Dog Breed Suggestions

Discussion in 'Working and Companion Animals' started by cjb, Sep 5, 2006.

  1. cjb

    cjb Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I can't believe that I'm asking this question as I am usually the one that helps others decide what to get.....

    However, I am at a loss right now. We want to get at least one dog and have had several. I've had a german shepherd, rough collie, mastiff, great dane and a leonberger. The leonberger, sadly, did not work out and is being returned to the breeder. Long story but, believe me, was not our fault and the breeder is very supportive and good about it.

    We need a large enough dog for the farm. Not one that will be eaten by coyotes. We want something to be part of the family - goes camping with us, possibly in obedience/4h with my son. We have 5 kids and one on the way.

    I loved my collie but not sure that I want the hair, maybe. Our kids have friends over and we're active in church so people come over alot so we don't want an aggressive dog. I know alot of that is in how you raise them.

    I LOVED my great dane so that is a consideration as well, but they are very hard to find around here and you have to be careful about health and temperament there, as well.

    What are your experiences and suggestions? We have ducks/gees, horses and goats as well.

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. Corgitails

    Corgitails Well-Known Member

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    Smooth collie?

    Have you ever looked into Beaucerons? The only ones I've met have been spectacular (but were probably really $$$ as well-both French imports, well on their way to AKC championsihps and specials careers.)
     

  3. Rouen

    Rouen Well-Known Member

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    how about.. rotties, boxers, boerboels, irish wolf hounds(they are a bit rare though), american bulldog, I know of a breeder whom just had a litter of boerboels in Fulton Missouri, not sure of their asking price though.
    http://www.boerboelsusa.com/index.html
     
  4. Country

    Country Well-Known Member

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    I think an American Bulldog may fit the bill for you.
     
  5. Pink_Carnation

    Pink_Carnation Well-Known Member

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    I like Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs. Ours thinks everyone is his best buddy. They are in the 130lb range. The biggest drawback for them is housebreaking, it takes them a long time to "get it"
     
  6. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

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    I second smooth collie. I personally like shelties, but then there is the hair issue again, although the one I own doesn't shed too much at all except twice a year when she blows her coat. She's worth it though. You'll never find a smarter more loyal dog then a sheltie, although some can be quite hyper when they're younger. According to my vet you can't go wrong with a sheltie. :)
     
  7. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    DANE! DANE! I VOTE FOR DANE!!!! Get a younger one but not a puppy. Perhaps out of rescue that they can tell you the history of. It's everything and more than you described and you already want one....You admitted it! :angel:

    If you really are interested, depending on where you are...I can get you in touch with some rescues. There are a lot of younger ones in rescue right now for some reason...reasons I really don't want to think about cause I'll get angry.
     
  8. NCGirl

    NCGirl Well-Known Member

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    Beaucerons are great dogs but not for the timid owner. They still have a lot of working drive. You won't get much past 2-3 generation imports. But they are pretty reasonably priced compared to Import German Shepherds. www.pawsnclaws.us/beauceindex.htm Met this breeder in California a few years back and she has some great beaucerons. Very steady temperament.

    Don't get a German Shepherd if you don't want to deal with fur flying always.
    I like Danes but hate what a short lifespan.
    Smooth Collie? Sounds like it might fit the bill.
    Sheltie's are some of the best obedience dogs and probably good all around farm dogs.
     
  9. cjb

    cjb Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Thanks for the input and keep it coming. The fur issue is secondary. What I can't do is another huge, hyper dog that takes years to calm down. Some danes are like but most are not. We'll see. A sheltie might be nice but I know they bark like mad as do some collies.

    Keep it coming - what about boxers? Anyone ever had an English Cocker Spaniel (not american) ?
     
  10. Corgitails

    Corgitails Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a fan of boxers- too bouncy and happy, not enough desire to work vs play in most of the ones I've met- but ECS are a blast to work with and train- there are still many that are really working spaniels, not just pretty faces, and sweet temperaments.
     
  11. GrannyCarol

    GrannyCarol Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We got a smooth collie and we love her (I've had many breeds, bred, shown, trained and groomed dogs for some 30 years). She is sweet, intelligent, easily trained and does sometimes bark. I hear that many collies are problem barkers, I'd watch out for that, but generally they are great dogs and the smooths are so easy to care for!

    If we get our farm, I want another one... :)

    ~ Carol
     
  12. glidergurl03

    glidergurl03 Well-Known Member

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    I vote Smooth Collie or Rottie. Both are great herding dogs, and excellent protectors, though, a Rottie is a bit more intimidating and a bit more rough housing, and if you have younger kids, I'd go w/ the Collie.
     
  13. Willowynd

    Willowynd Well-Known Member

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    I own and breed rough and smooth collies- so I know all about the fur and vices. Personally- I would much rather clean up after a rough than a smooth during shedding time. The long fur lays on top of the carpet and furniture and cleans up quickly and easily whereas the short smooth fur knits itself in and seems to float everywhere. I find the smooths are also harder to strip of thier coats during shedding time and refuse to keep any smooths in the house when they are at peak shedding as a result. The trade off is easier up keep on the smooths the rest of the time. The roughs do take more time brushing out than the smooths during the non shedding time- but I enjoy grooming- it is relaxing for me and enjoy the end results so not an issue with me except when they are in that stage of dropping coat that they do not look good no matter what you do (some is loose some is not). That said- I would prefer most of my males to be smooths as my males are very heavily coated with very thick undercoats and seems the heavier coated they are- the less they like having thier undersides and anywhere less than 12 inches away from thier jewels groomed- meaning I need a helper to hold the dog still. My girls- I have no preference as their coats are more manageable and they are much less particular.
    Barking- it is all about training and being consistent. I know many collie breeders debark thier dogs- I choose to train instead- and retrain a couple on occassion. I have had rescues that I was told were horrible barkers and told could not be trained that wound up being very quiet for me after training. I have bought dogs from breeders that had all thier dogs they kept debarked because they were so bad. Again- not an issue once they were trained. It does get noisy here when I have girls coming into season (which I help alleviate by bringing girls in season in the house for the duration of thier season), or adolescent pups (the deaf or forgetful stage), but by the time they are about 18 mo old, they have learned and remembered once again what "enough" means.
    For herding and being trustworthy around several species I would suggest a collie- but not any collie. Get one that has been raised around them as pups or at least introduced and known to be ok with them and from herding lines for your best chance at finding one that will do what you want. My collies herd the chickens and turkeys, are wonderful with the ducks and geese (though I tell them to leave them be as they do not get put up at night or when I leave), are good around horses and wonderful with children- but they have all been socialized with them and taught not to chase or use thier teeth on them and has shown signs of having herding instinct. My oldest boy Cody is wonderful. He was not from herding lines, nor raised with poultry- but he definately has the herding instinct- he was obedience trained and taught how to behave with poultry and he lives to please and understands everything. That is not the norm though- not all collies will have the instinct to work- even from herding lines. He is good with even catching the chicks that slip out. I say is "gentle- baby" and he understands. He will catch them then lay down and hold them between his paws covering them with his head until I get there. The hens he will stand over to get them to crouch down and place a paw on top of them if they move. The roos, he knows needs more than that. He will first try cornering and holding- but the older roos are usually need more convincing to stay, so he will then use his mouth to grasp thier tail feathers while he holds them with his paws. I have a couple who are really tough to catch- those he will snatch down from the air by their tail feathers and hold- boy do they get ticked LOL He will find ones that are hidden but cannot get out without using teeth- in those cases he will stand and whine until I come get them out or reach in and grab them. He is excellent at helping the younger pups learn what to do. After the young ones learn not to use thier teeth on poultry and learn some basic commands, I let some chickens out and let Cody get started- then will turn a pup loose with him. If the pup shows instinct, we continue to work the pup with Cody until it seems to have a strong grasp on what to do and can follow directions. Some pups will not have the instinct and I do not force it. Either they have it or they don't. If you want a dog who will herd no matter the breed, I would suggest getting an older pup that has been worked with. I never make the claim of a pup having herding instinct until I know for sure- usually when they are about 4-5 mo old. If I were to buy a pup speciffically for herding I would want one that was already started with it- not one that simply ran in circles around toys. I have seen pups that ran in circles around toys that grew to just like running in circles and could not be concerned with actually working.
     
  14. deaconjim

    deaconjim Appalachian American Supporter

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    I recommend an Australian Shepard. So far, we haven't found a downside to ours.
     
  15. mizattitude

    mizattitude Well-Known Member

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    I have had the cocker <not american> the english. I wasn't impressed enough with them to ever buy another. They require alot of grooming...As fas as intelligence I think they are okay. They are a pain to house train..it will take "forever"
     
  16. Rickstir

    Rickstir Well-Known Member

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  17. NCGirl

    NCGirl Well-Known Member

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    Labs may be considered the perfect family dogs, however If you get a Lab be very very selective about the parents and only from parents with OFA hips. There is a lot of hip and temperament problems with Labs.
     
  18. RandB

    RandB Well-Known Member

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    Here's another vote for a Lab, in your situation. They are great family dogs, and love the farm life.
    Actually I think an ideal dog is a cross of Lab and shepherd. The best dog I ever had was that mix, and the shelters are usually full of them. However, I don't know if you must have a purebred or not. Good luck in your search.
     
  19. RACCOON

    RACCOON Well-Known Member

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    I vote for a Rottweiler or Pitbull
    My son grew up with a female pit,gentlest dog there is,in earlier times they were great farm dogs.
    Rotts also very gentle,and make great farm dogs
     
  20. tulsamal

    tulsamal Well-Known Member

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    Very smart.

    Active but not pig-headed and willful like a Boxer.

    Coat and general appearence like a smooth collie.

    Can be great family dogs but can also be trained to be police dogs if necessary. My children have been all intermixed with our dogs since the children were born. (6 and 8 years old right now.)

    Never lost one to a coyote. I would think they are too big, too fast, too smart, for that!

    One of the best breeds you can get for obedience, agility, ring sport, or schutzhund.

    And the lady below is one of the reputable breeders. OK, OK, she _usually_ sleeps next to me but don't hold that against her!

    http://www.alouettebelgians.com/

    Gregg