How to pick the right dog |

How to pick the right dog

Nadine Lober

Some of you might be adopting or buying a new pet. This can be a personal decision. We sometimes choose the breed of dog that we were raised with at home because we are so used to it and attached to it. But there are many, various breeds to choose from and I will briefly give some scenarios that may help would-be pet owners pick their new best friend. You must consider your living arrangements and the members of your family. If you travel a lot then a cat or maybe two cats – who can entertain each other – might be a better choice. Get these cats at a younger age so they can grow up together. If the pet is for an older person, then you may consider a smaller breed of dog that doesn’t require as much exercise, like a Maltese, shih tzu or pug. If a member of the household is allergic to dogs, a non-shedding dog – such as bichon frise or poodle – is appropriate. There are, however, products for the dog and house to free your dog and environment of allergens. These products are useful when an allergic individual wants a certain breed or already has a dog and does not want to get rid of it. If you have kids than you should choose a breed that is well known for their passiveness with children. These breeds include golden retrievers and labs, among other breeds. Some breeds are known to be more aggressive around small children: Dalmatians, some akitas and some cocker spaniels, for instance. But most dogs, if raised correctly, will be kind around kids. If some form of aggression is observed, owners should be cautious because the next time might be more dangerous. If the dog bites the child, no matter what instigated this behavior, then the dog must be removed from the child’s environment or worked with professionally. If you travel and want to take your dog with you, then a smaller lap breed would work out great, like Yorkies, Maltese and others. But if you live in the mountains and want a companion to enjoy the outdoor activities, than a larger breed with hair is a good choice. This breeds include huskies, labs, goldens and malamutes, among others. If you live in a place like Florida, then a malamute would not be too happy, so choose accordingly for the well being of your dog.Some of you are looking for sports dogs for hunting, sledding or other activities. In England, hounds are popular for hunting. Here, in our neck of the woods, labs and spaniels are very popular. When it comes to hunting, training and dependable blood lines become very important. Buyers should research a dog’s ancestors, particularly its parents. And training should start the day a new puppy is brought home vital to ensure it becomes a well-mannered dog.Dr. Nadine Lober can be reached at 949-7972.Vail, Colorado

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