I have been accused of being a breed profiler. In many ways I suppose I am. I have seen way too many dogs destroyed, bounced from home to home, or end up in a shelter on a euthanasia list simply because they can’t change who they are, who they were born to be. Breed profiling could have prevented the stress this causes the dog and the person who couldn’t handle the dog.

I believe that dog breeds are both physically and mentally bred for specific purposes. Genetically programmed to act and behave in certain ways. A good example of this is the Labrador Retriever. They were bred to RETRIEVE. Shepherds and Rottweilers, originally bred as large livestock herding dogs, are also protectors. This is what they were genetically programmed to do. This is who they are.

It’s all in how they are raised??

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “it’s all in how they’re raised”. Well, if you’re looking for a jogging partner, a huge fluffy Great Pyrenees may not be the best choice. Regardless of how they are raised, a Great Pyrenees with their double/triple coat and lumbering body, is not going to be a good jogging partner. Are there exceptions to the rule? Yes, of course there are exceptions, but not as a general rule. Instead of falling in love with pretty blue eyes or huge fluffy coat, the better question to ask before deciding on a dog breed is “what dog will fit my lifestyle?” Long haired dogs need consistent brushing and grooming. Working dogs need to be mentally and physically exercised daily and some more than once a day. Seriously, they don’t call them Malingators (Belgian Malinois) for nothing…

Do your research!

In addition to doing research on your breed of choice, call breed specific rescues in your area and get a better insight on what that breed needs from you to make life wonderful for both you and the dog. They can usually tell you why it didn’t work out with the dogs previous home. AKC has some pretty good info on each breed as well as categorizing them. Dog Breeds – Types Of Dogs – American Kennel Club (akc.org)

I always encourage everyone to consider adopting from a shelter or rescue organization before going to a breeder. There are way too many good dogs, and yes, a lot of pure-bred dogs, in shelters everywhere simply because of who that dog was bred to be, and it wasn’t a match for the person who wanted it because they liked the physical appearance.