Welcoming a furry family member is bound to make your life more exciting, full of cuddles, and bring joy into your home! Having a dog is actually proven to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and boost heart health. If you decide to bring a dog home, there is no question it will improve your life! But, it can be a nerve-wracking life change. There is much to learn and prepare before your canine companion joins your clan.
Choosing which breed is best for your life and family is often the first step after you decide that you are getting a new dog. Considering there are 190 of them, it can be daunting, but don’t worry! Not only are dogs adaptable, but they are all highly unique. You can never be sure exactly what your dog will be like, but there are factors from breed to breed and based on your own life that can be used to inform your decision.
Taking the time to choose a breed will help you and your new dog in the long run. If you don’t consider the breed’s characteristics and your lifestyle, you may run into more issues when your dog comes home. Let’s discuss how you can discern what breed is best for you.
Consider Your Lifestyle
If you have decided to make the leap to becoming a dog owner, you are probably excited to welcome a canine companion into your heart and home. The first part of deciding what breed is a great fit is looking at your lifestyle.
Are you a homebody? A 9-5 worker? A parent to children? An active outdoors lover? Any or all of the above? Let’s discuss how your daily life can influence your decision on what breed will be a great fit.
Your activity level – Dogs require adequate daily exercise and activity to be happy and healthy. Still, different breeds have varying needs depending on their energy level and physicality. Some breeds will be content with minimal regular activity, while others will need extensive exercise to be satisfied. Whether you love a long hike or prefer a few short daily walks, use that to inform your decision. Whatever breed you choose should fit into your ability to be active with them according to their needs!
Past experience with dogs – Certain breeds are more high maintenance. They might need extra training, attention, or knowledge to be cared for. If you’re a first-time dog owner, you may want a low-maintenance breed to make the transition easier for you and your pup.
Other pets – Bringing home a new pup can disrupt life for any pets you already have at home. You might want to welcome a breed open to fellow canine companionship.
Space – Look at your living space and envision a dog entering it. If you live in a high-rise 1-bedroom, an 85-pound dog might not be best for you. But, if you have a fenced-in backyard and adequate space – it could be a perfect fit!
Climate – Some dogs will do well in hot places, but others are better suited for cold climates. Different breeds have developed features to fight off hot and cold temperatures over time. Consider the weather of your area and whether the breed you choose will be able to acclimate. A Husky with thick fur meant for arctic temperatures might be uncomfortable in the sunshine state!
Schedule – Work from home? Out of the house from 9-5 every day? Consider whether your dog will be alone for long periods of time or always with you. Certain breeds handle separation better, but some are prone to anxiety. If your schedule is constantly changing, choosing an adaptable breed is essential.
Characteristics of Different Breeds
There are many considerations to remember when deciding what dog breed is right for you, your home, your family, and your lifestyle. Your preferences and accommodations all play into which breed you should ultimately home. Alongside thinking about your daily life and home, you should look into the traits of the breed you’re thinking about.
Size – Wherever you live, you have to think about how a dog will fit into the spacial dynamics of your home. Some dogs simply require more space as they are bigger. A large breed will likely do best with a yard and adequate indoor space to sprawl out. If you live in a small space, consider small dogs.
Energy Level – Some breeds are known for being high-energy and very boisterous! This can be exciting and fun – but if you cannot meet their activity needs, it can cause problems. Behavioral issues may arise if a high-energy dog is not being exercised enough. Most-active breeds will require more of your time and dedication to remain happy, healthy, and tuckered-out. If you want a companion that is constantly ready for adventure – these breeds might be for you!
Temperament – Many dogs are known to be great with families, new people, and change. Some are less sociable and more reactive. Take into account your life and home – and how many new people your dog might be interacting with – when deciding on a breed. Certain dogs have a reputation for being easy-going and calm. These breeds might be the best fit if you want an exceptionally friendly pooch!
Grooming Care – Allergies, your furniture, and grooming maintenance are all impacted by the type of coat the dog you choose has. There are hypoallergenic dogs that don’t shed, but many dogs require frequent grooming and are guaranteed to leave fur around your home. If a dog’s shedding doesn’t bother you, there are many lovable breeds for you. But, if you prefer a dog with a low-maintenance coat, you might want to consider a hypoallergenic breed.
Although all these things can help you make the right decision, the choice is ultimately yours. Considering the traits of the breed as well as your home and daily life will ensure you and your new family member are content and happy!
Selecting The Right Breed | littlepawsvet.com
Secrets to Picking The Right Dog Breed | caninejournal.com
What Dog Is Right For Me? How To Choose The Right Dog Breed | akc.org