Dogs for Kids – any Suggestions?

Dogs for Kids – any Suggestions?

We’re thinking about getting a dog “for the kids”.  We think we want a small-medium size dog which is good with young children.  We are looking at beagles and labradoodles. We’d prefer a practical dog, rather than one which looks ornamental.

Does anyone have any opinions on these or any other dogs which would be good for young kids? Experiences to share?

We have looked at each breed’s (AU) club website.


11 Responses to “Dogs for Kids – any Suggestions?”

  1. 1 Paul 16 January 2009 at 8:44 pm

    Don’t get a multishit or a pomchi. Cute but yappy with a brain the size of a walnut. My wife is a serial pomchi (pomeranian- chihuahua) owner. The toddler loves chasing it, but it is too timid to play with him.

  2. 2 AlphaG 16 January 2009 at 9:05 pm

    I grew up with an English Beagle (female) and it was a great dog. Had the best temperment with all the kids in the neighbourhood and loved to run and play. Highly recommended. I believe the English beagles are the full size as opposed to the US beagles which have been bred with shorter legs for more indoor living.

  3. 3 brendanscott 16 January 2009 at 9:15 pm

    The big question mark over beagles is that they (apparently) can’t be left off the lead or may end up run over somewhere (tracking a scent). Otherwise they seem ideal.

  4. 4 AlphaG 16 January 2009 at 10:28 pm

    Yep they are a little independant that way, but they can be trained and will follow commands. We used to live near some bush so we could take her into it to run and chase but trained well enough to respond to voice commands etc

  5. 5 Matt 17 January 2009 at 4:39 am

    Try a red heeler. Not overly large (medium sized dog) and a very smart dog. Quite active and smart dog (easy to train/teach tricks) and will chase balls all day if you let them. :)

    Extremely loyal dogs.

    I would also look at getting one that is crossed (with say a more docile dog).

    take a look at one:
    Some discussion on them:

    However if you want the ultimate ‘kids’ dog, you can’t go past a Lab. (Though they are a large dog).

  6. 6 Dave Hall 18 January 2009 at 10:23 pm

    We have a 6 year old black lab called Billy. Billy is a great dog. We got him before we had kids – he was our practice child. Both our boys (4, 1y/o) just adore Billy and he loves having them around.

    I am not a fan of bitza-oodles, imo they are a mongrel with a high price tag. Beagles aren’t so good with kids and will eat everything in sight.

    Pros of a lab
    * Great with kids
    * Pretty easy going
    * Very loyal
    * Are happiest if someone is home during the day with them – great is working from home

    Cons a lab
    * Don’t mellow until they are ~2yrs old
    * They go through a crazy chewing stage – Billy chewed through an optus coax cable in about 10mins one day

    Tips for a lab
    * Socialise them, labs are very social, they love to meet people
    * Exercise them a lot in the first 12mths, reduces digging
    * Don’t feed them too much crap, they shouldn’t weight over ~35kg
    * Put the effort into training, it is worth it
    * Blacks struggle with the summer heat a bit more – less of an issue in .nz :P

    Labs + kids = perfect combination

    Contact me if want more info about owning a lab

  7. 7 Michael Fox 19 January 2009 at 8:35 am

    Certainly consider a Labrador. We have two, and love them dearly. But be prepared, go see Marley and Me at the movies, just so you know what your getting in too.

    I am sure our dogs will be fine with our first son, they tend to be really good with kids when friends come over. Of course it takes them a few minutes to calm down, after that they are not overly interested. But are happy just to play.

  8. 8 brendanscott 19 January 2009 at 12:29 pm

    Thanks for your comments so far (and any to come).

    We had a look at some beagles on the weekend and they were bigger in the flesh (and quite adorable – the breeder had a 11 mth old female who was eager to play with our kids, didn’t jump, didn’t snap, and paced herself to them). We are still very concerned about having to keep them on leash though.

    Lots of people are mentioning Labs. Our main concern about a labrador is its size. As I mentioned we were also thinking labradoodles, but even they look too big (and many of the breeders all seem a little… odd). Labradoodles cost about $1500(!!) or $1800 (!!!) if you want a red one (or US$2,400 if you’re in the US, importing them from Australia).

    We are planning to go to a dog show in the next week and have a look at as many different types of dog as we can.

  9. 9 Edyta 29 May 2009 at 4:02 am

    My son and my husband about two weeks ago brough home a little puppy. I thought he was a full blooded lab but when we took him to the vet we found out that he was a cross between a lab and a red heeler. He is the custest little thing I have ever seen, he just melts our hearts. He seems pretty calm so far. My question is it a safe breed to have around kids? My kids arent that young, but I am still concerned. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you,

  10. 10 milenaobi 24 August 2009 at 10:20 am

    Pleaaaaaaaaaase buy a Labrador, I grew up with one of them he was like a brother to me. He was always there for me, he was very inteligent he always took the garbage bags outside the house!! and he also played a lot with me. It doesn’t matter how big they are because they will not hurm anyone. They are very protective but not violent. He never bite me or anything, He was jealous when another dogs came into the house but i never like those little dogs that my mother carried around because you have to take care of them, and with a labrador, he takes care of you instead. Buy it, trust me is the best dog ever. You can watch this video it is very informative.

  11. 11 milenaobi 24 August 2009 at 10:31 am

    Ouch, that video didn’t worked. But search in youtube DOG 101 Labrador Retriever and there is a video there. Also i wanted to say that, that movie marley and me , those things happen when you don’t teach the dog. For example my dad was very strict with my dog and he was scared of him so he could do anything my dad said to him. But with me he was a wacko. Because i never teached him anything so…. it was my fault hahahah. And the size again, it doesn’t matter really. You can have little dogs that are violent. A labrador is like the energizer bunny. Cute and ready to play.

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