Pros and Cons of Pedigree, Cross-Breed and Non-Pedigree Dogs

August 27, 2019
As a dog owner with over 25 years of experience, I can attest that having a dog is one of the most wonderful things that has ever happened in my life. The companionship and joy they bring is incomparable.

Pros and Cons of Pedigree, Cross-Breed and Non-Pedigree Dogs

Before choosing a dog it is important to take some time to consider whether to get a pedigree, cross-breed or non-pedigree dog. Each has various pros and cons, which may impact upon finances and preferences.

Pedigreed Dogs - Pros and Cons

The main advantages associated with opting for a pedigreed (pure-bred) dog is that this makes it easier to know more about appearance and usual temperament, through researching a specific breed. Pedigrees are typically well-raised, making it likely that the animal will be healthy. However, contrary to what one may be led to believe, it is actually pure-bred dogs that tend to suffer more frequently from both physical and psychological health problems, due to inbreeding.

In Dog Basics, Davis identifies disadvantages associates with buying a pedigree dog, to include the following:

  • More expensive than cross-breeds
  • Some prone to hereditary problems
  • Some prone to particular ailments
  • May have high care needs
  • Certain breeds are hard to obtain as rare

Cross-Breed and Non-Pedigree Dogs - Pros and Cons

Advantages relating to opting for a cross-breed, include that they are normally more hardy and less expensive than pedigrees, with the latter being particularly relevant, in today's difficult financial climate. Being able to know the parents, it is typically much easier to then get an idea as to how the dog's appearance and character will map out. Davis highlights a key advantage of choosing a cross breed: being that they are usually intended, making it more likely for puppies to have been raised with care, while disadvantages of cross-breeds include that they are often not easily available and some combinations can be very hard work, such as a Border Collie x English Springer Spaniel.

In contrast to pedigreed dogs, non-pedigrees are typically inexpensive and are less likely to suffer from various ailments and health-related problems. Non-pedigreed dogs are also much easier to obtaom and many different types are often readily available. However, according to Davis, non-pedigreed dogs have the following disadvantages:

  • Character traits of parents generally unknown
  • Uncertain how dog will turn out
  • Hard to be sure the dog has been properly raised and cared for

As highlighted above, knowing the pros and cons associated with pedigree, non-pedigree and cross breeds will make it much easier when it comes to choosing a puppy or rescue dog. While pedigree dogs such as Jack Russell Terriers and Labrador Retrievers are usually raised with great care and have a smart appearance, they are more likely to suffer various physical and psychological health problems, due to inbreeding.

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