- Pets and Animals»
- Dogs & Dog Breeds
Advantages of Owning a Mutt
Call it a mutt, cur, mongrel, crossbred or more simply a mixed breed, however you like to call them, consider that these dogs are just as lovable as the purebred dogs that come with pedigree papers. Indeed, they seem to have a special ''charm'' that attracts people upon visiting the local shelter. You may see them barking for attention, whining or simply looking into your eyes deeply pleading you to take them home. If you feel those tugs to your heartstrings, do not fight back: indeed mutts offer several advantages when compared to purebred dogs.
Finally tests to determine what dog breeds are in your mutt!
Why Mutts Make Wonderful Pets: Advantages
Mutts, indeed, offer several advantages when it comes to health. It may sounds like great news to a mutt owner's ears that these dogs are less likely to to suffer fron inherited medical problems. Indeed, one main disadvantage of purebred dogs is that they often have an increased risk of inherited medical conditions.
Mutts instead are less likely to develop inherited diseases because they benefit from hybrid vigor, explains veterinarian Bruce Fogle in his book Dog Owners' Manual . This means that mixing stock from different genetic backgrounds may make dogs stronger. However, mutts may still carry to a certain extent genetic disorders deriving from the breeds that make up their genetics. For instance, a mutt derived from the crossing of a German Shepherd stud with a mixed Collie dam, may still develop hip displaysia, a hereditary condition common in the German Shepherd breed.
One of the biggest advantages of owning a mutt is that they are much cheaper to purchase and maintain than purebred dogs. Most mutts are free or you may just have to pay for a nominal adoption fee.
Disadvantage of Owning a Mutt
It is worth mentioning though that mutts also have a downside and that is they do not carry much guarantee onto what they may turn out to be. In other words, it cannot predicted how large a mutt puppy may turn out to be once adult and no predictions can be made on its future looks and temperament.
This is why many people like purebred dogs. They know exactly what their puppy will look like when it grows up and they have certain expectations on its future temperament. Coat color, height, weight, temperament are all qualities that can be to a certain degree predicted in specific breeds of dogs when they adhere to certain standards.
However, while selective breeding may appear to bring predictable characteristics, it is often forgotten that a dog’s temperament and personality derives not only from genes, but also from early environment exposures and training. You can therefore get a Golden Retriever which is meant to be social and tolerant of children but end up with an aloof dog if you do not work on socializing it and teaching it to accept children from an early age.
Mutts may not offer guarantees on how they may turn out to be, but there are chances they may ultimately become reliable, stable minded dogs with well rounded personalities if given the chance to flourish. It is unfortunate though that often they are surrendered due to unplanned pregnancies or just being unwelcome and are therefore not given much of a chance to prove their worthiness.
Generally, there are higher chances of obtaining a good mutt if taken from the litter as a pup. This way the parents can be assessed and you can work on early training and socialization. While an adult mutt at the shelter is a great option, keep in mind that you may have to work on some issues, such as barking when left alone, destructiveness and fear biting. If you persevere and are consistent though you may rehabilitate the dog and earn years of rewarding relationships.