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Breed recommendations for young teen girl's first dog?


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My daughter is a dog nut. Always has been. She is starting to save up for her own dog and I am looking for breed recommendations to point her towards. She is 11yrs old so this will be a long process, probably 2-3 years away still. Saving will take her a couple of years, she is already heavily researching.  She has her heart set on a Rough Collie however I am concerned that being a working breed they may end up being too much dog for her (and us as a family). 

 

She has an interest in training and obedience but not sure full on obedience is in the cards. She essentially wants a dog that can sleep on her bed, go for a walk daily, chase a ball, go to the beach etc. I tend to preference low shedding dogs (given I am the one that cleans the house lol). She is homeschooled, dedicated and very dog centered, obviously she will be fully supported and guided by myself as well. The dog would rarely be left alone. No size preference really but not too large.

 

Ideas? Thoughts? 

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Perhaps for her first dog she could get a rescue puppy/dog? (Look on petrescue) They have all the vet work done and need a home anyway, and they're A LOT cheaper than a pedigree if she's looking to buy by herself. (Usually $100-$600, whereas pedigree pups are usually into the thousands.) That way she has more $$ to spend on fun dog stuff like collars, equipment, walking stuff etc. :) (which is fun to browse for!) 

My first dog was a rescue when I was 9, and I've been a crazy dog lover since haha! 

But breed-wise there are many people who are much more experienced/knowledgeable first hand on here than me. :) 

Edited by Scrappi&Monty
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You can get laid back Rough Collies which do not have the full on working temperament and perhaps that's the way to go? Many of the pet RC's that I have met are not as demanding as, say, the average Border Collie, Australian Shepherd, Kelpie etc. 
I think you should be safe in talking to Rough Collie breeders. A good breeder will choose the correct temperament in a puppy or if you want to be 100% sure, look for an older dog whose temperament has already stabilised.
She might need to be sleeping in a queen size bed if she wants to share though ! A Shetland Sheepdog looks much like a Rough Collie, is much smaller but tend to be much more active and have a different temperament than Rough Collies.

There is a 14 month old RC girl currently advertised in NSW in the breeder's pages.

 

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9 minutes ago, Scrappi&Monty said:

Perhaps for her first dog she could get a rescue puppy/dog? (Look on petrescue) They have all the vet work done and need a home anyway, and they're A LOT cheaper than a pedigree if she's looking to buy by herself. (Usually $100-$600, whereas pedigree pups are usually into the thousands.) That way she has more $$ to spend on fun dog stuff like collars, equipment, walking stuff etc. :) (which is fun to browse for!) 

My first dog was a rescue when I was 9, and I've been a crazy dog lover since haha! 

But breed-wise there are many people who are much more experienced/knowledgeable first hand on here than me. :) 

and a totally unknown background/breed in most cases. Sorry but no way would I recommend a mutt for a young girl's 1st dog. A pedigreed dog you basically know what you are getting, size, coat, temperament etc.

My only query on a Rough Coat collie is the coat care

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Coat care is not complex. Just good solid brushing, a couple of times a week. As long as your daughter is aware of what is needed and is committed that should not be a problem. :)

 

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4 minutes ago, The Spotted Devil said:

Smooth Collie is another option!

 

ETA: I’ll ask a friend to pop into this thread. 

And I think our friend E will say that the average Smooth is more hyper than the average Rough! I could be wrong we will wait and see!:laugh:.

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I got my first dog as a dog and horse crazy 12 year old and it was a rough collie! 

 

Best dog for a teen in my situation, really high emotional iq, off switch and easy to train. Also, good with the horses (though terrified of the mini :laugh:

 

Yeah, brushing and hair isn't always fun but also led to some of the best bonding time between he and I. 

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3 hours ago, RuralPug said:

Coat care is not complex. Just good solid brushing, a couple of times a week. As long as your daughter is aware of what is needed and is committed that should not be a problem. :)

 

If that answer was that simple .

 

As a groomer many pet owners fail at brushing .

 

As this is a long term project I would imagine your daughters choices will change .

Attend dog shows,attend obedience trials and let your daughter see breeds looking true to type and then looking at the real life commitment she must be prepared to commit too.

If a Collie is her choice then she needs to see the breed in coat ,understand brushing and the time it takes .

Tools that are a must for grooming and making sure she is committed to coat care in her teens ,dog before going out etc etc,You can have both but the dog is her responsibility.

If she really loves the Collie breed then maybe the smooth coat is an option ,not serious coat care .

 

I guess what I’m saying does she want a Lassie or does she want a Collie .

Thoughts 2/3 is a long time to decide ,let her research all about her time commitments,grooming costs if she doesn’t brush,bathing etc etc .

Understanding that a stinky dog sleeping on the bed is no fun .

Maybe a Shellie is another option same look but in a smaller package 

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11 hours ago, Dogsfevr said:

1. As this is a long term project I would imagine your daughters choices will change .


2. Attend dog shows,attend obedience trials and let your daughter see breeds looking true to type and then looking at the real life commitment she must be prepared to commit too.

If a Collie is her choice then she needs to see the breed in coat ,understand brushing and the time it takes .

Tools that are a must for grooming and making sure she is committed to coat care in her teens ,dog before going out etc etc,You can have both but the dog is her responsibility.

If she really loves the Collie breed then maybe the smooth coat is an option ,not serious coat care .

 

3. I guess what I’m saying does she want a Lassie or does she want a Collie .

Thoughts 2/3 is a long time to decide ,let her research all about her time commitments,grooming costs if she doesn’t brush,bathing etc etc .

Understanding that a stinky dog sleeping on the bed is no fun .

Maybe a Shellie is another option same look but in a smaller package 

1. She has been on the Rough Collie bandwagon for at least a year and a half so far so if we find the Rough Collie can indeed fit into the family well...I don't think she will change her mind at all.
2. That is a brilliant suggestion. Are breeder/exhibitors happy to talk to the general public at these kinds of events?
She has her heart set on the full coated Rough so would be a great idea to introduce her to grooming needs and techniques from an experienced owner. As her mother and a huge dog lover there is no way that I would allow the grooming to fall down the wayside, even if I have to pick it up myself. I am going into this as a parent supporting her child but at the same time knowing that this dog will be family and *I* am making the commitment to the animal for it's lifetime.
3. She fell in love with the Rough Collie breed prior to even seeing the Lassie movie. She has already spent a LONG time researching the breed before she watched the movie so she is definitely in it for the breed.
4. I did look at the Sheltie but they seem to have higher energy/needs.
 

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14 hours ago, mackiemad said:

I got my first dog as a dog and horse crazy 12 year old and it was a rough collie! 

 

Best dog for a teen in my situation, really high emotional iq, off switch and easy to train. Also, good with the horses (though terrified of the mini :laugh:

 

Yeah, brushing and hair isn't always fun but also led to some of the best bonding time between he and I. 

Thank you. Starting to think she may already be looking at the right breed for her and there is a reason she is drawn that way.

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15 hours ago, Rebanne said:

and a totally unknown background/breed in most cases. Sorry but no way would I recommend a mutt for a young girl's 1st dog. A pedigreed dog you basically know what you are getting, size, coat, temperament etc.

My only query on a Rough Coat collie is the coat care

Our current family pooch is an RSPCA pup and she is such an awesome dog but you are right, we don't know her breed, can only guess at her history and it makes it hard to be prepared and researched on breed etc when getting into the mixed breeds. There is something to be said for knowing what to expect from a well bred dog and given the breed she is looking at (and people are saying might indeed fit) rescue doesn't seem like much of an option.
 

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15 hours ago, RuralPug said:

You can get laid back Rough Collies which do not have the full on working temperament and perhaps that's the way to go? Many of the pet RC's that I have met are not as demanding as, say, the average Border Collie, Australian Shepherd, Kelpie etc. 
I think you should be safe in talking to Rough Collie breeders. A good breeder will choose the correct temperament in a puppy or if you want to be 100% sure, look for an older dog whose temperament has already stabilised.
She might need to be sleeping in a queen size bed if she wants to share though ! A Shetland Sheepdog looks much like a Rough Collie, is much smaller but tend to be much more active and have a different temperament than Rough Collies.

There is a 14 month old RC girl currently advertised in NSW in the breeder's pages.

 

That is actually really exciting for me. To know that the breed she adores could work. I have yet to fully research myself and have met a couple of really high drive Border Collies in my time and thought "Collie" might mean too much to handle. Absolutely looking for a laid back family dog. Will start to research myself a little now and see what we come up with. Thanks for your response.

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When my daughter was 11 we looked into rough collies too as she really wanted a dog. We went to a collie fun show and people were very approachable and helpful. In many ways the breed would have been a good fit but I was a tiny bit allergic to the hair and and so we went for a standard poodle which was probably too high energy for her but she still loves her a lot. Despite her commitment, as I predicted her interests moved on in high school to friends and other activities so I take the dog to training and walk her most days. It sounds like you are prepared for this and also your daughter may stay completely obsessed with dogs. Good luck, from what I learnt you can get calmer rough collies and some people near the park I go to have a lovely rough collie.

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21 hours ago, Rebanne said:

and a totally unknown background/breed in most cases. Sorry but no way would I recommend a mutt for a young girl's 1st dog. A pedigreed dog you basically know what you are getting, size, coat, temperament etc.

My only query on a Rough Coat collie is the coat care

Personally I think that's a bit prejudiced and I disagree... (thats like saying staffies are all killers) 

 

There are lots of purebred puppies and dogs in rescue regardless. A dogs personality is individual, sure breed comes into it a little bit, but it doesn't guarantee a personality because it's a certain breeds (e.g, there are happy labs, calm labs, aggressive labs, hyper labs, lazy labs) 

If you look in the right places and get the carers to help match a pup/dog to the potential owner and if the right animal suits your circumstances then there are no issues. If you adopt or buy a dog that doesn't fit your circumstances then you'll have a very difficult time! 

My rescue I got when I was in primary school, was 12 weeks old and the perfect dog. Sure it was a major learning curve, but of course it's going to be as the first dog. We both progressed and learned lots along the way as we got older. 

So don't think that a rescue isn't an option, there are plenty of purebred or mystery mutt puppies and dogs who need a loving home. They already have vet work done and they are a much more achievable price range for a teenager/child.

 

But for the OPs situation her daughter really seems keen on rough collies (lovely looking dogs!) :) 

I wish her good luck with finding her new little mate, puppy hunting is super exciting! :) 

Has she got some ideas to help her save up? Maybe family members can chip in some money for Xmas & bdays etc and she can get some pocket money?  Good luck :) :thumbsup:

Edited by Scrappi&Monty
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Yes Collie people will generally happily share there knowledge ,a number of the Rough Collie people grew up as kids with the breed due to parents involvedment .

Maybe contact the Collie club and see if they do education days otherwise making a time with a person to talk at a show or simply watch the breed at the show .

 I see your in QLD ,the Collie National was held during the Brisbane Royal Show and would have been an awesome chance to have seen the breed in large numbers .

If she wants to do obedience then getting the right attitude to match really helps .

 

Collie people often have owned Shellie’s as well so can speak about both otherwise there is someone you can talk with about Shellie’s whose kids are in charge of grooming,training etc etc.

 

But a day at a good dog show would allow you to see numerous breeds and allow your daughter to really be final on a Collie or maybe see other options that will work for the family 

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On 04/10/2017 at 6:05 PM, Rebanne said:

and a totally unknown background/breed in most cases. Sorry but no way would I recommend a mutt for a young girl's 1st dog. A pedigreed dog you basically know what you are getting, size, coat, temperament etc.

My only query on a Rough Coat collie is the coat care

Ouch. But I agree with this for an 11yr old. 

Not saying that just because you get a pedigree you'll be guaranteed a 'known' quantity, that would be up to you with a lot of homework on what the breeder's other pups have grown up to do. Preference is a big factor, as is the skill of the owner. 

One single disadvantage of rescue puppies is that you can't research lines / family traits. Call me a monster but no matter how brilliant, when we get an application specifying rigid requirements needed to suit a home, I can't offer a puppy of ours in good faith that it will meet those specific rules when it is grown up. Even seemingly simple like 'must have' excellent recall or nil coat shedding.

 

Edited by Powerlegs
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I was 14 years old when I got my very first dog. I got a golden retriever and I haven't looked back, He was a amazing dog, very intelligent, easy to train, willing please me, loved all the attention, I could walk him off lead at all times. I did everything with him and took him everywhere I went. He knew all his commands sit, drop, sit/stay, drop/stay, come, heel, leave, ignore. He was the most easy dog to look after and he loved to retrieve toys and would do so all day long. I am now 32 years old and own 2 more golden retrievers who are just as great as my first. If your after a great kids dog one willing to do anything, easy to train and loves to be around you. You can't go past the golden retriever.

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