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Old 09-04-2013, 10:48 PM
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Paige Paige is offline
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Default Family dogs

I know this may sound like an odd question but where the heck do you find a good family dog? Bandit is getting older (he is 9) and my boyfriend and I are discussing adding another dog sooner rather than later. We have a lot of children that are young. A lot of smaller rescues we are out because we have a current dog, cat and small children. Most dogs are not fit for that. Then add on I want an active younger but not a puppy that isn't small on top of it and we are narrowing down even more.

So where do people who have other animals and kids actually get dogs? Breeders? The local pound? And what do you look for to ensure your dog is going to be good interacting with kids. Obviously training and supervision but some dogs aren't best suited to life with small children.
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Old 09-04-2013, 10:55 PM
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I'd start researching breeds that you think might suit you and check out shelters/rescues. With your needs I would seek a dog in foster care to be sure they have an evaluation history.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:25 PM
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Of the 4 dogs I've had, all have been excellent "family dogs" - 2 from rescues (Molly & Happy) and 2 from breeders (Lucy & Juno). I have young nieces and nephews plus my mom does daycare, so it's always been super imperative that the dogs get along great with people.

With Juno & Lucy I think it's helpful that they were raised surrounded by children. For Juno especially, from day 1 rules were in place regarding kids (no, you don't get to tackle them when they're running around). Boxers as a breed though tend to adore children, so there was never really a worry that she'd be bad with them, it was just about teaching her manners and how to control herself. With Lucy, sometimes I am amazed that she is so good with kids lol for her I really just think it's because she was raised around them.

Molly was from a local shelter. Not a rescue. There were no pre-reqs to meet in order to adopt her. She was a complete gamble, we knew nothing about her and only met with her very briefly before deciding to adopt her. She was 7 months old when we got her. I don't know if it's luck that her personality was the way it was. Happy is from a rescue and her bio specifically said good with dogs, kids, and cats. I was upfront that those 3 things were a necessity and they didn't question me about it or act like it was a problem at all. She lived with a dog and a cat at her foster home, and I think the foster had grandkids or something, so I knew that she genuinely must be okay with them. Honestly though it was something where I was prepared to bring her back if she wasn't able to mesh well.

Oh one of the things I made sure to ask Happy's foster was if she had shown ANY signs of resource guarding. You can label a dog "kid friendly" but I don't know if that necessarily means they won't react to a kid trying to take a toy away or something. (I also felt this was important to know since I was bringing her into a house with other dogs too).

The short story is that you can get a great family dog anywhere. I actually feel like most dogs out there would fit the bill pretty well. I agree with deciding on what breeds you're interested in, and then scoping out breed specific rescues.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:31 PM
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I would definitely start with rescues who have foster homes.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:39 PM
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I have always been into herding dogs so another bc isn't ruled out but we have been talking about other breeds more so as his taste in dogs is different from mine.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:41 PM
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All of my childhood dogs growing up were perfect "family dogs". One was a rescue adolescent, one was a pup from a stray we took in, and one was our neighbor's dog who chose to stay at our house *because* she loved children so much.

Chloe was our first "non family friendly" dog. She was from an oops litter and we got her as a pup...she just has a very unstable temperament. And she's gotten to the point mom and I have discussed euthanasia in the future, especially if lifestyles start to change.

Abrams is from a breeder and besides at the breeders has not lived with children, and I think he will make an awesome family dog whenever Mike and I do have kids. He LOVES kids, doesn't mind being handled in terms of poking, prodding, pulling, and pushing, and has no resource guarding issues period. Random loud noises and erratic behavior doesn't phase him, either.

If it were me, I'd do as others have suggested. Research breeds, then look at a breed rescue (or shelter) who has dogs in foster care and have been tested with/live with kids. Heck, even check out craigslist - since they're private rehomes, you have a good chance of knowing how they act around children.
Or, if you find a breeder you like, see if they have any young adult dogs they need to place, or can recommend someone who does.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:15 AM
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Wanting a larger young dog that isn't a puppy gives you a big pool to choose from, most shelters/rescues get tons of large adolescent dogs. I agree with Adrianne that your best bet is to go through a rescue that fosters, that way there shouldn't be any major surprises.
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Old 09-05-2013, 09:05 AM
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I've always been told that Cardigans are iffy around kids, but actually mine are really great with the little one, if maybe too friendly and gushy around him.

I know that some breeds really seem to just love kids; I know Newfies are one of them, and labs and goldens, too.

Maybe I just lucked out with my girls?

I've also heard that well bred pitties are one of the best breeds for kids, due to their high tolerance for both pain and silly humans. :-)
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cardiparty View Post
I've always been told that Cardigans are iffy around kids, but actually mine are really great with the little one, if maybe too friendly and gushy around him.

I know that some breeds really seem to just love kids; I know Newfies are one of them, and labs and goldens, too.

Maybe I just lucked out with my girls?

I've also heard that well bred pitties are one of the best breeds for kids, due to their high tolerance for both pain and silly humans. :-)
Both of our girls are wonderful with children. Although mine can be a little too lick-y with really young kids.

I will be adding either a Staffy or a rescue pittie on the next couple of years, I love them.
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:21 AM
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Yeah, mine are that same way in regards to being just really kissy and sweet. They're really mushy around little ones.

That's what I've had to work on most in terms of the kid/dog interaction is just that they just LOVE LOVE LOVE him and he needs space to explore the world and for some reason they think it's their job to be around him wherever he goes and whatever he does.
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