So you want a dog?
Your family has a personality and so do dogs. When you make the decision to get a dog, you need to do your homework. You need to consider how that dog will fit into your family.
Most dogs are now an extension of our family and just like your family you need to decide what is best for you and your situation.
- If you are single and living in an apartment or small space, there is a dog breed for you.
- If you have a small family that is very active, there is a dog breed for you.
- If your kids can be a little rough around the edges, there is a dog breed for you.
- If you are older and not so active anymore, there is a dog breed for you.
- If you live in a wide open space such as a farm, there is a dog breed for you.
- If your dog will be left alone for periods of time (while you are at work), there is a dog breed for you.
With the wide array and activity levels of dog breeds, you can pick the best dog breeds for your families.
Choosing a new member of your family should not be taken lightly. Do not give into the urge to take that cute little puppy before considering the things I have written above. Puppies will grow into adult dogs!
Let’s discuss the life commitment you will be making in adopting a dog, what are the best dog breeds for families, and what can be the best small dog breed if you choose that.
Consider your Commitment!
Before buying or adopting a dog, just ask yourself some basic questions:
- Why do you want a dog?
- Very many people fail to ask this question before getting a dog. Just because your children are begging for one or your friends have one is not always the best reason to own a dog. Some breeds can live up to 15-18 years and this is a long term life commitment.
- Do you have time to care for dog?
- Dogs are pack animals and you will be part of their pack. They need daily attention and exercise. You will be their source of food and love.
- Can you afford the expenses that come with dog ownership?
- Dogs like humans require medical assistance from time to time. If you go out of town and can not take your companion, then you will bear the expense of boarding and veterinary expenses.
- Does your living situation allow for a dog?
- The dog’s size should be relative to the space you are living in. The smaller the space, the smaller the dog should be.
- Do you have access to parks for your dog’s daily exercise?
- Your dog like you will require daily exercise to stay healthy and will need time to bond with their owner.
- Are you ready to deal with the issues that might come up with owning a dog?
- Vet bills, damaged furniture, a dog that likes to escape, or time to properly train your dog of any behavioral issues; these are just a few of issues that you as an owner might be dealing with.
- Do you have small children?
- Small children typically do not know how to treat a dog gently. This is very important when choosing a breed that is durable and has the temperament that will happily deal with your small child.
- Are you ready to be a responsible owner and care for the dog as long as he/she lives?
- With the over population of dogs and cats today, getting your dog neutered/spayed is the responsible thing to do.
- Following all town and city rules around dog ownership such as lease laws will need to be followed.
- Regular health checkups are required to keep a healthy dog.
- This is a lifetime commitment for your dog. Many good dogs end up in shelters because the owner was not ready for this commitment.
So as you can see, this is not a decision to be taken lightly, but thoughtfully and realistically.
The Best Dog Breeds for Families
When picking a dog for your family, pick one that will fit in and will be able to withstand the pressures of family living.
Below are just a few examples of great breeds for your family:
The bulldog is like the Timex watch, it can take a licking and keep on ticking. This breed is a compact tough dog that can get up to 50 pounds.
This dog can take the active child while they themselves are not that active. They can be suited for a small or large space and be happy.
This is one of the most popular family breeds. The beagle can be very sturdy around the active child and put up with a lot of rough-housing.
This dog will be slightly more maintenance with brushing and cleaning as they are always into something. The beagle can make good nannies for your child as they will wear you child out before they get tired.
This dog likes to bark, so be aware.
When I think of the collie, I think of Lassie from the television show. Collies are very good family pets as they always want to be around their humans.
They are a very loyal and smart breed, which makes them easy to train. This breed’s purpose in life is to please their owner.
This is probably the most popular dog for families. The Labrador is a very smart breed and as such is a top pick for training as a service dog.
Labradors love to please their humans, being playful, protective, loving, and reliable. There’s nothing that a Lab loves more than to show off by learning a new trick, even if they manage to learn that new trick before you’ve taught it to them.
If you want to rescue a dog from a shelter, this can be the best pick for you. Most mix breeds are very loyal and smart. You will have an array to pick from, both small, medium, or large.
Best Small Dog Breed
When selecting a dog or breed, just remember that the smaller dog can be more active and may require more attention by you or your children. These dogs are usually more suited for the smaller living spaces.
Below are a few some of the best small dog breeds:
This is my personal choice as I have one of these dogs. If you have children, these dogs are better introduced as puppies into our family.
The Pom is very loyal and highly intelligent. This dog can be very loud through barking and is required to teach them when the appropriate time is to bark.
This breed is loyal and affectionate to adults. This may not be the dog if you have small children as they tend to nip at them is they are bothered.
This dog comes with a lot of attitude and that is always on display.
Jack Russell Terrier
This dog is a very active dog and like to jump and run. This is not the dog for you if you want a dog that likes to just lounge around and be petted.
The jack is a very happy breed, but they require more attention than most small breed dogs.
Do you want a dog that does not shed? This could be the breed for you and they are good to have around if you suffer from allergies.
This is a family friendly dog, but they are a companion dog meaning they do not like to be left alone.
This is another great family dog and will bond easily with your children. They will protect their territory.
This dog is very active and like to munch on your furniture or other household items. This is why you should provide them with plenty of chew toys.
This dog requires little to no grooming, but remember to keep valuable items out of their chewing reach.
What are my Options? Adopt or not?
Should you adopt or not?
Today there are many dogs in shelters that need a new and everlasting home.
I am an advocate of adopting or rescuing a dog.
Just be sure you know what is the right fit for your family!
Getting a dog is a lifetime commitment for you and your dog. If you properly consider what type and size of breed will fit into your family, then you can make the right choice and enjoy your new pet as much as they will enjoy you.
I hope you enjoyed this article and have found it helpful in picking your new family member.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave those below and I will get back to you ASAP.