Deciding between a male or female pet is often an important decision for future dog owners.
Of course, there are pros and cons for each, and the decision becomes a matter of preference for the future pet owner. One important point to consider is that any pet that is kept simply as a pet, and not for breeding purposes, should be spayed or neutered. In addition to population control, spaying and neutering your pets greatly decreases their chances for various types of cancers while improving certain undesirable behaviors such as territorial marking and humping. In the long run, spayed and neutered pets live longer and healthier lives.
It is important to note that while some behaviors are more prominent in one gender or the other, both males and females will exhibit the same behaviors at some point in their lives. For example, males have a greater reputation for territorial marking than females, but females will mark their territory if they feel threatened. However, there are a few general ideas that people use as guidelines when choosing between a male and a female.
Female dogs are not as likely to mark their territory, which often makes them slightly easier to housetrain. They are also less likely to show dominance through humping people or objects, and tend to be less aggressive than male dogs. One drawback of female pets is that they tend to be very independent, which means they may like to have time alone, and they might not always want to be touched when you want to pet them. They can also be very stubborn, making training a bit more challenging. Also, remember that female pets that have not been spayed can go into heat every six months. This means messes to clean up around the house and keeping the pet confined so that other males in the neighborhood do not impregnate her.
Males are more prone to marking and aggressive behavior, but neutering can greatly reduce these behaviors. Males also have a reputation for humping people, objects, and other dogs. Most of the time this is a show of dominance that can be corrected with training; however, neutering will help eliminate this behavior as well. Un-neutered males have tendency to roam if there is a female in heat nearby. One of the benefits of owning a male animal is that they are typically more dependent on their people than females. This often makes them more affectionate toward people. Male dogs have a tendency to be more eager to please during training, so they are slightly easier to train.
Choosing between a male or female dog is really just a matter of preference. Generalizations can be made about each, but like humans, every animal is different. They all have their own personalities, and while some exhibit typical behaviors, others do not. Whether you choose a male or female, training is essential for it to be a valuable part of the family. Dogs have to be taught what is expected of them, just like children. Behaviors that show dominance or aggression can be altered with training.
Because dogs are pack animals, they need to know their place in the pack. Until they learn their place, they may test you or your family members to see who the leader of their pack is. Choose the animal that is right for you, but be ready to invest the time in training it to ensure a good relationship with your pet.