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Choosing a Mixed Breed Dog

By Robin Tierney

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Why do so many people choose to adopt a secondhand dog?

These folks are saving a life and making a positive difference in reversing the tragedy of pet overpopulation. They realize that shelters and rescue organizations have just about every kind of dog ... puppy, adult or senior canine ... large and small ... active and laid-back ... purebred and mixed breed. Many choose to take home a mixed breed, sometimes called a mutt, because of the personalities and advantages of these one-of-a-kind companions. We've met a number of people, who after buying only purebred dogs, decide to add a mixed breed to their family packs -- and discover the ultimate joy of diversity.

Canine expert and author Joan Paylo calls mixed breed dogs ''a virtual melting pot of positive canine characteristics.''

For insight about mixed breed dogs, guidance in choosing the right companion for your household and links to mixed breed clubs and registries, click or paste in the weblink below for Ms. Paylo's fine article:

Choosing a Mixed Breed Dog -- Mutts Can Steal Your Heart


For a comprehensive guide to choosing a dog and shelter dog adoption tips, see:

Adding a Dog to Your Family: How to Prepare for Success

For a brief overview about mixed breeds, see:

Selecting the Right Pet for You -- Pure or Mixed Breed

Other Related Links:

Shelter Dog Adoption Tips

Helping a Shelter Dog Adjust to a New Home

Recommended Books -- see the Choosing a Dog section

Different Kinds of Dogs webpage for kids

Responsible Breeders vs. Irresponsible Breeders, Pet Shops and Puppy Mills (Updated!)

For more free tipsheets on canine issues, see the Dog Tips index at

Temperament Testing

For more Dog Tips and other information about pet care, adoption and the work PAW does,
visit our website at: www.paw-rescue.org

Partnership for Animal Welfare, Inc.
P.O. Box 1074
Greenbelt, MD 20768

Last Updated: April 26, 2018 (LET) PawSupport