Monday Open Thread

I have really slacked lately on the pet pics, so in honor of the new First Dog, here are some of your pets:

Claim your pets and consider this an open thread. I will be back later on today.






84 replies
  1. 1
    Punchy says:

    That’s my greyhound, apparently unawares that I needed a car to get her to the park, deciding to completely mud-ify herself, thereby ensuring a frustrated owner, a filthy vehicle, and five hours of cleaning. Her AND the car.

    Not to mention, how much other owners at the park pointed and laughed their ass off at me.

  2. 2
    Tom says:

    Nice picture of the pup at the Grand Canyon or other beautiful locale. Funny thing about dogs, whenever I am taking in some breathtaking vista or beautiful full moon, you look over and they are looking around for critters or smelling some dead thing. Or looking for a mud puddle to plop into.

    That’s why I haven’t taken my dogs to visit Paris or the Taj Mahal or anything. Totally wasted on them.

  3. 3
    Krista says:

    Is the dog in that first picture a Great Pyrenees? He’s GORGEOUS!

  4. 4
    Krista says:

    LOL @Punchy. I bet you had a hard time scolding her, though. She looks like she was just so damn happy, sitting in that gigantic puddle.

  5. 5
    Punchy says:

    @Krista: Nope, couldn’t scold. She hadn’t done anything wrong, officially.

    Funnier was how she got out, ran over to a random stranger for petting (as she’s want to do), and wiped a bunch of the mud onto his pants. I just shrugged my shoulders.

  6. 6
    Laura W says:

    Is that Gus Butcher in #1?

  7. 7
    Incertus says:

    I posted this a couple of days ago, but it’s still cool as hell–time lapse photography from a window on the International Space Station, including shots of an aurora as seen from the top. Just gorgeous.

  8. 8
    South of I-10 says:

    @Punchy: That picture cracks me up. I needed that on what is clearly going to be one of those Mondays.

  9. 9

    @Punchy: And I’ll bet you now keep a beach towel in the car in case she goes and gets another French mud treatment. ;-)

  10. 10
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Punchy, when you mentioned this in the other thread I thought you were being metaphorical or something.

  11. 11

    Good looking dogs all of them.

    We are in the process of adopting a pair of Newf brothers who had to be given up to a rescue group by a family that couldn;t afford them anymore. I’ll post pics when they arrive here at the farm.

    Now I’m off to IKEA so we can stimulate the economy.

  12. 12
    The Moar You Know says:

    @Punchy: That’s one o’ them thar mud dogs, ain’t it?

    She looks pleased as punch, and knows damn well that your car is going to be destroyed. Dogs can be as sneaky as cats.

  13. 13
    amorphous says:

    Oh to be as happy and blissfully unaware as the dog in the mud.

  14. 14
  15. 15
    Ash says:

    Just look at our manly president and his faithful canine running to save the captain’s life from insidious brown Mooslem bandits.

    http://i39.tinypic.com/w0hl49.jpg

    *tingles*

    [/snark]

  16. 16
    Cain says:

    @Ash:

    Just look at our manly president and his faithful canine running to save the captain’s life from insidious brown Mooslem bandits.

    http://i39.tinypic.com/w0hl49.jpg

    tingles

    [/snark]

    Why, their like the Blue Falcon and Dynamutt!!

    cain

  17. 17
    Jay says:

    I certainly hope that an investigation is launched to make sure that none of these critters’ breeding involved "garbage" or came from puppy mills.

  18. 18
    John PM says:

    I have three boys under the age of 6 who desperately want a dog. It has gotten to the point where they all now take turns pretending to be a dog. Wife and I watched Marley & Me last weekend and bawled our eyes out at the end (SPOILER ALERT) when the dog died. I asked her then if she had changed her mind about getting a dog, and she still said no. To be fair, she would be primarily responsible for the dog during the week.

    My question is, what would be a good dog for three rambunctious boys? Requirements include little to no shedding, easily trained and not too big. Growing up I had a poodle (looked cute but was actually very vicious) and a Rotweiler (looked vicious but actually a big scaredy-cat).

  19. 19
    GSD says:

    Balloon Juice has let loose the dogs of war!

    -GSD

  20. 20
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @John PM: All the good dogs shed a lot.

  21. 21
    mike says:

    I think the big white dog may be a Kuvacz.

  22. 22
    robertdsc says:

    GOS link to the White House Easter Egg Roll

    Funny shit. The President and family kick major ass.

  23. 23
    Dork says:

    His mutha was a mudder! His father was a mudder! He can…..uh…sit…..in the slop!

  24. 24

    Heh. Look dad, I’m a mud puppy!

  25. 25
    Shibby says:

    @John PM:

    My parents just got a second beagle. Fantastic family dog. They shed little and are very food motivated thus are easily trained.

    Animal planet has a whole bunch of short videos on various dog breeds. Here is the Youtube for the beagle.

  26. 26
    b-psycho says:

    Here John, have some more Wingnut

    Found that on Technorati among responses to that stupid Rasmussen poll.

  27. 27
    J. says:

    @Punchy: LOL. Great pic and great story!

    And that pic of the dog at the Grand Canyon is amazing. Am amazed he/she didn’t jump. Phew!

    Hey all you beer and/or documentary lovers out there, a friend of mine has a new documentary coming out this Thursday titled "Beer Wars," and she asked me to promote it across the blogosphere. It sounds like a great/really interesting movie. You can learn more here and/or here. Cheers!

  28. 28
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    John, beagles totally suck. They are very trainable as long as you don’t actually require them to do the things you trained them to do. If yer just looking for something to eat you out of house and home and shit all over the yard, go with a beagle. They’re prolly to small to eat your children.

  29. 29
    Krista says:

    My question is, what would be a good dog for three rambunctious boys? Requirements include little to no shedding, easily trained and not too big.

    I’m partial to Boston Terriers. From the few that I’ve known, they seem to be relatively easy to train and are good with kids. Of course, you’ll also have to train the kids to know how to behave around dogs, but I’m sure you knew that already.

  30. 30

    Look into German Short-Haired Pointers. We called ours Tigger (because she bounced); they need space to run, though.

  31. 31
    FARfetched says:

    @John PM: If you can have an outdoor dog, an Austrian Shepherd mix would be one to consider. In my experience, they’re very good natured and highly energetic — the dog will wear out the boys before they can wear out the dog. IMO, they’re probably too energetic to have inside. Fave pic here of ours. Even as he becomes an elderly dog, he’s still strong enough to break tethers, collars, and snap-rings.

    We’ve also had a Springer Spaniel mix (mixed with something large) when our kids were little — he loved ’em and they returned the favor.

  32. 32
    Delia says:

    My sister has a Blue Kerry Terrier because one of her boys is allergic and she says this is one of the breeds that has hair and doesn’t shed. It’s one of those medium sizes and they seem pretty happy with him. I don’t know about trainability.

    Great story, Punchy. Reminds me of when my daughter and I were ready to take our dog to the boarding place cuz we were leavin’ on a jet plane. My daughter took him for one last long walk by the creek a few blocks from my house. Naturally he found a nice pile of dog poop to roll around in. Good delaying tactic.

  33. 33
    Max says:

    @John PM:

    I suggest a Wheaten Terrier. They do not shed, top out around 45lbs (males) and are the greatest. They are the Golden Retrievers of Terriers. They are sturdy, great with kids, and very loyal. Google image search is recommended.

  34. 34
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Terriers like to bite children. But it’s not the terriers’ fault. Children actually taste quite delicious, especially the ones that have jelly or other condiments smeared on them.

  35. 35
    John Cole says:

    I just want to second the notion that Beagles are a total PITA. They take forever to walk, having to sniff every damned thing in sight, so there never is any thing as a quick walk to do your business before dad has to rush off to work. They are completely guided by their nose, and jerk you all over the place while you are walking them, and they have the common sense of a dalmatian and can get themselves, the leash, and your legs hopelessly tangled in under ten seconds. Also, beagles have a hound smell unlike any other dog- you can smell a beagle the MOMENT you walk into a house that has one, and there is something about their damned hair that makes it impossible to vacuum. They also will bark and howl at the most imperceptible sound, and god forbid should a siren go off anywhere within five miles of a beagle.

    My sister’s former dog was half beagle and half lab, and I hated everything about the beagle half of that dog. My friend had an aging beagle that I often had to watch when she went out of town. I know some people love them, but I would go without a pet before owning a beagle.

  36. 36
    Svensker says:

    @John PM:

    Just don’t get a boxer — nice dogs but very rambunctious and goofy. Labs are always good with kids and tend to be mellow.

  37. 37
    Krista says:

    Terriers like to bite children.

    Nonsense. The larger terriers, like the Airedale, the Wheaten and the Kerry Blue can be great with kids. The only danger is that sometimes they can be a little rambunctious, and may inadvertently knock over a smaller child.

    Caveat: if possible, you may want to avoid a terrier female who’s had pups. They tend to get very possessive about any belongings that they see to be "theirs", and may get rather bitchy about it. My in-laws have a male Airedale, however, and you can quite literally haul his face away from his food dish, open his jaws, and take food out of his mouth and he’ll just wag his tail and wonder what kind of new game this is. They’re not super-easy to train, mainly because they’re huge clowns, and if you laugh at anything "bad" that they do, they’ll happily do it for the rest of their lives. But they’re great pals, and would easily stand up to the roughhousing of three young boys.

  38. 38
    Tommy T says:

    Here’s Bailey Bulldog – bullies are good for children over 4 (under that age, they can get stepped on or knocked over) – extremely placid and amiable.

    Tommy

  39. 39
    John PM says:

    I was thinking that a terrier might be a good dog. My mom was watching a friend’s terrier for a few weeks. I took the boys for a visit and after the initial skittishness due to three boys bursting into the house, the dog was perfectly fine around the boys. We only had an issue when my 2 1/2 year old (who already weighs 34 lbs, btw), tried to ride the terrier like a horse. I was able to put a stop to that quickly. My mom told me that after we left the terrier was too tired to move from in front of the couch, so she had to carry it to its bed.

  40. 40
    Larime the Gimp says:

    @Krista: Yep! That’s Velentin! He’s mine. :)

    The first dog is my Great Pyr, Valentin. He’s a service dog to my wife and I. Helps us around the house, and alerts my wife when a big allergy attack is coming. Huge, sweet dog. Utter teddybear.

  41. 41
    John PM says:

    @Krista: #37

    They’re not super-easy to train, mainly because they’re huge clowns, and if you laugh at anything "bad" that they do, they’ll happily do it for the rest of their lives.

    Oddly enough, my wife has said the same thing about me.

  42. 42
    Anne says:

    That’s a gorgeous GSP in the last shot. I want a GSP like nobody’s business, but a) no yard and b) I have cats, and I hear GSPs tend to be cat-sharp. Ah well.

    Seconding Krista on the large terriers. My grandparents had an airedale (Banjo) when I was growing up, and even with all the kids running around she was as gentle as could be. We loved her to pieces. I’ve also heard that Wheatens make great family dogs.

  43. 43
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Any of the herding dogs, especially collies, are ideal for children. I know we can all remember the many times Lassie saved Jeff from foul play, poor planning and girl trouble.

    Then later when Jeff got really little and everyone started calling him Timmeh, Lassie saved him from quicksand.

    But most of the herding dogs shed a lot. Which is one of the reasons we’re offering a free furminator with the purchase of a Balloon-Juice subscription.

  44. 44
    greynoldsct00 says:

    Ditto the Beagles being cute but not a pet for everyone…we had one when I was a kid that would bay at it’s own reflection in the fireplace glass doors…was amusing for a few minutes

  45. 45
    Max says:

    One caveat with Wheaten Terriers, and probably most terriers… unless raised with kitties, not so good with them.

    My Wheaten spent an hour yesterday trying to defy the laws of gravity and be the first dog to climb a tree after the neighborhood cat he chased up there. I’m not sure he’d actually hurt the kitties if he ever caught one, but man he sure does love chasing them.

  46. 46
    Indylib says:

    @John PM:

    Look into Springer Spaniels. They have all of the good traits of a cocker spaniel and none of the bad ones. They are bred as bird retrievers, so they are smart and trainable. They have longer hair, like most water dogs, but don’t shed too much and can be clipped or shaved if the weather is warm enough. They are sweet tempered, mellow in the house, love to chase and run outdoors and are kid friendly.

    We have a blue-tick coonhound, that could be the sister of the pup in the pic above at the Grand Canyon. She was a shelter rescue as a puppy. I love her to death, but she is not an easy dog to deal with, she’s really emotionally sensitive and could care less about anyone else in the house except my husband. She pays no attention to my boys at all. The only reason she gives me the time of day is because I feed her.

  47. 47
    JenJen says:

    Still no JenJen pet pics. Balloon Juice must not like my sweet doggies. :-(

  48. 48
    Indylib says:

    @Anne:

    Wow, didn’t realize Blue-ticks and GSP’s looked so much alike.
    The have almost identical markings except for the heads.

  49. 49
    Krista says:

    I was thinking that a terrier might be a good dog.

    Just make sure you do your homework and go with a reputable breeder. If you let them know that the dog is only meant to be a family pet (not to be shown or bred), sometimes you can get access to dogs that aren’t aesthetically perfect for show, but are otherwise healthy, wonderful dogs. That’s how my in-laws got Gibson. His ears don’t stand up, so he couldn’t be shown or bred, but he has the sweetest disposition, and is perfectly healthy. So they got him for a lot less than you’d pay for a show-quality pup.

    Wheatens are also fantastic — I do hear that they have a bad tendency for jumping up on people (a.k.a. the "Wheaten greetin’") so it’s something you’ll want to keep in mind, where you have a toddler.

    Westies are lovely little dogs, but they need to be reminded early and often that they are NOT the alpha.

  50. 50
    Krista says:

    But most of the herding dogs shed a lot.

    This IS true. And you want to be careful with smaller kids, as some of the herding dogs will herd the kids, and may nip at their heels a bit (like they would with sheep).

  51. 51
    The Moar You Know says:

    @Shibby: I’ll weigh in with the others and scream NO FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST DON’T GET A BEAGLE!

    A beagle is the only dog that has ever successfully, with malice aforethought, tricked me. I am still bitter about it to this day. To be outsmarted by a cat is one thing. To be outsmarted by a dog is something else entirely.

  52. 52
    JenJen says:

    @Ash: That picture is AWESOME! I hadn’t seen that one before! Thank you so much for that. I’m loving FDOTUS! :-)

  53. 53
    Krista says:

    Balloon Juice must not like my sweet doggies. :-(

    I like them, though. Especially Stu. What a handsome fellow!

  54. 54
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    We got a German Shepherd dog/Chow mix for our two children which seems like a crazy thing to do given the German Shepherd’s aggressiveness and the Chow’s known propensity for just going apeshit on its owners and mauling them half to death.

    But apparently the two breeds produce a very loyal pack member that attacks everyone else except the kids. Our dog sleeps with my eight year old son every night and sometimes when I walk past his bedroom in the middle of the night, I’ll hear the low growl of the dog warning me off, kinda like Mrs. Blaylock’s dog in Omen.

    How lucky did we get?

  55. 55
    JenJen says:

    @FARfetched: Have to second the Aussie Shepherd suggestion. In post #46 you can see pics of my two Aussies, as well as my cattle dog mix when he was a pup.

    I’m obviously biased, but Aussies are just the best dogs. We always had them when we were kids, and I’ll never be without one. I’ve never had difficulty with my Aussies in the house; they take so well to training that they’ve never even chewed anything up or had an accident indoors. They are indeed high-energy and rambunctious, which I think makes them perfect for two boys. :-)

    Sadly, the shelters are full of Aussies and Aussie mixes because too many people find them to be just a bit too much dog. Again, they’re unbelievably intelligent and train so easily that I’ll never understand how anyone could return one to a dog shelter. :-(

  56. 56
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @Krista:

    This IS true. And you want to be careful with smaller kids, as some of the herding dogs will herd the kids, and may nip at their heels a bit (like they would with sheep).

    Well of course it’s true, just like it’s true that terriers like to bite, you commie terrier-sympathizer.

    Put footwear on the kids if they’re so wussified they can’t handle a little tough-love herding.

  57. 57
    Punchy says:

    as some of the herding dogs will herd the kids

    I would think you’d want a herding dog to herd baby goats.

  58. 58
    liberal says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    But apparently the two breeds produce a very loyal pack member that attacks everyone else except the kids.

    That’s cool. I have twins on the way, and we were burglarized a few weeks ago, so…

    Could we also locate a breed/mix that will leave most humans alone, but tear sociopathic banksters a new one?

  59. 59
    Gina says:

    The smiling Rottie in #2 is my boy Mo. The white thing stuck in his nose is a cat claw . He likes to "bounce" the old man cat in the house, and gets a lot of free plastic surgery enhancement from said cat in exchange.

    Mo is a rescue, from West Virginia’s Mercer County animal shelter. He was fostered by a wonderful woman and her family, courtesy of the Mercer County Humane Society.

    Thanks for posting his pic, since I’m mostly a lurker I wasn’t sure if I’d see my devil dog make his debut here :-)

  60. 60
    The Moar You Know says:

    Could we also locate a breed/mix that will leave most humans alone, but tear sociopathic banksters a new one?

    @liberal: Back quite a few years ago, my mom had a boyfriend who was a Marine captain. I’m a bit unclear as to what it was that he did exactly (that lack of clarity was probably not accidental) but it involved him working in a closed psych ward with Marine patients, being a licensed therapist, carrying a gun and having a canine partner.

    He got transferred to Okinawa and couldn’t take the dog, so we got her.

    Beautiful dog, an all white German-shepherd type dog (maybe an Alsatian?). Sweet and as well-disciplined a dog as you could find. LOVED us kids.

    And God help anyone who broke into our house, as she was trained to kill. She could also be told to go kill somebody. Like a sociopathic banker, for example.

  61. 61
    liberal says:

    @Svensker:

    Just don’t get a boxer—nice dogs but very rambunctious and goofy.

    You don’t like that goofyness? I love it, except that it’s not really very relaxed.

  62. 62
    jeffreyw says:

    Obigatory Brittany plug, and here he is grown up.

    Great dogs.

  63. 63
    realbtl says:

    @Anne: While most GSPs are high energy, if you are willing to check out the GSP rescue groups you can find mellow ones. I had an 80# male who was raised by a young boy that was as sweet and laid back as you will find. My current rescue female is very easy in the house and car, even staying in the convertible by herself, then runs everywhere outside. A good walk/run daily will work for some GSPs. As far as cats, inside the house would likely be fine as long as the "chase" instinct isn’t engaged. GSPs are the best as far as I’m concerned.

  64. 64
    mp1900 says:

    @Shibby:
    All my beagles have been very stubborn dogs. Great chowhounds, but stubborn as hell. I just love them.

  65. 65
    srv says:

    Obama’s lie about getting a rescued dog.

  66. 66
    Laura W says:

    @John PM: I was thinking Aussie Shepherd before the others rang in with testimonials. I have an Aussie Cattle Dog and you probably don’t want that level of INSANE in your life. I could be wrong, but I think the Shepherds have a slightly sweeter, less neurotic disposition than the cattle dogs. You probably have to be crazy to take on cows and horses. Fuzzy little sheep? Bah!

    Something to consider about the herding dogs, along with their high energy, easy-to-train-if-you-start-’em-young natures (they are scary smart and pathologically eager to please you)…with three young boys you could get the whole herd into agility training and let them all blow off the energy. Your sons might totally dig learning how to "work" their dog over a fun agility course, possibly even become kid celebs on the agility competition circuit. Or stars on Letterman’s Stupid Pet tricks. All sorts of options in front of you.

  67. 67
    asiangrrlMN says:

    @Gina: I LOVE your dog (I thought he was a Rottie). I’m glad you identified him. Good to see that the cats are keeping him in line.

  68. 68
    Anne says:

    realbtl, thanks for the info. Whatever dog I end up getting, whether purebred or mutt, will definitely be a shelter/rescue dog. I figure it’s good for the dog, and good for me as there’s a greater chance that the dog’s temperament (especially with cats) will be known. The cats love to tear around the house chasing each other, so we definitely need a dog who’s good with cats, or at least mellow around them. I have my eye on the local GSP rescue organization’s adoption pages.

  69. 69
    JenJen says:

    @Laura W: Totally agreed about Aussie Shepherds vs. Aussie Cattle dogs, but you already knew that. I love ’em both, but Aussie Sheps are far more loving and cuddly and please-please-please-love-me-love-me-I-live-to-please-you, aren’t they?

    :-D

    For what it’s worth, I liked Agility and so did the dogs, but all of us were weirded out by the obsessive, anti-social, freakily competitive Agility people. So we happily returned to just being Frisbee Dogs.

  70. 70
    JenJen says:

    @Anne: I got my Aussie Shepherd and my Aussie Cattle Dog from a shelter, and my other Aussie Shepherd from a breed rescue. You can see pix of them at comment #46 above.

    You can do sooooooo well at the shelters, and most of the rescues. Be sure to keep us updated!

  71. 71
    Tyler Forrest says:

    Hey – that is my GSP in the last shot. She was a rescue dog and has been great. Knows when it is mellow time and knows when it isn’t and doesn’t shed a ton.

    The pic was taken at the tuweep overlook on the north rim of the grand canyon with a point and shoot, no photoshop!

  72. 72
    alhutch says:

    John – I would also recommend one of the larger terrier breeds as a good, non-shedding companion for your boys. Airedale, Wheaton, Kerry Blue & Irish are all good choices.
    You might also consider a rescue dog in the 4-6 year old range (avoid the puppy phase and give an unlucky dog a new home).

    Our neighbor has an Airedale (Penelope) and a very rambunctious son. He likes to wrestle and play with PePo and they get along famously.

  73. 73
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Gah. I was going to ignore all the cries for Australian dogs since it’s so hard to get them from over there to here but this is turning into a bit of a cacaphony. So if yer thinking about getting one, just ask youself why they sent it to Australia, a penal colony, in the first place. These dogs have a criminal history, unlike the proud German Shepherd dog that came damn near to liberating Europe for the Germans.

  74. 74
    passerby says:

    @Linkmeister:

    Yeah, that German short-haired pointer looks a lot like Yhatzee, our childhood pet. We’d take him out to romp at the lake and he always burned off energy fetching sticks out of Bayou St. John.

    Nowadays, there are all kinds of leash laws, but back then, everyone let their dogs just romp. [He pee’ed on someone’s picnic basket once. We felt bad about that.]

  75. 75
    Anne says:

    JenJen – gorgeous pups! Aussies are such great dogs. (They’re on my list, too.) Unfortunately I don’t expect any movement on the dog front until after I finish grad school and get settled in a real job (hopefully with a real house/yard), and that won’t be for another year at least. For now, I have to content myself with perusing the adoption pages and getting my fix with a friend’s dog (a 4 year old English lab, and what a sweetheart).

  76. 76
    JenJen says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: Yeah, but since the news broke that Mel Gibson is getting a divorce, I think it’s safe to say that it’s a good day for Australian Shepherds.

    Or something.

  77. 77
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Mel Gibson is an American (he also holds Irish citizenship). His dad moved ’em to Australia to avoid the Vietnam draft for Mel’s older brother. Now his dad lives in West Virginia.

  78. 78
    Laura W says:

    @JenJen: LOL!
    Score one for JenJen.
    Edit: Fuckhead is obfuscating your very valid point. Don’t be deceived. I know you won’t. He’s a serial obfuscator.
    Besides, West Virginia?
    As if.

  79. 79
    JenJen says:

    @Laura W:

    Besides, West Virginia?

    I mean really.

  80. 80
    AnneLaurie says:

    Something to consider about the herding dogs, along with their high energy, easy-to-train-if-you-start-’em-young natures (they are scary smart and pathologically eager to please you)…with three young boys you could get the whole herd into agility training and let them all blow off the energy. Your sons might totally dig learning how to "work" their dog over a fun agility course, possibly even become kid celebs on the agility competition circuit.

    I second the joys of agility training for dogs AND kids! One of the dear friends who turned me into a dog-owner teaches dog agility to kids in the local 4H group. Kids actually have an advantage on some of those obstacles, because most adults can’t crawl through the cloth tunnel or jump through the suspended hoop to show a dog how it should be done (grin). But you don’t need a herding breed — almost any dog can do agility work, although a chihuahua may have trouble "tipping" the seesaw and a flat-faced bulldog is going to take a lot longer trundling around the course than a border collie.

    Since you’re not predisposed to a particular breed, my suggestion for finding the Perfect Dog for your family would be to call up a couple of the local shelters and tell them *exactly* what you’re looking for. (If your spouse is the less ‘susceptible’ half of your partnership, let them do it instead.) Don’t go visit the shelter/foster homes in person until you’ve narrowed your choices down, and absolutely don’t let the kids get involved at this stage, because odds are that all those pleading eyes will completely destroy your will to resist long enough to find the RIGHT dog for all of you. There are tons of healthy, kid-friendly dogs of all breeds & crosses looking for new homes in this economy. And I have to speak up in favor of adopting an adult dog (over a ‘cuddly’ puppy) because you’ll not only have a better idea of what you’ll end up living with, but the right adult dog will be better able to adjust to "sharing" their time & attention between your three kids & their two parents. For the same reason, all other things being equal, I’d go for a middle-sized or larger dog — one at least 25/30 lbs. Not that a little terrier or beagle isn’t *tough* enough, but small kids will pick up & drop a little dog, or play tug-of-war during a squabble without meaning to hurt it, and that can lead to a situation where the little dog snaps in self-protection or becomes hand-shy for situations that just don’t happen with a dog that’s too big for them to lift.

  81. 81
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    You’d be crazy to adopy an adult dog from a shelter, John. There’s a reason they’re in Dog Jail. It’s usually because they were a Bad Bad Doggy. You don’t want someone else’s reject fouling up yer life. Just trust Fuckhead on this one. The lady next door to me has a rescue license which means she can hoard up to six rejects at any one time. These fucking dogs are an absolute nightmare. When she lets them out to go to the bathroom they will plant their asses under my window and bark at absolutely NOTHING. And none of them has a normal bark, it’s always a hideous ear-splitting choke-yelp-cough. And nothing the dogs do – like shit in my front yard or jump the fence and wander in my house – is ever their fault. It’s always the fault of some poor SOB that got tricked into caring for this canine dreck somewhere in the past. Avoid the convicts in Dog Jail.

  82. 82
    wonkie says:

    Just make sure you do your homework and go with a reputable breeder

    Please don’t. Don’t go to a breeder. Even good breeders contribulte to the over population of homeless dogs in this country. You can get almost any breed through rescue. Every breed mentioned on this thread has a breed rescue on line. Also if you get an adult dog that is living in a foster home you can find out with a pretty good degree of accuracy what the dog’s personality will be–kid social or not, cat social or not, etc. plus it wil be housebroken. it is a myth that you can get a puppy and raise it to be the dog you want. Puppies, like human children, have a good deal of inate personality which is only somewhat influenced by nurturing.

    Again if you want to know what you are getting your best bet is a dog that is being fostered through a rescue. You will be able to find out from the foster parents all about the dog’s behavior and personal quirks.

    As for shelters being full of bad reject dogs–bullshit. Shelters ar full of dogs that are there becaue of the failure of a human to be responsible for them.

    BTW I have had three dogs, all from rescue: a pruebred smooth coat collie, a AKC registered pug who came with his papers, and a one-eyed, one-eared neurotic insecure little black mutt who looks like the cross between a canister vaccuum sweeper and an aardvark. All of them were wonderful loving dogs although the pug was also a grumpy butt head and the mutt is afraid of everyone except me.

  83. 83
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Also, if you absolutely must get a dog from a shelter despite my advice, be sure to get a puppy. Otherwise, they’ll have to kill it and you don’t want that on your conscience.

  84. 84
    lucy says:

    Don’t listen to Fuckhead.

    I adopted a lovely adult dog from a shelter and she has been my darling companion for 8 + years. It’s often not about being a bad dog – more about having a bad owner – that doggies end up in shelters as adults. (Ditto what Wonkie says!)
    My dog had been seriously neglected and even had been in a couple of previous shelters. It took some TLC, yes – but there’s no more loyal and affectionate dog than mine. Wouldn’t trade her for any purebred dog in the world.

    By the way, gorgeous photos, thank you!

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