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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone. I am looking into getting a dog but am not sure what breed to get and am hoping that you will have some advice. :)
I need a dog that is good with children – especially young and loud ones. I also live in a town house and do not have a yard but I am very willing to go on long daily walks/runs.
I would like a larger dog breed. A good guard or watch dog would be preferred, but not the highest thing on the list. Any dog that looks reasonably intimidating will be okay. LOL
My family has allergies/sensitivities to dogs and while they are being treated, we need to limit the amount of allergens. Mainly sensitive to the hair and drool, so one that doesn’t shed or drool a lot would be preferable. Not necessarily “hypoallergenic” but low on the shed/drool scale.
Things I need in a breed:
  • No yard required
  • No small dogs
  • Good with children
  • Hairless/low shedding
  • Low drool
  • No major health concerns/very short lifespans
  • (possibly) guard or watch dog
Does anyone have any recommendations? If you do, could you list the reasons why you recommend that breed? Just trying to make a good choice here. :)
Thanks so much!
 

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Hello everyone. I am looking into getting a dog but am not sure what breed to get and am hoping that you will have some advice. :)
I need a dog that is good with children – especially young and loud ones. I also live in a town house and do not have a yard but I am very willing to go on long daily walks/runs.
I would like a larger dog breed. A good guard or watch dog would be preferred, but not the highest thing on the list. Any dog that looks reasonably intimidating will be okay. LOL
My family has allergies/sensitivities to dogs and while they are being treated, we need to limit the amount of allergens. Mainly sensitive to the hair and drool, so one that doesn’t shed or drool a lot would be preferable. Not necessarily “hypoallergenic” but low on the shed/drool scale.
Things I need in a breed:
  • No yard required
  • No small dogs
  • Good with children
  • Hairless/low shedding
  • Low drool
  • No major health concerns/very short lifespans
  • (possibly) guard or watch dog
Does anyone have any recommendations? If you do, could you list the reasons why you recommend that breed? Just trying to make a good choice here. :)
Thanks so much!
Hi. Welcome to the forum.

Without a garden, one long walk a day won't be enough. Walking the dog isn't just about exercise - it gives the dog an opportunity to toilet, and you can't expect the dog to hold their toilet indefinitely. If you can't commit to that, then a dog is not for you at this time.

Good that you said "not necessarily hypoallerengenic" because there's no such thing. All dogs shed.

What do you have against small dogs?

What's in it for the dog?

How long is the dog likely to be left alone per day/week?
How much exercise and mental stimulation will it get?
What exactly does "Good with kids" mean? And are you also willing to teach the kids to respect the dog's boundaries? I'm not kidding - there's a reason kids are statistically more likely to be bitten than adults, and that's because they can't or won't respect the dog's warnings, and the adults often cannot see the dog's signals that it's uncomfortable, leaving the dog to take matters into its own paws. My own niece has been bitten twice by two differen dogs for that reason. Luckily both dogs have great bite inhibition.
In addition, how old are the kids in question?
There will be more, but my own dogs need their morning walk so I've got to go.
 

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I'm going to add about the guard dog aspect. If you want a dog that alerts you to strange noises, fine. But what if you need emergency personnel to come help you with a medical emergency or fire. Do you really want a dog who's going to slow them down or potentially injure someone there to help you?

If you're worried about your property or safety, install a good security system, and sure, have a dog as a deterrent, but know that it's far better to have a mellow dog who's going to let someone in if you need it, than a dog who might attack an intruder but also potentially someone who's supposed to be there.

A guard dog is not a pet, so by definition is not going to be good with kids.

Also, I suggest this to a lot of people in your situation.

For the next month, act like you have an adult dog. Get up an hour earlier than normal, take an hour long walk. Do the same in the evening after work - and come straight home from work; no shopping, gym, socialising (which should be easier than normal right now, but be aware this will be the new normal). Do this every day, without fail, regardless of the weather.

Be aware that winter is coming and remind yourself every morning that for several months of the year you will be doing it in the cold and dark.

Also put away what you think a dog will cost for food, insurance, vet bill excesses, toys etc, then add 10% because we always underestimate these things.

That will give you a good insight into some of the commitment you will need to make.
 

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Hello everyone. I am looking into getting a dog but am not sure what breed to get and am hoping that you will have some advice. :)
I need a dog that is good with children – especially young and loud ones. I also live in a town house and do not have a yard but I am very willing to go on long daily walks/runs.
I would like a larger dog breed. A good guard or watch dog would be preferred, but not the highest thing on the list. Any dog that looks reasonably intimidating will be okay. LOL
My family has allergies/sensitivities to dogs and while they are being treated, we need to limit the amount of allergens. Mainly sensitive to the hair and drool, so one that doesn’t shed or drool a lot would be preferable. Not necessarily “hypoallergenic” but low on the shed/drool scale.
Things I need in a breed:
  • No yard required
  • No small dogs
  • Good with children
  • Hairless/low shedding
  • Low drool
  • No major health concerns/very short lifespans
  • (possibly) guard or watch dog
Does anyone have any recommendations? If you do, could you list the reasons why you recommend that breed? Just trying to make a good choice here. :)
Thanks so much!
You are looking for a Perfect Dog and that doesn't exist.
No dog is going to be healthy with only a long walk each day; dogs need more than that unless they are very small, and you say you don't want a small dog. No dog large enough to be "intimidating" will have enough exercise with no yard and only a walk.

No dog breed is "good with small children". This is something that is not determined by breed, but by training and proper conditioning, no matter what breed or mix it is.

There are very few hairless breeds. I don't think you would want a hairless dog like the Xoloitzcuintli, as it would not fit other criteria you have.

"low drooling" ...well, there are some breeds who drool more than others, but even a labrador, which is not known for drooling, can end up being a drooler depending on the their mouth is formed.

I don't think you really want a guard dog. What Joanne said about this is very pertinent here. A guard dog is not something that an average person can train, and if you have a fully trained dog it will cost a lot to have it trained to guard effectively. I mean, thousands of dollars for that kind of training. If you just encourage a large breed dog to bark when someone is coming, that is one thing. Encouraging actual guarding behavior is very dangerous. Especially for the dog, who may be killed if they bite someone.

I suggest you stop looking for the Perfect breed and start considering what you can offer to a dog in your present situation, instead of what you want from a dog, and think about what breed or mix of dog would be able to adjust well to your life and what you can do for the dog to keep the dog happy and healthy. A dog is not there just to meet your needs. You have to meet their needs first. To me it doesn't sound as if a large breed dog would be right for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
LMMB, thank you.
Oh yes, I definitely realize that. There is a small communal yard right in front of our house where the dog could go to the bathroom, but it is very small and right by the road with no fence so it is not suitable for running around free.

I don't have anything against small dogs per say, I just prefer larger or medium sized ones.

The dog will never be left alone. I'm home almost all the time and if I'm not then someone else is. Benefits to a large family, lol.
our life is pretty laid back and we do have quite a bit of free time that could be devoted to exercising/giving the dog mental stimulation. It depends on its needs.

When i say good with kids, I mean that it isn't going to be bothered by having kids making noise around it, touching it, etc. I would certainly teach the kids to respect the boundaries and teach them what they can and cannot do, but kids are loud and excitable and I need a dog that is tolerant of that. The youngest kid is almost three and then there is a five year old. The rest are old enough to be responsible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm going to add about the guard dog aspect. If you want a dog that alerts you to strange noises, fine. But what if you need emergency personnel to come help you with a medical emergency or fire. Do you really want a dog who's going to slow them down or potentially injure someone there to help you?

If you're worried about your property or safety, install a good security system, and sure, have a dog as a deterrent, but know that it's far better to have a mellow dog who's going to let someone in if you need it, than a dog who might attack an intruder but also potentially someone who's supposed to be there.

A guard dog is not a pet, so by definition is not going to be good with kids.

Also, I suggest this to a lot of people in your situation.

For the next month, act like you have an adult dog. Get up an hour earlier than normal, take an hour long walk. Do the same in the evening after work - and come straight home from work; no shopping, gym, socialising (which should be easier than normal right now, but be aware this will be the new normal). Do this every day, without fail, regardless of the weather.

Be aware that winter is coming and remind yourself every morning that for several months of the year you will be doing it in the cold and dark.

Also put away what you think a dog will cost for food, insurance, vet bill excesses, toys etc, then add 10% because we always underestimate these things.

That will give you a good insight into some of the commitment you will need to make.
You made a lot of good points that I hadn't thought of. :) Thank you!
 

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When i say good with kids, I mean that it isn't going to be bothered by having kids making noise around it, touching it, etc. I would certainly teach the kids to respect the boundaries and teach them what they can and cannot do, but kids are loud and excitable and I need a dog that is tolerant of that. The youngest kid is almost three and then there is a five year old. The rest are old enough to be responsible.
None of this is something you can expect with any dog, no matter what breed or type or mix. Some dogs are more sensitive than others, and no matter what breed or mix you get, the dog may not do well with loud noises, sudden movements, and so on. Even the most generally relaxed family-type dogs like golden retrievers are individuals and if you get a puppy you won't know what kind of personality traits that dog may develop. A puppy who seems outgoiong and confident can grow up to be a reactive and fearful dog.

Good that you plan to teach good boundaries with the kids...that is of course a big part of the whole thing. but no dog can be relied upon to be 100% patient all the time with children, so with the littlest ones supervision is always a good idea.

I really think you would do best to go through a rescue, and get an adult dog. I hope you will consider this. Don't think for a moment that all dogs in rescue are problem dogs, because that's the farthest thing from the truth. Getting an adult dog is the only way that you can be reasonably assured that the dog will have the personality traits that you need.

A puppy is always going to be an unknown, no matter what. some are little terrors for the first two years, resembling sharks more than dogs. Others are mellow, but all puppies will be bitey until they learn not to. And, of course will require a lot of training. If you get an adult dog that has been in a foster home, the foster person can tell you what the dog is like, the dog may have been thoroughly tested with children in that home, and so on. You won't have the house training to do, and you will know what you are getting into with that dog.

As for what kind of dog, I am thinking maybe you might like a standard poodle? They don't shed much, are smart, and are often not allergenic for people. You would, however, either have to learn to groom the dog yourself and be able to dedicate time to that, or else you would need to have $75 to $150 to spend every 4 to 8 weeks to keep the dog groomed.
 

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There are quite a few medium to large low shedding dogs: Standard Poodle, Irish Water Spaniel, Portuguese Water Dog, etc. Dogs with with a hunting background will have a big bark, but they should not be aggressive if properly bred and socialized. All of these dogs were bred to be working or hunting dogs, so all will be medium to high energy. They won't be happy lying around being fluffy. This is especially true when they are young. It is quite likely they will playfully chase, playfully catch, and playfully knock down a small running child. They will do it in the most loving way possible. Therefore, for the first 18 months or so you will need to train children and puppy how to behave. You will also need to find ways for the dog to burn off both mental and physical energy. A potty trip outside and then back into the house won't be enough, at least not if you value your shoes, furniture, and woodwork.

Whatever breed you choose, I'd suggest that you choose a breeder who performs the recommended health tests for the breed and posts the results on ofa.org. I'd also recommend buying from a breeder that performs temperament testing such as Volhard testing and matches the puppies to the buyers by temperament.

Someone will undoubtedly try to direct you to a labradoodle or golden doodle. The logic will be: "Everyone knows Labs and Goldens are great with kids. Everyone knows poodles are hypoallergenic. Mate the two and you will get the perfect dog!" It's too good to be true, and don't believe it. You might indeed get lucky find the perfect dog. (Especially if you find a breeder who does both the health and temperament testing I suggested above.) On the other hand, you might get the dander, cancer predisposition, and wildness of an ill-bred Golden mixed with the intelligence, prey drive, and auto-immune disorders of an ill-bred poodle, all rolled into one nervous separation anxiety prone package.
 
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