Dog Manual

Buying A Dog

Before you buy a puppy, several factors must be taken into consideration. The size of your living quarters and the freedom that your dog will enjoy should be taken into account in selecting a breed. If you are a home owner and have a large back yard where your dog can have unlimited exercise, then the matter of breed presents no special problem. If you are confined to a small, city apartment, then it would be advisable to limit yourself to a breed of dog no larger than a Cocker Spaniel or a Fox Terrier. It is always wiser to select a purebred dog than a mongrel, because with a purebred you can have a specific idea of how your pet will look upon maturity, while, with a mongrel, you can never be sure. big>None the less, there are some people who have a special preference for mongrels and a disdain for the kind of snobbishness that often is associated with owning a purebred dog.
German Shepard

If you are one of these persons, then it can only be suggested that you make it your business to find out all you can about the parenthood of the puppy because the little bundle of fluff you acquire might grow almost to the size of a small pony—much to your dismay. In the event that you can find out nothing of the puppy's heredity, look at the size of the paws. A puppy who will grow to be a large dog will invariably have very large paws, while those destined to be of small or moderate size will have proportionately smaller ones. If for any reason you are not sure, make it a point to show the animal to a veterinarian and allow him to solve your problem.

The next point to consider is whether to get a long-haired or a short-haired dog. The prospective owner of a long-haired dog must be prepared to spend the time and money needed for properly grooming and maintaining the appearance of such an animal. The expense of clipping and bathing will could get quite expensive; further, the owner must not mind the discipline, and sometimes the sweat, of giving the dog a thorough daily combing and brushing. For people of limited means and leisure, the short-haired breeds are recommended because these require very little time and trouble, and the expense of maintaining their appearance can be kept to a minimum. Of course people still have their preferences. But with dogs, as with anything else, the discriminating use of common sense in what you buy will tend to lessen future hardships and annoyances.

The selection of a particular sex usually presents no special problem. If a person is determined to raise a family of dogs, the choice must obviously fall on a female. But so far as personality is concerned, there are no consistent differences between male and female. It is commonly said that males are somewhat more rambunctious than females and that females tend to be more docile and obedient. But the plain fact of the matter is that the behavior of the individual animal will be determined more by the training that it receives than by any differences in natural disposition due to sex. big>It is true, however, that the female will come into heat a couple of times a year for periods of three weeks each, and that these heat periods may prove rather messy and troublesome to some owners.
Irish Setter

 If the owner is the least bit squeamish in this regard, then the problem can be permanently eliminated by having the animal spayed. But even the female in heat will not be particularly annoying if the animal is obedience trained, and properly restrained by a leash while outside the confines of home. The male, on the other hand, will be on the prowl for females if permitted to run loose. So obedience training and leash restraint are just as necessary for the male as for the female. The selection of a dog according to sex, therefore, would not appear to be an especially crucial problem.
While there are no essential personality differences between the sexes, there is no doubt that some personality variations exist among the various breeds. Though rather minor, they are significant enough so that they should be inquired into in order that the particular breed can meet individual needs. This fact may be of special importance where there are children in the household. The disposition of an animal certainly must be compatible with the personality of the child. Some breeds have a tendency to be peppy, alert, excitable, or noisy, while others are generally quiet, lazy, or phlegmatic. Some are more likely to become one-man dogs, while others seem to want to encompass the whole world in their sphere. True, training of the individual animal has a lot to do with its final disposition, but tendencies certainly do exist innately. There are, however, enough breeds to satisfy almost any requirement. Any veterinarian or kennel club agency will be very happy to help you make your choice.

Once the breed has been definitely decided upon, it is advisable to get in touch with a recognized kennel club agency. If there is none available in the area where you live, you can always apply to the American Kennel Club, 221 Fourth Avenue, New York City. The kennel club will usually be very helpful and will go to great pains to put the prospective owner in touch with reliable breeders who sell animals within a suitable price range. It is especially important that the breeder be highly recommended, for occasionally breeders have been guilty of dishonest practices, though these are the exception rather than the rule. In the final analysis, however, there are reliable and unreliable dealers in all fields, and the discretion of the purchaser must ultimately decide the issue.

When the animal is purchased, a ten-day trial should be insisted upon, in order to have time to get veterinary certification of good health, and to ascertain whether the animal is of suitable disposition—that is, to find out whether the animal gets along with your family.

The reliable breeder will agree unhesitatingly to such a reasonable request. Less reliable breeders will agree to a trial of only 24 to 48 hours.


big>Since latent diseases often do not arise for several days, and since it usually takes more than a couple of days to decide whether an animal's disposition is suitable, the prospective owner is advised to proceed with extreme caution when he has only a day or two to make his final decision.

A reference list of the recognized breeds of dogs follows. The various breeds were developed to adapt these animals to different activities; to learn to distinguish one breed from another, the best method is to attend dog shows. The official publications of the American Kennel Club give detailed information on the history and standards of the various breeds.

The American Kennel Club recognizes six major classes of dog breeds, as follows:

Griffon: Wirehaired-Pointing. Pointer: German Shorthaired. Retrievers: Chesapeake Bay, Curly-Coated, Flat-Coated, Golden, Labrador. Setters: English, Gordon, Irish. Spaniels: Brittany, Clumber, Cocker, English Springer, Field, Irish Water, Sussex, Welsh Springer.

Afghan, Basset, Beagle, Bloodhound, Borzoi, Dachshund, Deer-hound (Scottish), Foxhound (American), Foxhound (English), Greyhound, Harrier, Norwegian Elkhound, Otterhound, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Saluki, Whippet, Wolfhound (Irish), Wolfhound (Russian).

These include some of the largest breeds in the dog world. They are best suited to being used as guard dogs for police or army purposes, watchdogs, herding dogs, sled dogs, etc.

Alaskan Malamute, Belgian Sheepdog, Bernese Mountain Dog, Bouvier des Flandres, Boxer, Briard, Bull-Mastiff, Collie (Rough), Collie (Smooth), Doberman Pinscher, Eskimo, German Shepherd, Great Dane, Great Pyrenees, Komondor, Kuvasz, Mastiff, Newfoundland, Old English Sheepdog, Puli, Rottweiler, Samoyede, Schnauzer (Giant), Shetland Sheepdog, Siberian Huskie, St. Ber¬nard, Welsh Corgi (Cardigan), Welsh Corgi (Pembroke).
These breeds have a sporting background. They are adapted to hunting small game, especially where a considerable amount of digging is required.

Airedale, Bedlington, Border, Bull, Cairn, Dandie Dinmont, Fox (Smooth), Fox (Wirehaired), Irish, Kerry Blue, Lakeland, Lhasa, Manchester, Norwich, Schnauzer (Miniature), Schnauzer (Standard), Scottish, Sealyham, Skye, Staffordshire, Welsh, West Highland White.

These have been bred as novelty dogs and have no work or sporting function.

Affenpinscher, Chihuahua, English Toy Spaniel, Griffon (Brussels), Italian Greyhound, Japanese Spaniel, Maltese, Mexican Hairless, Papillon, Pekingese, Pinscher (Miniature), Pomeranian, Pug, Toy Manchester Terrier, Toy Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier.

While some of these breeds have a sporting, guard-dog or hunting background, they are now bred mainly as pets. They include some of the most distinctive and handsome animals in the world of dogs.

Boston Terrier, Bulldog, Chow Chow, Dalmatian, French Bulldog, Keeshonden, Poodle, Schipperke.