Breed Suggestions for child's obedience dog

Discussion in 'The Dog Breeds' started by stafinois, Dec 15, 2011.

  1. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

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    I can't say I've ever really met a Boston that I would say is a good kids dog. They've all been, well, completely insane, balls to the wall, dog-reactive...not something I'd want to hand to a kid in a ring setting.

    However, knowing it's going to be you guys and Syd, and the fact that you'd either go through a really great breeder or know enough to handle a rescue, it might work. 99% of people I meet with Bostons (and it's been A LOT. Like, ALOT A LOT) have no idea what they're doing with them and just accept their atrocious behavior as "this is how Boston's act."
     
  2. stafinois

    stafinois Professional Nerd

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    That's sad. Everybody I know with Bostons (with the exception of one) are also current/former Pit Bull people, and the dogs are lovely. They remind me a lot of tiny little Grants :p

    I did find a Boston breeder in MN with a lot of performance titles on their dogs. They have a UDX and three MACH/UD/RAE dogs, plus some lower level titles. Everything but the puppies on the website are titled in obedience. I might look at their dogs sometime. We also have a couple of Papillon people in our kennel club.

    We have time to think about it. And, she might not even be into dogs. She is half my husband, after all :eek:
     
  3. WackyJacki

    WackyJacki New Member

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    Bostons are well known for being excellent companion dogs for children, and with the right motivation/training, can make fun little sporting dogs for a child, too. Plus, they are low maintenance, easy keepers. Like most bull and terrier types, they are not quick to snap/bite people, even when startled. They also have a nice off switch, unlike some terriers. Another bonus.

    And yes, I'm totally biased. lol But I'm not a little dog kinda gal, and Fiona has shown me that once you have a Boston, you will always want a Boston.

    As for Brussels, my brother has two and they are pains in the asses. :)
     
  4. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    Funny, you mentioned that kennel. A good friend of mine has a Boston from that breeder. I would wholeheartedly reccomend a Boston for a kids dog to a RESPONSIBLE dog savvy family. My friend's Boston, Jitterbug is a phenomenal Agility dog and working on OB stuff and she is littler than the Bostons I'm used to.

    I love Brussels, they are super cute. A good friend of mine's sister breeds them and hers are lovely little dogs who ironically do a lot of 4H stuff cause my friend is a 4H leader.

    Either of those are good choices IMO.
     
  5. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    Bostons to me are basically hyperactive french bulldogs. ^^ This description I've found pretty accurate, I find them to be about as trainable comparatively as posts.
     
  6. elegy

    elegy overdogged

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    I like Bostons a lot. I could see one as being an appropriate match for your family.
     
  7. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    Kids don't know what they are doing. That's why I am pretty specific about what kind of experience I would want for a kid showing a dog. It's up to you to decide how much involvement you should have in this 4H project. IMO the kid should be doing the grand majority of training, handling, and day to day care under the at very minimum loose supervision of an adult. It doesn't mean mistakes won't happen.

    Just yesterday my niece who is 8 who is very careful with little dogs and babies jumped over the couch corner and stepped on the cocker spaniel HARD. Yelp! Lecture for the little girl about horseplay and watching where you are going in the house, and a cocker spaniel who was a little confused on what just happened but got over it. If it had been a papillon I would likely have been at the vet, very likely with a broken dog that would have possibly cost thousands to repair and possibly years to repair mentally with the dog. For the spaniel, she was over it in about ten minutes.

    Kids do stupid stuff sometimes in moments that seem random. I just think you're setting yourself and the dog up for a real headache to pick a little dog just because you think your kid would be great with dogs. Just because you're dog savvy doesn't mean your kid is and wont make a mistake - just hopefully you set your kids and pets up so their mistakes won't be potentially fatal or obscenely costly.
     
  8. redgrrl

    redgrrl New Member

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    I'd highly recommend a Boston Terrier. For what you want, it sounds like a perfect fit. They are smart as hell and eager to please, which makes for quick and easy training. Uber-low maintenance grooming, sturdy, fun-loving, unbelievably devoted and affectionate.

    My own Boston is wonderful with kids, as are many others that I know of personally. My dog's father is actually a service dog for a five yr old boy.

    It also doesn't hurt to consider how many times I get stopped by older people while out with Bowie. Over and over, I've heard people telling me their fond memories of Bostons they grew up with. Obviously the Boston/Child pairing has been successful for generations. :)
     
  9. stafinois

    stafinois Professional Nerd

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    So, any family with children shouldn't own anything under 40 lbs? Do you say the same thing about cats? Cats could get hurt, too. So could another baby, so perhaps people should stick to one child. Come to think of it, my husband and I have stepped on the cat before. Maybe adults shouldn't own small dogs, either.

    Yes, accidents can happen, and kids can be wild. But, I was a vet tech for 13 years. I saw lots of families with small dogs, and the vast majority of them somehow live lives without getting broken by the kids in the house.

    Curious, have you ever actually spent time around children that were raised in homes where they were taught to behave properly?
     
  10. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    You're being a little over dramatic.... Just wee bit...

    I have spent lots of time with lots of kids well behaved and otherwise. TYVM. Kids at some point in the day will behave like children, sometimes they might even break something, they might disobey you, even if you say the word careful they might be clumsy. *shock and horror* I guess my warning is to just be realistic about who your kid is and how your dog perceives it. The kid should be allowed to make a mistake without it being the end of the world, breaking your dog's leg because of the minor mistake of stepping on his foot to some, might be a pretty big event. I know for the small dog it certainly would be.

    I didn't say under 40 lbs. I said small. I mean small. As in small with fine bone. Papillons, chihuahuas, yorkies, italian greyhounds, etc.

    As far as cats until recently I didn't live with them. I haven't really formulated an opinion one way or the other about it. Fendi is a pretty tough big gnarly cat, really she's about double the size of Vinnie in all directions.

    I know you're a vet tech. I can tell you how many papillon breeders in the last 3 years I've known where dogs/puppies are returned to them with broken legs that the new owner couldn't afford to fix or long term care after an "incident" but that's not what this is about. It's about setting yourself up for success and IMO getting a dog that matches the job/lifestyle. IMO a papillon isn't it, imo a beagle, a teckel, a cocker, or even a shiba would be a better choice for a smaller size dog with a kid in mind. I just don't think it's a great idea because that small isn't really THAT necessary. There are a ton of slightly larger options that are just as trainable, just as fun, and not as traumatically easily breakable. But hey, do what you want - this one disagreeing voice on the internet isn't going to stop you. :D
     
  11. Danefied

    Danefied New Member

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    This is really true. There's a reason that the traditionally kid friendly breeds are not in the toy group.
     
  12. stafinois

    stafinois Professional Nerd

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    And, you aren't? In my experience, I don't think little dogs get creamed by kids nearly as often as you imply is going to happen. I have known lots and lots of little dogs personally and professionally that live with small children. In fact when I think back to dogs that we did have to do surgery on for broken limbs, I don't remember any that weren't in adult only homes.



    Yes, Beagles, Dachshunds bred for blood tracking, and Shibas are exactly what come to mind when I think "competitive obedience." There are a few who do well, sure, but I think we can all admit that they aren't the norm. I think the chances of us not breaking a small dog is a lot higher than finding a biddable dog with good work ethic in those breeds. A Cocker, maybe. But, like one of the reasons that I shy away from Papillons, they have too much hair.

    I am confidant that a small dog would survive our family now, and six years from now she will be even more mature and reasonable. I think that we will be fine. It's not even remotely set in stone anyway. This is just musing.
     
  13. stafinois

    stafinois Professional Nerd

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    Working bred Malinois are also not known for being excellent choices for homes with children, yet somehow we managed to keep him from eating the baby for 3.5 years.
     
  14. ~Tucker&Me~

    ~Tucker&Me~ and Spy.

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    Well, you asked for opinions, you are getting them... People are going to disagree, it happens.

    Anyway, I tend to agree with the people saying avoid a tiny, fine-boned dog. You can argue all you want about it not happening and fair enough if you decide to go that route, I just personally don't think it is worth the risk and that a slightly larger, thicker dog is better suited to the job. Plus, being able to rough-house and play with the dog is half the fun! A slightly larger dog is just that much hardier and more 'rough and tumble' friendly for the kids.

    I like the suggestion of miniature poodle or the right shelter mutt. In this case, I would also look more into getting a young adult dog rather than a pup :)
     
  15. ~Tucker&Me~

    ~Tucker&Me~ and Spy.

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    That's interesting, maybe there is a specific breeder in your area that is producing dogs who are a little different from the standard ACD. All of the ones I have met and interacted with out here would be, imo, highly unsuitable for all but the most dog savvy teenagers (I don't think a kid could handle them). They are much, much edgier than BC's and most I have seen were similar size wise, if not a bit 'thicker'. I would imagine a typical BC would be much better suited than a typical ACD.

    Anyway, not to rain on that parade but from my personal experience over here with the breed, they would make unsuitable kid's dogs.

    ETA: Oh and *if* the OP was to go the cattle dog route, I would highly recommend going for an adult so you could see exactly what you were getting into and make sure the dog was relatively bomb-proof and appropriate for the situation.
     
  16. stafinois

    stafinois Professional Nerd

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    If I was looking for an ACD, I would go to a breeder that health tests and has had dogs that have done well in competitive obedience and with junior handlers. Hillhaven dogs come to mind. But, I'm not looking for an ACD at this point.

    Believe it or not, I actually have experience successfully obtaining, training, and handling dogs :)
     
  17. Georgygirl

    Georgygirl Uffda!

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    Bostons can be great with kids given the proper training and I think would fit your needs well. My Joey is a celebrity among my mother's daycare kids. He even helped one little boy get over his fear of dogs. He lets them pet him and play with his toys. He'll do all his tricks for them and they give him cheerios for rewards. They will take him for walks and he's the perfect gentleman on a leash. Bostons really are a fun little breed.
     
  18. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    Just to play devils advocate.. people say all sorts of things about JRTs... BUT loads of kids, even little kids do the junior handling with JRTs. They are a lot of dog too, yes they are smaller. But I have seen 4 year olds in the ring with well trained JRTs. Darien has been handling Kaiden since he was 5 and ran AAC juniors with Kaiden when he was 6. No I wouldnt' have handed him Dekka to handle on a show ground. But he was fine with Kaiden.

    Darien would have very little trouble with an ACD even an edgy one. Sport is a lot of dog, and somewhat reactive too. He is your typically badly bred BC with loads of drive, little impulse control, bad social skills and insecurity. However Darien handles him beautifully and understands his dog. (Darien is now 11) I think people don't credit kids enough. A kid from a dog savvy home is likely better equipped to handle a difficult dog (not that I think they should) that the average person. On that note I don't see an issue with a toy breed. Darien is careful and good with puppies and small dogs. Dog savvy parents usually raise dog savvy kids.
     
  19. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    We've had Paps, Chi's, shih tzus, toy Poodles and Yorkies in 4H and none have been broken by the kids. I see Paps in the Junior ring at shows all the time too. Look at all these kids with Paps!

    [​IMG]

    This thread has an odd tone of "the sky is falling" concerning dogs and kids. IME it isn't only possible for dogs and kids to get along but it happens all the time. Even dogs who have a less than ideal temperament can do well in 4H or Juniors. Most 4H kids take their family dog, which has not been selected or raised as potential sport dogs. And if the kids are into it, the dogs generally do just fine with some work (some more than others LOL). The biggest issues I have had with dogs and kids in 4H has been the dog is too bonded the parents to work for the child or the dog is so low drive or so easily stressed from being out and about that they won't do anything. Both of those issues can be overcome with training, management and time in most dogs if the families are interested.

    Not everything is worst case scenario :) Aimee is obviously experienced and knowledgeable, why would anyone assume she'll get a dog which is poorly suited for her family?
     
  20. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    Stafi asked an opinion and I gave it. Feel free to do or not do whatever you wish with it. I stick by the opinion.

    It's really not about the sky is falling to me it's like someone saying they want to herd sheep and someone recommending a basset hound. We have breeds far more suited to the span of hypothetical situations related to herding so why not go with one of those? Not that a basset hound somewhere couldn't herd sheep, just like a bulldog somewhere could be a water retriever, just like a pekinese somewhere probably could do agility-I just don't recommend any of those breeds for those purposes because there are far better choices available for the purpose in mind IMO.

    Just like I don't recommend a papillon with a kid as a primary care giver or handler. To me it's not that it can't be done, I just feel that it shouldn't be done for probably 95% of the kids I see throughout the week. Everyone who tells me their kid is special and raised right - still has a kid, who will behave like a kid from time to time.

    So for further reference
    From Forevr papillons
    From the papillon club of america
    From the papillon (butterfly dog) club UK:
     

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