Are you in dilemma and not sure if adopting a large dog for your family is a good idea. I’ve been there as I also thought hard about this and consulted widely before we got out Mufi, a Great Dane breed.
Talking of Great Danes…
The largest dog as confirmed by the Guinness World Record was a Great Dane called Zeus and it stretched 7 feet 5 inches. That’s the height of a basketball hoop! Obviously, this was an exceptional dog and not the average large dog.
An average large dog is still very big. It weighs more than 50 pounds and is as tall as 2 feet at the shoulder. Large dogs are usually defined by their weight and not height. The most common large breeds are Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, Boxers, and Rottweilers.
Behaviors and characteristics of large dogs in a family setting:
If you’re considering adopting or buying a large dog for your family, you should know that each dog breed has unique behaviors and characteristics. For example, some large breeds are very active and need a lot of exercises, while others are more laid back. Some breeds are also more friendly toward other pets and children, while others may be more reserved.
Are Large dogs good for families?
The answer is yes and no. It all depends on the family’s lifestyle and the specific breed of dog. Some large breeds are better suited for families than others. For example, Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers are typically very friendly toward children and other pets. German Shepherds and Boxers can also be good family dogs, but they may need more training and socialization to be comfortable around children. Rottweilers are usually not recommended for families with small children, as they can be aggressive toward smaller animals.
Each breed of dog has its own unique set of behaviors and characteristics, so it’s important to do your research before adoption or purchase. Talk to a veterinary behaviorist or animal shelter worker to get recommendations for specific breeds that would be a good fit for your family.
Defining family Setting
When we talk about family dogs, we generally mean dogs that are good with children. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the dog is a lapdog or cuddler; it just means that the dog is tolerant of kids and won’t snap or bite when they get too close.
Factors to consider before getting a large dog for your family:
Friendliness towards other pets:
Unfortunately, not all dogs get along with other animals. This is often due to the fact that they were not properly socialized as puppies, but it can also be a result of genetics. If you have other pets in your home, you’ll want to make sure that the large breed dog you’re considering is good with other animals.
Some large dog breeds that fight with cats, for example, include Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, and Chow Chows. However, there are also some large breeds that get along famously with cats, such as Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers. If you’re not sure whether a particular breed is good with other animals, your best bet is to consult with a veterinarian or animal behaviorist.
Friendliness towards children:
Of course, you’ll also want to make sure that the large breed dog you’re considering is good with kids. This is especially important if you have young children in your home. Some large breeds that are known for being particularly patient and tolerant with kids include Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, and Boxers.
Conversely, there are some large breeds that are not particularly good with kids, such as Rottweilers and Doberman Pinschers. Again, if you’re not sure whether a particular breed is good with children, your best bet is to consult with a veterinarian or animal behaviorist.
Some large breeds are very active and need a lot of exercise. If you live in a small home or don’t have a lot of time for walks and playtime, it’s important to choose a breed with a lower energy level. Some energetic dogs that can even mull your little kids include Border Collies and Australian Shepherds.
-Drooling and shedding:
Some large breeds drool and shed more than others. If you’re not a fan of dog hair, it’s important to choose a breed that doesn’t shed excessively. Some large-size dogs that drool include Newfoundlands and Saint Bernards.
Some large breeds are known for being vocal. If you live in an apartment or have close neighbors, it’s important to choose a breed that doesn’t bark excessively. You may want to avoid loud barkers such as the Beagle and the Basset Hound.
-Training and obedience:
Some large breeds are easier to train than others. If you’re looking for a dog that will obey your commands, it’s important to choose a breed that is intelligent and easy to train. Some large-breed dogs that are easy to train are the Labrador Retriever and the Golden Retriever.
-Cost of ownership:
Large dogs require more food and may need more expensive medical care than smaller breeds. It’s important to consider the cost of food, toys, and veterinary care before adoption or purchase. Mix breed dogs from large dogs have lower healthcare cost as they have less health issues compared to purebred.
What about the first-time owner of large dogs?
If you’re a first-time owner of a large dog, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
First of all, you’ll need to make sure that you have enough space for your new pet. Large dogs need plenty of room to run and play, so if you live in a small apartment, it’s probably not the best idea to get a large breed dog.
You’ll also need to have enough space for all of your large dog’s gear, including its food and water bowls, bed, toys, and so on.
Another thing to keep in mind if you’re a first-time owner of a large dog is that you’ll need to make sure it gets enough exercise. Large dogs are very active, and if they don’t get enough exercise, they can become bored and destructive.
You’ll need to commit to taking your large dog for at least one long walk every day, and preferably two or three. If you don’t have time for daily walks, you might want to consider hiring a dog walker or taking your large dog to doggy daycare.
Last but not least, you’ll need to make sure that you’re prepared to train your large dog. Large dogs can be stubborn, and if they’re not properly trained, they can quickly become out of control.
You’ll need to be patient and consistent with your large dog’s training, and you might want to consider enrolling it in an obedience class.
You may also want to invest in top-quality bark collars for large dogs
Reap the benefits:
Despite the challenges that come with owning a large breed dog, there are also many rewards. Large breed dogs are loyal and loving companions, and they can bring a lot of joy to your life.
If you’re prepared to provide your large dog with the space, exercise, and training it needs, then you’re sure to reap the rewards of owning one of these wonderful animals.
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Hi there! My name is Ben Domb, an owner of two pets and I am one of the co-founders of OurPets HQ. I have several years of experience as a pet care professional in the New England region having spent time in various roles including a stint at a veterinary hospital in Upstate New York, Syracuse area. I am a certified pet care professional and mostly spend my time researching pet nutrition and sharing my thoughts in various blogs and columns. With quarantine and COVID restrictions, I have been spending a lot of time a lot with my dogs and cat and loving it! I also run a small consulting business providing advice to parents on pet nutrition, and especially safe homemade options to try. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org