When choosing to adopt a new puppy, people often ask whether they should get a mixed breed or a pedigree dog.

It all comes down to personal preference, and how much you have your heart set on a particular breed. Do remember, though, that each breed has characteristics, and often health issues that are specific to that breed, so take that into consideration when deciding.

For this article, we’re going to look at the crossbreed, mongrel, or “pavement special” – the loveable mutts that often defy a description of belonging to any particular breed or even breeds, but who will love you unconditionally just the same.

Mixed breeds tend to have fewer genetic health risks as they are less likely to have received a high dose of any particular breed’s genes, and because of this, many mutts have a lower rate of health conditions such as hip dysplasia, spinal diseases, knee problems and heart disease than their purebred counterparts. Overall, they will have a longer life expectancy and are healthier than their purebred cousins and so will require fewer visits to the Vet. Die-hard fans of mixed breed dogs will insist that they are more intelligent than their pure-bred counterparts – but that is a discussion for another day!

While your mixed breed pup is likely to display some of the behavioural and character traits of its lineage, these will have been somewhat diluted, and will be noticeably less extreme. This also means that your new best friend will have a character uniquely his or her own – there will not be another quite like it anywhere!

At Power Paws, we firmly support the “Adopt Don’t Shop” initiative. There are so many Shelters that are full to bursting point with dogs of all shapes and sizes desperate for a new home and despite an increase in “breed-specific” Rescue Organisations who work tirelessly to network purebred dogs needing new homes with families looking to adopt a specific breed, many people still think that you can only buy a purebred dog from a breeder, but this is certainly not the case. A visit to any shelter or SPCA will show you a number of purebred dogs waiting to be adopted. Although they may not have pedigree paperwork, they are indeed a pure breed. It remains a sad fact, however, that most of the dogs at the various shelters are mixed breed.

Choosing to adopt a mutt gives you wide selection – you will have a variety of colours, sizes, ages and types to pick from, and you can choose exactly which one appeals to you for whatever reason – and sometimes it’s the eye contact, not necessarily what you thought you were looking for, so keep an open mind. Trust your heart! This is where the phrase “love at first sight” comes in, and its generally a far more successful and reliable match than Tinder – here, what you see really is what you get! Whether you are looking for a calmer, older dog as companion or a young, energetic puppy, there will be plenty for you to choose from.

And remember – you can’t buy love, but you can adopt it