General Question

Knotmyday's avatar

Would you rather have a mutt or an established (read: expensive) breed of dog, and why?

Asked by Knotmyday (7483points) May 15th, 2009

A friend of mine has a Yorkie, which he and his wife bought for $2400. I have a mutt, which was free. They both perform the same functions, ie barking, pooping, playing, and eating. So….

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40 Answers

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

It what depend what you’re looking for in a dog.
Purebreeds tend to be for dog enthusiasts or for fashionable pet owners.

Les's avatar

I love Norwich terriers look at that little guy!! and I would love to own one. I’ve never owned a dog before, and I understand (and love) why people adopt and/or rescue dogs, but I don’t think I’d be happy with any other dog. I hope I can find a Norwich to rescue, but otherwise, I’d buy one.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

All a matter of what purpose your dog is going to serve, i.e. some animals are bred for specific tasks. My favorite breed of dog is bred to herd pigs, but while I have no pigs to herd, I simply like the coloration and temperament of that specific breed. $300 for a male puppy, $450 for a female.

Some people pay big bucks for a specific breed of dog as a status symbol. Which seems retarded, but hey life is about choices. If someone wants to pay several grand for a dog, no skin off my ass.

I think how a dog is cared for is twenty times more important than how much one pays for it. We have a pure bred JRT, I paid $150 for it, long story, don’t ask and she is worth every penny. Would I pay for another one in the future? Depends. I really like JRTs, but I go more for a dog’s intelligence and temperament than its actual breed. This one just happened to be a very sweet and smart dog. My JRT seems ten times smarter than my last pig herding dog, but then small dogs are somewhat smarter than big dogs, and less clumsy as well. And easier to care for. I never liked little dogs until I got my JRT, and it really changed my opinion.

That’s enough, this is turning into a novel.

spresto's avatar

I think dogs are a useless necessity of our time. Back when they served a purpose dogs were bread for specific uses. True a dog serves some purposes still (hunting, herding, etc.) Past that they are just a waste of time and money. Nobody in the modern world needs a dog.

ubersiren's avatar

@Les : That’s the exact dog I want, too! They are so freaking adorable! Oh my GAWD!!!!

I wouldn’t care as long as I felt a bond with the dog. However, ultimately, I’d rather have a cat. They’re far less dependent, destructive and noisy. They’re a superior creature imho. :)

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@spresto, I disagree. My dog serves several purposes, one of which is she is a replacement for a child, which we don’t have. While you are entitled to your opinion, and I respect your right to express it, don’t for a minute think that I believe you are right. I know otherwise.

Life is about choices. Your results may vary.

Knotmyday's avatar

@les – I like his watchband. :)

spresto's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra I am not sure what the bold text is supposed to mean. Eh, nevermind. You are entitle to your opinion and I mine. Dogs aren’t a replacement for people.

Les's avatar

@knotmyday: Yeah, you know. He’s a dog on the move. He has to keep he eye on the clock.

Facade's avatar

I want a mutt.

spresto's avatar

Well…if I had to pick one I would go with the mutt. They are virtually the same crap factory.

Supacase's avatar

I would probably go the mutt route because they need homes, are less expensive and just as good.

I will say my brother-in-law brought his 12 week labradoodle to our house the other day and I fell in love with it. So smart, great with my daughter, and he doesn’t shed. Still, not worth $1500, IMO.

spresto's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra On the other hand I did see “I am Legend.” That was pretty sad when Sam the dog died. sniff sniff.

loser's avatar

Mutts, or “blends” as I like to call them, often make better dogs. The pedigree dogs are so often over bred and develop problems. Not always, of course, there are several respectable breeders around. I would personally rather go with a nice shelter dog based on health and temperment than spend a lot of money on a pedigreed dog.

TaoSan's avatar

Dunno, I’m a cat guy, but I guess the same question applies. I had quite a couple throughout my life, and they all came from shelters. It’s the personality I go for, not a particular breed.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

A dog is a dog is a dog, to me. I love them all. Same with cats. They’re all cute and lovable.

dynamicduo's avatar

Any dog I would get would have a purpose and a job, such as a sheep herding dog. I would not have the dog as a pet. Thus it is very important for that dog to be pure bred in order to fulfill its purpose to the best of its abilities. As well, I enjoy knowing the possible health problems my breed would have, so that I may have appropriate back up plans.

aidje's avatar

I’d rather have a mutt. From what I gather, they’re less susceptible to diseases and whatnot. Also, I’d rather take a dog that needs a home rather than one with a huge price tag. Of course, I would still have some parameters in mind, and I would also consider the traits of whatever ancestry was known or could be guessed at.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I have had both mutts and pedigrees and have loved them all the same! My family and I currently have a number of Flatcoated Retrievers (which my Aunt breeds), one Jack Russell Terrier and 2 cross breeds (1 Spaniel X Retriever and 1 Collie X which my Grandmother recently got from a shelter). They are all wonderful friends but the Retrievers and Retriever X are also working gundogs as well as pets. The Jack Russell and Collie X are unemployed and spend most of their time asleep on the couch!!! While I have no problems with people choosing to get their dogs from breeders I like to remind people that it’s not just “mutts” or cross breeds that are in shelters or rescue centres looking for homes, there are plenty of pedigrees that have found themselves looking for their forever homes. I know of a lot of people who have avoided rescuing because they “want a specific breed” and while I agree that there are some breeds that you hardly ever see in your local shelter there are plenty of breed specific rescue society’s that are working to rehome plenty of that specific breed.

toomuchcoffee911's avatar

Hope I’m not repeating, but don’t mutts live longer and aren’t they smarter?

phoenyx's avatar

Mutts tend to be healthier and have less genetic defects.

rooeytoo's avatar

I like most all dogs, have met dumb mutts and smart pure breds and vice versa.

They are more loyal than humans and in a lot of cases, much better company.

They don’t replace humans, rather they complement them.

Darwin's avatar

I have both mutts and purebreds, although I have never bought a dog, only rescued them. They have been and are great dogs, every one of them.

And @spresto , they do have a use. Just today some strange guy kept trying to open my storm door even after I told him not to so two of the dogs (a purebred and a mutt) convinced him otherwise.

Of our current batch of dogs (four mutts and a pedigreed purebred American Bulldog) two have severe allergies, one of the mutts and the bulldog. Thus while mutts may potentially be healthier each dog is an individual and must be judged as such.

Ivan's avatar

I suppose there is a desire for pure bred dogs if you want them to fulfil a specific purpose. But if you just want a pet, there is no reason to get a pure bred dog. I don’t really care what the dog looks like, I just want it to love me.

YARNLADY's avatar

Many dogs that look exactly like purebred are available at the Animal control/Humane Society, and in fact some are purebred that didn’t work out for the owner. There is never any valid reason to spend money for a house dog, other than the usual spay/neuter and shots.

For a show dog or working dog, then it might make sense.

MissAnthrope's avatar

I would probably pick a mutt for the reasons stated (better temperaments and fewer genetic defects due to inbreeding). However, after owning and raising one, I love Weimeraners, so there is the likelihood of my going that route just because I like the breed so much. That’s the only breed I would go purebred for.

I will say our Weimie was, I think, the stupidest dog I have ever met.. and I am so not kidding. He would turn and run head-first into walls, he did not at all understand his farts, and one time he came sprinting in from the backyard and instead of running through the wide-open doorway, he ran dead smack head-first into the propped open screen door.

I’ve never met a mutt that stupid.. you be the judge. ;)

rooeytoo's avatar

People who want specific qualities in a dog such as size, coat type, etc. should go with pure bred. Pure bred does not necessarily always mean inbred genetic problems, most breeders are trying to eliminate these problems not continue them.

Hounds have never been noted for their great intelligence, although of course there are exceptions, but Akitas are, not easily trainable but so smart. So if you get a mixed breed hound, do not name him Einstein even if he is a mutt because he is probably going to be a little slow. But if you get a pure bred akita or akita mutt, it is probably going to be a smart, thinking dog who will try your patience.

sccrowell's avatar

We have an Italian Greyhound & Dachshund both purebreds & no inbreeding… I can not say they are smarter than a mutt, as I’ve never owned one. But these tell me it’s time to eat to go outside and DEFINITELY time to go to bed!!

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

While a dog can’t replace a human, one thing I have noticed about dogs is that they love their ‘person’ more than they love themselves. Besides, kids will break your hearts, and a dog would never do that knowingly.

@spresto, the bold text is simply something new I came up with this morning. I might make it into the new slogan for Evelynism. Just think, you were the first one I used it on. Don’t you feel special?

lisaj89's avatar

I have had both mutts and purebred dogs growing up. For about 15 years, we had mutts put off on us for various reasons. Last year, after the old mutt passed away, we adopted two standard poodles (the big ones) from a poodle rescue in SC. Although I love these dogs to death and they have wonderful personalities, they just aren’t nearly as smart as our mutts were. I think it’s ridiculous to breed animals when there are so many being killed in shelters ever day.

Darwin's avatar

Our Shar-Pei was one of the brightest (and stubbornest) dogs I have ever known. However, two of our mutts are also very bright. One of them approaches dog genius. Thank God he does not have thumbs.

Another fearfully bright dog is my niece’s border collie. The only way to outwit her is to play on her OCD and get out a ball. She will do anything for a ball, even get off the trampoline or get out of the pool. She also climbs fences, much to a burglar’s great dismay when he attempted to rob the house next door, figuring he was safe because of the 6-foot chain link fence. Dawg simply climbed the fence and went after him.

cak's avatar

Two mutts in my family. One is slightly dingy, but we’ve figured out that it has more to do with her enthusiasm. Growing up, we had pure breds, but as an adult dog owner, never once have I had a pure bred. I just love my mutts. They are loyal, smart (mostly!), loving and fun. :) Also, my husband and I only believe in rescue dogs or saving them from an animal shelter. Too many homeless animals need homes for us to pay hundreds, even thousands for a dog. (yes, they are worth the money, but we’d rather save a homeless one.)

MacBean's avatar

I’d go for a purebred. Because I’m snobby like that. I don’t really like dogs in general, so if I do like one, it’s probably because of some trait that’s specific to the breed.

tinyfaery's avatar

I have never had my own dog. I do eventually want one, but I think I will get an older dog, one with predictable behavior, so that I know what to expect. As to breed, I just want a medium-sized, non-slobbery, soft, cat and people friendly, with minimal shedding, funny, happy dog, that does not need my constant attention.

I’ll pay if I have to.

Kayak8's avatar


I train dogs for search and rescue (that is finding lost people and human remains NOT performing rescue services for a particular breed of dog). I live in the modern world (last I checked and, admittedly, there is some debate) and man has still not invented anything like a dog’s nose to find a lost child in the woods or the fragments of a loved one’s remains.

I have a German Shepherd Dog and a Labradoodle. Both are equally good at the tasks I set before them, but they each approach the tasks in novel ways.

Purchasing a pure bred dog can result in health problems for which any given breed is known. Typically, you will get the benefit of what is called hybrid vigor when you have a known cross (i.e., you still know who the parents are as is the case with my labradoodle). The challenge with mutts is that you don’t necessarily know the history of a particular dog’s parents and you can end up with a dog that has unpredictable or surprising problems.

That said, the animal shelters are full of delightful dogs that can be temperament tested to assess a number of traits and reviewed by a veterinarian to determine potential health concerns. Often these dogs are available at a nominal fee that includes spaying and neutering.

Darwin's avatar

I am now caught on the horns of a dilemma. I just discovered today that there is another American Bulldog in our local Humane Society Shelter. I am so tempted because I enjoy ours so much. They are BIG dogs and tend to be very enthusiastic but rather stubborn and sometimes a bit dense, so they are starting to show up in shelters frequently because you need to work with them a lot to get a well-behaved result.

I am sure someone will take her, but it is tempting.

OTOH, I saw someone hit a dog on the road yesterday and just keep going, although the dog was obviously alive. He was a sweet, fairly young black lab who was very willing for me to load him in the truck even though it jarred his very broken leg. I ended up taking him to a local vet, not my usual guy, and signing him over to them. I have five dogs already and simply cannot take on another one. How do the gods always know when I have extra cash (tax refund check came yesterday too)? Between my “donation” to help the dog and the cost of fixing my daughter’s car we are back at square one financially.

But Lola Jean is very tempting.

cak's avatar

@darwin lola…that is the greatest name.

I’m not helping, am I?

Darwin's avatar


YARNLADY's avatar

@Darwin That is very commendable of you. I would have done the same. My grandson works at a vet and they get strangers bringing in injured dogs several times a month. Unfortunately, he hit one last week and it died instantly. He still tried to find the owner, but no luck

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