17 answers

4 Yr Old Wants a Puppy

My 4 yr old girl has been asking for a puppy for a couple of years now, and I am finally starting to seriously think about getting her one. I want a dog that has low maintenance, and very good with children. Also I would like a small dog. What would be the best breed to get?

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I have 2 wonderful shih tzus. They do not shed and they rarely bark. They are also very tolerant with my 21 month old. They are playful but low-key. Overall very low-maintenance. Don't require a ton of exercise (like a Jack Russell might), but they enjoy playing when you are ready to play with them. They are each under 20 pounds.

You can also go online do some research on the best dogs for children. The internet is wonderful when looking for information on anything.

Hope that helps


More Answers

The right dog for one family is not always the right dog for another family. I work as a professional dog trainer, so I see a lot of perfect matches and not-so-perfect ones. There are a lot of things to consider:
Size of house, size of yard, fenced yard, finaces, grooming responsibilites, your personality (are you laid back or out going?), what you want out of a dog, gaurding instinct, ect.
All of that has to be taken into account. If you are a laid back, mellow person, getting a hyper (but sweet) Jack Russel will be a bad match. If you are a person on the go that likes to hike, jog, ect getting a lazy English Bulldog will be the wrong choice. Also you have to consider where you live: If you live in an apartment or a subdivision where houses are close together, you don't want to get a dog that barks a lot (unless you are willing to train it away) b/c you will have neighbor conflict issues.
If you would like to contact me privately we can discuss your personality, wants, lifestlye and maybe I can help you choose a breed.
My email address is: ____@____.com

1 mom found this helpful

Check out this website! It lets you put in your preferences and selects which dog is best for your family. It's really neat!


You can also go online do some research on the best dogs for children. The internet is wonderful when looking for information on anything.

Hope that helps


I would highly recommend a beagle. They are a great size and very good with kids. They are also low maintenance. You do not have to get them groomed. We just give Abby (our beagle) a bath about 4 times a year. (If you bath them too often it can dry out their skin.) We have 4 small children (6,5,3,1) and couldn't expect a better dog. We would get another beagle in a heartbeat!

I have a 3 year old and she really wanted a puppy. We got her a dachsund and she has become so responsible. She feeds it, waters it, takes it outside, and puts down a clean pad after I take up the dirty one. We can't believe how much she has done with the dog at 3!!! I have heard that dachsunds aren't good with kids, but ours is. We have had a boxer and WOO! that was a challenge. THe dog was VERY hyper and uncontrolable! My husband always had mini poodles and they are great with kids! I think it just depends on the individual family and how much time you have to invest in the new member of the family! Good luck!

I have 2 wonderful shih tzus. They do not shed and they rarely bark. They are also very tolerant with my 21 month old. They are playful but low-key. Overall very low-maintenance. Don't require a ton of exercise (like a Jack Russell might), but they enjoy playing when you are ready to play with them. They are each under 20 pounds.

Hi M.,
I would get a beagle. Not only are they very cute and loveable, they are awesome with small kids and they are easy to train to potty and they are awesome dogs. I have one and it is so very loveable and smart. Very easy to take care of. I also have a 4 1/2 year old. They play very well together. Well I hope this helps!! Have a great day!!

I went through this last year, and I kept saying no because we don't own the house. Of course between aunt Marsha and Daddy guess what showed up, you got it a puppy. The only dog I ever wanted if we got one was a Pug. The are really good with kids, and small. My boys play with him all day, I swear they can do anything and the most he does is bark at them and than run. We got our pug when he was 8 weeks old so he growing up with the kids. But, that is what I would suggest for a small dog that is going to be good with kids.
I also grew up with one and he thought he was a kid. Everywhere we went he we, swimming in the pond or my favorite was sliding, he would get on an old car hood and slide down the hill, stand at the bottom and look at you to come get the hood so he could do it again.lol
Good luck in choosing a dog.

I am in the same boat and have gotten great info. on various dog breeds through dogbreedinfo.com. They even have a short quiz that will give you your perfect dog matches. I think I want to rescue a young dog, so I have gotten great results through Petfinder.com. These sites also give you lots of important training tips, etc.
Good luck.

If at all possible, I'd put off getting a dog for a couple years because all dogs need to be properly trained, and you probably won't have time for that with a 7 1/1 month old and a four year old. Also, she may be better able to handle a little responsibility when she's 5 or 6 (and will probably be gentler with a puppy). Nothing's cuter than puppies together with babies or children, but remember the tough times too: puppy-teething, potty training, dog illnesses, etc. I love dogs, but sometimes I wish I just had our cat and could just let our daughter play with neighbors' and relatives' dogs. I know this probably won't be popular- call me the Devil's advocate- but I thought I'd just point out that no dogs are really low maintenance. Only goldfish and frogs really are. Good luck!

Go to www.dogbreedinfo.com They have information on just about every breed you can imagine.

Santa brought my two girls a puppy last Christmas. Their dad had died in August, so they needed something to love and care for. My girls were older though, 5 and 7 at the time. Santa brought a Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier.

I did alot of research on dogs. I didn't want a big dog because I was renting at the time, but in the same token, I didn't want a small dog either.. too easy for them to get hurt when small children play with them. My wheaten is a girl, and she now stands about 18 inches from her shoulder down, and is about 35 pounds. She is very playful with the girls and with other dogs, when she is alone, she is very gentle and quiet. I never had a problem with her chewing on things, but she is a terrier and she did dig a little when she was younger. (she is now about a year and a half). She doesn't shed, which was a HUGE plus for me, but you will have to have her groomed (I keep her coat short) or you will have to brush her. (This is something fun for the kids to do.) She doesn't BARK... I have heard her a couple of times but for a dog.. I would say she doesn't BARK. She loves other dogs and I have never heard her growl or try to bite anyone. She loves to curl up on the couch with me and the girls.. She is a very intelligent dog, and that is good and bad. :-) Potty training here was not that difficult.. but it took a good 6 to 9 months to get her fully trained.

I did alot of research on different dogs... and this breed just really fit what I was looking for. I had never heard of them before, but now, I am so glad I chose her. She is the perfect compliment to our family, and my daughters and I both just love her to pieces.

Good luck on finding the perfect dog for you... As long as you know you will be the one taking care of her and cleaning up after her, and not your child.. then there shouldn't be a problem. My girls do help with baths and feeding and watering her.. but I am the one responsible for making sure she is watched and fed and let out.

Things you really need to do from the start is crate train her from the very beginning, and keep her on a schedule. With you being a stay at home mom, it won't take you too long at all to get her trained. My dog stays in the laundry room during the day while I am at work, and in her cage at night. She loves her cage and knows when it's time to go to bed, she crawls in without a peep.


I got my girls a puppy when the girls were 3 and 5. I did a lot of research to figure out what kind of dog is small (my motto: little dogs, little messes), smart, well-tempered and good with kids. I used those on-line questionaires, too, that ask you lots of questions about what you want and what kind of environment you have, and then tell you which breeds work. The consistent suggestion was daschund. We ended up getting a female short-hair miniature (puppy) and about three years later we adopted a two-year old male (not so miniature) from daschund rescue. I cannot tell you how tolerant both dogs were. The female was dressed a time or two like a baby doll and pushed around in a doll carriage without complaint. The male became my younger daughter's best friend through thick and thin, and I promise you he was in large part responsible for easing her transition through the hormonal thing into teen years. I cannot recommend the doxies highly enough.

hi M.,
I have a big dog he is a yellow lab and I love him to death he will be a year old in july he was very easy to crate train and potty break. we got him when he was 13 weeks old. the kids love him also. he is also our daycare dog he is around the kids all day. as for what kind i would look at what kind is best for you and if you have the time to potty train a puppy or get a dog from the humaie scciety or someplace like that.
My sis works at the kansas humaine scciety and she fosters puppy all kinds big and small when we got our dog she done "all the tests" she does on the dogs they get in and he passed with flying colors. hope this helps W.

I got my son (Who turns 5 today!) a puppy at the age of 3. The breed of my choosing was a beagle. Granted they are a hyper breeed but I find that she does very well with Brayden. They are easily house broken and allow children to "mess" with them by pulling tails, ears or "hugging" with out any response. Boomer has been a great dog!!

I've turned into a cat person as an adult, but as a child I grew up around Beagles (my Dad hunted a lot). Later we had a Schnauzer who was really great with kids and just a little teddy bear, the only problem with him though was that he needed grooming every couple of weeks, so you may want to consider a short hair dog that won't need to be taken to the groomers. My sister has a small terrior of some type and she has been really good with her three kids (ages 1-11), but does growl when the 1 year old comes around and the dog is eating.

Do not get a chihuahua or a min pin!!!!!

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