As a parent, we are ready to provide our children all the opportunities that we can to help them mature and grow – to become independent when they come off age.
However, you can be sure that even with all the education and toys in the world, you would not be able to provide your child the kind of lessons they would be able to learn when they spend time with dogs who are justifiably called the best friends of men.
These fur babies are naturally capable of loving you unconditionally. They are also perfect demonstrations of how we should treat people around us.
There is so much that your children could learn from these beautiful individuals. They do not have to go around sniffing everyone, but they could learn how to greet people with an open mind and a smile.
If you get a dog, you could teach your children the best way to care for others. The dog would also constantly remind them about the necessity of the basics of life, such as food, exercise, and water.
Finally, through these fur angels, your child would learn that every creature – human and otherwise – requires affection and love.
Size is the first factor that you must consider in this particular case. Usually, the smaller dogs look more like toys. For instance, the Smaller Terriers and Chihuahuas are not the ideal choice if you have kids younger than 7 years of age in the family.
These babies are the weakest of the lot, and the smallest of a mishap, such as falling off the bed and inadvertent squeeze, could cause them significant damage.
In the case of the bigger dogs, you need to be careful because they could be a bit too rough with small children and babies.
2. Needs of exercise
The bigger dogs, such as Labrador retrievers and the German shepherds, need a lot of space to run around freely. Do you have fences in your backyard where you can take your baby for those long walks every day?
If yes, a large breed would be the best possible choice for you. Now, if you travel a lot or are otherwise so occupied that you cannot devote sufficient time to their exercise, you should get a dog breed that does not need a lot of cardio – one who would be satisfied with plenty of affection coming their way.
The best options in this regard are the likes of Shih Tzu and Pomeranians. Your child might promise that they would walk the dog every day, but you should never trust them because they would never do so.
3. Requirements of grooming
The dog breeds with long hair, such as poodles and, collies are perhaps the most adorable ones. There can be no doubt about such a statement.
However, the diverse range of decorative bows and fluffy coats need grooming sessions frequently. It could either be you or a professional.
So, if you do not want to spend any more money on grooming your little angel than you would for yourself, you should go for the short-haired dog breeds. The most prominent examples in these cases are the dachshunds and beagles.
They need to be bathed and brushed only occasionally.
It does not matter what kind of hair and coat the dog has. They would shed them. It is one part of your life that you would not be able to avoid.
If you are somewhat apathetic to the very idea of sweeping the floor regularly, then you should go for breeds that do not shed as much as others. The most prominent examples of such dog breeds would be Bichon Frises and Border Terriers.
5. Potential for allergy
If you have pet allergies, you should go for dog breeds that have hypoallergenic coats. Dog breeds such as Irish water spaniels and Schnauzers produce little dander, the main culprit for pet allergies.
The smaller breeds live longer than larger ones. There is no guarantee that a puppy of a particular dog breed would live till a certain age.
However, this is one factor that you must consider if you do not want your child – and yourself too – to experience sorrow only a few years down the line.
Typically, an English Bulldog would live around 8 to 10 years, while a Bichon Frise would live for 12 to 15 years.
7. Think of the financial aspect
Having a dog could be more expensive than you may have bargained for. You would have to get the shots of vaccines each year, take them to the vet when they are sick, and get the medicines for the likes of flea, heartworm, and ticks. Apart from that, you also have to spend money on their food, boarding, and accessories.
Your kids would be playing with your dog. Therefore, you need to find someone willing to put up with the indignities such as eye pokes and tail pulls. You would not want a dog who bites if you have kids at home.
Experts would tell you that there are indeed breeds of dogs who are highly capable of being trained. They would also suggest not to get puppies if you have kids because they tend to scratch and bite a lot.
So, when selecting a dog breed for your family, it pays to go by their general reputation.
For example, pups belonging to breeds such as golden or Labrador retrievers have earned the good name they have in this case. Golden retrievers are intelligent, good-natured, and even have a tolerant nature as a dog breed.
The Labradors are obedient, energetic, and loving. The pugs are friendly and playful. They are also so tough that it would surprise you.
The Bassett hounds are curious, friendly by nature, and intelligent. The beagles are gentle and sweet and are calm with kids. Thus, if you have people in that age group in your family, they would be a possible option for sure.