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What kind of Pet is best for you?

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Join our host for an animated guess-along game that matches pet types with potential pet owners based on lifestyle, routines, breed characteristics and dispositions. From the sweetly protective Nanny dogs to the rough-and-tumble Jack Russell to the silky, low-maintenance Chinchilla, there is definitely a lot to consider when choosing a pet. This post is part informational, part fun, part whackadoodle. What kind of pet is best for you?

🎧 Listen to the Podcast
Things We Do For Pets


Match that pet – What kind of Pet is best for you?

Extra points for you if you can also give a fun fact that makes the pet perfect for that individual

Today I am sitting in front of a big tumble ball machine. It looks like a lottery ball cage but instead of numbers, the little balls are printed with different characters who could potentially own pets. We’re going to play a hearty round of “Match That Pet!”: a game where we try to figure out the ideal pet for each owner.

😺🐶 Spoiler alert. There is no prize at the end. Just the fun of playing along with me!

Animals come in all shapes and sizes, and each species and breed has its own personality, appearance and needs. Its behaviour and happiness can depend on its owner’s habits and lifestyle.

So extra points for you if you can also give a fun fact that makes the pet perfect for that individual.

Here we go: Cage Roll! Drum Roll! Jump!

What type of pet is best for you? Extremely dynamic, agile and flexible cats to liven up the house and love you.
Birman cat (Photo by Cynoclub | Dreamstime.com)

Our first profile: Olympic Gymnast

Did you say Ragdoll Cat? Ding, ding, ding, that’s absolutely correct.

A ragdoll is very affectionate and oddly flexible. She’ll jump on your lap and go limp as she enjoys you rubbing her belly or brushing her soft fur.

Next up: A Music Teacher

There could be a number of options here, but the best answer is a Canary.

This songbird will keep you cheerful and humming all day long.

Just remember to cover the cage at night unless you want a serenade at the crack of dawn – though I can think of far worse things to wake up to!

I’m fishing for the next ball… it’s Rocky Balboa

This one is just too easy. If you said “Boxer”, you get just half a point, even though it is the correct answer. But you can redeem the other half-point if you named her Adrian.

😺🐶 PS: No one is keeping score.

Oh, interesting one: OctoMom

Like OctoMom had the time or energy to look after a pet! But if she did, she would want one that is gentle, patient and tolerant. One that can handle the noise and chaos of a busy household and be protective of babies and toddlers.

There is actually a category of “Nanny Dogs” that includes Golden Retrievers, Newfoundland dogs, Bernese Mountain dogs and Saint Bernards.

Any one of those breeds is correct, but my pick is the Golden Doodle just because it would be so much fun hearing the little ones trying to answer the question: “What kind of dog is this?”

Later on, with teenagers, she might want to look for a pet that is fun and interactive. Some breeds that can keep up with the energy and activities of teenagers are Boxers, Retrievers, Bulldogs, and Mastiffs. They’re all playful, loyal and affectionate and love to be part of the family.

I think my choice, though, would be a Bengal cat. Although they can be expensive, they are beautiful with their wild-looking leopard spots and are very smart.

They have a high energy level and need a lot of stimulation.

Good at learning tricks, many are train-able to use a harness and leash so you can take them out to be the conversation-starter they always are.

How about this duo: John Lennon and Sir Paul McCartney

Yup, there’s only one answer here: Norwegian Forest Cat.

Sweet: A Single person looking for love

Gotta be that Bengal cat. It’s a show-stopper and a conversation starter.

Even dog people will stop and admire a Bengal.

But you know what? Any cat trained to go for walks on a leash is a conversation starter. And let’s face it, taking any pet to the park is a great way to meet new people and potential partners! Borrow a pet if you have to… just get out there!

Just in: A Marathon Runner

As a person whose life might revolve around long-distance exercise, you would want a pet that is energetic, adventurous and loyal. A few dog breeds that fit this profile are Australian Shepherds, Huskies and German Shepherds. These dogs are all smart and athletic and love to hike and explore with their owners.

The correct answer here, though, is a Greyhound. What an inspiration she would be with her sleek physique, calm temperament and fine athletic form.

Female Spanish greyhound dog with her elegant physique, calm temperament and fine athletic form. The sleek stance is certainly a source of inspiration for long runs.
Female Spanish Greyhound Dog (Photo by Emptsik | Dreamstime.com)

And here’s the Cat Lady

Apologies if that’s not politically correct, I just read what’s printed on the ball. Maybe a trite stereotype, but someone who already has multiple pets in their household should look for a pet who is social, curious and not too territorial.

A friendly dog who is playful and – most important – able to share their toys. Dogs like Basset Hounds, Boston Terriers, and French Bulldogs. Cats that fit here are Siamese, Abyssinians, Sphynx and Ragamuffins.

The correct answer, though, is Corgis because, you know, Queen Elizabeth.

Poof! The next ball magically appears and says… Harry Potter!

Our favourite boy wizard! Your first reaction might be to associate the young Mr. Potter with a wise old owl. Good choice. But would it not be ultra-cool for Harry to have a pet Bearded Dragon? Aside from being brilliantly colourful, these remarkable reptiles are highly social, friendly, animated, curious, and gentle.

They usually live in a tank, but I’ll bet Harry could train it to do anything!!

Hmmmm: A Scorpio

Say, what? We’re going by Zodiac signs now? Interesting. It does kind of make sense: the traits and qualities used to describe people according to their birth month are quite similar to how pets are described.

For a Scorpio – a person born in late October to mid-November – I’ll accept your answer of Snake or Chinchilla. Why? You’ll have to tune in to a next the episode where I describe the best match for every sign of the Zodiac. (coming soon!)

Here’s the final one: Mr. Michael McGregor

Don’t recognize the name?

He is the farmer in the classic children’s tales of Peter Rabbit who does not appreciate having his vegetables stolen by rabbits. So definitely not a pet rabbit!

A better choice would be a tortoise, an herbivore that does enjoy the occasional veggie but earns its keep by eating weeds and pests. The tortoise would be well-fed and content, and Farmer McGregor becomes a proud and eco-friendly neighbour rather than the crusty villain.

To summarize all this, choosing a pet is an important decision and a long-term commitment. We’ve all heard about the puppies, kittens and rabbits that made excellent gifts but not-so-great matches with their new owners.

Many of these creatures end up at an animal shelter through no fault of their own.

This cute little rabbit is a beloved pet. Completely different from Peter Rabbit from the classic children's tales, who stole vegetables from Mr. Michael McGregor's garden
Young tricolor little rabbit (Photo by Mitya Chernov | Dreamstime.com)

So it’s smart to put some thought into the pet you adopt or give as a gift. In general terms:

😺🐶 Busy people who like to socialize might want to look for a dog that is friendly, energetic and adaptable. Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Poodles, and Beagles are all breeds that are usually easy to train, love to play and get along well with people and other animals. They can also cope with being alone for a few hours, as long as they get enough exercise and attention. Some other breeds that you might consider are Cocker Spaniels, Border Collies, and Daschunds.

😺🐶 Homebodies looking for companionship and low maintenance would do well with a pet that is quiet, independent and easy to care for. Most every member of the bird or rodent families would fit this bill. Some suitable dog breeds are Maltese, ShihTzus and Chihuahuas. Cat breeds include Persians, Russian Blues, Devon Rex, and British shorthairs. These pets are loyal, cuddly and low-energy. They don’t need much grooming or exercise, and they are happy to nap on your lap.

😺🐶 A family needs to consider their members, stages of life and lifestyle. Your pet must be safe with children and patient with toddlers. Finances, chores and pet care all must be considered. Assigning tasks is a great way to instill responsibility and reliability in your children, as consistency is key with keeping your pets healthy, happy and part of the family.

😺 🐶 If a family member has a respiratory or allergic condition, you’ll want to seek a pet that will not cause reactions. Aquarium Fish, Geckos, Turtles and Canaries are great choices. Poodles, Shih Tzus and Portuguese Water Dogs can be safe, as can Balinese cats, Devon Rex or Siberians. Best to first check with your human doctor and your vet.

I’ve really just scratched the surface. If you want to dig deeper, here is a link to a great resource called The Ultimate Guide to Dog Breeds.

So that’s it for today. Gotta go give my Chinchilla a sand bath.


🎧 Listen to all episodes :

Things we do for Pets


Podcast: Things We Do For Pets
Made possible with the support of Ontario Creates

Directed by: Teresa Botelho
Content writing: Lauri Richardson
Pre-production & research: Ana Carolina Botelho
Recording / Editing / Social Media: Christian Pedersen
Host: Eric Major
Vignettes & special effects: Robson DJ Estudio 
Website & Digital Marketing: Creative Team Canada


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