Day 23: Reason #1 Why Small Dogs Are More Convenient Than Big Dogs

A comment left in a previous post made me start thinking of “Big Dogs vs Small Dogs.”

I personally always grew up with big dogs.  Up until 2nd grade, my family had a Siberian Husky, Mork.  From 4th grade until my sophmore year of college, we had a yellow lab, Bear.  Once Bear passed away, I couldn’t wait to have a dog again, and I was convinced that the next dog I owned would be another “big dog.”

That was all when I lived in New Jersey on 9 acres of land.  Then I moved outside of Boston and started living in a little 2 bedroom condo on the middle floor of a 3 family house with a small yard.  When I talked my boyfriend into us getting a dog, suddenly a big dog didn’t seem all that practical.

I love dogs of all shapes, sizes, and colors.  I am the epitome of what you would call a “dog person” and don’t believe that any type of dog is better than another, big, small, pure-bred, mutt (though it is important to choose the right dog that fits in your home and family).  Though I still absolutely love big dogs and hope one day to live somewhere with the room again for a big dog in the future, I have come to realize the convenience of having small dogs.

So this all gave me an idea for a series of photos for my blog.  I’m not going to do these all in a row.  I’m not going to do them all on a certain day of the week like my “Timewarp Tuesday” Posts.  They will show up randomly and they will be titled “Reason __ why Small Dogs are More Convenient Than Big Dogs.”   These posts aren’t meant to be “small dogs are better” because as I said before, I don’t believe they are.  However I think most people can agree that they can be way more convenient in many ways.

Soooooooooo… after that big long introduction…

Todays 1st reason…

because they are easier to exercise indoors when the weather is bad.

I love the fact that when it is pouring rain outside (like today) I can still get Bailey a decent amount of exercise indoors.  Walking Bailey outside in the rain just isn’t an option, because the dog absolutely hates the rain.  So on days like this, if I want to give Bailey exercise I can play fetch with him down the hallway and it is actually a decent little run for his little legs. For a big dog, it would be like 4 steps.  I can also set up Bailey’s agility jumps and/or tunnel in the living room for him to play with.  I think our 100 year old house would feel like it was going to collapse if I tried to do indoor agility with a big dog.

So there we go.. Reason Number 1 why small dogs are more convenient (not better!) than big dogs.  I am looking forward to making a series of this and posting more :)

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16 Comments to “Day 23: Reason #1 Why Small Dogs Are More Convenient Than Big Dogs”

  1. Thats a very compelling reason. I love this jump set up in your house. The pictue on the bottom right looks so cute. If I had that jpeg I would edit it to give him angel wings, It looks like he is flying.

  2. Yea Bailey looks very graceful when he does agility. Other people have commented before in our classes how he looks weightless when he jumps.

    I had such a hard time getting a good action photo today. I got plenty of him mid-air, however none of them were in focus how I wanted them to be (due to crappy indoor lighting and not enough good natural light coming through the windows because of the bad weather) so I settled on multiple thumbnails combined. Photos always look better when they are smaller lol

  3. If this was Canine Olympics, Bailey would get a 10 from all the judges! (although I know you aren’t officially competing)
    And you, as photographer and beautifully catching all the action, you’d get a 10, too!

    Before I had Andy (an American Eskimo), I always had cats. My husband is allergic and in wanting a pet, long story short, Andy came into our lives. Technically he’s not a small dog, like Bailey, but at 25 lbs. and 1000 square feet of town home living, it works. I can not imagine how uncomfortable a full grown samoyed would feel living in our small space.

    Terrific piece of advice. Look at your lives, look at your living space, look at your environment in terms of easy access to the outdoors, walking trails, dog parks, etc., before you even think about bring a dog into your life. Dogs are a commitment and it’s one you should love keeping.

    With that, keep up the good work!

    • Thank you :)

      I still consider 25 lbs small. Bailey is about 15. When we foster dogs, I know I can’t expect to have Bailey sized dogs every time, so my size limit is 40 lbs (medium).

      Anything bigger is just pushing it for us as far as feeling like we have enough room to accomodate them. Our next foster, which we are getting on Friday, is about 25 lbs.

      We have dogsat a friend from the dog park’s big black lab/shepherd/golden mix, and when him and Bailey decided they wanted to actually play inside, the entire house shook as Milton ran. I realized at that moment that we could never have a big dog living where we live now.

      One of the wonderful things (I think) about dogs is that there are so many different types, all sizes, different temperaments, different traits. If one does their research and homework, anyone could find a dog to fit their home and lifestyle. Unfortunately there are many people who don’t do that homework, which results in many dogs finding their way to shelters, through no fault of their own, just because they didn’t fit into the home they were brought into.

      • I totally agree! Having a dog is just as big, on some levels, as the commitment to having a child. But unlike deciding to have a baby, people can research and learn what it takes caring for the dog breed of choice before they bring one into their lives. I think the people who adapt from a dog from a rescue shelter are truly amazing because they know they could be taking on behavioral issues from an abusive past and they are willing to accept that as part of the furry package.

  4. I find my moms lahso-apso much easier to take places than Reese. She will wait in the car with more patience and I can take her in some places as well. That would never happen with Reese!

    • It’s much easier to travel with small dogs. They are so much more portable and less intrusive. That will definitely be a point that I make in another thread, especially when it comes to flying.

  5. aaah yes I agree with you on this convenient point. While luna is not large i a lot of ways she can require room, and exercise is one of them. So she gets to use the couch and chair as jumps. this is usually very UNconvenient (and that not being a word makes the point even better). cute series.. indoor shots are always hard, especially action ones.
    Anna
    http://www.akginspiration.com

    • I could just imagine re-arranging the furniture to make an indoor obstacle course to exercise the dog lol ;)

      I normally don’t have a problem with indoor shots during the day in our living room because with bayview windows, a decent amount of natural light comes through. That is all out the window though (no pun intended) when it is bad weather. I could still get decent still photos in these conditions, but not action ones. I also hate to use my flash and avoid it like the plague lol. I have been thinking of getting and trying a flash diffuser to possibly remedy that for times like these when its a little more necessary.

  6. A further point to your observation about smaller dogs being easier to exercise inside: I think it’s easier to exercise smaller dogs in general because they tire out faster. Their little bodies can only take so much. Whereas a big dog can go forever. Romeo, my bigger dog, could walk all day if we could. Casey, the little one, gets tired after a mile or two. Although maybe she’s just lazy; I wouldn’t put it past her.

    • I think in general that is correct but I think it also has to do with the breed. In a lot of cases, there are many big dogs that were bred to be working dogs. They were bred to have a job and are much happier when doing something and can get restless when not. So they tend to need more exercise. A lot (not all) of the smaller breeds were bred simply as companion dogs so they aren’t quite as busy. Of course on the other hand, then you have little terriers that have tons of energy and could go all day.

      I do agree that in most cases it is much easier to tire out a small dog than a big dog though. Looking back at my comparison of the length of hallway to the 2. Even on a regular walk, a small dog has to take many more steps to cover the same ground as a big dog.

  7. What a great idea. I didn’t have a small dog in mind when I “got” one. I had my eye on a big dog but agreed to take care of my friend’s Dachsuhund for a month as a trial run since I had never owned a dog by myself and as an adult. A month turned into 6, turned into 2 years and then turned into forever. Now I am so happy that Chester is a small dog. It is so much more convenient because I live in the City. Besides, Chester can keep up on hikes just like a big dog.

    I actually read an article a few days ago comparing the cost of owning a big dog vs. a small dog. Annual care and upkeep of a small dog was about half the cost of a big dog – probably because of food.

    • Definitely cheaper owning a smaller dog, especially because of the food. I love the fact that with Bailey, his 15 lb bag of food lasts way over a month. With a bigger dog, it would last a couple weeks. It makes it easier to feed Bailey really high quality food and treats. Yea, it might be a little pricey, but it lasts him so long.

  8. Great job, Bailey! Did you train Bailey to do this? Bailey is good at sport.

  9. I totally relate to this post, because Toki is at the opposite end of the spectrum. When we try to play fetch indoors, it’s hard to keep Toki’s interest, since there’s only one direction to throw the ball where she’ll have any space to run. And like you said, even that’s about four steps. So yes, I agree!

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