My coworker bought a beagle for his two young sons. They adore him and have not had any problems or difficulty caring for him. Also, the good old standby, a labrador retriever. If well trained, they are great family pets. Look for rescue groups online.
I think the perfect dog for someone who's never owned a dog is a shelter dog. As this is your first dog, read up on the subject, and make sure you invest in obedience training. Every dog needs a good bout of obedience training (Bowen included)
I have goldens, and they are much more calmer than my brothers labs, but are still very playful. Mine with never having been around small children till they were around 7 months old, and they meet this 3 year old girl that they play with, they are very careful and let her do anything she wants to them not snappy or anything
I have never adopted a dog from a shelter/rescue group/pound, etc... Maybe you should. A 12yr old is mature, although obviously not an adult. That being said they are capable and able to undertake many responsibilites. Please consider most mixed breeds. Pure breeds...unaware of your environment but most people/families cannot go wrong with Labs and Golden Retrievers. German Shepards are fantastic, they will make you all work but what you get back will be wonderful. I am partial to the big dogs, however I love and respect all, they're many great smaller breeds out there American Pit Bull Terriers, Beagles, Cocker Spaniels. A retired Greyhound in the right circumstance could be a wonderful family addition. Have fun and good luck
if you have never owned a dog before and this is for your child to start out with I would not recomend a pit bull. While they are awesome dogs they require a lot of work and since you have said you never owned a dog before I do not think this would be a good breed to start out with. Plus they are not a small breed of dog.
I have to disagree with pitsanddobes. A jack russell is not a good "first dog" because they are so high strung. If you can't keep up with their high level of energy then they are going to find their own means of releasing it which usually mean chewing and digging. Plus they can be snappy especially around children. I'm a vet tech and the best family dogs we see are goldens. They are laid back yet capable enough of keeping up with a family with children. You just have to be willing enough to constantly run the vacuum as they shed quite a bit. I own an American Staffordshore Terrier and while I would advise a first time owner to do their research about the breed along with American Pit Bull Terriers I would recommed them to a first time owner. They require very little upkeep and they are GREAT around children.
How often are you going to be around??? 12 year olds even though they think they have it figured out are a step behind. It all comes down to how much attention your family/you can provide this special dog. Widowed Grandmas have owned Mastiffs. most likely pit bulls also. what you put in you will get back. Nobody ever said it would be easy. What is? Granted this should be a happy situation i apologize for my gruff tone...if you are here and asking for advice you are a friend. Minnesota sends its good blessings.
"Wats a good starting dog that is easy enough for a 12 year old to take care of?"
There's a problem with that question...no dog is "easy" to take care of. All dogs take work to stay happy and healthy. It's sort of like raising a child...no one should go into parenthood if they're not willing to work hard at it.
You have to consider how much time you're willing to invest before buying any dog. You have to take into consideration that all dogs need house training if kept indoors, a proper diet, veterinary care, obedience training, etc. If you're looking for an easy pet, get a cat or a gold fish. They pretty much take care of themselves. A dog is a major commitment for someone of any age.
Actually I'd neither recommend pit bull terriers or jack russell terriers. First off, I don't know many first time dog owners that are really prepared to deal with the possible extreme dog aggression issues that can come up with having a pit bull terriers. That alone makes them a breed that is inappropriate for a first time dog owner IMHO even though they do make excellent family pets.
Regarding JRTs? I'd no more recommend one of those to a first time dog owner than I would a border collie or an australian cattle dog, and for the same reasons. These dogs are highly intellighent and have insane working drive. If they don't have a job they will make one. And again, most first time dog owners aren't prepared to deal with the ingenuity and working levels of these dogs.
I would have to say Golden Retrievers I have 2 and my son is twelve and they are his best friends. Labs are also good but any that I have had experience with are very hyper and you would have to have alot af activity.
I also would not recommend the APBT as a first time dog especially for a 12year old.Pitties have a tendancy to be very animal aggressive and the owner of one needs to know how to handle that situation properly and they are very high energy with a high prey drive.I own two of them and though the breed makes a great family pet you have to devote ALOT of time for training and socializing.You have to keep a pitties mind busy.You definately need some experince with dogs to own this breed.The one thing this breed dont need is another inexperinced owner.
Now for a pure bred pup depending on the size of dog you want,i think i would say a great dane or saint bernard........ smaller....i would say beagle or basset hound or pug.I dont know much about those breeds just know some people who own them.
But in all honesty......you can find wonderful furever friends at your local shelters and they make fabulous pets!
Hi and Welcome! If you don't mind a mixed breed ( some are purebred) I would try the shelter or a resuce group in your area. Some of the dogs are already housebroke and more mellow if they are past the pup stage. Much easier to handle for the first time dog owner. In MN our shelters and resuces are very helpful in helping match a dog or pup to the family and could help you find a training class that would be fun for your child and new companion to go to. Good luck. ( PS, I wouldn't get a jack russel for your first dog, they can be a handful) My neighbor has a couple of Schnauzers(sp) and they are great dogs and med in size.
***Edited By: jeanief on 3/7/2005 11:25:52 AM*** Reason: added
"I own an American Staffordshore Terrier and while I would advise a first time owner to do their research about the breed along with American Pit Bull Terriers I would recommed them to a first time owner. They require very little upkeep and they are GREAT around children."
I am professional dog trainer and I have to say from expierence that most people that have owned dogs all their lives are not prepared to handle this breed. This is not a good dog for a childs first pet especially one whom has a parent that has never owned a dog.
As for the Jack Russell yes they are very energetic dogs but I beg to differ they are not nippy dogs. We have had and workd with many of them. Their energy level is what makes them good for children. Children have more enrergy then we do and Jack Russell love to play. They are also very easy to train. Sorry but I would not recomend any large breed dog for this situation.