Is it better to stick to choosing a pure breed dog or can it be just as good or better to choose a mutt (mixed breed). In this article we examine the pros and cons of choosing a mixed breed as the family’s newest member.
Mixed breed dogs (mutts) have a tendency to be more moderate. The good thing is that extremes of temperament and behavior that is often seen in purebred dogs are more rare in mix breeds. Of course it is certainly still possible that a mix dog / mutt turns out to be very energetic; very independent, very prone to hunt other animals etc.
Purebred dogs are often bred for the extremes in skill or appearance
But many pure breed dogs are specifically bred with a particular purpose or temperament in mind to excel at a certain task. Examples of this are herding dogs, game dogs, watchdogs, sled dogs etc. In mixed breed dogs extreme characteristics / traits / behavior is more of a coincidence. Because mixing dog breeds usually results in a moderate dog with behavior and temperament averaging out rather than being emphazised as in a pure breed. You will often find that mixed dog breeds are more flexible.
Mixed breed dogs can easily adapt
Mutts can often better adapt to different households and living conditions. However if you want a dog with a specific set of abilities for hunting or a shepherd dog etc., then a specialized purebred dog is the right way to go. It is with a specific purpose a purebred dog excels. Mixed Dogs have a tendency to be more healthy Good. Most mutts have a broad genetic base, as their genes typically come from different backgrounds and include a little of everything. This promotes health and energy.
The mutt often has healthier genes
Because the genes in a mixed breed dog typically come from different and unrelated parents there are less chance that your puppy will have a genetic defect that in some purebred dogs can be problematic. When we humans do not excert our influence on mother nature through specific breeding towards certain traits in a dog then most dogs will tend to be of moderate size, looks and natural build.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a mixed dog that is as small as a Chihuahua, long as a dachshund or large as a Great Dane. This is good for the dogs health, as these traits that humans have bred into the dog can lead to increased health problems. Some hereditary diseases in dogs can be detected by tests that can be done on a dogs parents to ensure that a puppy is not born with the same health problem. Unfortunately it is very unlikely that a mutts parents have been tested for hereditary diseases.
Some mixed breed dogs are a mix of two breeds that have the same health problems. As an example if a puppy is the result of mixing a Cocker Spaniel and poodle then the puppy may have inherited hip problems or other health problems that are often seen in the two breeds.
A mixed breed dog is the economical choice
Mixed breed Dogs (mutts) are cheap. If you buy a purebred dog you’ll often have to pay quite a princely sum for your new dog. You can often get a mutt for a very small amount of money or even for free. You can adopt a mixed dog at a dog rescue center.
Mixed dogs are impossible to predict, you can not look at a little mix puppy and predict how the puppy will look or behave when it grows up. Even if you think you can see specific breeds of dogs in a mix dog, you can easily make mistakes. There are quite a few ways that dog limbs and parts can look.
A mutt might not necessarily have gotten its erect ears, golden color or long tail from a specific pure dog breed, it may very well have come from another mutt or from a dog breed that you haven’t thought of. A lot of the time when you are told what dog breeds have resulted in a certain mutt it is only based on guessing.
Don’t trust others to tell you what other breeds went into the mutt
Dog Shelters often write something like: Labrador mix, German Shepherd mix, terrier mix etc. In many cases the dog shelters don’t know who the parents were and therefore is guessing wrong. There is no rule that says that any dog is a mix of one or more pure breeds. Even if you know for certain that two purebred dogs were the parents and what breed of dog the were you do not know if the parents were typical for their breed.
Many Doberman Pinchers loves everyone and many Golden Retrievers are aggressive. Atypical dogs can pass on their atypical genes.
Should you get a mixerd breed dog
In summary the mutt or mixed breed is a good choice for you if you’re willing to accept any appearance and characteristics that your puppy will have as an adult (or are willing to adopt an adult dog so you can see how he looks and behaves). If you’re willing to place your trust in the fact that mixed dog’s genetic diversity protects them from health problems as it is unlikely that its parents are tested for hereditary diseases. If you don’t want to pay the high price that is often demanded for a purebred dog. If you want to save a four-legged life that no one else wants.
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