Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I want a dog

Lately I've become slightly obsessed with wanting a dog. It's even gotten to the point where I'll catch myself thinking that maybe a Chihuahua would be okay . . . and then reality steps back in and reminds me that I don't actually like tiny dogs. What I'd really like is an English Mastiff--big, adorable, sweet tempered, and not-so-likely to spend the whole day barking/jumping up and down. Not so crazy about the drool but hey, everything has its downside. I love the gentle giants, what can I say?
Reality raising its ugly head again says that there's no way I can afford a mastiff in the near future or that one would be suited to my current lifestyle. I acknowledge this. Still want one though. Someday off in the distant future I will get one. :)

That said, I still want a dog now. It gets lonely home alone sometimes and I'd love to have a dog to talk to and play with and attempt to train. Labs and Retrievers seem to be standard issue but I've never been particularly attracted them and would prefer to have something a little more exotic I guess, as shallow as that seems. They just seem like they're too high energy to me and/or have too much hair. I've had a dog with a long coat before and I'd rather avoid that in the future. Plus since I plan for my dog to spend a considerable portion of their time indoors with me I'd rather have a shorter coat that won't shed too much. Is that asking too much?

All I want is a nice largish female dog who is relatively calm, trained/trainable, doesn't shed or drool much (at least no more than is average), will be good with small children, maybe likes to play frisbee or something, and will be mildly protective of me. I'm not looking for a guard dog--I just want to know that she'd at least let me know that someone's inside my house. Is this so much to ask?

I've tried to research breeds on the internet but it's a case of overkill--there's so much information on such a huge range of breeds that it's hard to find any that is actually useful. Sure, breeds like German Shepherds, Labs, Spaniels show up a lot on searches but if I knew of a fairly common breed of dog that I thought would fit what I'm looking for I'm pretty sure I'd already have a dog. Instead I wind up looking through web page after web page, finding a mention of a type of dog that sounds interesting and then attempt to dig my way through all the conflicting information about the breed to try to piece together a realistic idea of what it is. I've looked at information on Samoyeds, American Eskimo Dogs, Jamthunds, Vizslas, American Bulldogs, American Pit Bull Terriers, Presa Canarios, Rottweilers, Border Collies, Australian Shepherds, and more. Those are just the more recent ones that came to mind. Some of these breeds are similiar, some are not. Some don't fit what I'm looking for physically but I'm trying to keep an open mind and realize that some of what I'm looking for is open to compromise, while others (like temperament) are not. And of course individual dogs can vary greatly from the general characteristics of a breed as well so I try to keep that in mind as well.

Anyways, I'd love to get some suggestions on any other dog breeds that might fit what I'm looking for. Or if you happen to have the perfect dog sitting next to you . . . my invisible ninjas will be seeing you. :P

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