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Considering a new dog can be exciting.  There are a great deal of things to consider before you get your new furry friend.  These considerations should be done before you walk into a pet store.   One of the most important decisions about getting a new dog is it's breed.  

Should you select a purebred dog or mutt?

Benefits to getting a purebred dog

Get the type of dog you want (family, guard, athletic companion)

Specific dog breeds have traits and characteristics that may ensure a dog is more likely to be good with children, have a calmer disposition, be more playful or healthier.  While there is never a guarantee as such, knowing the breed of the dog makes it less of a guessing game.

Higher value and documented lineage

Dogs that are produced by two AKC (American Kennel Club) registered dogs will also be able to be registered with the AKC.  This registration indicates your dog is purebred and includes a permanent record of your dogs name and it's place in breed history.  It also increases the value of puppies should you choose to breed your dog in the future with another registered dog.  In addition to your dogs certificate, the registration also includes certain discounts and eligibility to participate in AKC events, along with other AKC benefits as noted on their site,

Less risk for aggressive breeds

Knowing what kind of dog you have eliminates the risk that the dog could have a mix of an aggressive breed.  Such breeds may be a danger to those in your home and visitors.  Also, it may disqualify you from certain home insurance policy providers, cause your homeowner's insurance premium to rise or increase your risk for lawsuit if your dog attacks someone. 

As noted in an article How to Tell if a Dog is Being Aggressive, aggressive breed dogs do not always indicate the dog will be aggressive or dangerous.  It may have a wonderful personality that shows through when cared for in a good home.  Likewise, dogs from non-aggressive breeds can also be dangerous.  It is always wise to see the parents of the dog and perhaps test the dog with some tasks used to determine the disposition of that particular dog prior to purchasing.

Meet the parents, breeder and know the dog comes from a healthy envirnment

If you purchase a purebred dog from a breeder you will have the opportunity to see the facility or home and parents of the dog.  You will also be able to talk with the breeder to ensure your puppy come from a healthy set of parents, clean environment and is likely to be free of disease or illness that is most notable in puppies that originate from puppy mills (a commercial puppy production facility or home where dogs are forced to produce an unhealthy amount of puppies in dirty environments with little regard for the health of the animals).  Nothing is worse than falling in love with a puppy that later dies or gets ill due to unhealthy breeding procedures or breeding environment.

Benefits to getting a mutt

Plenty mutts available

There are approximately 7.6 million companion animals that enter shelters every year that need homes.  The abundance of these wonderful animals provides an excellent source of great pets to choose for your home and family.

Less expensive

The cost associated with adoption or purchase of a dog that is likely not purebred is substantially less than that of a dog that is a registered purebred dog.

Training is done, enjoy your new pet

There are many dogs that have been surrendered that are already trained and housebroken.  You may not be able to select a specific breed, but it helps to spend time with the dog prior to adoption to determine if it is friendly and evenly dispositioned.  Ask your vet or research some ways to determine if a dog or puppy shows signs of aggression so that you can conduct some easy tasks while visiting with the dog before you make a decision.

Less genetic disease

There is always a debate regarding which is healthier, mutt or purebred.  However, the fact that mutts tend to be hardier and maintain their longevity with fewer illnesses has been claimed due to their lower incidence of genetic disease.   Basically, they have a wide range of breeds within their genetic make-up and therefor are less likely to suffer the common illnesses certain breeds are known to suffer.

Beneficial for the animal

Your interest in acquiring a new pet indicates you and your family care about the well being of the pet population.  Placing a homeless pet in your home by paying a small adoption fee helps your new pet and the shelter to provide care and life saving efforts for millions of animals that end up in the shelters due to a multitude of reasons.  It makes sense to select from over 7 million new animals every year that need loving homes.

Neutered or spayed

Many animals in shelters have been examined by a local or in-house veterinarian to ensure they are healthy enough for adoption.   Most were also neutered or spayed to further benefit the health of the animal and for the reduction of the homeless pet population.  The adoption shelters usually have opportunities for discounts for upcoming vaccinations or veterinarian care upon your adoption of the pet.  

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