I often talk about my dogs on this site, and I usually refer to them as my Pit bull and Foxhound. However, I have a confession to make: neither of my dogs are purebred.
My Pit bull is really a Pit-Boxer mix with possibly something else in him, and my Foxhound is mostly English Foxhound but definitely a little bit of something else, as well. What? I have no idea.
Maggie, the Foxhound, was adopted from an animal shelter by my parents, and then gifted to my wife and me. Morty, our little Pit-bull was a stray we picked up off the side of the road.
They aren’t the only mixed breed dogs I’ve had, though… My family has always adopted mutts, and I genuinely believe that nine times out of 10, they’re better dogs than pedigrees. I have absolutely nothing agains purebred dogs – after all, without them, where would mixed breeds even come from? But mutts have several advantages, which I’ll delve into right now…
Mixed Breed Dogs Are Healthier
This might seem a bit counterintuitive but it’s somewhat true. Mixed breed dogs tend to have less health problems than purebreds. Studies have found that the risk of genetic disorders is far greater in purebreds than in mixed breeds.
Strict selective breeding has also led to some breeds developing physical characteristics that are bad for them. For example, the unique way in which a Yorkshire Terrier’s eyelashes grow causes their eyes to water and discharge mucus and puss excessively.
Mixed Breed Dogs Have Unique Personalities
While it’s true that every dog has its own personality, purebred dogs tend to have similar personality traits across the breed. For example, every Husky I’ve ever met has basically had the same personality. In fact, if you put them all together in the same room, I’m not sure I’d be able to tell who’s who.
On the other hand, every mixed breed I have ever had or met has had a distinct personality. Even though both of my dogs are mutts that were adopted at roughly the same age, brought up in the same house, trained the same, etc… they are two completely different “people.”
Mixed Breed Dogs Are (Often Times) Free
Step into your local animal shelter, and you’re likely to find more mixed breeds than any other type of dog. Shelter dogs are usually free to adopt except for a small fee for having them spayed or neutered.
On the other hand, purebred dogs typically cost hundreds, if not even thousands, of dollars. And because mixed breeds have fewer health problems, their vet bills are usually a lot less expensive, as well.
Mixed Breeds Fit Our Modern Lives
Most purebred dogs were bred a long time ago for a specific purpose, such as hunting, guarding, fighting, working, etc… These days, however, most of us are just looking for a dog that will chill on the couch and be a cool, relaxed member of the family.
The instinct to perform specific tasks is much weaker in mixed breed dogs than their purebred counterparts, so they tend to be more content with our modern ways of living than purebreds that become restless and frustrated when they’re not doing what they were bred to do.
Mixed Breed Dogs Are More Fun if You Like Surprises
Think of this next point like this: Some people want to know the gender of their baby as soon as they can, others prefer to wait until the baby is born. If you are the latter, you’ll definitely have more fun adopting a mixed breed puppy.
That’s because mixed breed dogs are a roll of the dice. Until they fully mature, you really can’t tell what they’re going to grow into. On the other hand, if you adopt a dog that comes with papers, you’re pretty much guaranteed on what you’re getting.
For some, this might be preferable, but I prefer curiously watching my dogs grow up, wondering how they will finally turn out.