The furry creatures are a man’s best friend, undoubtedly. There are various breeds of dogs and not all of them are suitable for first time owners. Wrong training and asymmetrical bonding can turn the sweetest of dogs to take a dislike for their human companion.
It is not easy for a first-time owner to choose a dog breed, so we have created a guide that shows you the characteristics and gives you some expectations with certain breeds.
The warm and affectionate Siberian Husky is suitable for the colder climate regions. Its ancestors were bred to pull sledges and protect the fences. The dog radiates liveliness and needs a large amount of space to maintain its agility. The Husky is not suitable for the city life; you will rarely get enough space anyway. This breed has a strong predatory instinct; therefore, a household which has smaller pets or cats should not opt for the Siberian Husky.
It is the “King of the Terriers”; the Airedale loves to play frolicking around, digging and making a mess of the yard. Its antics will make you laugh but its exuberance does not overshadow its stubbornness. It is an intelligent and independent animal, who will have problems accepting other dogs and animals coexisting in the same household.
In the last century, the Pit Bull Terrier had a frightening reputation because it was frequently used in dog fighting rings, and the Terrier certainly looks formidable. Even though the domestic acceptance of the Terrier in the last few years has softened its approach and made it amiable with having humans around, it will have issues with other cats and dogs.
A fiercely loyal companion, the Bullmastiff is an independent soul who can sacrifice its life for the human family. The breed is an overbearing one, weighing around 100-130 pounds in adulthood. As such, it needs a strong and powerful owner capable to handle the dog. It needs a leader who can stand up to him, provide consistent training, and set firm boundaries. He does not endear other dogs around.
A friendly, loving, and entertaining breed, the Bulldog comes with its own set of challenges. You can encounter frequent health issues and it is usually a challenging task to train the dog, even from its puppy days. It has a laid-back attitude and it is quite a struggle to make the Bulldog exercise. Otherwise, it is also sensitive to stress and heat. The dog cannot swim so a house with a swimming pool is not the ideal place.
A happy, friendly, and joyful breed, the Malamute could be the ideal puppy for the first-time dog owner. However, be warned, it sheds a lot and it needs a committed family who devotes a lot of time in exercises. It is a great escape artist, too!
A Shar-Pei is a territorial dog who will bond with one human for life. Being territorial, it does not trust other humans and animals. It requires an experienced person to handle because the animal tends to get bored easily. Chronic skin and eye conditions later could be a daunting situation for a first-time dog owner to experience.
It is a challenge to train the Akita, making it suitable for experienced dog owners. The breed was originally used for hunting bears and boars. Akita weighs 115+ pounds and should always be kept on a leash.
An intelligent but a stubborn breed, the Chow Chow requires heavy training schedule and maintenance. It is usually distrustful of strangers and other animals, causing it to display uncontrollable aggressive behavior.
It is a preferred breed for experienced dog owners. They are fierce protectors and highly intelligent. A German Shepherd is often a police dog, military dog, and a guide dog. It requires regular and correct training, lots of exercise, and a prominent level of dedication. In its later age, a Shepherd can experience neurologic issues and hip dysplasia.
A lovable, polite, and affable breed, the Saint Bernard requires around the clock maintenance. It has an enormous size, weighing around 130-180 pounds. It drools constantly and is sensitive to heat. Without constant monitoring, you will find it ingesting household items like towels and socks! The Saint Bernard is an indoor dog – it loves to stay around its human tribe so you will often find it ditching the yard and sitting at your feet. First time dog owner should be prepared for its maintenance before adopting one.
The breed is also known as the Australian Cattle Dog or the Blue Heeler. The Heeler is a hybrid of various others – Dingo, Bull Terrier, Collie, Black Kelpie, Tan Kelpie, and Dalmatian. The Heeler has an ambitious spirit, with powerful strength and endurance. It is tough to control this one. You have to be continuously on your toes to keep up to its pace.
The breed is energetic, intelligent, and suffers from separation anxiety when alone. Though a protective and a close companion to its human counterpart, the dog is not suitable in a household with other pets. If your personality is of a hiker or a hunter, the Weimaraner is the perfect companion.
Popularized in the Hollywood movies, the Dalmatian is a traditional firehouse dog. His breeding was to assist alongside carriages with coachmen of stray dogs and other highwaymen. The Dalmatian needs challenging work to keep its interest going; otherwise, it can be destructive when bored. They shed a lot and needs tons of exercises.
The gentle giant weighs around 125-135 pounds easily and with the wrong kind of an owner, it is a disastrous relationship. The Rottweiler loves to take charge and be the “boss”. If its human companion is unwilling to be the “boss”, the dog will be glad to oblige, which is not the symbiotic relationship the human should ideally want to experience. Otherwise, the dog is fiercely loyal and protective.
The breed may display problematic behavioral issues without proper stimulation and an active life. It is known as the world’s “workaholic” dog; it is highly energetic and needs lots of space to explore. A walk down the block or sprinting in the neighborhood park is ineffective. You need to keep a Collie occupied always for a healthy relationship.
An alert and a territorial dog, the Corso is known in Italy as a watchdog of properties and wild boar hunting. They are strong and dominant creatures with a mind of its own. The Corso is affectionate and loving towards the human household, especially caring towards children. Chaos ensues when its owner/s is unable to prove himself as the leader of the household, in which case the Corso will start ruling the turf.
A stubborn dog, the Skye is wary of unfamiliar dogs. It prefers to live indoors and requires frequent outings to maintain its fitness. Grooming is a task with this one. The hair grows fast and covers the face/eyes easily. Regular bathing and grooming could become a task for first time owners.
It is one of the favorite breed of hunters and hence, aptly unsuitable for first time dog owners. The breed has high endurance, itches to perform, and has a competitive spirit. Their ancestors were bred to track wild raccoons. It is suitable for families with an active lifestyle. It is a social and an intelligent breed who will keep the owners consistently on their toes.
Its origins lie in the Caucasus Mountains where its ancestors used to work with shepherds in protecting their animal flock. Later, they were used in Russia as guard dogs for prisons and government buildings. The Ovcharka is rare in the US and can grow into a massive size of over 200 pounds. First time dog owners will find its independent and indomitable spirit a threat.
It is often a preferred choice for the police and the military. Their energy level is always high and has a strong work ethic. It is an ideal service dog for experienced dog owners but new dog owners will not be able to handle its assertiveness and intelligence.
They have naturally protective instincts and needs an experienced handler to rein in their tendencies. They are suitable as family dogs though.
Do your research properly before adopting your first dog. Dogs require a lot of attention & an active life for a dog will lead to a happier, longer life. Important to note that dogs will require a new pet check to help validate the paperwork and identify any early issues. Pets will need to be groomed regularly to keep a healthy coat & dog vaccine’s and dental checks are also regular checkup appointments to be mindful of.