Doggie advice please!


Hi everyone,

OH and I have been tentatively considering getting a family dog, but we can't agree on breed, size etc.

Having never owned a dog before, we need lots of advice from all you doggie experts out there.

I am unsure about the committment for a number of reasons;
a) we have a cat
b) I'm very house proud
c) don't like doggie smells or cleaning up dog poo

I do think it would be great fun though, and the boys would love a new addition to the family.

Also, we are in fantastic dog walking territory with the pinewoods and beach on our doorstep.

I love King Charles Spaniels, my parents had one and he was so affectionate and tolerant of the kids.

OH thinks they're too ponsy!

He likes Border Collies. I do too but think they're too much work for a beginner, a big large and lively.

I also love Boxers, but would probably avoid one for the same reasons.

Someone did put on a link to a website where you do a quiz to find your perfect breed; it gave both of us a poodle!!!

Anyway, enough waffle.
Any advice greatly accepted; things to consider are
Buffy the cat
3 boys (6, 12, 14)
Desire to keep house reasonably intact


Hi Jude,

I used to have a Border Collie. They are lovely dogs, however, they are sheep dogs and not the best with children. They often nip at the ankles as they try to round them up:eek: They can also be a little highly strung.

I have had an Alsation/Lab cross he was really lovely but was quite large.

My current pooch is a Lab/Gt. Dane cross and is so soppy. I thinks Labs make wonderful family pets but they do have a tendancy to wood chew in the early days.

I have a cat and apart from a couple of days of spitting at the puppy they adore each other now.

I have always tended to go for cross breeds rather than pedigrees as sometimes pedigrees have more health problems. Just a personal choice though.

Owning a dog is a whole different ball game to cat ownership but can be very rewarding and great fun.

I've always had a dog and have experience of various breeds. For me, one of the factors was avoiding dogs that moulted loads of hair. I can't bear dog hair everywhere - you see it when people who own labradors wear fleeces covered in golden hair!

Also, I had to have a dog that was not too big and was 'people friendly' - especially with kids. A dog's temperament is largely to do with its upbringing but there are also genetic 'traits' in certain breeds. Some are more 'manic' than others too and require loads of stimulation or they go stir crazy and get destructive. Some also need loads more exercise than others.

Border collies are lovely but are one of those breeds that need masses of stimulation: they're very intelligent (hence you see them a lot in obedience / agility competitions).

The dog we own at the moment is a cross breed: her mum was a cavalier king charles spaniel and her dad was a miniature German schnauzer. She possesses the traits of both breeds and is the best dog I've ever had.

I'd recommend you check out Miniature German Schnauzers if your OH thinks CKC spaniels are poncy. Schanuzers don't shed hair and are medium sized. They are fabulous little family dogs and are cute to look at too.
Here's a link to info about them (and other breeds too)
Schnauzer Miniature

Keep us posted on what you decide! :)
My OH is 6ft 4! and we own a yorkie!! LOL they do look funny walking down the road!
That said our yorkie is fab! he is great with kids even other peoples, doesn't molt, doesn't smell! No dog will smell if you bath them often enough! My house certainly doesn't smell doggy although I do know what you mean as I have friends whose house stinks! and when we go there we all do too! He has his own dog flap! so lets himself for picking up poo! thats DH's job!!! After all it was me that changed pooey nappies on all our kids he only did 1 ever!
I've only ever had yorkie's even as a child so not sure what breed to recommend...sorry.
But what about having a look in the local dogs home to get some ideas.

As RD says the downside of a Lab is the hair, bracken is black and I have to do the floors every day. Luka was LabAlsation but didn't moult.

I love Jack Russells but you do get a bad hair problem with them as the hairs are like little needles.

Blimey Sonkie - you must love long walks then!! Dalmations were bred to escort horse-drawn coaches and consequently run on Duracell!! :) (Beautiful dogs though ;) )
Thanks for all your replies, keep them coming, I'm loving doing the research!

OH just snapped at me "I never said I wanted a bloody dog!"

Anyway, ignoring him, just looked at the description of a labradoodle, seems ideal:)

Seems Border Collies aren't the best breed to have with kids.

Hi Jude

Well just to confuse you a bit more LOL - I currently have a border terrier, small cat size dog but with a BIG personality. She's got a lovely temperament, as do most Borders, very easy going, loves long walks but will happily do with a shorter one if time is of the essence. Quite independent, but still loves a cuddle, very friendly with children & very tolerant. Also very greedy, so have to watch what she eats & not too many treats, plus she'll steal food if given the opportunity, the plus side of this was as an independant, doesn't give a damn terrier, she was easy(ish) to train with food rewards. And although she's small, she's not a "ponsy" looking dog, so I don't think you're DH would mind too much. Regarding the cat, you should be alright as the dog is coming into the house whereas our Border wouldn't accept a cat now.

Best of luck & hope you do get a dog, I wouldn't be without one. My last dog was a lurcher cross, again a lovely tempered dog, but needed a lot of exercise, which doesn't fit into everyone's lifestyle.

You're doing the right thing by researching, there's so much info on the website, I found the Breed Profiles page on really good and worth a look. I get annoyed when people get a dog and then find it's totally unsuitable because they did no research on it whatsoever!

Best of luck with your search
Hi Jude

Nice to hear from you:D

Definitely don't get a Newfie!!!!! I love mine to bits but sweep up a puppy worth of fur every morning and evening and yes my house does smell a bit doggie cos they have an oily coat and they DROOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I USED to be houseproud!

My friend has a cavalier cross minature schnauzer, he's gorgeous and doesn't molt but he's quite bouncy and lively. As long as he's walked a couple of times a day though he's happy. He has been a bit of a chewer but is now a year and is getting better.

A poodle may not be such a terrible idea though, no moulting and various sizes to choose. Another friend has one (Supergran) she chose him cos she has asthma but is fine with poodle coats. He's lovely.

Defintely not a border collie, they definitely need to be kept busy; truly working dogs I reckon.

I'd like a cocker for the kids, they can't walk our Newfies cos they're too huge so I'd quite like to add to our zoo. They do shed their fur though.

Why not visit a dog re-homing centre You'll probably find that a dog will choose YOU, and he'll be so gorgeous you'll mould your house and lifestyle around him and will not mind the havoc he may cause!
My friend has a cavalier cross minature schnauzer, he's gorgeous and doesn't molt but he's quite bouncy and lively. As long as he's walked a couple of times a day though he's happy. He has been a bit of a chewer but is now a year and is getting better.

Hey Cheb ... that's the EXACT cross breed of my little Pepper!!
She's just turned 5 years old and still acts like a puppy - she's truly adorable!
She isn't mega active and definitely isn't a chewer: maybe they should 'invent' these two mixed as a new breed .. A Cavanauzer or something! :D
I've attached a pic - does this look like your friend's dog?


Oh - another breed to look at is a wheaten terrier ... not to huge, lovely looking and minimal moulting :)
I have 3 boys, a cat and a cavalier king charles spaniel (my avatar pc). My dog is still a puppy and very plyaful. Kids always want to pick him up though and he doesn't like it, although he is great with them.

He is terrified of the cat though. I've had him since July and he is still scared of her and she always torments him by sitting where he cant get to his food or to go out in the garden. My cat is a bully!

He's gorgeous though and we never get very far on walks without someone stopping to play with him which he loves) and he is very eager to please. Oh and he follows me all around the house all the time and hates being alone.

I don't know about any other dog so can only speak about the one I have, just thought I'd share my experiences with my lot as you mentioned the breed of my dog. I'm not a big dog lover but I love my little dog and ouldn't be without him now.
I got Pepper in Derbyshire when we lived up North (moved back home last year). What a coincidence though! I thought Pepper was a 'one off' but obviously cavaliers and schnauzers are attracted to each other! ;)

I've been tempted to let Pepper have pups but I'm worried it'll affect her temperament and stop her from acting like a puppy herself - bet she'd have cute ones though!
Hey, thanks for all your feedback:)
Cheb, long time no hear, good to see you!;)

I'm really excited about getting a dog now, spent most of last night on various websites researching labradoodles, and still love cavaliers.

But Rohan insists quite categorically that we are not getting a dog! What's all that about?

Feel like a child being denied sweets:(

Still, the research is fun and I can always get a dog to keep me company when I leave Rohan....;)

Keep your doggie tales coming!
It's a great distraction from food:eek: