Knowing Your Dog's Personality

There are some instances when opposites definitely do not attract. Such is the case when choosing a new dog. Before you decide to add one to your family, be sure to study up on the common personality traits of your potential pup's breed. Here are some of the most popular breeds to help you get started.

Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terriers are excellent dogs for very active people. They are small, but filled with lots of energy. They are very intelligent and independent, but they also require special attention and training to keep them from become hyperactive. Once trained, though, they are dependable, loving and fun to be around. Jack Russell Terriers are known for their spunky and lively behavior, and although they do well in apartments, their curious personalities are best suited for a yard where they can explore and play.

Golden Retriever

Golden Retrievers are known to be one of the kindest and gentlest of all breeds. They are friendly and carefree and can stay entertained for hours simply by playing fetch. Their patience and willingness to learn makes training relatively easy; however, their openness to strangers does not make them the best guard dogs. Generally speaking, this well-mannered, handsome breed is indeed "golden."

Basset Hound

If an adorable, easygoing dog is what you're looking for, the Basset Hound is the breed for you. Basset Hounds are known for their droopy demeanor that is irresistibly cute. They are also known for being very well behaved and calm, and their excellent sense of smell makes them great hunters. Their laid-back attitude can often lead to stubbornness, so training may be difficult in the beginning. They also may "talk" in low, mumbling sounds until they get what they want. And because they are so endearing, don't be surprised if you find yourself giving in.

Doberman Pinscher

With a broad chest and muscular body, the Doberman Pinscher can be likened to a powerful bodyguard. They are very intelligent, and despite their sheer strength and intimidation, they are quite easy to train as long as they have an assertive owner to lead them. Dobermans are very active and require a regular amount of exercise. With the necessary amount of exercise, though, they are normally very calm and friendly pets for all people, young and old. They remain loyal and protective of their owners and make great family pets.

Shih Tzu

If you are looking for a pet to spoil, the Shih Tzu may be right for you. Known for their long, silky hair, the Shih Tzu is one of the most popular of the Toy breeds. They are very playful and often mischievous, but very loving and social. Their alertness and love for barking makes them great watchdogs, but they can often get snappy and bite if not properly trained. They do not need lots of exercise, but they do require more grooming than most breeds, especially if their hair is kept long. They require much attention and may not be suitable for families with small children, as they are known to have a jealous streak.

There are many breeds and mixes to choose from when adding a pet to your family, and knowing how your personalities mix will keep you from having any surprises later.