Friday, May 10, 2013

On the hunt for a good dog for the family

My goal this summer is to start doing more mommy/kid posts. Well we are now in the market for a dog again. Our old dog Max passed a few years back of brain cancer. He was a good boy and we miss him every day!

Last year we had our oldest son allergy tested and he came back allergic to everything under the sun. So we are looking for a dog but it has to be hypoallergenic. We have our eye on Labradoodles! Check out this little guy below...isn't he a cutie?!

Photo credit

They historically they have been good for people with allergies. Wikipedia gives a very detailed history on the breed, "The first known use of the term "Labradoodle" was by Donald T. Campbell to describe his Labrador/Poodle cross dog in his 1955 book, "Into the Water Barrier". However, the Labradoodle became better known in 1988, when Australian breeder Wally Conron crossed the Labrador Retriever and Standard Poodle at Guide Dogs Victoria.[1][2]
Conron's aim was to combine the low-shedding coat of the Poodle with the gentleness and trainability of the Labrador, and to provide a guide dog suitable for people with allergies to fur and dander.[3] Although Guide Dogs Victoria no longer breed Labradoodles, they are bred by other guide and assistance dog organizations in Australia and other places.[4] The Association for the Blind of Western Australia have introduced Labradoodles into their training program, and their first, Jonnie, graduated in November 2010.[5][6] Labradoodles are now widely used around the world as guide, assistance, and therapy dogs[7][8][9][10] as well as being popular family dogs.

Appearance and temperament

Because the Labradoodle is a hybrid and not a breed, puppies do not have consistently predictable characteristics. While most Labradoodles have some common traits, their appearance and behavioral characteristics remain, to some extent, unpredictable. As such, Labradoodles' hair can be anywhere from wiry to soft, and may be straight, wavy, or curly. Many Labradoodles do shed, although the coat usually sheds less and has less dog odor than that of a Labrador Retriever.
Like most Labrador Retrievers and Poodles, Labradoodles are generally friendly, energetic and good with families and children (although as with any dog the temperament may vary between individuals). Labradoodles often display an affinity for water and strong swimming ability from their parent breeds.
Their parent breeds are both amongst the world's most intelligent dog breeds.[11]"

So it sounds like the perfect dog for our home. However we are having trouble finding available puppies right now. In addition to that, we would love to add a rescue dog to our home. Both of our cats came from the Lake County Humane Society. They are the sweetest animals and we all love them to bits.

I tweeted the fabulous and amazing Wendy Diamond about our quandary. Diamond is an entrepreneur, leading pet lifestyle expert, Best Selling Author, TV personality and endangered animal and rescue advocate. She gave some other wonderful suggestions on breeds. Check them out here.

So we have been reaching out to local pet shelters, newspaper ads etc that reference the Labradoodles as well as the other breeds Wendy suggested for us.I would like to get a rescue animal that was housebroken if possible but I'm open to potty training a puppy as long as it doesn't bother my sons allergies.

Do you have a child/spouse with allergies in your home? Do you have a dog? What breed did you select? 

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