Whether you’re looking for a dog that’s big enough not to get underfoot or want one that can look and sound intimidating when strangers knock on the door, larger breeds can be very popular. However, they aren’t for everyone, and it’s important to consider the space you have available and whether it can support a big dog. Here are some factors to think about before considering a large breed.
In general, the more square footage you have in your house, the bigger the dog you can comfortably fit. More space gives everyone — humans and pets included — more room to spread out, and if your house is large enough to let you devote an entire room or even a floor to the pets, you won’t be constantly tripping over dog toys or worried about dog hair when you have people over.
Dog Ownership Responsibilities
Think about the day-to-day responsibilities of owning a dog, and try to picture yourself doing these things in your home. Where do you store the dog food? Can you fit a large dog crate (it needs to be big enough for your dog to turn around in) in your room? Large breeds mean large everything else, from water dishes and dog beds to leashes and chew toys, and you want to make sure you have enough room for the dog and everything that comes with it.
Large breeds like German Shepards are usually kitchen-counter height, which means they can easily get into things that would be out of reach for a medium- or smaller-size dog. Walk around your house and think about where the dog will come up to. Do you have a lot of windows that will end up with nose prints and drool marks? Do you like to keep snacks on the counter or table? These are things you’ll have to deal with or change if you decide to bring a big dog into your home.
When it comes to large dogs, it’s not just the inside that matters. How much outdoor space you have can make a big difference in whether your home is able to comfortably support a big breed. While a sprawling yard may seem like an automatic good thing, if it’s not fenced in, it could lead to issues if your dog decides to make a run for it, and fencing can be a significant expense. A large yard that’s very steep also won’t be as advantageous as a smaller flat space. Keep in mind that big dogs dig bigger holes and make bigger messes than smaller breeds, which can mean more time spent on yard cleanup.
While all of these issues are definitely things to consider, the specific breed you get will make a big difference as well. Great Danes, for example, are one of the tallest breeds out there, but they are known to be fantastic apartment dogs because they don’t need much exercise. Make sure to thoroughly research any breed you are considering to find out more about the energy level, temperament and space needs.
Whether a large breed dog is definitely what you want or you’re now considering the advantages smaller breeds can provide, Pennsylvania Puppies Online can help you find just the right breed and puppy for your family.