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Growing up, I had two shetland sheepdogs. While they are gorgeous dogs, they are not best for a loud, rambunctious household with two little kids...

I still have my boy sheltie, but my girl has since passed on.

Now with two more little kids running around, im looking for a dog that can tolerate my rollercoaster of a household. I realize I need to put a lot of research into this next dog, because I dont want to end up with another poor match...

I have some preferences, but I would really appreciate some advice and insight on the dog breeds im looking into. I'm also definitely open to other dogs breeds, so please, feel free!

Ideally, I would like:

Minimal to low-shedding

Laid-back, able to tolerate loud noises and grabby hands.

Medium to large, and sturdy. My kids can be rough. (they know better with puppies though)

Intelligent, and eager to please. (I would love to do obedience, rally-o, and maybe agility with my new dog but I am a beginner with all three)

And this one is super important, it has to be super lovey and tolerate CUDDLES! :)


I also have the time for excessive grooming, if needed.


I was thinking of these breeds and researching them, but I would like some insight!

Standard poodle(Are poodle sensitive or anxious?), Miniature schnauzer, goldendoodle, Portuguese water dog(maybe way too active), Cavalier king charles spaniel(Is MVD as big of a deal as it's made out to be?), any other suggestions?

Thank you all in advance!
 

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I would start by teaching your kids some better manners and managing them better-ie separation from the new dog even as they age unless they're supervised and behaving appropriately. Kids are smart, they'll catch on that they have to be gentle or they don't get to play at all.

I'd say find a dog that suits the energy of the house first and foremost. If you want laid back, that's very different than super-fast-always which is common in agility. Any dog can enjoy agility and you'll still have fun, but set them up for success by having a household that matches the energy you want them to have normally. Likewise-intelligent means able to find your garbage can, chews out of boredom if not stimulated correctly, wonderful escape artist....which may not suit your house with children or activity level. All dogs can learn-train-ability is not the same as intelligence, an quiet often the two conflict. you have to convince the smarter dog WHY they should do what you want and not eat your shoes!

It may be worth looking at shelter dogs-that way, you already know their personality and how they get along with the kids beforehand! Mutts can compete in agility, too, so that's not an issue :) Best of all worlds.
 

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Maybe you can consider a lab. They tend to be super loving especially towards kids, but have the energy required from an agility dog. However, I don't know if they are a low shedder.
 

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Labs shed a lot.

I think a poodle sounds like a good option for you.
I figured they probably did. Poodle are also very loving. My grandmother had a poodle when I was little and it also made sure to check on me when I was outside playing to make sure I was okay when I fell.
 

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I would start by teaching your kids some better manners and managing them better-ie separation from the new dog even as they age unless they're supervised and behaving appropriately. Kids are smart, they'll catch on that they have to be gentle or they don't get to play at all.

I'd say find a dog that suits the energy of the house first and foremost. If you want laid back, that's very different than super-fast-always which is common in agility. Any dog can enjoy agility and you'll still have fun, but set them up for success by having a household that matches the energy you want them to have normally. Likewise-intelligent means able to find your garbage can, chews out of boredom if not stimulated correctly, wonderful escape artist....which may not suit your house with children or activity level. All dogs can learn-train-ability is not the same as intelligence, an quiet often the two conflict. you have to convince the smarter dog WHY they should do what you want and not eat your shoes!

It may be worth looking at shelter dogs-that way, you already know their personality and how they get along with the kids beforehand! Mutts can compete in agility, too, so that's not an issue :) Best of all worlds.
Thank you for the advice! My kids are better than they used to be, but they can still be grabby and in the dogs face without even realizing. They won't hurt the dog, but they could easily scare a shy or anxious one.

The only problem I have with shelter dogs is I don't know the parents of the dog, and if it's an adult dog, what if it had problems early on and is now terrified of something no one knows about until they are living with the dog.
The dog may seem great at first, but then you bring it home and it suddenly has all these different issues. :(
 

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The only problem I have with shelter dogs is I don't know the parents of the dog, and if it's an adult dog, what if it had problems early on and is now terrified of something no one knows about until they are living with the dog.
The dog may seem great at first, but then you bring it home and it suddenly has all these different issues. :(
If you find a good match through a rescue that places dogs in foster homes, you'll have a better chance at getting a stable, adaptable dog. Some of the most bomb-proof dogs I know are from shelters, rescues, and other less-than-ideal places.

That said, the right standard poodle would be a decent match. My girl would likely do well in a situation like yours; my boy would be overwhelmed. I'm not too familiar with the other breeds you mentioned. I looked into Porties, but hesitated due to lack of confidence in my training skills and ability to provide enough physical and mental exercise. Most folks here would advise anyone to be extra cautious when considering mixed breeds.

If you decide to get a dog from a breeder, I'd strongly advise finding a responsible breeder who can identify a good fit for your home.
 

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Thank you for the advice! My kids are better than they used to be, but they can still be grabby and in the dogs face without even realizing. They won't hurt the dog, but they could easily scare a shy or anxious one.

The only problem I have with shelter dogs is I don't know the parents of the dog, and if it's an adult dog, what if it had problems early on and is now terrified of something no one knows about until they are living with the dog.
The dog may seem great at first, but then you bring it home and it suddenly has all these different issues. :(
Find a rescue that does fostering. They'll be very upfront with any issues they've seen and can help you choose better-someone is living with that dog, they aren't just kenneled all day, so you get a more accurate picture.

It is easy for socialization to be lacking, but rescues tend to pick up dogs with great social skills as well. if there's only one issue that's mild, you might be able to work on it with that dog (vs a puppy where you'd have to work on socialization/prevention/etc anyways!). One thing is way less work than all of it!
 

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Growing up, I had two shetland sheepdogs. While they are gorgeous dogs, they are not best for a loud, rambunctious household with two little kids...

I still have my boy sheltie, but my girl has since passed on.

Now with two more little kids running around, im looking for a dog that can tolerate my rollercoaster of a household. I realize I need to put a lot of research into this next dog, because I dont want to end up with another poor match...

I have some preferences, but I would really appreciate some advice and insight on the dog breeds im looking into. I'm also definitely open to other dogs breeds, so please, feel free!

Ideally, I would like:

Minimal to low-shedding

Laid-back, able to tolerate loud noises and grabby hands.

Medium to large, and sturdy. My kids can be rough. (they know better with puppies though)

Intelligent, and eager to please. (I would love to do obedience, rally-o, and maybe agility with my new dog but I am a beginner with all three)

And this one is super important, it has to be super lovey and tolerate CUDDLES! :)


I also have the time for excessive grooming, if needed.


I was thinking of these breeds and researching them, but I would like some insight!

Standard poodle(Are poodle sensitive or anxious?), Miniature schnauzer, goldendoodle, Portuguese water dog(maybe way too active), Cavalier king charles spaniel(Is MVD as big of a deal as it's made out to be?), any other suggestions?

Thank you all in advance!
What worked for me is involving the whole family in dog-training. Turns out, kids are natural dog trainers and the teaching comes easy for kids. Enjoy your dogs and kids.
 

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Standard poodles are awesome awesome dogs. I think they would totally fit what you're looking for. I've found they're great middle of the road dogs - active and up for a good time, but with a good off switch and don't need crazy amounts of exercise.

I find goldendoodles to be super spazzy and high energy. I much prefer poodles or goldens but mixed together they are just all over the place. And their coats can be a hot mess to take care of (much harder than poodles).

I would avoid mini schnauzers. I grew up with them, and I love them, but IME they are not good with kids and do not like loud noises and chaotic households. I'm sure some do, but none of the ones I've met. Ours didn't bite or anything, but they would disappear any time kids showed up. They are also not that cuddly. Our males were fairly cuddly with my mom, but they were one person dogs and didn't really want anything to do with me and my dad. Our females were sweet but pretty aloof.

Cavaliers do have a ton of health issues and no breeder's lines are completely clear. I would steer away from them though they are super sweet.

What about the other spaniels? An English cocker or Welsh springer could be a good fit for you. IME they are great with kids, fun, happy dogs who enjoy training. They are not non-shedding, but as far as shedding breeds go they are minimal (mine shed way less than any of my friends' dogs, from GSD fur to short haired and everything in between). And they love to cuddle! My Welsh boy has to sleep pressed up against me every night unless it's too hot. The girls tend to be a bit less affectionate, and my female puppy is no lap dog, but she still loves hugs and cuddles and physical affection, she just prefers to sleep by your feet or on the other side of the couch. They are velcro dogs and will follow you from room to room. I also like that they are good family dogs who bond strongly with the whole family. I never liked how our schnauzers bonded so strongly with my mom and didn't give me the time of day sometimes, because I really loved dogs and wanted a buddy. Welshies might have a favorite in the household (I'm the favorite for both of ours), but they love all of their people and will snuggle with everybody in their family. They tend to be reserved with strangers until they are well known and an honorary family member. Like mine will greet guests enthusiastically, but then go lie down on the other side of the room and leave them alone. Except when my parents visit, or our best friend comes over, the dogs are all over them, lying on their laps the whole night, etc because those people are considered part of their family. They're very sweet dogs.
 
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