When choosing a puppy lots of factors come in to play and when you see that cute little cuddly photo REMEMBER this!!!!  It will eventually be a dog! And a relationship that could last 20 years!!!


Here are some things to take into consideration when choosing a Dog Breed

  • Size of your home – do you live in a large house with a yard or an apartment with no yard.

  • How active is your family – if you are an active 'outdoors' camping, long walks type of family or a quiet, t.v. watching, book reading type of family

  • Family members – does anyone in the family have any type of allergy, there are breeds that are hypo-allergenic that could work for some families, not all allergies are the same and may require some extra research and time visiting different breeds.  Not all dog breeds are good with small children, they may be fine with older kids, but not a good fit for quick moving active little ones.

  • Available time – how much time can you spend with your puppy

  • Your finances – the financial needs of a dog could be the deciding factor:

  •          Make sure you research the Breeder and breed.

  •          Then factor in the yearly costs:

                                    Dog food, yearly vet visits, grooming, scooping fees, toys,

                                                Doggy beds, yard repair, yard preparation, daycare.

                                                Large breeds will cost more on upkeep as they take the XL size of everything.


Temperament & Personality

Try to research and get an idea of breed-traits you may be interested in, every dog was bred for a reason working, herding animals, guard dog, loyal friend, some just to be a companion or Lap Dogs.

     Dogs that are bred for a certain trait, you may find hard to deal with, herding dogs may herd your children, may seem funny at the time but could advance into something you have to keep an eye on especially if they are small children!!  Some dogs will need a lot of stimulation, physical or mental, and if they find they don't have enough bad habits may form or an unhappy puppy with a destructive behavior.

     Then look for the temperament, blood-lines and parents are good indicators for a puppy’s temperament.  Genetics may play a role in your puppy’s temperament.   Always make sure you meet and spend time with the parents of your prospective puppy it will give you a good idea of the type of personality traits they may have.  But remember once you are home and the environment you create for your puppy may inhibit these personality traits.           

      A good breeder will know their puppy’s personalities and will let you know from your information if that puppy would be a good fit for your family. A shy timid puppy is not always an indicator of a problem puppy it is just a personality that may require a quiet family with no children. 


Physical Considerations

Now a large breed dog such as a English Mastiff, can be very big but they don't need a a lot of space or activity because they have a low energy level.

     But when you look at a Jack Russell Terrier, they are a tornado wind of energy and life and may be way more than your home can handle, with small children consider a terrier to be one of the clan he will be the busiest and the instigator of the bunch.

     So if you live small home, a Great Dane may be an option because as full grown dog they are pretty easy going, however they do take up a lot of space even if they just lie around.   A larger breed may not be suitable for elderly or a family with small children as the may inadvertently knock them over, they tend to be clumsy and it is totally by accident they have no sense so space in a loving manner.

      Now if you don't want to spend a lot of time grooming your puppy on a daily basis attention should be given to animals that have a coat thickening ability.  Most shepherds or shelties, sheepdogs or dogs with a heavy wavy long coat that are NOT non shedding could create a “Make work project” for you

      When choosing a smaller breed your family dynamics should be taken into consideration, small children are typically fast moving, love to grab thing and hold of for life, drop food on the floor or toys, and sometimes squeeze just a little to hard!!!   Lots of consideration should be taken when considering a toy breed with a very young family, the bone structure and digestive system could play a huge factor in this decision, for the puppy’s sake.


Some Categories of Dog Breeds:

Figuring out a breed you can find A Lover, A Protector, A Pleaser or your Exerciser, or my Favorite the Couch Companion.


The 'Lovers' will drop everything to be with you, they are amazing bonding pets and can be friendly and outgoing, and greet other dogs and people as if they've been best friends for years. 

They usually make excellent family dogs and get along well with children. Some of the breeds that fit this area would be a Labrador Retriever,  Golden Retriever, a cross Labradoodle, or Goldendoodle,  Dalmation, Bernese Mountain Dog, Cocker Spaniel, Boxer, Mastiff, English Bull Dog, Shih Tzu, Maltese, Morkie, Cavapoos, King Cavalier, and more.  The Lover dog comes in all shapes and sizes but mostly medium to large sizing.



If a protector for your family and property, is something that you admire in a breed there are several options to choose from, they are great family companions will excel at agility training, sports, tracking and obedience, they are great personal body guards!! 

They are generally larger dogs and have a very high level of intelligence, the financial costing will be substantially higher as food, care and attention will more demanding for them.  A benefit to some bigger dogs is they do not require a lot more space inside or outside than the average size breeds, but they will require more exercise, attention and training.   Some breeds to consider in this category would be German Shepherd, Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher, Cane Corso, Airdale Terrrier.  If you are short on space you may consider looking at the Chihuahua, or Yorkie they are also good protectors.



Are you looking for a smart, attentive, eager to please and willing to learn the type of breed who will ace the obedience course or command attention on the agility course, then the Pleaser may be the breed you are looking for.   

Any dog that has been bred to work with human direction is great for this type of category, they do really well in the field of service dog, rescue dog or hunting dog.  Choice of the Border Collie, or German Shepherd, a Goldend Retreiver, or the Poodle,  Australian Shepherd or Shetland Sheepdog will all fall into this category.

Things to consider with this breed are a high level of energy, can be nippy (to get your attention) and will need a lot of exercise both mentally and physically.  They are great at sports and obedience, you can easily teach them tricks or to be your hunting companion.



Looking for your own personal exercise partner, that won't complain on the journey or will go camping and long hiking trips, loves to play fetch or Frisbee for hours this may be the breed you are seeking.  

The Border Collie, the Australian Shepherd, the Siberian Husky, the Greyhound, the Labradoodle, the Weimeraner or the Irish Setter.  If you want to size down you exercise regiment and just want a companion for activities try a Schnauzer, or Jack Russell or the Labrador Retriever, they won’t be able to go as far or as long but are willing to try with you and they may surprise you.


Couch Companion

I prefer much companion, grab a coffee and a good book and have a companion to spend quality time with, check these breeds out.   They are also great for small apartments, or homes, great companions if you work at home, they remind you to get up and move around!!!! 

Consider one of these breeds Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, a Beagle, the Whippet or the English Bulldog, the Maltese or the Pekingese, Morkies, Cavapoos and the Basenji is also an option they do not bark but they yodel!!!  Some breeds tend to be quiet however others may bark, but with proper training, and lots of love and attention great couch companions


Finding a Healthy Puppy


Here are some basic things to consider when finally going to meet a breeder and considering a puppy from their litter. Though it will not totally guarantee the puppy it can be a good start to make sure you are taking proper steps to find a healthy puppy.

  • A sturdy body; they should have a strong, sturdy, compact body. Obviously small breed puppies will be more dainty, but he shouldn't look thin/bony and his belly shouldn't look distended and out-of-proportion with the rest of him

  • Clean, shiny coat; should be clean, and shiny. With no bare areas or red and irritated spots, or constant scratching, these indicate skin problems. A little mud is okay means they have experienced the great outdoors!!!

  • Clear eyes and nose; clear, bright eyes and there shouldn't be any discharge from his nose, a healthy puppy should not cough.

  • Clean ears; should be clean inside, with no redness, irritation or discharge. A bad smell from his ears, or constant scratching at them or head-shaking are a red flag for ear mites, infection and so on.

  • Firm stools; odd topic but could be a precursor to health problems; they should pass firm, regular stools. Constant licking of the private parts could mean health issues.

  • Lively, energetic behavior; you don't want a puppy who seems lethargic or listless. A pup who just seems a little shy than his litter-mates is probably perfectly healthy.


Also make sure you view the parents of the puppies.

If the home/kennel area is clean and sanitary, the puppies are obviously used to being handled and played with, and the owner/breeder is knowledgeable, competent and has the best interests of the puppies at heart.

    Most important has the puppy been given their first shots/deworming treatment and has vet papers to prove it, should have a certified vet clear the puppy to go home.


Paper work you should receive before you leave:

            Veterinary Card with date of shots, deworming protocol, dated and signed by a vet.

            A good breeder will provide info on the puppy’s schedule, some info on the puppy

            If you are getting a purebred, ask for registration papers to confirm.

The above information is gathered and presented in a non committal and legal form, it is not intended for a perfect puppy choice, but the info is presented to guide you to a proper and healthy puppy most of the time.  Some situation can not be seen or prevented so research on the breed and breeder should be your top priority