find the right dog for your temperament

How to Find the Right Dog Breed for Your Temperament

Not every dog is every man’s best friend. To find the right one, you have to be honest with yourself about what your personality and lifestyle are like, and then you’ll need to do some research to find a dog that has a temperament to match yours. If you don’t, you could end up with a dog you have to drag off the couch when you want to go for a hike, or one that’ll be bouncing off the walls demanding attention when you’re about to settle in for a lazy afternoon of binge watching.

If you’re thinking of getting a new dog, here are some tips that will help ensure that the two of you are a real match.

Outdoor Dogs

If you’re a guy who loves to get out and run, hike, or explore new places, you’ll need a dog who not only wants to keep up with you but, who also has the energy to do so. A big dog might seem the logical choice, but a lot of larger breeds, like the St. Bernard, tend to be couch potatoes. Something like a Golden Retriever is a much better match.

The Golden Retriever temperament is affectionate and playful, and your dog will be game for whatever adventures you are.

Boxers are another good choice, since they tend to be playful and extroverted. But they’re also very high energy, so if you aren’t serious about spending a lot of time outdoors, you might end up with a bored dog. And bored dogs often entertain themselves by tearing up your yard or house. Boxer temperaments also take longer to develop, so don’t expect your puppy to be ready for the same adventures you are.

Cuddly Dogs

Looking for a new best friend who’s going to be affectionate and adoring? One who’ll sit in your lap and won’t want to leave your side—a true companion? Your best choices will be toy breeds like the Pekinese or the Bichon Frise. These dogs have been bred for centuries as lap dogs, and they thrive on lavish attention, which they’ll return in spades.

Not all toy breeds are the same though. Chihuahuas, for example, are often very nervous and timid and don’t always do well around strangers. They’re fiercely loyal to their owners and may bark at or even bite others who come near.

Guard Dogs

You may not want a dog that’s going to attack anyone who even looks in your direction, but you might want one that’s going to feel fiercely loyal to your family and will scare off robbers or anyone else who thinks about invading your space with nefarious intent. You need a dog that has a pack mentality and a dominant temperament so he or she will be protective but still obedient.

Some good choices include the Siberian Husky, the Akita, and the German Shepherd. Each of these dogs respond well to a dominant, head of “the pack” (you) and can learn to immediately and obediently follow your every command.

Finding a dog with the right temperament is essential to having a long and happy relationship with your dog. Otherwise, you’ll always be at odds over what the dog needs vs. what you need. You won’t be able to enjoy the things you want, and neither will your dog, leaving both of you unhappy.

Just make sure that once you find the right dog, you treat him well by giving him the right healthcare and the right environment, including plenty of stimulating toys and a relaxing place to rest.

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