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We are new on this forum and would appreciate your advice and assistance in finding a dog breed that would be suitable for our lifestyle, but most importantly that the dog will be comfortable with.
We are a family of four, two 50-year-old parents and two early 20s daughters. We are active and like walking but not athletes. We live in a spacious first-floor maisonette having a good-sized private roof measuring 75 square meters and surrounded by a 5 feet high wall and two large balconies. Parents work full time, eight hours daily Monday to Friday, and weekends off. Daughters go to university but are at home from time to time during the day.
It is planned that after getting our puppy home, for the first six months, someone will always be at home, while we will start professional behaviour training (professional dog classes will continue after the dog reach adult age), socialisation and crate training. After six months (when the puppy is around nine months old), the most that the dog will be left at home alone (weekdays) will be a maximum of five hours straight.
With regards to walk/exercise, at 6.30 am the dog will be taken for a one-hour walk and another one-hour evening walk at around 6 pm. A few minutes every day will be spent at our (artificial turfed) private roof for exercises and playtime. The rest of the evening, the dog will be with all the family.
Every Saturday, we will spend time at a dog park or at a well-fenced large private grass field where the dog will be given time for sprint runs (after being trained recall and walking off-leash). Sundays we will go for long walks in the countryside. An important point to mention is that we never lived with a dog and do not have dog experience. However, we are committed and we have read and researched a lot about different dog breeds, however, still need to learn much more. Apart from taking care, grooming and looking after the dog's health, our main goal is to come up with a plan to start early training for anxiety separation issues.
Another point to note is that we live in a Mediterranean country in Europe where the climate is mild. Hot summer weather May till October; Mild weather November; Wintertime (could be quite cold but no snow) December till February; March and April are good mild weather.
So our preference as a first dog would be a medium-size male dog with low shedding and with the least barking tendencies.
We have been researching for a dog breed for these last couple of years and after looking at each and every breed, our choice is between five dog breeds. These are (by order of preference) Basenji; German Pinscher; Whippets; and Bordoodle (Border Collie x Poodle Mix); Shiba Inu.
Will any of these dog breeds be a good choice for people like us who work and have no dog experience? Do you think that we will be a good family with our type of lifestyle as described above, to own any of the above dog breeds?
 

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I'd say forget the border collie poodle mix - that coat could be an absolute nightmare. And a collie or collie mix needs stimulation so leaving him for several hours daily would be an issue. Without a job, collies go self employed and that probably means redesigning your home with their teeth.

The whippet might fit your lifestyle, they are all hunting breeds but whippet might be a little less extreme.

As well as the look of a dog, it is really importantly to consider its temperament. When we are asked about behaviour and training, I think there are three main reasons why a dog doesn't do as we ask - he doesn't understand; the reward or motivation to do what we are asking doesn't outweigh the thrill of what he is already doing (and if that is hunting, you could have a challenge); or you are working against a breed trait that has been fine tuned through hundreds of years of selective breeding (again with hunters, possibly setting yourselves up for a difficult time ahead). So if you want a dog that is responsive to your cues, these might not be the easiest of breeds - unless you plan to train to hunt of course!
 

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I totally agree with Joanne to forget about the Border collie and Poodle mix. Expect from a horrible coat you’ll probably end up with a dog that have numerous of mentality issues. These breeds are designer-breeds which often means that the only thing the breeder cares about is money rather than health and mentality.

What’s also important to consider is; why a mixed breed? What do you want to accomplish? Why not a purebred bc or poodle instead? Because when choosing a mix breed you play russian rolette regarding which traits and characteristics you’ll get so you need to be prepared for anything. And lastly the Border Collie doesn’t suit your lifestyle anyhow.

However it sounds like you’re able to offer an amazing life, now you just need to find the perfect breed. The breeds you’ve mentioned are very different, what is it with each and every breed you like? What traits and characteristics do you want?

Both the Basenji and Shiba Inu can be quite difficult dogs. Very independent and have traits that differ from a lot of dogs.
 

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I'm not against doodles at all. I personally have a Yorkipoo and purebred toy poodle (comes home in june). my dad has a Newfypoo. we had large dogs growing up then I just went small with a tiny toy poodle and fell in love. His newfypoo is great. Doesn't drool like a purebred or shed as much. Almost anything poodle mixed are a lot of maintenance with grroming. we had purebred newfoundlands, labs, etc growing up. I've noticed on a lot of forums you'll get the "stay away from doodles" thing, I just don't personally agree with it. I think they're amazing dogs, if you're looking for a mix. what I would honestly look for in your situation would be a more of a retriever or retriever cross. An easily trainable breed. Labradors, weimerheimer, and german short hair pointers are all great dogs and what honestly come to mind with your expectations.
 

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Sorry, I jumped the gun a bit. lol. I read wrong in the post wrong. I read someone's comment as don't do a doodle. I do agree that I wouldn't necessarily think a poodle crossed with border collie would be a good mix. I just don't think that mix would blend well and collies can be rather difficult. I'm on a poodle page where they're all greatly against all poodle mixes, so I mixed up forums. apologies.
 

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I'm not against doodles at all. I personally have a Yorkipoo and purebred toy poodle (comes home in june). my dad has a Newfypoo. we had large dogs growing up then I just went small with a tiny toy poodle and fell in love. His newfypoo is great. Doesn't drool like a purebred or shed as much. Almost anything poodle mixed are a lot of maintenance with grroming. we had purebred newfoundlands, labs, etc growing up. I've noticed on a lot of forums you'll get the "stay away from doodles" thing, I just don't personally agree with it. I think they're amazing dogs, if you're looking for a mix. what I would honestly look for in your situation would be a more of a retriever or retriever cross. An easily trainable breed. Labradors, weimerheimer, and german short hair pointers are all great dogs and what honestly come to mind with your expectations.
What is the reason for mixing every thinkable breed with poodle? What is it that you want to accomplish?

I once asked this question to a “breeder” that mixed poodle and Bernese mountain dog and the answer I got was “we want to get as far with this combination as the labradoodle”. I found that to be a terrible answer and asked once again but then was left on read. These dogs were sold for over 3000 $ each. Probably without the correct health tests or preparatory work.

The thing is that there’s almost never a good reason for mixing these breeds. It have become popular and they are so called “designer breeds”. If you mix in poodle with anything it gets popular but the consequences of this irresponsible breeding is undeniable. You can sell them very expensive which means people breed for money and not for the dogs well being.
 

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You’re clearly very against mixed breeds. I’m not going to argue and can’t speak on what everyone thinks. My dad has always owned purebred Newfoundland’s and now he owns a newfypoo. He switched bc his wife isn’t fond of high shed or drool. So he decided a newfypoo bc he wanted the mix of traits. His dog hardly sheds and the drooling isn’t an issue so they both got what they wanted. I personally think that it’s great people have the options. I do think that it’s crucial that you love the traits of both breeds. Meaning I wouldn’t own a herding poodle mix....like an Aussie doodle. Mainly bc I’m not a fan of herding dog traits. There’s a lot of people who don’t research prior to buying and I think that’s when they get into trouble. I just personally don’t find purebreds superior or a better choice. Now, I don’t breed or show and our dogs have always just been family. In our area the designer dogs aren’t any more or less than purebreds. Almost all dogs run about the same as far as pricing. So it just depends what someone wants. I just won’t own anything but toy poodles or poodle mixes bc they’re what fit into to our family the best. It’s kind of like adopting or buying, most time people just prefer one over the other.
 

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You’re clearly very against mixed breeds. I’m not going to argue and can’t speak on what everyone thinks. My dad has always owned purebred Newfoundland’s and now he owns a newfypoo. He switched bc his wife isn’t fond of high shed or drool. So he decided a newfypoo bc he wanted the mix of traits. His dog hardly sheds and the drooling isn’t an issue so they both got what they wanted. I personally think that it’s great people have the options. I do think that it’s crucial that you love the traits of both breeds. Meaning I wouldn’t own a herding poodle mix....like an Aussie doodle. Mainly bc I’m not a fan of herding dog traits. There’s a lot of people who don’t research prior to buying and I think that’s when they get into trouble. I just personally don’t find purebreds superior or a better choice. Now, I don’t breed or show and our dogs have always just been family. In our area the designer dogs aren’t any more or less than purebreds. Almost all dogs run about the same as far as pricing. So it just depends what someone wants. I just won’t own anything but toy poodles or poodle mixes bc they’re what fit into to our family the best. It’s kind of like adopting or buying, most time people just prefer one over the other.
I’m not per say against mixed breeds. I’ve had many mixed breeds in my care and I’ve absolutely adored them. But what I’m against however is irresponsible breeding. The reason behind this kind of breeding is because it’s trendy, makes a lot of money and is “fun”. Which are reasons that never favors the dog.

What is the reason for mixing every single breed with poodle except that it’s trendy? Why not get a purebred poodle if that’s what you like? Try to find a good reputable breeder that follows all the correct steps and breeds for a good purpose. I’m sure you won’t find many..

That being said I’m not totally against mixed breeding if it’s done right and with a good purpose. For instance mixing different hunting breeds is pretty common. But I’m fine with that because they breed for function and purpose.

Since this thread isn’t about this I think we should leave it at that.
 

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The breeder I got my pure bred tiny poodle from switched to poodle mixes. she loved the fact that it brought new possibilities to people with medical conditions, allergies etc. my mom has copd so she couldn't handle shedding dogs anymore. she can't visit my brother home, he has a smaller dog and she cant even be in the house due to the shedding even though it's minor. she does great around my pups though. She doesn't have a pet right now due to being stage 4 with not much time left but being able to visit our pups makes her day. So I do think some breeders have other reasons. However, you can have irresponsible breeders with any breed, purebred or mixed.
 

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Thanks Joanne, back on topic pls. Is the German Pinscher really a difficult breed for a first-time dog owner? What makes the German Pinscher an impossible breed for a newbie?
 

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Honestly, of the breeds you suggested I'd still lean towards the whippet as being less demanding for a new owner.
 

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Thanks Joanne, back on topic pls. Is the German Pinscher really a difficult breed for a first-time dog owner? What makes the German Pinscher an impossible breed for a newbie?
I wouldn’t say that it’s an impossible breed to own for a beginner but they might be more difficult than other breeds. They are Intelligent, inventive and nimble thinkers that won’t always do as told, so they can be quite a challenge! Due to this they will also come up with their own way to keep busy if their need for exercise and mental stimulation isn’t met. Things that end up not usually being that desirable to the owner. They are trainable but if you wish for a dog that will have total discipline and obedience this isn’t the right breed. So it takes a combination on being strict, understanding and have quite a bit of humor when raising a pinscher.

They’re a breed that require a good deal of mental stimulation. Reading your description you don’t mention that you will offer any particular mental stimulation. They need some sort of occupation to keep them happy and satisfied. So because of that I’m a bit concerned about it being a suitable breed.

The instinct to guard can vary between individuals but they all have it and they’re reserved to strangers. Because of this they need to be correctly socialized when they’re puppies. There’s also some issues with bad breeding and bad mentality, so that’s another thing to be aware of.

Because of them being quite sharp, quick to perceive and to react and also being naturally reserved to strangers, a badly bred/or badly brought up dog could turn into an issue.

However, I’m still curios about this: The breeds you’ve mentioned are very different, what is it with each and every breed you like? What traits and characteristics do you want?
 

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Choosing a dog can be a challenge, more so for senior citizens. There are many factors for seniors to consider when choosing a pet: lifestyle, living space, allergies, grandchildren, and financial responsibilities. Some pet owners want a dog for long walks, others might want a dog to sit on their lap while watching television. Many large dog breeds need more exercise than smaller-sized dogs.
Whatever the situation, there is a dog for everyone. We’ve listed the top 8 factors for choosing the perfect companion. Lifestyle. A large or active dog might not be the right choice for a senior citizen. Different dog breeds have different requirements for activity. Seniors should keep their activity level in mind when choosing a dog breed. For example, a Yorkshire Terrier usually gets enough exercise from a daily walk. Dalmatians, on the other hand, are extremely energetic and needs daily runs. Allergies. Many mixed-breed dogs, such as Labradoodle and Cockapoo, provide dog owners with companionship without needing to reach for the tissues. It’s important to keep allergies in mind when choosing a dog breed. Re-homing a dog due to allergies can be heartbreaking for owners. Age. While adorable, puppies demand a level of care and training that an older dog doesn’t. If a dog owner considers adopting a puppy, they must consider the time and energy it will take for care and training. On the other hand, a low-key older dog might require expensive visits to the veterinarian for medical issues. Size. A small dog, like a Bichon Frise might be perfect for an older senior citizen living in a small home. Larger dogs need more space and might feel cramped in a tiny living space. Will the dog need a yard? Is the dog content with a small play area? Potential dog owners should consider their living space before choosing a dog. Temperament and noise. Quiet dogs make good neighbors. Seniors living in a small condo with thin walls and many neighbors might consider a dog breed that doesn’t bark excessively. Breeds like Shiba Inu and Basset Hounds tend to not bark much. Breeds like Chihuahua and Terriers are known for barking. However, no two dogs are alike. Some dogs with excessive barking issues might simply need additional training or care. Living Facilites. Seniors living in an assisted living facility or small apartment should check with their landlord/management before choosing a pet. Many facilities have rules regarding pets, such as size. Financial responsibilities. Raising a puppy can cost upwards of $2000-3000 a year according to AKC.org. That can be a large price tag for seniors living on a fixed income. It’s important to consider all financial responsibilities when choosing a pet, including the cost of grooming, pet sitters, boarding, medical care, medical insurance, food, and toys.
The grandchildren. Seniors with grandchildren might consider dog breeds that are kid friendly. Gentle, affectionate dogs make great companions for both seniors and children. Shih Tzu and Miniature Schnauzer are two breeds known for being devoted and patient with owners of all ages. When choosing a dog, there are many factors to consider.
Good Luck
 
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