Category Archives: personality traits

The Five “Personality Types” of Dogs

By Linda Cole

The deeper researchers dig into the animal kingdom, the more we learn about the different personalities and intelligence of animals. For instance, did you know crows can recognize our faces – and remember if they were treated in a positive or negative way by a human? Our personality is one aspect of our character that defines who we are. Understanding who your dog is, based on his personality type, helps you figure out why he acts in a certain way and defines his behavior characteristics as an individual.

Like us, dogs fall into different personality types, and can show more than one type. We all know someone who’s the life of the party, someone who is quiet and reserved, or one who will do whatever is necessary to get ahead. Our canine friends fit into five types of personalities. Knowing your dog helps you ward off potential behavior issues before they get out of control when you understand how he might act in a certain situation. His development and personality is based on his upbringing, environment, breed and self esteem.

The Confident Dog is a natural born leader of the pack. He’s a team player and more than ready to take charge of a situation. A confident dog can also be dominant. Harsh discipline or training methods with this personality type could cause him to show aggressive tendencies or become more willful. This dog feels secure in his surroundings, and has a self-assuredness that shows in his body language.

The Independent Dog is more standoffish, and may not form a strong bond with an owner he doesn’t see as his leader. Some breeds are independent by nature and capable of developing a very close bond with the family member who takes control as a fair, patient and strong leader. The independent personality is perfectly happy being away from the crowd. He needs to be given space, and trying to force him to do something he doesn’t want to do will backfire. You can easily lose this dog’s trust and respect if you expose him to heavy handed treatment.

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What Do You Love Most About Your Pet?

By Julia Williams

I entered a giveaway on another blog recently, and I had to leave a comment stating what I loved most about my pet. I didn’t have to think long and hard; I knew immediately. However, as I read the other comments, I was intrigued by how different they were. Upon further reflection I realized this actually made perfect sense.

Each of us is a unique human being, and each pet is also unique. When you bring the two together, the result is a relationship unlike any other. And just as we each value different things for different reasons in our relationships with other people, so too do we appreciate certain qualities of our pets above others. I thought it would be fun to answer the question myself, and then share what some of my friends told me about their pet.

I’ve loved many cats over the years, but none so deeply as Annabelle, my sweet little black-and-white with a lopsided diamond on her nose. I call her my “heart cat” because she is, above all others past and present, the cat who has my heart. If soul mates exist, then she is mine. Who says soul mates can’t be different species? I’ve seen enough examples of interspecies love to think it could be possible. Oh, I know…some people say animals don’t have souls. But whether Belle is my soul mate or not is irrelevant, really. She’s brought so much happiness into my life, and that’s what matters.

What I love most about Belle is the head-bonks she gives me on my face. When it’s time for her brushing, I lie down on my bed with Belle beside me, and it goes something like this: brush-brush-bonk…brush-brush-bonk…brush-brush-bonk. She never tires of it, nor do I. I’ve never had a cat who liked to head-bonk my face. Some have given me gentle nudges on my hand or leg, but Belle head bonks with unbridled enthusiasm that clearly says, “I love you.” It always makes me smile, and I simply can’t imagine life without this beautiful sweet soul.

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Does Breed Always Determine a Dog’s Personality?


By Suzanne Alicie

All over the world people have misconceptions and yes, even stereotypes about dog breeds. Over the centuries dogs have been bred for certain uses, including hunting, working and sport. The breeding has led to certain characteristics that are common for each breed of dog. For example, Labradors are considered water dogs because they were bred for retrieving. But the type of behavior, skills and abilities that come from breeding are traits that run in the bloodlines.

Personality traits are entirely different from breeding traits, and many breeds have common personality traits. One example of this is the Samoyed. These dogs were originally bred for working outside in cold temperatures. Yet somewhere along the way this breed also developed a loyalty and personality that is very unique to their breed. They want to be close to the people that are their family and are almost comedic in their effort to gain their persons attention.

The question is, do all dogs of this breed have this type of personality? The answer is that while breed-wide personality traits are common, and considered to be the norm, in reality each dog is an individual and may develop a different personality because of the way it is raised.

For example, if a dog breed that is generally regarded as friendly and great with kids, is raised in a home where there are no children and the dog has little contact with people other than its owners, this dog could be quite unfriendly, territorial and scared of children.

A common claim these days concerning personality traits is in regards to the Pit Bull. These dogs have a reputation for being fierce fighters, dangerous to have around your children and a scourge in the community. Yet when a puppy of one of these breeds is raised in a family filled with love, a family that trains the dog and raises him to be gentle, they can be one of the most protective and loving dogs. This isn’t to say that you can cross out centuries of breeding traits that involve fighting and defense. Those instincts are still there, but in the family situation when the dog isn’t threatened he may have a wonderful friendly personality.

On the other side of the realm are the tiny dogs. Poodles and Chihuahuas have a reputation for being annoyingly yappy and nervous dogs. This can be because of the breeding that has made them so small and seemingly insignificant in a big world. I used to have a fair amount of disdain for what I called yappy dogs, and then my children got me a miniature poodle for Mother’s Day.

From the first day when he curled up in my hands I fell in love with that little white ball of fur. I didn’t turn into Paris Hilton and carry him around with me in a purse, but I allowed him to be with me wherever I was around the house. I taught him tricks and let my children play with him. My poodle didn’t bark unless a stranger came to the door, and no one was a stranger for long. He loved everyone and exhibited none of the nervous yappiness I had come to expect from that breed. Health problems did arise that were part of the poodle’s breeding traits, but the personality traits were all from how he was raised.

So the basic idea is that breeding traits are ingrained in your dog, and can at times override personality traits. But if a dog owner assumes that a dog will have a certain personality due to its breed, then that is probably the type of personality it will have because they will make no effort to train it differently, chalking the personality up to the breed.

Read more articles by Suzanne Alicie

The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.