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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would really appreciate an advice of the experienced dog lover... We can't decide which breed will be the best match to us. We are a large family, two working adults, one stay at home senior, two teenage girls and a 6 years old boy. This will be our first dog, although we do have a bit of training experience from long ago :)
We live in a four season climate, cold winters and warm summers, in a semi-rural area, on half an acre but it is only partially fenced so I guess the question if the breed tends to run away is an important one.
Ideally, it should be a medium sized dog (think lab size), some grooming is okay but minimal to no drooling. Realistically, we can provide half an hour walk in the morning, another half an hour at lunch, an hour of play and training in the afternoon and another 30-45 minute walk before bed. Weekends will be about the same, may be a bit more (depending on season and weather). I realize that it's not too much of fun so low to medium energy dog probably will be happier with us :)
Not sure if I want too much so any advice would be highly appreciated... Thank you!
 

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I have to be honest, you have a lifestyle that would fit many breeds, except for perhaps the highest energy dogs like Border Collies or overwhelmingly large or drooly breeds as you don't want them.

Do you want a puppy or adult dog? Is there something specific you want in a dog? Really you could also probably find a really good one just going to a shelter and talking to the counselors about the kind of dog you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your opinion.
We went to a dog show today and fell in love with cane corso. Been reading all afternoon but reviews and opinions are mixed. I understand that this is a large guard dog, not too active, fairly trainable and relatively low maintenance. However, some are saying that this breed is not for the inexperienced owners... Does anybody have first hand experience with cane corso as a first dog?
Thank you!!!
 

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Puppies vary a lot in how mouthy they are, our pup drew blood every day between 10 and about 16 weeks. She found many things overwhelming, us sitting for example, and would essentially have a tantrum. If you get a puppy it might be wise to think about how you'll keep kids and puppy separate to give them both a break.

I really recommend looking into your local rescue groups, they usually have puppies/dogs in foster and can match personality with your family. Beware back yard breeders, our pup came close to dying within 24 hrs and has cost us over 3000 dollars in vet bills. I wouldn't change her for the world but it would have been better for both of us to have gone through a rescue or reputable breeder.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Chas, we will find a breeder, a relative of ours had very unpleasant experience with BYB, so we are aware of that. I will learn more about rescues, maybe we can go that way as well. Thank you for the warning about mouthiness... Does it depend on a breed or just the pups's personality?
As for the kids and pup- kids are at school from 8.30 till 3.30 so I hope that's enough time for a break.
 

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It depends more on the puppy than breed I think. I suspect Echo was really ill and lacked energy most of her life so part of her mouthiness is probably due to lack of play with her siblings and a lack of exposure to different environments by the breeder. They were locked in a laundry until 7 weeks.

In terms of breaks, a long break is really good but puppies also need frequent short breaks I found an exercise pen really helpful. We don't have a yard though.
 

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Cane Corsos are large and do tend to drool, I think. Beyond that, they are a protective breed that probably isn't a great choice for a house where there are a lot of visitors. What is it that drew you to the breed at the show? Personally I wouldn't describe them as "not too active, fairly trainable and relatively low maintenance"- I see them more as a large, protective breed that requires a competent trainer willing to deal with some issues related to their guard-y nature as they grow up (things like not liking strangers, unfamiliar dogs, protectiveness of family and property, etc). Definitely not a dog I would want to take on if my goal was to have a fun, easy, family pet. I think they do tend to be more biddable than a lot of other mastiff-type dogs, but a dog being described as "trainable" doesn't automatically indicate an easy keeper. I think there does tend to be a lot of variability in how intense/protective/difficult they are based off of their lines and what they're being bred for (for example a confirmation/show breeder is going to be producing very different temperaments then someone breeding them primarily for bite sports).

From your initial post, it seemed like you were looking more for a relatively easy family pet of a breed who is unlikely to want to wander, who loves its people, is easy to train, isn't a breed known for having issues of protectiveness/reactivity, doesn't drool, and is medium or on the small end of large sized. This is definitely not how I would describe a Cane Corso.

It is also important to note that very few dogs will just naturally stay in their yards- usually you have to do some kind of training. That said, some dogs will be more likely to respond reliably to boundary training and recall training than others. I would recommend staying away from sighthound breeds (Greyhounds, Whippets, etc), as well as Northern breeds (Huskies and other spitz-type dogs), and scenthounds (Beagles, Coonhounds, etc) if off-leash reliability and being able to trust a dog in a not fully fenced yard is important to you.

The amount of exercise you're willing to do with a dog is good- half an hour walk in the morning, another half an hour at lunch, an hour of play and training in the afternoon and another 30-45 minute walk before bed is going to be OK for most breeds, and the fact that you have an outside area for them to run is good as well.

If you're not set on a purebred, I would HIGHLY recommend looking at near-bye shelters and rescues- they're definitely going to have dogs that fit what you're looking for.

Given there's a small child and a senior in the house and the fact you're wanting to start with a puppy I would avoid large and/or especially boisterous breeds (Bully breeds and their mixes, a lot of Mastiffs, GSDs, and Rotts tend to be very rough and can knock people down or just generally be too rough for a young child/senior) and breeds that like to use their mouths to control their people (Cattle Dogs, Shelties, Border Collies).

A Lab, Golden, or Rough or Smooth Collie sound like they'd be a good choice. There's a reason labs and goldens are so popular as family dogs, LOL.
 
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