Picking and choosing

Boy; I have a houseful of exhausted dogs. The weekend started early; Wednesday afternoon and the dogs had their usually weekend runs Thurs, Fri., Sat. and Sunday so there pooped. Today is their usual day off but they need it more than normal this morning. I've been to the gym; now back home and preparing a yummy high calorie breakfast for the hounds.

This morning I wanted to talk about temperament again; I know I talk about it alot but with all the puppies around it's been on my mind more than normal. First let me say that I am highly impressed with breeders who wait until their puppies are 7 weeks old; and after the temperament test to place them. It doesn't mean that the puppies are going to their home at 7 weeks; just that they are assigned their very own family at that age.

Temperament is one of the most important factors when choosing a puppy. And even more so if you already have a dog or two at home. Lots of people have lots of dogs that get along great; it is wonderful when dogs mesh in a home. But often they don't mesh and perhaps a better look into temperament could have achieved a better outcome. Typically I like a puppy who is very people oriented; I love to see a waggy puppy when they approach a human and I like to see a bit of submission; a small ear drop or slight tail being lowered as well.

I tend to skip over the more independant dogs; but that does not mean they aren't or won't be wonderful. Many people want a more independant type. Some puppies have higher drive than others; and if you are going to be doing any sort of performance activities then these are the pups you want to look at. If you are interested in doing therapy work then again you will want the people dog; not fearful, a bit adventurous but definitely loves to be touched, turned over and snuggled.

Now as far as bringing home a second, third or fourth dog; this is where it gets tougher. You are going to be looking for a puzzle piece. Now if you are lucky and have a very neutral typical dog at home then choosing isn't as hard. But, if you have a dominant type dog at home you want to steer as far away from dominant or pushy as you can get. Putting the pieces of your family puzzle together is not always easy but with patience; you'll find them all. :)

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