Wednesday, June 10, 2009

puppy advice!

Mark and I have decided to make the plunge and expand our family by adding a puppy. But we won't be doing this until we are totally settled into our new home at Langley. So, we have a good 3 or 4 months until we will be on the hunt for our new furry friend.

But I need your help.

I can't figure out what breed we should get. Here's what we are looking for
-- a small dog that is easy to put in the car, move with, and won't be a problem living indoors
--a dog that doesn't shed much or doesn't shed at all. I hate animal fur.
--a nice dog that isn't overly hyper. I really like to cuddle, so a dog that jumps all over me and goes insane won't work!
--it has to be cute. this is probably the most important criteria!

The good news is: We are moving to a huge area. And I do mean HUGE. So, we should have absolutely no problem with finding the exact breed we want. Here are the top (and only) contenders that we have so far:

Miniature Dachshund:

Pros: absolutely adorable, minimal hair, and small. and again, adorable!
Cons: not too great with small children but great with older children

Shar Pei:

Pros: TOTALLY adorable! Look at those wrinkles.
Loyal, good with kids, and totally nice and not hyper at all!!
Cons: Possibly hard to find - they aren't very common
and.. they get kinda big..

West Highland Terrier:

Pros: I've always dreamed of having a white puppy. I *love* white dogs!
They don't shed at all. Or so the internet says (Do they, Meaghan?)
They're great with kids, loyal, and LOVING!
Cons: None that I can think of.

That's all I've got. Put in your vote. We are going to have children, so that plays a big part in which dog we get. Plenty of families have wiener dogs, and they get along just fine. If you have another suggestion for a puppy, please let me know! I'm extremely picky with dogs. I grew up with a Cocker Spaniel, but he was a tad too hyper for me. And... pretty hairy. Mark used to only want big, manly dogs. But as of late, he's up to anything! So give me advice. PLEASE!

Seriously. Don't be afraid to comment. I really need your help.


  1. Out of those three, I like the terrier!

    But I'm also a huge fan of beagles. My parent's beagle stayed pretty small for her breed, and is the smartest, most lovable dog I've ever seen (I hated dogs before her!). Just a thought! So exciting, I'm dying for a puppy right now but we just can't afford it right now haha.

  2. I'm responding to this with a post on my blog. Because I am so madly in love with our Westie.

  3. I agree. I like the Westie. I hear they are really good dogs-but all terriers do have that hyper factor. I'm not sure HOW hyper a Westie is though, but they are really sweet dogs.

    Side note-I saw on some special on like GMA or some other morning show that I can't remember at the moment, that LONG haired dogs actually shed less than short haired dogs. Really weird huh? Not sure I believe it, but you never know!! My uncle has a bichon frisse (totally misspelled it) it is about the size of those dogs and it never sheds. It's white, and kind of a fluff ball.

    I'm so jealous! I can't wait to get a puppy! :-D

  4. Oh P.S.-I LOVE the weiner dogs. I talked to a vet one time about them and he said they are really good dogs, but their anal glands have to be suppressed pretty often due to their body shape. GROSS! :)

  5. Cool beans, Meaghan!!! I can't wait to read it... Can you make an emphasis on how hard Baby was to house train and how hyper/not hyper she is? I only have experience with our Cocker Spaniel, so I have NO idea. Mark wants a wiener dog right now, but I don't really care TOO much.. although those Westies are SOOOO cute.

  6. Hey Shannon...I am a HUGE fan of dogs, so I thought I would let you in on a little that I know. Weiner dogs are soo cute but they have a lot of back problems being that they are so long and have such small legs. Also shar pei's are so cute too but they have a lot of skin problems and allergies do to the wrinkles of their skin. A lot of people end up allergic to their dander and stuff. The west terrier is adorble, I don't know a lot about them. I do have one suggestion though: its to go to the local shelter and look for a dog. Almost 3-4 million cats and dogs are euthanized every year because they don't have a home. Also, it would probably be pretty cheap or cheaper to get a dog from a shelter and they already have their shots and are spayed or neutered.
    I personally, would reccomend a mixed breed. They often have less health problems because they are not over bred or interbred like many breeders do.

  7. Yeah! Going to a shelter is a good idea too! But id you have your heart set on a certain breed, there are Rescues that have pure breds. The Westie Rescue has some cute little dogs!

  8. Weeeeell, considering that there are no cons on the terrier I'd say that'd be a good choice! I do think that the shar pei is SUPER cute though. :)

  9. I think your winner might be the Terrier, since you didn't find any cons!

    But a Miniature Dachshund would be good, too, as long as you had lots of time to let it mingle with babies and small children while it was a puppy. Then it'd be fine with kids of all ages when it got older.:]

  10. excuse me. I love the shar pei. BUT. austin just told me that "shar pei" means "fighting dog" and that they aren't really good with unfamiliar people, and will try to "defend family from guests". Which is really sad. Because they're cute!!! I'd say go with that little white dude because you've always wanted one, there are no cons. Aaaaaand, it's cute!! Oh, and ps. I've always wanted a dachshund, but i think they might be kinda yippy much like that of a chihuahua.

    anyways. yeah. love you!

  11. I have the best bloggy readers ever. I love you ALL!

    Note: I have not mentioned Westies to Mark yet. Soo... I don't know how he will feel about them. But lately he's up for anything, so MAYBE he'll let me get my dream job. Actually, a Maltese is my DREAM pet, but they get semi-ugly when they grow up, and I like the ears on Westies. if we had a Maltese, we'd cut its hair really short so it'd be curly. The Maltese you see in dog shows always have that long, ugly hair. forget that!! it's MUCH cuter short and curly! hmm... decisions, decisions...

  12. Please dont buy a dog. Please go tot eh local shelter to get one. Its so sad when people spend hundreds of dollars on dogs when there are ones about to be put to sleep in the shelters because no one wants them.

  13. Why is it that our guys want a weiner dog? lol its too funny though. Hey how about a basset hound? They are waaaay too cute with their long ears and droopy eyes. Aaand they are a bit sturdier than dachsunds.

  14. I did look at basset hounds, but don't they howl? a LOT? at least the ones I've seen do. and it just depends on if we can find one at a shelter that we like. the shelter here literally doesn't have puppies. well, they RARELY do. but since we're going to a huge area, hopefully there will be a lot of bigger shelters than what we are used to. the shelter here primarily has HUGE mixed breeds, about the size of German Shepards! we'll look around a LOT, I promise :]

    and I have no clue why he wants a wiener dog. He JUST came up with that breed idea last week. I'll have to ask him...

    but, in other news, Mark agreed that we can get a Westie if that's what I want! :D

  15. Any dog will howl (or bark) a lot if they are bored. Dogs - no matter what size! - need to be walked every single day in order to prevent that from happening. It still may happen, of course, but it will be less likely to happen if the dog is properly exercised - mind & body. Look at Cesar Millan's pie graph of the 3 things dogs need. (1/2 exercise, 1/4 discipline, 1/4 affection.) Seriously check into him when you get a dog.

    Also, buying a dog from a breeder is not wrong. If you can't find one at a shelter, don't feel bad. Plus, most dogs in shelters are there because of behavior problems, so they need to be rehabilitated (what Cesar does). Which, it's possible, but it is so much better to get a puppy from a breeder that you have from the start. If you raise it and train it well, you will not have the problems that the dogs in the shelters will need to be fixed of.

    And I speak from experience.

  16. yes, if we are going to invest a lot of time and money into a pet, I'd rather not start with gobs of behavior problems :\ I'm sure we can find a local breeder who breeds Westies. I'm glad that I will have a long time to train him and be there every day with him when he's a puppy. Hopefully we'll have a fenced in backyard since we'll be in base housing. So he will be able to run around in our backyard and get some of that energy off. Plus, maybe I can walk our puppy to see Mark during his lunch break! How sweet :]

  17. It's really good that you'll have time to be with the dog everyday and train it correctly. And like the comment above your last, don't feel bad about buying from a breeder. Especially for a first dog. And yes, the behavior problems from shelter dogs can be a deterrent to some people. J and I will be getting a Westie from a breeder, but a cat from a shelter.
    ALL dogs and cats need loving homes. Not just those at shelters or those from breeders.

  18. Yes, that's one thing I forgot to mention:

    "...don't feel bad about buying from a breeder. Especially for a first dog."

    That's really important. Shelter dogs are definitely for people who have lots of experience with training dogs! That's one of the reasons why Chris & I didn't do a shelter dog, because we knew it would be better for our first dog to be with us since a puppy.:]

    And yes, that would be sooo cute if you walked the dog to see M on his lunch break!:D Oh, and did you two decide to do base housing after all? I really hope you get housing with a fence already installed. When we got our German Shepherd, the two base houses we got stationed to didn't have fences, so we had to request them. They were free, but there was a long waiting list and we had to wait months to get them. Laaame.

  19. well, a bunch of wives I know at Langley say there is TONS of open base housing, so it "shouldn't be a problem" getting in one of them. I'm crossing my fingers. We could totally get a BETTER apartment for the money - a new, nice apartment in Newport News. But... living on base is more convenient. and easy. and Mark won't have to drive to work (traffic there is HORRIBLE - like 45 minutes to get to work one way..) so anyway.

    I *think* they have fences. I'm not 100% sure.

    This is all overwhelming. I just want to get to Langley, unpack our stuff, and hunt for our puppy. I planned on waiting til Christmas, but FORGET THAT! I want one NOW!!!!!!!

  20. Well I hope it works out! And yes, the commute would be tonsss better on base than from off base. My mom's commute to work (Knox) every morning is about 45 mins now. But the worst part is actually getting on base, since you have to go through the gates and show your id, etc etc. Tacks on about an extra 10-15 mins.

  21. I'm sure getting an apartment would be nice, if you can't live on base. But you do have to remember that some apartments won't allow pets. So plan accordingly.