Find the perfect pooch by considering personality traits — yours and his!
THAT GIFT-GIVING TIME of year is rapidly approaching. If you’re thinking about getting someone in your family a present that has four legs and barks, be sure to choose the breed that’s the right match.
It’s all fine and well to opt for a cute or fashionable dog, as long as that dog’s personality and energy level are in harmony with his or her human companions. Answer the following in terms of yourself or as the person upon whom you are bestowing a pup.
What personality traits do you have? Are you affable, in a good mood most of the time and happy to meet new people? A toy dog (such as a toy poodle, cocker spaniel or terrier) or bird dog (such as a golden or Labrador retriever) might be a perfect fit. If you’re on the upper end of the IQ scale and would like a dog with matching intelligence, look into a herding or working breed (such as a German shepherd or border collie). Extroverts may do well with an English sheepdog.
To help you choose a pet that’s on the same wavelength as you (or your giftee), here is a list by energy level of some common breeds and their generalized traits. But remember, there are no guarantees when it comes to a dog’s personality.
A note of caution: When you’re making your decision, don’t kid yourself into thinking that owning a frisky dog will make you an energetic person. That’s an unlikely scenario.
Airedale terrier: intensely curious, easily distracted, outgoing, playful, self-confident, stubborn
Australian shepherd: cautious, demanding of time and attention, loyal, eager to please, protective, quick to learn, reserved
Boxer: animated, courageous, dominant, loyal, playful, reliable, sensitive, headstrong
Dalmation: demanding, dependable, headstrong, high-spirited, independent, intelligent, loyal, territorial
Golden retriever: Cheerful, attention-loving, eager to please, easily distracted, gentle, slow to mature, social, submissive
Irish setter: affectionate, easily distracted, happy-go-lucky, high-spirited, impulsive, sociable, willful
Jack Russell terrier: affectionate, alert, excitable, headstrong, independent, intelligent, playful, mischievous
Labrador retriever: enthusiastic, friendly, good-natured, independent, slow to mature
Basset hound: friendly, gentle, good-natured, laid-back, sensitive, slow to obey, stubborn
Bulldog: easygoing, dependable, possessive, single-minded, good-natured, tenacious,
Chow chow: aloof, independent, intelligent, introverted, mannerly, strong-willed
Mastiff: dignified, docile, good-natured, sensitive, headstrong, timid
Shih tzu: attention-loving, devoted, friendly, mildly stubborn, playful, good-natured
Saint Bernard: accepting of everyone, gentle, intelligent, loyal, relaxed, slow to mature, social
Pekingese: independent, loyal, polite with strangers, possessive, sensitive, stubborn
By Sandie Lampe