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How cute is that face!

It started with Lassie, the Collie. Or maybe it was Rin Tin Tin, the German Shepherd. Or that dog Petey from The Little Rascals, an American Staffordshire Terrier.

Asta, the Jack Russell Terrier, from The Thin Man series. Fala, the Scottish Terrier, FDR’s companion.

Beethoven, the St. Bernard. 101 Dalmations. Beverly Hills Chihuahua.

Bo, the Portugese Water Dog.

Dogs made famous by movies and their celebrity owners have inspired many people to get that particular breed. Once they got the puppy home, did it meet with their expectations?

Why DO we want, and get, the dogs we have?

Here are some of the usual reasons:

1. I didn’t intend to go into the pet store but I did and I saw a puppy with the cutest face in there, and she was so sad, I just couldn’t leave without her, so I “rescued” her.

2. That dog that Paris Hilton has – I want one like that, only smaller.

3. My friend has the sweetest Yorkshire Terrier so I got one, too.

4. I met a Labrador Retriever in the park and it was so well-behaved and mellow. I want one just like that.

5. There was a picture of a Bloodhound that I saw – the dog was sleeping on the porch – I want a dog that will just hang out with me like that.

6. As long as it doesn’t shed, I don’t care what kind of dog it is.

7. I wanted a dog that I can carry around with me and buy it some really adorable clothes, maybe one of those bodyslings so I can take her with me to the mall.

8. None of those wussy dogs for me – I’m getting a Rottweiler, or maybe a Cane Corso. Those dogs are really cool.

9.Remember that dog from the Wizard of Oz, what was it, some kind of terrier? That was a nice dog. I want that kind of dog.

10. Well, it’s freezing in upstate New York so I’ll get a dog that likes the cold, like a Husky or Malamute.

11. I love the color of Irish Setters. I’ll bet that dog will look terrific lying next to the fireplace.

12.I saw this dog in a magazine. You have to have it flown in from Argentina and it costs, like, $3,000! My family and friends will be so impressed that I got a dog like that.

13. My kids are bugging me for a dog. I’ll surprise them at Christmas with a puppy. I’ll just find a cheap one from one of those ads in the newspaper.

14. My parents had a Cocker Spaniel when I was growing up. It was a great dog, so I’m going to get one of those.

There are probably as many reasons to get a dog as there are breeds. Before you make the decision based on the dog’s:



Film Credits

Your Family History

Your Friend’s Dog

A Photograph

A Magazine Article

Your Image

To Impress People

…please, get a dog that fits you WELL: your Wallet, your Energy Level, and your Lifestyle.

Do the research. Books like Choosing a Dog for Life by Andrew De Prisco can help, or visit the AKC website or

Or, ask a dog trainer you trust to come with you to the animal shelter to help you find your new best friend.

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