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Choosing the Right Dog: Breed Selection Guide for a Happy Pet

Want to get a dog but don’t know which breed to choose? Making the right decision is very important: here are the best tips and advice to ensure a happy life for you and your pet.

Learn how to choose the ideal dog breed to suit your lifestyle and ensure a harmonious relationship with your furry friend. Explore factors like temperament, mixed breeds, and nutrition to make informed decisions for a happy and healthy canine companion.

Choosing the Right Dog. Getting a dog is an important choice: our four-legged friend will be part of the family for many years. Therefore, finding the right breed for us becomes essential to ensure a happy life for us and our beloved pets. Very often, we rely on aesthetics or are guided by impractical motives. These aspects, however, risk leading us to take in a dog that has very different needs from our own.

For example, some dogs need open spaces, constant walks and special attention, while others are better suited to living in flats or close contact with children and older people. A wrong context for Fido can also lead to problems for the owner. For this reason, it is essential to carefully consider the type of animal that will accompany us and be aware of their reciprocal needs.

So, how does one choose a dog? Let us assume that neither one size nor breed can be considered better than others. The ‘perfect’ dog for us is the one we choose based on the space available, our lifestyle, the family environment in which we live and the individual characteristics of the animal itself.

Choosing a dog: how the breed affects us

There is no right or wrong way to find a new dog. The important thing is to see the right dog for your lifestyle. Whether you want to adopt or turn to a breeder, you should find the dog most compatible with your life and home.

A first mistake is to opt for a breed based solely on aesthetic characteristics. For example, some prefer the elegance of Greyhounds, some prefer the size of the Rottweiler, some prefer the soft ears of the Beagle, and some like the tenderness of the Labrador. However, in addition to these external aspects, each type has other well-defined characteristics, which inevitably influence Fido’s actual needs.
An example? Labradors are sweet and good-natured but at the same time energetic and lively. These attitudes, therefore, make them suitable for young couples, whereas they might be more challenging for older people.

The same applies to dogs selected to perform certain activities (e.g. sledge dogs): they struggle to adapt to urban environments and require longer walks, dynamic activities and greater strength when holding the leash.

In MIXED BREEDS, what prevails in physical appearance also prevails in behaviour.

And again, the Dalmatian is a dog accustomed by nature to travelling tens of kilometres. Forcing him into a domestic life characterised by short walks and idleness can lead him to develop behavioural problems. The Rottweiler, on the other hand, is ideal for guarding and defence but may be suspicious (and sometimes aggressive) if approached and petted by strangers during daily walks.

Therefore, before choosing a particular breed, it is essential to find out what it was selected for by humans and whether it suits us.

Mixed breeds: what you need to know

Even those who choose to get a mixed breed must make some preliminary considerations: although the latter are not ‘pure-bred‘ dogs, they are still a mix of different breeds and, often, the one that prevails in their physical appearance is also the one that prevails in their behaviour. Being cross-breed and a mix of several types can make for a healthier, more intelligent, long-lived specimen.

But suppose Fido comes from a potentially delicate background (such as a kennel) before making the final choice. In that case, relying on a dog trainer for professional advice and qualified guidance may be helpful.

It must be borne in mind that an adult dog generally has a more defined character than a puppy: it is less impetuous, more independent and balanced (already having a wealth of previous knowledge and experience). At the same time, however, it may also have behavioural traits that are more difficult to manage because they are the result of previous traumas.

Questions to ask

Choosing the best dog for you means finding the specific breed and considering the dog's needs.

Before getting a dog, it is always important to ask yourself questions, considering your family and financial situation, needs, and available space. For example, time for walking and playing is essential: the dog is a social animal and requires particular attention.

Assessing how the household is made up is fundamental: will Fido live with young people, older people and children? One must also consider economic possibilities: dog breeds require more attention, food, and adequate space.

But that’s not all: the space in the house also serves to assess the dog’s size. Some vast types are unsuitable for flat life and require a terrace or garden.

Without forgetting, those who live predominantly sedentary lives should avoid getting a very active and energetic pet. Another question is related to the age of the four-legged friend: is it better to get a puppy or an adult? Here, too, the strength and time required vary greatly.

The education of a puppy, in particular, can sometimes be demanding. Gender is also a factor to consider: males are generally more active, whereas females are quieter.

Same breeds… same temperament?

It is not necessarily so, nor is it obvious: the same breeds may not have the same temperament. A Labrador, for example, may be more playful or quieter than another, just as a Shit-zu may be livelier or more peaceful than one of its kind.

Breed determines a number of broad characteristics, which may change depending on the specific dog. However, it is undeniable that certain breeds (or crosses) may be better suited than others to a particular type of person or activity.

For example, a small size is recommended for those with less space and energy. However, it is always wrong to generalise: a Pug and a Fox Terrier are both small dogs but quite different in character and needs! When choosing a breed, there are many ‘variables’ to consider, and they must be cross-referenced.

For example: Do you have a large house but little time? Better avoid particularly active breeds or large dogs. Or vice versa; do you live in a small flat but have plenty of time and energy? A lively and playful puppy is welcome.

Nutrition: which is suitable for large or small dogs

It is essential to consider all the needs of the various breeds. For example, giant breeds like Great Danes may be more prone to physical ailments like hip problems. Smaller-breed dogs like Chihuahuas may be more vulnerable to physical accidents or colder temperatures than large-breed dogs.

When talking about dog nutrition, it must be specified that there is, in fact, no perfect diet in absolute terms, but there is the ideal food for each individual, depending on his characteristics and breed.

The first aspect that should not be underestimated is size: as the dog gets bigger, its metabolism slows down. Furthermore, some breeds tend to gain weight more efficiently and be more voracious: this is the case, for example, with Beagles, Labradors and Cockers.

West Highland White Terriers are particularly prone to TARTAR formation and have an extremely DELICATE and ALLERGIC SKIN.

Some breeds of large or giant dogs (such as Great Danes) are more prone to developing orthopaedic growth disorders. The risk is increased if such pets are overfed or fed food unsuitable for their characteristics (e.g. food that is too rich or deficient in vitamin D and calcium). Nutrition should never be underestimated.

Two dogs of the SAME BREED may not have the same temperament. One LABRADOR, for example, may be more playful or quieter than another.

Some small breeds (such as Chihuahuas or Maltese) tend to have teething problems, which can sometimes also be reflected in chewing. Therefore, choosing food with a suitable consistency and size is also essential as a preventive measure.

Dalmatians, on the other hand, tend to develop hyperuricemia, a condition that leads to a high concentration of uric acid in the urine and the formation of painful stones. Therefore, a diet with a low purine content is a good idea.

West Highland White Terriers, finally, are particularly prone to tartar formation and have extraordinarily delicate and allergic skin, which is why they require ad hoc products.

Thank you for reading the article to the end. Your reading contribution was significant to us.

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The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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