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Old 02-07-2010, 02:38 PM
rubysoho rubysoho is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 44
Default Need a place to start.

There are so many incredible breeds out there it is hard to know where to start. All my animals have been shelter/rescues. Up until recently I was very active in the horse world - which takes a lot of time. However, I am moving away from that and would like to put more effort in to dogs. I have loved training them, worked with a few types of breeds as well as gone hunting with various pointers and retrievers.

I'd like my next dog (not in any rush) to be my new partner. I've not had a dog of my own for two years and it is getting lonely - especially now that I have mostly stopped training horses and teaching riding lessons. Can people here help point me in the right direction?

Here is what I am looking for...

-Moderate to large size, no giants though. 40 - 75 lbs.
-Somewhat active. I'd like a dog that I can do agility, hiking and potentially other breed specific trials (absolutely love watching a good bird dog). Would also like to look into showing as well, but I prefer performance based competitions first and foremost.
-Trainability. I love some of the "slower" breeds but stubborness can frustrate me. Perhaps I am not smart enough for that type of dog!
-At least has the look of being protective. I hike alone and whether it is people or cougars (mainly people I am worried about) I'd like to feel safer.
-Grooming, easy to moderate. Once a week is fine. I can deal with shedding but prefer not to have the type of shedding that comes with labs and shepherds.
-Independence is just fine. I do not need an extra shadow. I do want a dog that will have a decent recall (I know a lot of this has to do with training! But I think it leaves out hounds and some terriers).
-With socialization, is a dependable dog and good with children. (I do not have any but you never know! )
-The ability to snuggle on a couch and keep me warm in the winter.
-Good with a house cat. She is my princess, rescued, and deserves respect from the new dog.

What I am willing to be flexible on is the activity level (either more or less), grooming (more is okay if the dog suits my needs) and the size. Trainability and a good disposition/family dog are a must. I plan on speaking with responsible breeders and am willing to wait for that special pup/dog.

Thanks so much in advance for helping a newb on the board!

- Nicole
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:04 PM
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MicksMom MicksMom is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Warren Co, NJ
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Hhmm, all that pretty much described just about every Rottweiler I've met, but they shed almost like a Lab (I was actually going to suggest a Lab until I got to the part of your post about the shedding). Except for the shedding part, I think a Rott or black Lab fits your description.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:12 PM
rubysoho rubysoho is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 44

Thank you! Rotties have been on my "list" to look into. I am weary of dogs with a bad rap... though I love pitties and bull dogs. My sister was once lunged at by a doberman who was nice to everyone else it came in contact with. My sister was 4 or 5 at the time. So I am very conscious about children and dogs.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:41 PM
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bubbatd bubbatd is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 64,812

All dogs shed some . Looked into Goldens ? Best companions ever !
A light for all who are crossing dark times.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:50 PM
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elegy elegy is offline
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 7,720

standard poodle? more grooming involved, but they're active, social, fun dogs.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:55 PM
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JPuckett1989 JPuckett1989 is offline
Slowly but surely......
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Tifton,Georgia
Posts: 312

I was thinking american bulldog? Not much of a shedder as far as I know. Have intimidating features,active,smart,sweet dogs. Girlfriend used to live on a farm and she had around 17 of them as working dogs,best dogs she ever had.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:56 PM
Brattina88 Brattina88 is offline
treehugging clicker freak
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: OH
Posts: 12,941

how bout a boxer?

Maddie CGC .:. Cocker Spaniel .:. 13 y/o
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Old 02-07-2010, 04:12 PM
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Zoom Zoom is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Denver, CO
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I think a Rottie might be a good fit as well.
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Old 02-07-2010, 04:16 PM
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Maxy24 Maxy24 is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 8,041

I was thinking pittie until you said he had to be good with a cat, generally doesn't happen though sometimes it does. Plus they are not independent But Boxer sounds good, might try to play with the cat but I'm sure the cat will put an end to that, if not you can teach him to be calmer around the cat. Don't know how clingy they are though. I like the idea of Rotties too just remember they are a protection breed, this means he will try to guard you and the house from what he considers a threat, it is your job to teach the dog what is NOT a threat, that means socialization. A dog who has learned who is a "normal" person and what is normal behavior will not consider those things threatening. So anything you want your dog to be okay with must be introduced regularly. That way only really odd behavior (like someone crawling in the window and following you closely and very quietly) will be considered threatening by the dog. Other than shedding they do match what you want. both breeds may have some trouble with other dogs of the same sex.

If you are going the breeds route I'd love to help you find good ones!!

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Old 02-07-2010, 04:24 PM
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Fran101 Fran101 is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Boston
Posts: 12,548

Standard poodle would be a perfect fit

If I were you, I would get black and keep them in a normal puppy cut, a show cut wont help with the whole protection thing. but the sight of a big black dog is enough to ward off MOST people

Incredibly smart, quick to learn, soft for cuddliness in the winter, great size, playful and great in agility,and from what ive seen.. great with cats

Disclaimer: I work for Trupanion and love it/our policy! But I do not speak for the company or as the company.
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