Every dog lover knows that every dog has their own unique personality, and that every dog is different, even for dogs that belong to the same breed as each other. However, learning about the general temperament and personality traits of any given breed can help to give you an insight into canine behaviour, and can help you to make an informed decision about what breed of dog might be a good match for you, and those that would not suit your lifestyle. That being said, there are certain breeds of dog whose reputation often precedes them, and many people have very fixed ideas or impressions of certain breeds without really knowing where they got their ideas from.
This in turn leads to some dog breeds being rather misunderstood, or assumed to possess traits that they do not actually have; which can mean that a suitable breed is discounted, or an unsuitable breed chosen wrongly.
Read on to learn about five of the most commonly misunderstood dog breeds in the UK, and the misconceptions that people often hold about them.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is often thought by some people to be similar to the Pit Bull Terrier, which is a banned breed within the UK. While the Staffy and the Pit Bull share some physical traits and history and are often popular with the same people, the Staffy’s reputation and how people view the dog is often influenced by people’s views of Pit Bulls, very wrongly.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is not by nature an aggressive dog, and is actually calm, kind and loyal, forming strong bonds with their families. While they have a very businesslike appearance and can form an effective deterrent to undesirables, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier does not make a good guard dog or personal protection dog; they are simply too personable, friendly and gentle.
The Siberian Husky has a very distinctive appearance, which makes them popular with people who like the look of wolves, and think that the Husky offers all of the visual appeal of the wolf with a calm, domestic dog temperament. However, Huskies are complex, high-energy dogs whose personalities are rather unique, being as they are incredibly outgoing and friendly with everyone, not just their owners, and require significant amounts of exercise.
The Husky does not do well living in a small home or built up environment where they can only be walked for half an hour a day on the lead, and needs plenty of time and effort spent meeting their exercise requirements and keeping them entertained. The Siberian Husky is one of the most common dogs to be rehomed after their inexperienced owners found that they had bitten off more than they could chew!
Lots of people love the Border Collie, and Collies of all types are popular because they are lively, personable, good fun, and love a good cuddle. Many of us will have fond memories of working Border Collies from holidays in the countryside, and it is certainly true to say that the Border Collie is more commonly kept today as a domestic pet than as a working dog.
However, people often overlook the Border Collie’s need for exercise and entertainment within a domestic situation, and think that just because these dogs can live happily within a family home, they are also happy to be left alone for much of the day, and only walked or let outside a couple of times a day too. The Border Collie, in reality, is a challenging dog to keep, and needs to spend plenty of time outdoors on the go, as well as having their intellectual needs met too.
The muscular, stocky Rottweiler is commonly used as a guard dog, security dog, police dog and patrol dog in working roles all over the world, which has led to the breed having a rather fearsome reputation. Rottweilers are tenacious and very biddable, and so can be trained for a wide variety of working roles, including protection and guarding work, which is part of the reason for their historical popularity.
However, the Rottweiler is not by nature an aggressive dog, they are not prone to snappiness, and they make perfectly suitable family pets. They will guard their territory and be protective over their families, but they are not prone to snappiness or aggression.
The diminutive, cute little Chihuahua is one of the most misunderstood dogs of all. They are adorable little lap dogs and often, handbag dogs, but a great many people totally overlook the fact that they are still dogs, and not toys or babies.
They should not be carried everywhere or given human food and lots of treats, and they still require a balanced diet, clear limits and appropriate training, just like any other dog. Without these things, the cute-looking little Chihuahua will soon turn into a snappy, unruly little terror, without their owners really understanding why this has happened.