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Bring on the mixed breeds ...


National Mutt Day is observed twice a year—on July 31 and Dec. 2. But why wait to celebrate and hopefully save the lives of the many homeless mixed breed dogs out there? The largest percentage of dogs euthanized in shelters is medium to large mixed breed dogs—a ridiculous figure, since we all know that mutts are awesome! Here are the top 10 reasons why mixed breed dogs rule.

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#10 They are unique

The standard for breeding purebreds calls for breeding puppies whose appearance and temperament are of exactly the same quality every time. A mixed breed dog is awesome because without these standards, the dog is more unique. Plus, when visiting a shelter to adopt a mutt, the selection of choices is more varied and unique than you’d find at a breeder.

Image: Katie Brady / Flickr

#9 They are more flexible

Mixed breeds tend to be more flexible and more middle-of-the-road because they are not as strongly programmed as purebreds. Mixed breeds are thought to adjust more easily to a variety of households and living conditions, whereas purebreds tend to be bred with a specific skill set in mind, such as herding or hunting.

Image: Chad Nordstrom / Flickr

#8 They can still compete

Think you need to purchase a purebred in order to enter dog competitions? Think again! Mixed breeds can compete in agility competitions through groups like the NADAC, amongst others.

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#7 They can still be trained as service dogs

Being trained as a service or therapy dog is no longer limited to just purebreds. Mixed breeds are now considered equally as awesome and capable in this regard.

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#6 Housetraining is provided

Many mixed breeds found in shelters did belong to someone before - people who couldn’t keep them due to allergies, or moving homes, or for some other reason. Because of this, many mixed breed shelter dogs come already potty- and housetrained. A definite plus towards their awesomeness!

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#5 You can skip the puppy stage

While many pet owners cherish the puppy stage, there are others who just don’t have the time and patience to train a new puppy. With a mutt from the shelter, you have the choice of adopting a young or adult dog over a baby. In these cases, the dog’s size and temperament will already be pretty set, too, so there will be no surprises in the future.

Image: Alain Lauga / Shutterstock

#4 They have fewer health issues

There are some people who claim mixed breed dogs are healthier than purebreds. While this isn’t proven, it is known that certain purebreds are more prone to specific illnesses. Mixed breed dogs are thought to be less likely to develop these illnesses because even if they are part, say, Golden Retriever, they have fewer Golden Retriever genes than a purebred one.

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#3 They have cheaper start-up costs

Many shelters only require a $50 to $200 donation in order for you to adopt a dog. Purebred dogs can run up to and over $1,000. Plus, a mixed breed from the shelter is likely spayed or neutered and is up-to-date on vaccinations, which will save you even more money.

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#2 You're saving a life

Even if a purebred puppy doesn’t get adopted (highly unlikely in and of itself), the puppy is already living in the home of a breeder, probably even still with its parents. A mixed breed dog living at a shelter, however, has a high chance of being euthanized. Adopting one means you are directly saving a life, a fact your grateful new dog will not soon forget.

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#1 Their awesomeness is contagious

A mixed breed dog is for the adventurer in all of us. When purchasing a purebred dog, you’re buying a specific temperament that has been honed through strict breeding practices over a long period of time. With a mixed breed, a puppy especially, the unknown genetic line leaves all that up in the air. Appreciate the spontaneity behind this and that makes you awesome by association with the awesome mutt you’ve chosen to adopt.

Image: Mike Baird / Flickr

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