My husband and I have been preparing to get a puppy for about 9 months now and it is almost time. I have researched so many different breeds, thought about what characteristics I want in a dog, and read practically every book in my library about dogs. I narrowed down a few breeds and read everything I could get my hands on about them. The breeds I am most interested in having is Newfoundland and GSD but I also love aussies, labs, goldens, great danes, and boxers. Then I realized I really wanted to adopt a dog from the shelter after finding out that my local shelter has more than a 90% euthanasia rate. I visited the mobile adoption clinic over the weekend and spent a little time with some puppies (and older dogs) and spoke with some volunteers for quite some time. What I really want is a puppy but would consider an adult dog if we "clicked". So today I went up to the shelter to look at puppies and it was an okay experience. I brought my husband and 3 year old daughter (the volunteer advised me to bring her) and we went into the adoption area. We looked at each cage but it was so overwhelming for all of. We took some of the puppies to the play yard to see how they acted and all of them bit at my daughter's shorts and shirt and that really turned my husband off. They were 2-3 months old. Is this normal puppy behavior or is this a personality trait? We took some out individually and others out in pairs and they all just jumped and scratched her and bit at her. We took out an adult lab that was labeled as "good with kids" and she seemed calm until she got around my daughter, then she jumped and pawed at her. She definitely liked kids but she was probably better suited for older kids that would enjoy wrestling. We also took out a 6 month old GSD/lab mix and he basically ignored us the entire time. He was relatively calm and allowed my husband to man handle him but he wouldn't give us the time of day. I told my husband he wasn't very people-oriented and that wasn't what we wanted. We left after that because my daughter was getting sleepy and wasn't in the best of moods anymore. I don't know what I expected but I was really let down by the whole experience. I didn't fall for any of the puppies but I did really like the first lab mix but he was the pup that bit at my daughter the most. How do you choose a puppy in that kind of environment? It didn't help that a few of the puppies had poo covering their paws and therefore I didn't want to get them out and the rest where wet from water (or pee) and we reeked when we left. I literally had to shower when I got home, I smelled that bad. Is this normal for a shelter? I know they are probably doing all they can and the volunteers were very nice and seemed to enjoy what they were doing. I still want to adopt a puppy, I just need some guidance so that I end up with a dog my whole family will enjoy. Maybe we should try another shelter? Or wear more appropriate clothing next time we go? And leave my daughter home until I narrow it down to one or two dogs we like and then go get her? Any and all advice is very welcome.