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Select your new dog with your lifestyle and living situation dog.pngin mind. In addition to your new family member's personality, consider its temperament, size, and coat as well. Some breeds have traits that may be objectionable in certain circumstances, such as hyper excitability or a tendency to bark. Your veterinarian is a valuable resource and should be consulted before you acquire a pet of any kind.

Breed Selection

There are two types of dogs--purebred and mixed breed. The 124 recognized breeds are grouped into seven categories: hound, working, terrier, toy, sporting, non-sporting, and herding. There are thousands of mixed-breed combinations. Each purebred or mixed-breed dog has a unique personality. Dogs originally bred for a specific purpose tend to retain these characteristics. These dogs may require additional training and patience. Selecting a specific breed does not guarantee a particular behavior, but choosing offspring from animals with desirable temperaments does increase one's chances of getting the best pet. Mixed breeds can be as beautiful, intelligent, loving, and companionable as purebreds.Veterinarians, breed-specific books (usually available at libraries and pet stores), and dog shows are excellent sources of information about individual breed characteristics and needs.

Friend or Protector?

Most dogs, even tiny ones, bark when strangers approach their home or yard. This bark is usually enough to deter intruders. A pet should not be trained as an attack dog. Attack-trained dogs require special handling and knowledge to prevent accidental injury to people, including members of your own family.

  • Selecting a Puppy or Older Dog

    Selecting A Puppy A new puppy can be a terrific addition to a family, but with the fun comes responsibility for its care and well-being. Consider and prepare for your puppy's needs before you adopt! Pick a puppy that is active, friendly, and inquisitive. Avoid the one that appears to be afraid of everything

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  • Winter Dangers for Pets

    Image of a dog sniffing plates of food left out on a table. Winter is a time of cold weather festivals, holiday parties, and changing weather. For pets and pet owners, this season can bring its own unique set of challenges and hazards. Keeping your pet safe during this time of year will require some ...

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  • Traveling with Pets

    Image of a seatbelt strap securing a pet carrier in a car. According to a survey of pet owners by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), more than 53% of dog and cats will travel with their owners. With the upcoming busy travel season, what are the best ways of traveling with your best friend? It ...

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  • Strange Things in Pets' Stomachs

    X-ray image of random items in a dog's stomach. Ask your family veterinarian to talk about what he or she has found inside the stomachs of dogs and you will be in for an afternoon of stories. For a variety of reasons, our canine pets seem to enjoy gobbling up the oddest things! Recently, a leading manufacturer ...

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  • Bred Specific Rescue Groups

    Image of two women petting a large dog in a kitchen. Many dog owners admire the unique looks and personalities of purebreds, but also worry about the fate of millions of pets euthanized each year. What many people don't realize is that there are specific breed rescue organizations for almost every breed ...

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  • Puppies and Kittens as Holiday Gifts?

    Image of puppies sitting in a room. Christmas time advertisements often picture a happy family with a bright eyed, ribbon adorned puppy licking the children's faces. But, is giving a pet as a gift likely to create a winter wonderland or a potential blue Christmas? It may be an honored and even adorable ...

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  • Pet-Friendly Exercises Offer Benefits for Both You and Your Pet

    Looking for a devoted workout partner? Consider exercising with your pet. ...

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  • Pet Proofing Your Home

    Image of a woman, her toddler daughter, and their dog. Your home is a haven and a place of safety for you and for your pet. But, inside every house are poisons, dangers, and hazards that can injure your dog or cat. Here are some helpful tips to help keep your pet safe and out of the emergency room! According ...

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  • Pet Internet Sources

    Image of woman on a laptop. We live in an age of almost instantaneous information. 24-hour news stations, talk radio, and the Internet have revolutionized the way we think and educate ourselves. It is easier than ever to research a topic and make decisions about almost any subject, even the medical ...

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  • People Food for Pets

    Image of dog sitting by a person's feet. On a low carb diet? Planning on sharing some of those low calorie dessert treats with your canine friends? STOP! That sugar-free snack you think is good for you and your dog could actually send you to the veterinarian The sugar substitute, Xylitol, has ...

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  • Online Pet Pharmacies - Saving Money or Risk to Your Pets?

    Image of hands holding a cat. Their ads promise to save you lots of money and even "a stressful trip to the veterinarian". You are encouraged by slick video and professional announcers to purchase flea medications, pain relief drugs and even heartworm prevention all from the comfort of your living room ...

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