July 31 is Mutt Day, an unofficial holiday set aside to recognize how much fun and joy mixed-breed dogs bring into our lives. Purebred dogs are fine, of course, but mixed-breed owners know there’s nothing less special about their cuddly, loyal mutts. If you don’t have a dog, but you’re thinking of adopting one, we recommend a mixed-breed pooch. Think there’s no difference? We’ve got 12 reasons why a mutt might be a match for you.
12. YOU’RE NOT GOING TO SHOW HIM
Well, unless you are, but you’re probably not. Most likely you won’t be entering your dog in any dog shows. No judges will poke and probe its teeth, its coat or its testicles looking for “imperfections.” Probably the only person who will inspect your dog that closely will be your vet, and she only wants your dog to be healthy, and doesn’t care how perfect of an example of its breed it is.
11. YOU’RE NOT A HUNTER OR A SHEPHERD
Many dog breeds were created through selective breeding in order to perform certain tasks. American foxhounds were designed to be perfect hunting companions. Dachshunds are shaped the way they are because they originally were meant to root out badgers. And Sheepdogs were meant to herd sheep, duh. But unless you’re a hunter, have a badger problem, or make your living as a shepherd, you don’t need a dog that’s perfectly suited to such tasks.
10. PERSONALITY IS WHAT COUNTS
If you’re looking for a dog with a great personality and you don’t need it to do any other job, a mixed-breed dog has as much or more personality as a purebred dog. A mutt will greet you at the door, play fetch, curl up with you on the couch and keep you company when you’re sick, too. What else are you looking for? If you’re shopping for a purebred dog as a status symbol, like expensive clothes or a luxury car, maybe consider the fact that you’re getting a dog for the wrong reasons.
9. YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT FINDING A RESPONSIBLE BREEDER
Not all breeders are puppy mills. There are absolutely responsible breeders producing every breed of dog there is. They do everything right, take wonderful care of all their dogs and can be trusted 100 percent. But how do you know which ones are responsible? You can’t tell just from looking at a website. Finding a reputable breeder will cost you a lot of time, energy and resources while you investigate and interview various breeders until you find what you’re looking for. Mutts don’t present that kind of headache. When you visit your local shelter, all you have to worry about is finding the dog who catches your attention, whose personality matches yours.
8. MUTTS ARE WIDELY AVAILABLE
Even if you do find a reputable breeder who can offer you exactly the kind of dog you want, one that was born and raised in proper conditions, chances are slim that the breeder is around the corner from your home. We’ve heard of people traveling out of state or even halfway across the country to adopt a dog they found from the right, responsible breeder. But why go that far out of your way, literally, to adopt a purebred dog when there are dozens and dozens of dogs in a shelter in your neighborhood who need homes and can offer you the same companionship?
7. MUTTS ARE AFFORDABLE
You know that a purebred dog is probably going to cost you a small fortune, right? Breeders are businesses; they don’t give dogs away. Do you know who gives dogs away? Animal shelters. Shelters offer dogs of all ages, shapes and sizes, dogs who need homes and people to love them, and one can be yours free or, at most, for a small adoption fee to help cover medical costs. “Designer” breeds aside, adopting a mutt is much easier on your bank account.
6. THEY’RE THE BEST OF BOTH (OR ALL) WORLDS
A “mutt” isn’t breedless; it has multiple breeds. That means you’re getting two or more dog breeds in one package. That’s a bargain! Not only does a mutt combine the physical characteristics of the breeds that make up its DNA, but their temperaments, too. This can take the edge off of some breeds that may be difficult to handle. Many breeds are designed for very specific abilities and traits, but they may also carry behavioral or physical problems. Mutts may be less prone to these.
5. MUTTS ARE UNIQUE
If you adopt a purebred dog, and you research its breed, you pretty much know what to expect from it. A mutt may be more difficult to figure out at first, especially if you don’t know its breed, but ultimately you’ll have a pet that’s uniquely yours, with a look and personality that you can’t find anywhere else. And depending on its parentage, you can have a dog that looks wildly unlike any other dog in your neighborhood. How many of your friends own Chihuahua/Pit Bull mixes?
4. YOU’LL BE SAVING A LIFE
Shelters everywhere are over capacity with homeless dogs who are waiting for families to adopt them, but we all know the sad truth is that too many of these dogs are not allowed to wait forever. A healthy, adoptable shelter animal is put down every 11 seconds in the U.S. because there isn’t enough room or resources to house them. When you adopt a mutt from a shelter instead of a purebred dog from a breeder, you save that mutt’s life.
3. ADOPTING A MUTT TAKES A STAND AGAINST PUPPY MILLS
No dog lover wants to support puppy mills, profit-driven business that breed dogs in adverse conditions with little or no regard for proper care. Puppy mills exist only to make money, not to breed healthy, safe dogs. Whenever someone adopts a mutt from an animal shelter, it’s like a slap in the face to puppy mills, and that’s a good thing.
2. YOU GET TO INVENT COOL NAMES LIKE 'LABRADOODLE' AND 'MALTIPOO'
Your mutt’s not a designer dog? Who says? Slap your own name on your mutt’s unique genetic background and suddenly you’re the first to own the next big thing. That’s not a Husky/Yorkie mix; it’s a Yorkskie! Rottweiler/Pug mix? Call it a Pugweiler. Or a Rottpug. Let your imagination take you away.
Next: Debunking Dog Breed Myths
1. IT’S BETTER TO BE INCLUSIVE THAN EXCLUSIVE
It’s important to remember that dogs are living creatures with dignity, and all dogs deserve equal respect regardless of breeding. While you should adopt a dog that will thrive best with your particular lifestyle, ultimately what will dictate the kind of companion animal that’s best for you won’t be its supposed “purity.” Keep an open mind and heart and be prepared to find a best friend in any dog.
12 Reasons to Adopt a Muttcountdown
Around The Web