis are pretty tough minded. Aussies and Labs (particularly young Labs) are high energy dogs.

Since I'm contemplating a puppy myself, I've been cruising other sites and dog forums, and I see a lot of people moaning the work of raising a puppy. Someone who knows they're a couch potato would be well advised to give precedence to adopting a quiet, easygoing adult, and even then you've got to accept an apartment dog means you have to be up and out, rain, snow, cold or heat, several times a day. A rescue group that lets you foster to adopt would be a good idea since dogs can change a lot between shelter environment and a home.
 

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I agree, the whippet/windsprite/silken windhound would be my top choice here! Many of the other breeds listed are lovely, but absolutely demand higher than average activity and engagement, especially in the early years (I can't speak to the Schipperke - no personal experience). And the sheltie barking behavior is absolutely true and a big concern in apartment life. I also think that finding a settled, mature dog - not necessarily a senior but one who's well past the puppy and adolescent nonsense - is a great option for a first-time dog owner who's lower energy themselves and living in an apartment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Would an adult dog or a senior dog be better as a first time dog, than a puppy? dachshund, schipperke, windsprite, silken windhound, which one of these are the most likely to be a calm and quiet dog? What are the differences between a windsprite and a silken windhound? Are there photos of both breeds on this site? I also wanted to say that would these dogs have a double coat to protect them against harsh hot and/or cold temperatures?
 

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That depends on what you're looking for. Most puppies are not calm or quiet. A puppy will need to be potty trained, crate/home alone trained, leash trained, basically everything to do with living in a human household (although a really excellent breeder will be doing some work to give you a head start). You'll be doing late-night potty breaks at minimum, though some puppies take time to learn how to settle at night so that might not be the only sleep you lose. They will need careful management or they will pee on/chew on things - an especially big consideration when you're renting. They can't be left alone as long because they need many, many more potty breaks than an adult, even if they're confined and/or sleeping. They'll also need a lot of outings for socialization purposes, where they're exposed to the sights, sounds, smells, etc. of the world in a neutral to positive way so they learn that everyday things aren't scary and that strange people and dogs can exist in the same space as they are without needing to be interacted with.

Basically, they demands a LOT of time and energy their first few months, and then just when you think you've got things figured out you're hit with adolescence, where it seems like half of what they've learned falls out of their heads and they start pushing boundaries as the world becomes more interesting to them while they feel less dependent on you. And even with all that, you're never quite sure with an 8 week old puppy what kind of adult they'll turn out to be. Yes, training, socialization, and breeding all play a role in this, but every pup is an individual and life throws us curveballs - like the hunting line dachshund my in-laws had who, despite her breeding and my FiL's considerable experience training their previous tracking dachshunds, couldn't follow a trail to save her life and was the laziest animal I've ever met. With a pup you kind of have to go in with an open mind that way.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to scare you off! There's nothing quite like raising a puppy, and there's lots of wonderful moments in there (or nobody would ever want to do it!). You get to know (almost) your dog's entire history, everything they've been through, and - if you go to a good breeder - their genetic history as well. You also get the maximum time possible with them in your life. But it's good to be realistic going in, especially with your first - it's always more work and more stress than you think it'll be.

With an adult dog, especially one living in a home setting already (a private rehome, for example, or a rescue living in a foster home, or a dog the breeder held back as a show prospect who didn't quite make the cut, etc.), you can get an immediate picture of what that dog's adult personality is like and how it'll fit into your life. Many (not all) older dogs are already housebroken, have some basic manners training, know how leashes work, and are more comfortable being left home alone. All of them, unless there's a medical condition involved, have full physical control of their bladder and bowels and therefore can hold it longer and don't need as many potty breaks (including those late night ones). They are in general not as demanding of your time and energy as a puppy or adolescent (although they do still need attention, exercise, and mental stimulation of course).

But adult dogs can take a longer time to settle into a new home, and if they have any bad habits it can be harder to address because they've had longer to practice them. In the case of rescue/rehome situations, most of the time genetic history and even parts of the dog's personal history may be completely unknown. You might not even be able to determine their exact age. This isn't the case if you can find a breeder rehoming one of their dogs (didn't work out as a show/breeding prospect, was returned by a previous puppy buyer, retired breeder), but there's far fewer of these dogs available than adoptable adults in rescue situations.

So it's up to you: if you want to be involved in your dog's life from go, to have that puppy experience (for better and for worse), to be able to find a dog you know is from excellent breeding with health tested lines from carefully selected parents who are great examples of their breed, you'll probably want a puppy. If you feel like you want the companionship an adult dog can offer but aren't sure if the demands of puppy raising is right for you or your situation right now, then you might want to lean more towards an adult dogs - although that may mean selecting an individual based on how well they fit your life rather than their specific breed.
 

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You can find a lot of information on breeds - and photos - with internet research. You can find the website of the breed's national club with info. You can find contact info of breeders and talk to them. Take it all with a grain of salt, but if you read/talk to enough sources, a consensus about the breed will emerge.
 

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Honestly, an adult with a known personality is frequently a better option than a puppy (says the person getting her first baby puppy in 21 years...).

Dachshunds tend to be tough, active little dogs. Most of the ones I've known were also quite vocal.

Long Haired Whippets and Windsprites were originally bred from Whippet x Shetland Sheepdog crosses (my understanding is that all AKC registration for long coated Whippets was pulled when it was proven that they were mixes). Silken Windhounds were originally bred from Borzoi crossed with other sighthounds and lurchers, including LHW/Windsprites.
 
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All but the whippet you have listed would probably not be great matches for you, based on their activity level. They will likely require more exercise and stimulation than you can provide.

I second the idea of first fostering a dog to see how you like it, and how much activity and stimulation you can actually deal with. Pretty much all dogs, even lower activity dogs, are going to need a few brief potty breaks a day, plus at least one walk. Even low activity dogs need exercise! Because you live in an apartment, it will be necessary for you to get up and go with the dog for each of these potty breaks!
 
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