You may think you know about dogs, but do you have preconceived ideas about the characteristics of certain breeds? If you do, stop right there! Most of us will agree that judging other humans based on stereotypes about their ethnic origin is a very bad thing. So why should our attitude to dogs be any different? Make sure you’re getting your doggie facts right with this article.
Pure Breeds Are Best Breeds
Many people still think that a top notch pedigree dog is the best dog to have. This is absolutely not the case. Many well-bred pure breed dogs suffer from genetic disorders. For example, pugs and bulldogs have been bred for particular facial features that severely restrict their breathing. An English bulldog is incapable, thanks to its breeding, to mate or deliver puppies without human help, and the Cavalier King Charles spaniel is prone to a painful condition called syringomyelia, which causes a painful swelling at the back of the dog’s skull. If you want good “value for money” when choosing your best friend, you are likely to get a healthier dog that lives longer if you go for a mongrel or cross-breed.
Small Dogs Are Yappy
A small dog’s bark may be high and loud, but it doesn’t mean that a small dog is necessarily going to be a barker. In fact, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are typically one of the quietest breeds. If a dog barks, it may be the owner that is to blame. If a dog is given attention (it is unable to sophisticatedly discern between positive and negative attention) it may continue the barking behaviour. A dog may also repeatedly bark if it is bored or under stimulated, or if it is otherwise stressed. Make changes to your dog’s lifestyle and environmental stressors and the problem may relent. We have an informative article on controlling barking dogs here.
‘Sight Hound’ Breeds Are Stupid
Dog breeds such as Afghan hounds originated from hunter dogs, who were taught to perform jobs when their masters were away. This has led to a typical breed characteristic of independence and self-reliance. This is sometimes misinterpreted as ignorance. These breeds are actually very intelligent. They’re just much less needy than some other breeds!
‘Bull’ Breeds Are Vicious
Any dog has the potential for aggression. When placed in stressful situations, or rewarded for aggressive behaviour, or treated poorly, any animal will retaliate with aggression. Controversial breeds such as Staffordshire Bull Terriers and Pitbull Terriers are no more aggressive than any other breed. In fact, those who know them will attest to the fact that they are some of the most affectionate, calm and loving dogs around.
Greyhounds Need A Lot Of Exercise
This may come as a surprise, but greyhounds are lazy, lazy dogs! Many would rather curl up in front of the television than run around a race track all day. Greyhounds require about 30 minutes of exercise a day, which is no more than most other breeds.
So before you make your choice of dog based on what you’ve heard, make sure you really investigate. Better still, go to a shelter and choose a dog based on mutual connection and suitability for your lifestyle. After all, why would you choose your best friend based on rumour?