Craig Rowe blog

May 07, 2013

The dog stalker

Manuel and MiffyI am totally desperate for a dog at the moment. I think it's even fair to say that I have dog envy. It's not a decision that I am taking lightly but I think I am going to take the plunge soon and finally get a dog, I just have to decide what kind? I don't know where to start, how do you know which dog is for you, and should you get a male or female?

Some friends of mine Jason and Hannah have recently got themselves a new addition to their family, a Bichon Frise called Billie. He is a gorgeously soft haired pup, and not only is he naturally hypoallergenic but he doesn't smell at all! He is a very happy go lucky lap dog.

I have toyed with getting one but is he too small, do I need a more substantial dog who is a good guard dog too? Another friend of mine Dave has two dogs that are a rarer breed called Sheba Inu (pictured above). They are an ancient mini Japanese mountain dog who have a good temperament. I spend lots of time with Manuel (who looks like a fox) and Miffy (who is naughty) walking in the park and playing by the river, could they be the dog breed for me?

I am toying with adopting a dog too, there are plenty of rescue dogs in the UK who are desperate for a happy loving home. Last week I took a trip to Battersea Dogs and Cats, it's a great place to go for a rescue pup. It provides temporary home for a variety of breeds, and each dog has their own little enclosure. As you wander around the dogs poke their little faces through the bars looking at you as if to say "please pick me, I am a good dog", it really breaks your heart.

When you take dogs to the park for a walk, all the owners tend to chat to one other when passing by and they become familiar faces. Even though I usually take my friends dogs to the park, I have recently found myself popping there dogless and chatting to the owners about the breed and the temperament of their dogs. I now regularly visit the park as part of my ongoing research regarding dog breeds and which would be good for my home, lifestyle and if I can cope with the needs of the dog. I just hope the dog owners in the park don't think I am the local dog stalker!

I really want a dog with a good temperament, who's loving, medium sized and low shedding. I'm open to advice so what kind of dog should I get and why?

Love Chloe x


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I'd definitely consider adopting a dog that is in need of a good home. I've done this twice now and would highly recommend it. When looking around a rehoming centre, you often just 'click' with a particular dog and all previous ideas about breeds etc can just go right out of the window!

It's good that you're clearly giving this lots of thought and consideration before taking on this commitment, if only all potential dog owners were as conscientious.

Good luck and I hope you find your doggy companion soon.

Julie x

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I have Shetland sheepdogs and Samoyed's both fantastic dogs for family's.

would recommend these breeds to anyone.

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Unless you particularly want a posh breed, do please seriously think about getting a dog from a rescue centre. It's heartbreaking when you visit and see dogs cooped and unloved (though well cared-for there) and if you could find it in your heart to do this, one dog will stand out. It will just happen.

Good luck.


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I would recommend a Shetland Sheepdog or Rough Collie.....both are wonderful breeds. We have rescued our collies, and it was a very rewarding experience.

Good luck!

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Glad you are thinking carefully about getting a dog, I love them & have had dogs for over 50yrs-so I hope I know a little about owning one.
I absolutely agree with the others who have said-the dog picks you really-never mind too much about breeds, as long as you have room & can control the dog, pick the dog that comes to you, you'll know when that happens,
Hope you find him/her soon-good luck

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i recommend an American spaniel! good temperament medium size easy to train very loving and low shedding.I have had the breed for nearly thirty years. they really are lovely friends.

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Hi Chloe! Go to Battersea Dogs Home they have such choice and if you watch Paul O'Grady on a Thursday evening T.V. at 8.00pm it is good to see how they help. I personally have a favourite breed of Golden Retrievers, they are wonderful; lovable pets and very faithful to one person who feeds them but they do need a lot of walks. Have fun and do make the right choice for you. lots of love in making your life complete. Christine Hindle Mrs.

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Hi Chloe love watching your shows as you are so down to earth & natural. You are quickly becoming one of my favourite presenters as you have your own style . I do have a question, what do you use to style your hair as it always loves fab & shiny? My style is similar but cannot get my sweepy fringe to look or stay put like yours. Love Mandy x x

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Hi Chloe,
We have two rescue German Shepherd Dogs and a Schnoodle. All three are super dogs (the wee Schnoodle even has her own FB page!!) but I still trawl the animal rescue websites to 'share ' the pictures of all the dogs desperate for their forever home. You can be breed specific or just 'click' with a dog!
Gill Iredale

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Hi Chloe, bit late reading this but I am an avid Rough Collie lover. My current one is Bonnie, she is getting very old now, 13, but she has been the love of my life for the past 13 years. I had two collies before Bonnie - Sasha and Misha, and I can honestly tell you they are the most beautiful natured breed, a bit highly strung, and need lots of walks and on the downside they do lose their fur a few times a year. That is a small price to pay though for the happiness they bring. My choice is always for a bitch, in my opinion very loyal and loving. Good luck, whatever breed you go for I know they will give you unconditional love and bring much happiness. Karen.

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Hi Chloe
After my first pedigree Labrador I have had all rescue dogs i.e.2 labradors, 2 collie crosses and 3 German shepherds. They have all been wonderful pets and their own personalities come out when they find a loving home. Please seriously consider taking a rescue dog, you won't regret it and you will have so much love in return.

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If you want a loyal dog, you can't go wrong with a Jack Russell. My brother's had Snoop since he was 8 weeks old, and he's been brilliant, especially with my niece and nephew. He's old and poorly (cancer, sadly) but we wouldn't be without him.


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Hi, you can't beat a cocker polo ( cross between poodle and cocker spaniel). They have fantastic temperament and non shedding, and great personalities too.


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As several have said, do choose a rescue dog - there are far too many irresponsible breeders. Battersea can advise what's suitable, and would perhaps correct the ill-advised comments about sheepdogs, border collies, anything that needs a huge amount of walks, attention, etc (you are out quite a bit working?). But there are loads to choose from, and something will give you a big hint that it's the one! (alternatively, get a cat, much lower maintenance). One other point, the BBC has info re life expectancy of dogs/breeds, (from a recent program), so that's worth a check too. cheers Tony

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I Have to agree with Jennie a Cockapoo (girl I must say) is most loving, our house has changed when family come she takes over and everybody wants her attention,wonderful with children.
Now i hope you got plenty of energy because they want to go for walks all the time,but i can assure you that you will never ever be bored.

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I hope u will have the time to walk it and not just leave it at home

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Hi Cloe i have a jack Russell she is lovely, loves children especially and is so gentle even in rough play never rough please consider x

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Discover Dogs in London is a great place to go if you're unsure on what breed / type would be most suited to you and your lifestyle.

There are representatives for nearly all breeds and also rescue organisations too, who all have years of knowledge in their particular breed and can advise whether they'd be suitable for your lifestyle. Plus they bring their dogs along, so you can see a true idea on size expectations etc.

And breed rescues and canine charities are represented, so you get the best of all worlds.

Good luck!

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