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Seeing Past Cuteness When Selecting the Best Dog Breed For You: Part 1 of 3

Are there so many great dog breeds out there that you just can't decide where to begin? If so, let's break it down and sort through all the options. Over a series of 3 unscientific articles, we'll begin by looking at the seven Groups of dogs that are acknowledged by the American Kennel Club. We'll learn what commonalities bring various breeds together to form a Group. Learning about each Group will narrow down our search for the best Breed(s) for us.

How to Use this Guide: Highlight each piece of information that is most important to you and compare the number of highlighted traits when you have finished reading about each Group.

Group: Sporting

Group Traits: Point; Set; Retrieve; Enjoy Water; Mouthy

Likes: People; Other dogs

Dislikes: Being left alone; Not having a job

Behavior Indoors: Normal to Active

Behavior Outdoors: Active

Physicality: Moderate to High

Territoriality: Low to Moderate

Relations with Children: Very good

Relations with Strangers: Very good

Relations with Dogs: Good

Relations with Other Animals: Good to low (prey drive)

Guard dog inclinations: Low

Vocalization: Low to Medium (vocal whining when lonely)

Group: Hound

Group Traits: Visually or Scent oriented; Speed; Digger

Likes: Working

Dislikes: Boredom

Behavior Indoors: Low to moderate

Behavior Outdoors: Active

Physicality: Moderate

Territoriality: Low to moderate

Relations with Children: Good

Relations with Strangers: Good

Relations with Dogs: Good

Relations with Other Animals: May chase (prey drive)

Guard dog inclinations: Low

Vocalization: Moderate to High (high when working or excited)

Part 2 in this series will discuss the following Groups: Working Dogs, Terriers, and Toy Dogs.

*Note: Use this information as a general guide at best. The most we can hope to offer is a stereotypical overview of what you might be able to expect, or what you may want to look for, in dogs in each Group. Breeds and individual dogs in each Group can vary greatly in traits and personalities.

The author has worked with dogs and dog people for two decades, advocating for smart selections before a new dog is brought into a home and always stressing responsible selection and ownership for the good of the dog, the family and the community. She also makes dog and cat art available to the companion animal industry and to animal lovers at http://www.GreatandSmallGallery.com

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