By Cory Warren
Published: 11/07/2019, edited: 05/18/2022
By Robert Cabral
Professional Dog Trainer and Behavior Expert
I’m always fascinated when I talk to people about their dogs and why they picked a particular breed. More often than not, the answer is they were attracted to the way the dog looks — and that may not be the best reason.
Are you active or laid back?
Do you love to exercise or prefer lying on the couch watching Netflix?
Are you at work all day, do you work from home, or do you travel for business?
Do you live in a small apartment, on a farm, or someplace in-between?
These are important points to consider. Remember, the dog you adopt now will likely be with you the next 10 to 15 years.
1. Drive – The amount of energy dogs have
2. Size – How big they are and how much room they need
3. Personality – How they get along with other dogs and other animals
These three traits can help you determine which dog breed is best for you and your family. For example:
If you’re a person who lives on open land and doesn’t have many other animals around, you’re lucky. You can choose almost any dog and have a good life. The rest of us have to make some choices.
If you live in an apartment in the city this usually limits the choice of dogs to ones that can live well in a smaller space with intermittent walks and have a moderately easy-going personality around other dogs and people.
People who want a hiking partner and can dedicate time to frequent walks, training and stimulation like training classes and such are better served by high drive dogs like Aussies, Border Collies, and Shepherds.
If you’re just looking for a good pal that will hang out with you, but still be up for a casual stroll, I like Golden Retrievers, Labradors, Dachshunds, and Miniature Poodles.
Some people just want a couch potato to serve as a confidant and best bud, who is happy with a few short walks, and a car ride to the coffee shop every once in a while. If that’s the case, you’re probably best served by an English Bull Dog, Frenchie, Bichon, Maltese and such.
Remember, too, that while a dog’s breed can, as a general rule, be an indicator of a dog’s overall personality, there are always exceptions. There are dogs in every breed that are outliers. These dogs are the exceptions, but they exist.
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