Can.I.Rock.it?

Messy Nessy’s Guide to Pooches

In Uncategorized on July 22, 2010 at 1:02 pm

The truth is, growing up my best friends were dogs. My Labradors, Sacha and Pacha and my retriever, Toby always stayed close by as I dressed Barbie, picked flowers in the garden and made floury messes in the kitchen. They put up with me when I stuck reindeer horns on their heads for Christmas, made coming home from school the most exciting part of my day and most importantly, they were there for me whenever I needed them. My dogs loved me when nobody else did.

My friends today still find it slightly strange that I can’t walk past a dog without attempting a meet and greet– Pugs and Rottweilers alike. Being a dog lover first and a style guru second (what?! ;)), I thought I should use my blog to do a guide to my favourite pooches. Anyone who might be considering adopting a furry companion might find this useful…

(The dog bones indicate the pros and the dog houses indicate the cons of each breed)


Sacha, my first Labrador, my first dog, my first love

The Best Friend: Labrador Retriever

I believe the saying about a dog being a man’s best friend was coined by a man who owned a Labrador.

It is possible to teach a Labrador to do almost anything– it’s no coincidence that the Labrador is the chosen breed to guide the blind.

Very eager to please, they will easily participate in good behaviour if they know it makes you happy.

A Labrador will constantly be by your side. This kind of dedication provokes the deepest possible relationship between you and your dog.

They are incredibly playful but not always gentle. I’ve spent many hours in the pool with my Labradors (they love water) and come out with more unintentional paw scratches than I would like. They tend to be unaware of their strength and weight.

These are born and bred hunting dogs, not for the squeamish when you see your handsome Lab trotting proudly back to the house with a lifeless squirrel in his mouth– definitely NOT an apartment dog.

They are messy. At times it can be endearing and others you may lose your temper. Most of the time, I just thought it was funny. My parents didn’t. Also a lifetime supply of hair removal bushes will be needed because Labs like to shed their pretty coats all over your brand new jet black dress.

***

Boxer-Bull dog cross, Billie Holiday, there's no one like her...

The Realist: Bull Dog

If you’re ever thinking about doing something stupid, like fall in love, just look into a bull dog’s eyes. They’ll say something along the lines of, “Can you stop being a moron and just feed me, goddamnit?”
With the kind of expression that reveals how ridiculous they think humans really are, you’ll always remember your senses soon enough. This is also the ideal dog if you are lazy, you’ll be kindred spirits.

A perfect city dog without being too puny and wimpish, bull dogs prefer not to exercise and shouldn’t be overexerted in hot weather

Effective guard dogs, they rarely bark but if they do, consider it a real warning

Loyal and attached to family

Very gentle with children

Very possessive over their food

More prone to health problems than most breeds, most commonly, hip, respiratory, heart and skin problems.

***

The Comedian: The Pug

So ugly that they’re cute, I’ve become more and more drawn to this unusual little creature and I’m seriously considering making one of these to be my first dog to live with me on my own (that is, my first dog without having my parents to clean up the poop and walk him at 7am).

Don’t judge a book by it’s cover, Pugs are actually extremely intelligent and easy to train if done right

They do well in both a city apartment or living in the countryside but should never be left to live outside.

Pugs very rarely attack other animals and are known to be very sociable when cats or other animals are brought into the home

Unlike most small dogs, Pugs don’t yap and bark, but they are still very good watch dogs.

Pugs are prone to infection and need to be groomed frequently to avoid this

***

Grace Kelly with her Weimaraner

The Personal Trainer: Weimaraner

Courageous hunters, bred by German royalty, it’s very rare that another dog can outrun the Weimaraner. My dogs have tried. And failed.

Extremely expressive: sometimes it feels like they are trying to communicate on a human level with their exaggerated expressions, yawns and vocalizations, which is ofcourse, very endearing.

Ideal pets for sportsmen, hikers and outdoor types

Very protective over loved ones, natural watchdogs

Their neutral coloured short hair means barely any visible dog hair on your clothes

They must be close to the ones they love– in your lap or in your bed, sharing your pillow. They tend to have separation anxiety. Depending on the owner, this can either be a positive or a negative trait– for me it’s a positive. I love to cozy up with my dogs for bed time!

Sometimes they are too smart– quickly learning how to open doors (which I happen to find very amusing). They always find fun things to occupy themselves with, like chewing through shoes.

Weimaraners bark because barking is fun for them. They also tend to bark when left alone.

***

The Showstopper: The Siberian Husky

An owner of a Siberian Husky knows how much attention they are going to get when they bring this remarkable canine beauty on an outing. Even the dogs seem to know how special a breed it is! Much to the annoyance of Siberian Husky owners, because their colouring is similar, Huskies are often used to play wolves in movies and therefore frequently confused with the dangerous species.

Arguably the supermodel of the canine breeds

They are in fact a very cheerful, energetic and need human companionship to be happy

Because of their arctic ancestry, Huskies have an innate ability to sense of danger where a human cannot. While most well-trained breeds will do whatever their masters tell them, Huskies have been known to refuse direction from their master’s in order to keep them from danger (like falling off a cliff in the middle of a blizzard).

They love to run with the wind, you have to be an energetic owner– although perhaps energetic is an understatement.

They love to howl and have an ear-splitting bark

An extremely rewarding dog to have if you can raise them properly, I would strongly discourage this breed for inexperienced dog owners.

***

The Fashion Accessory: French Bulldog

I’ve been noticing these dogs more frequently with very attractive lady owners around Paris. They become cuter each time I encounter one and so I did a little research on what they are like to have as pets.

They tend to form a strong bond with one person and one person only– their master

They are very curious, amusingly stubborn and loving

Easily trained, enthusiastic but not too hyper

French bull dogs can often be aggressive towards other dogs (probably a height complex)

They tend to snore and do it very loudly, but if you keep them at a healthy weight, respiratory problems are less common

Left alone, French bulldogs will become mischievous and depressed

***

The Chick Magnet: Great Dane

If you can handle one of these, you just scored ten points in my book. Owning one of these dogs requires a lot of self-assurance and physical strength– two very good qualities in a man! There is a bohemian, retired wild child in his late sixties who walks around King’s Road with five gigantic Great Danes, handling them as if they were little Jack Russells. I imagine he must have had many beautiful women in his life.

Shockingly, the Great Dane won’t mind living in a small house or apartment. They are surprisingly compact and can easily curl up on a couch

While Danes do need a lot of exercise, you do get your downtime because they are extremely lazy around the house and therefore, not as destructive as you would think for such a large animal.

They are extremely affectionate dogs and terribly friendly with adults and children alike

Gorgeous women love them

They have a very short life expectancy– most live until the age of eight on average which can be heartbreaking for owners

Vet, food and grooming bills with such a large dog will naturally be quite high.

***

Family Guy: Newfoundland Shepherd

A gentle giant, they have an unusual instinct to tone down their animalistic behaviour when around small children. While any Newfoundland dog owner will never cease to gush about what an amazing dog they have, two key personality attributes to owning one of these is having a sense of humour and a big heart. I thought with this particular breed, I should list the Cons first!

They LOVE to get dirty, get wet, drool and shed a ton

They like to push your buttons– when giving a command to a Newfoundland, they will actually think about it before doing it and so patience is key

As it’s a larger breed, naturally, food and vet bills will be higher

While they are never aggressive, they simply won’t let anyone they don’t trust near the children they love

Extremely patient and tolerant

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  1. I LOVE all those breeds. I own a boxer bulldog, lived with a pug, used to have a weimeraner ( well he was a pointer but same thing) and my neighbour has a New Foundland.

    My advice to you? Get a french bulldog over a pug. The ears are worth it!

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