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  1. #1
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    Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Since we were talking about cats, I figured I'd bring dogs into the mix.

    During my previous career, I would do 'Breed Consultations' for perspective puppy buyers. There's nothing more heart breaking than realizing that you've chosen the wrong breed (or even worse, NOT realizing it), and being miserable with your dog.

    Although I previously charged for it, I'll do it for free for you guys here . Here's a few questions to answer, and I'll give you my opinion of breeds that would best suit you. Also give me the breed that you currently like, and I'll do my best (with the limited info I can get from here) to tell you if it's a good match for you!

    1) Do you want a small ( >20lbs), medium (20 > 45lbs) or large breed (45lbs< )?

    2) Do you like grooming?

    3) How active are you on a regular basis (weekday would be best - weekends are misleading)?

    4) Would you want to take the dog with you where ever you go?

    5) What is your #1 reason for wanting a dog?

    6) Are there children in your household? Please include ages.

    7) Will the dog be exposed to many people on a regular basis?

    8) What other experiences have you had with dogs (ownership)? What about the other members of your household?

    9) Are you prepared for the expense of having a dog? The first year of a puppy's life is the most expensive.

    10) Are there other animals in the household?

    11) What are some things that you DON'T like about other people's dogs?

    12) Are you ready to commit time and effort to finding the dog?

    13) Have you ever trained a puppy or a full grown dog before?

    14) Are there specific activities you'd like to have your dog involved in? (frisbee, fly ball, hiking, swimming, etc.)

    15) Where would the dog live? In the house? Apartment? Only in the yard?

    Happy Puppy Searching

    ------------------


    [This message has been edited by digits71 (edited 11-16-2001).]

  2. #2
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Ok, it's storytime kids.

    You've heard the phrase, 'A boy and his dog'... Well, that was me and my English Springer Spaniel named Gwendolyn.

    There's 2 things you need to know about springers: 1. They love water more than life itself. 2. They make great hunting dogs.

    Well, she's 1 for 2. Turns out the owner before us committed suicide in front of her with a gun. I think we had the only gun shy hunting dog on the planet. She was so afraid of them, that the click of a camera freaked her out. She'd be under the bed from the sound of thunder. And don't get me started about Fourth of July fireworks...

    And to say that she loved water, is an understatement. I grew up near the NY State Barge Canal. She doesn't run away from us and is very well behaved, so it was save. We were walking her along the canal and let her off her leash.

    She be-lined into the water.

    Swam half way across, and then came back.

    We had an above-ground pool in our backyard. Before we had a deck built, we had a latter that was one of those that could be removed. Just your standard latter, not attatched to the pool in anyway (but made for pools). My sister was still very young, so to prevent from her climbing up, falling in and drowing, the ladder had a feature where the steps could be pushed up. That way, the bottom rung was above her head.

    Gwen is running around the backyard and I'm talking to my mother. We look and see Gwen jump up, put her front paws on the bottom rung, pull the thing down, climb up, and DIVE into the pool.

    We were speechless.

    When we finally got her out of the pool, we still couldn't believe it. It was absolutely hillarious.

    Sigh. She's no longer with us. We got her when I was in 3rd or 4th grade, and when I was away at college, my parents had her put to sleep. She was old, blind, deaf, and getting cancer. I still miss her. We've had other dogs since (and while she was alive), but they've never been like Gwen. No dog since her has slept at the foot of my bed when I was sick, or sit under my chair while we ate dinner.

    I don't know what kind of dog I'll have in the future, but I don't think I could ever own another Springer. Too many memories. Rest in peace, Gwen.

    ------------------
    "I can see my house from here!"
    Jordan Gottlieb
    Qualitech Solutions, Inc.
    jgottlieb@qualitechsolutions.com
    Jordan Gottlieb
    Senior Consultant, Orasi Software
    Twitter: @JG_QA

  3. #3
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Awww

    My best friend had Springers too. They are 'high personality' dogs. They can be 20 lbs overweight, but still sucker you in with those "but I'm STARVING!" eyes.

    Getting a new dog after losing an old one is different for everyone. Some people go out and get a new dog the same day! The house is just too empty for them to endure. Some go years before getting another dog. Some people stay with the same breed their entire lives, some change with each new dog.

    Personally, I like getting a second dog when the older one starts to slow down. The older one helps to train the younger one, and the younger one livens up the older one. It still makes me smile when I see my current dog begging with the same look as my old dog did. She's been gone for 8 years now, but my dog learnt some of her best stuff from my old dog. I can still see my old dog in her .

    Whatever you chose to do is right for you .

    Just so you know, I used to know a Labrador Retriever that came from hunting lines that was a horrible hunting dog. He was gun shy and would run off for hours when he heard a shot. When he did bother to return, he'd eat the empty shells. Brass, rubber and all! After 3 major surgeries to get them out of his stomach (they would have killed him if we tried to let them pass through) - they decided to get a new hunting dog and retired him to 'pet of the house' status.

    ------------------

    Keep the following in mind: For all of the hurt you feel when you lose a pet, would you give up all of the happiness they gave you over their lifetime to save you the pain of losing them? Food for thought.

    [This message has been edited by digits71 (edited 10-24-2001).]

  4. #4
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Yeah... she had those eyes...

    And she was a sucker for popcorn. She'd do anything for it...

    ------------------
    "I can see my house from here!"
    Jordan Gottlieb
    Qualitech Solutions, Inc.
    jgottlieb@qualitechsolutions.com
    Jordan Gottlieb
    Senior Consultant, Orasi Software
    Twitter: @JG_QA

  5. #5
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    It's nice though isn't it? That even years after she's gone, she still brings a smile to your face?

    It's that happiness that makes me know that I'll never be without a dog. The sadness of losing them pales in comparison to all of the wonderful memories and laughter they bring to my life.

    ------------------

    So you all know - the same applies to ANY pet. I've known people with iguanas, ferrets, birds, cats, snakes, hedgehogs, rats, horses - you name it, they ALL make us happy in their own special way. I didn't want anyone to think that I only thought that dogs are the only animal that could generate this amount of love.

    [This message has been edited by digits71 (edited 10-24-2001).]

  6. #6
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Okay, first off, I am hoping to get a dog in 1 to 2 years after I move to a more suitable house and don't have the hour commute to work anymore.... SO if you are offering why not take you up on it!!

    1.) Do you want a small ( >20lbs), medium (20 > 45lbs) or large breed (45lbs< )?
    Small or small-medium

    2) Do you like grooming? No, want something that does not shed much and is not a poodle either.

    3) How active are you on a regular basis (weekday would be best - weekends are misleading)? Could go for a 30-60 minute walk/jog with the dog daily.

    4) Would you want to take the dog with you where ever you go? Sometimes.

    5) What is your #1 reason for wanting a dog?
    Cuddle factor!

    6) Are their children in your household? Please include ages. NO children/none planned

    7) Will the dog be exposed to many people on a regular basis? Not really, however, will see lots of people at the park.

    8) What other experiences have you had with dogs (ownership)? What about the other members of your household?
    Raised Great Danes and Golden Retreivers for 5 years.

    9) Are you prepared for the expense of having a dog? The first year of a puppy's life is the most expensive.

    I think they range up there with a baby right!

    10) Are their other animals in the household?
    2 cavies (guinea pigs) They don't like to cuddle as one might think.

    11) What are some things that you DON'T like about other people's dogs? Ones that bark all the time or are missed behaved.


    12) Are you ready to commit time and effort to finding the dog? I would commit the time!


    13) Have you ever trained a puppy or a full grown dog before?
    I don't remember training our dogs specifically. The only bad habit I remember was one was a crotch sniffer.

    14) Are there specific activities you'd like to have your dog involved in? (frisbee, fly ball, hiking, swimming, etc.)

    Hiking and camping.

    15) Where would the dog live? In the house? Apartment? Only in the yard?

    Inside the house with a yard.

    16) additional comments!
    Should mention husband is more of a cat person.

    Kimberly

    ------------------

  7. #7
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    When getting ready to start looking for a dog last year, I bought some books, went through a "choose the right dog" program on the Purina web site, etc. I had decided a sight hound (greyhound, whippet, pharaoh hound, etc.) would probably be the best fit for me, so I started checking some of the local animal shelters.

    None of the shelters had much to choose from in sight hounds, but the lady at one orphange introduced me to Noggin, who's an Australian cattle dog mix. She said he was a really sweet dog, and the only reason she could think of why he hadn't been adopted yet was his "unique" appearance - he doesn't look like any particular breed: he has Aussie coloration on the face and chest, black/brown brindling over the rest, a lean body covered in short hair, and a fairly broad head (possibly pit bull heritage?).

    Well we hit it off great, I came back a couple days later to take him to his new home, and it's worked out great. He gets along well with people (though he's a bit shy around small children), is generally laid back when indoors, likes to take walks with me, and would dearly love to get hold of my neighbors' cats. So in the end, I went mostly with emotion when I chose him, but the animal behavorist the orphanage consults with agreed he'd be a good fit for me and my life style, and he was right!

    Here are a couple photos: http://members.verizon.net/~vze2694s/noggin.html (note: his eyes are light brown, that's camera flash "green-eye").

    ------------------
    Charles Reace

    charles{DOT}reace{AT}verizon{DOT}net
    web site | [url=http://www.ebookworm.us/[/url]

    [i]...Sound trumpets! Every trumpet in the host! / Sixty thousand, on these words, sound, so high the mountains sound, and the valleys resound.&lt;/i] (The Song of Roland)

  8. #8
    Advanced Member tonymro's Avatar
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Well Digi, I already know the perfect dog breed for my family and my horses. Australian Shepherds, which btw are not from Oz, and are not to be confused with Dingos, Blue Healers, or Australian Cattle Dogs. We've had 2 Aussies, our beloved old Bree who passed away 4 years ago, and our current Jasper (the J-dog), who was born on the day Bree died.

    Like Bree, J-dog is fanatical about his horses. Both dogs love their horses as much as their people. Feeding time is exciting if for no other reason than to steal apples and carrots from the horses, or to hoover up any extraneous oats and corn that falls from their mouths.

    The slightest indication that we are going to saddle up for a ride leads to a frenzy of whining and wiggling. While the horses are tied to the hitching post as we groom and prepare them for the ride, J-dog is a gray blur as he orbits the horses at warp speed, stopping only to snack on the gunk that results from using a hoof pick.

    Jasper settles down once we actually are on horseback and the riding has begun. He likes to take up a position between the 2 horses when my wife and I ride. And though he occassionally runs under the horses, he has never been stepped on or kicked.

    One of Jasper's best friends is the farrier who shoes our horses. J-dog would gladly eat his weight in horse hoof trimmings. I worry that one day, Jasper will get his nose too close the the farrier's rasp while scrounging for hoof treats.

    Since both dogs were blue merle (grey, white, black, and brown), we've gotten used to having grey hairs on our clothes and on the seats of our cars and trucks. In fact, we specifically buy vehicles with grey interiors to match the dog's hair.

    Yup, the perfect dog for me is my Aussie...

    ------------------
    Tony Mrozinski
    Sr. Software Test Automation Engineer
    Sr. Software Test Automation Architect

  9. #9
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Hiya Kim!

    Well it sounds as if a dog would be lucky to arrive in your home . Here are 5 breeds that may suit your life style. If there is anything that you don't like about any of them, please let me know and I'll adjust as needed. You'll notice that I didn't ask about the 'look' of the dog. The reason being is that I want to get you into the group and personality that will match you first, and then work our way down from there.

    In alphabetical order:

    A) Basenji - http://www.petnet.com.au/dogs/D107.html

    B) Boston Terrier - http://www.petnet.com.au/dogs/D190.html

    C) Cavalier King Charles Spaniel - http://www.petnet.com.au/dogs/D119.html

    D) Pug - http://www.petnet.com.au/dogs/D162.html

    E) Shiba Inu - http://www.akc.org/breeds/recbreeds/shibainu.cfm (QA Girl will be happy about this one - she has one!)

    Of course there are others that would fit the bill, but these 5 will give me an idea of what you like and what you don't. Feel free to give me more info (like the look, hate it, want bigger, smaller, more outgoing, more laid back, etc.) once you've had the chance to look at them!

    ------------------


    [This message has been edited by digits71 (edited 10-24-2001).]

  10. #10
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    Re: Dogs...how do you know it\'s the right one for you?

    Well Charles and Tony - I have to say that you've both found a good match. I currently have an Australian Cattle Dog, Bridget. She's a real sweetheart that has adopted me as 'her one and only person'. She's 11 now and lives with my parents, but I'm still the only one she'll do tricks for and cry for.

    Charles, I can see why they said maybe some pit bull in your little guy. He has a wonderful expression and I've known MANY sweet pits. With the Aussie mixed in, I'm sure he's a bottomless pit of love and adoration for you and your family.

    Tony, with horses, you know that Aussies are a winner. They love their horses as if they are their own pack members. And the energy that they get to spend with you while you ride must be great.

    -------

    Please know that there is something to be said for adult dogs / mutts / SPCA and Humane Societies.

    Mutts can often be the BEST dogs on the face of this planet. Because of their mixed heritage, they are often much healthier dogs. You don't often see the eye, hip, ear, skin, temperament problems that you see in purebreds. Because they're mixed, the extremes are limited so you'll often get a well tempered, balanced dog. Not that I'm against purebreds, but there's always a risk when you choose from a smaller gene pool.

    Humane Societies, SPCA's and Rescue Organizations often have wonderful dogs, all looking for wonderful homes. Adult dogs are often already trained, over their "terrible two's" stage and settle in very easily. If you have time for a dog, but not a puppy (you'll need to be home every 2 - 3 hours for house breaking, play sessions, etc.), go to your shelter and pick up an adult dog. The training they already have is free! Most of them are already neutered or spayed, so that's included too! They're a real bargain Perfect for you and with all of the ‘options’ already included!!

    Puppies can be wonderful, but they're a lot of work. They'll be adults in a year anyway, so be honest with your self and your time - an adult dog may be perfect for you and waiting at your local shelter for you right now!

    ------------------

 

 
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