suglttgestions, please!!

denise anndenise ann Posts: 10Member
edited 20 March, 2011 in Choosing the Right Dog
I am looking for a family dog to bring into our family, a smaller breed dog under 20 pounds. I have a chance to get a shih tzu that is the only puppy in the litter? Is that ok, will the puppy learn appropriate behaviors with only the puppy and the mother in the picture? Also, i have seen a cavahon puppy (bischon/king charles caviler) that seems like a sweet little girl. I have two girls age 10 and 13 and want a dog we can take to our softball games during the summer and possibly camping. I work 3/4 time and the dog would be crate trained and in the crate for a little over six hours per day. Once potty trained, i would be willing to only baby gate the puppy in the kitchen for this timeframe. Can anyone let me know if either of these two breeds would work for our family, or suggest how to make sure i am selecting a sweet dog who will not only love my family but will be friendly around strangers and other dogs??


  • sherri stockflethsherri stockfleth Posts: 1,123Member
    edited 19 March, 2011
    There is a lot of grooming for those breeds. That is all I can tell you though, I am not familiar with them much.
  • Claire RobisonClaire Robison Oregon CityPosts: 4,926Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    I wouldn\'t get the singleton puppy for a family with children. Puppies raised without littermates often have very low frustration tolerance and greater propensity for biting (both because they never had littermates to compete with for mom\'s attention and milk, and to play with, and learn not to bite.) This is not ALWAYS true, but if this is your first dog, I wouldn\'t risk it. Singletons are better off with people who have some training experience and lots of time for the puppy. Since you work, housetraining will take longer than with someone who can stay home. Puppies that young simply can\'t hold it all day, and if crated will mess in the crate (which can make for a training NIGHTMARE- a dog who\'s learned to mess its crate, there\'s no way to keep clean and it won\'t even try to \"hold it.\") Can you come in for a midday potty break, or hire someone to do it? That would help. If not, maybe wait to get a puppy until the kids\' summer break and they\'re home to help with that. Choice of breed depends on a lot of things- how much you want to groom, and whether you want a low-key companion, or a little athlete who can keep up with you all over the place. These breeds WILL need professional grooming, unless you want to keep the dog shaved all the time, or invest in the tools and skill to do it yourself. Ungroomed, long-haired dogs get matted and it\'s really painful for the dog. (Never mind yucky and smelly too!) If that\'s not a problem, a Shih Tzu or Havanese or Bichon make good family dogs. I suggest looking through the AKC website for detailed breed information. There are very few online breed descriptions that really speak to the experience of living with a breed though, they tend to sugarcoat things and focus mostly on appearance.
  • Amber FrielAmber Friel WebsterPosts: 690Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    I couldn't help but think of a Pug. But I agree with what the others said if you can't get someone to let the dog out during the day should wait till the kids summer break to get the puppy.
  •  Posts: 2,382Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    Both of those breeds are going to have a LOT of grooming involved! Personally, I would keep them in a "puppy clip" which is easier to take care of than the long, flowing coat. Agreed with Bruno in regards to the singleton. I own a Bichon cross, and she is wonderful with children. She was under-socialized when we rescued her, but she warmed up really quickly to children. I also suggest getting someone to give the pup a potty break midday. It's too hard for puppies to be alone that long, holding it.
  • Tamika SaundersTamika Saunders Posts: 503Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    I have a tzu and will have anither in a couple of weeks. I didn't crate train Chloe. She stayed gated in the kitchen with puppy pads. Now she has free roam. The new puppy will be in a playpen during the day as I work full time. We just got an APBT last week. She stays in a crate and my son lets her out throughout the day. Their is alot of grooming involved with tzus but I keep mine in a puppy cut too. I can't really give advice about the tzu being the only puppy in the litter in your case but in mine Chyna, the ABPT,is 9 weeks and was the only puppy in her litter and she is doing just fine with my tzu Chloe. She had her parents and a 5 year old skinsis so she was socialized with dogs and people. Oh and tzus do well with children. I have four.Chloe loves them all. Good luck with whatever you decide to do. Keep us posted!
  • denise anndenise ann Posts: 10Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    thanks for everyones comments, they are greatly appreciated!! I know the tzu needs a lot of grooming and if we would go tau route, we would definately go with a puppy cut. I wasn't aware that cavachons needed a lot of grooming. i was wanting a breed that does not do much sheding as i have allergies. Any other suggestions anyone? Also, anyone know any quality breeders in IA?
  • Mike JacobsenMike Jacobsen Posts: 53Member
    edited 20 March, 2011
    Poodles and members of the Bichon family; Havanese, Bichon, Coton Du Tulear, Bolognese, Malatese, etc. have hair so they "don't shed," but you do need to keep them trimmed up or the hair will grow to amazing lengths, they are also relatively odorless, and as allergy friendly as you will find. Member of the Bichon family are often very hard to house train and some Poodles are a bit "barky" and high strung. You do have a number of breeders of those dogs in IA. Please, however, read the "warnings" about breeders you'll find here on Dogster. The list will quickly get smaller. We've looked.
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