Males vs Females. Ask any two people which is better and you will likely get two different answers. Me, I will tell you “It Depends”. It depends on your lifestyle. It depends on your goals for the dog. It depends on the dog itself! Each puppy born is an individual, so the generalizations I am about to give you should be taken as that, a generalization.
Females are more independent and able to share loyalty between the entire family. They are much more go with the flow and less prone to stress about major life changing events. They can also be extremely stubborn and even willful. When a female plants her foot on a subject it can be almost impossible to change her mind.
Males are more dependent and seem to prefer to bond to one person in the family much stronger than the rest. They love the entire family, but often pick one special person as their lifeline. They are more empathetic than the girls and this makes them more prone to stress and anxiety.
I breed working dogs, so I take these traits and pair them with the right homes.
Females make some of the best Therapy dogs. They are able to separate the job from their life. They can go into high stress environments and not bring the job home with them. Males are also great at Therapy, but highly stressful therapy situation can often bring them down. If a child is in pain, most males will worry about that child. Males work best at nursing homes, reading programs, hospital visits without ‘to much’ stress. Females can do almost any therapy job you can imagine. Special needs, critical or chronic illness doesn’t stress them like it does the boys.
Males make the absolute best service dogs. Their empathy allows them to identify a need and take care of the issue. They truly worry about their owner, their health, their safety, and do not think of what they are doing as a job. It is their life. Bonding to one person in the family is extremely helpful for a service dog. There are some great girls who do service work, but if you plan to train your own dog from a puppy, getting a male will stack the odds in your favor the dog will learn the job and enjoy taking care of you.
Most of the time, if a home has a specific desire for one sex over the other, I do my best to help them find the right pup of that sex to match their needs. There are puppies of both sex who can swing the other direction. A more independent male or a more dependent female. It does happen, but it might take me a litter or two to locate the right dog. Sherri in CA is looking for a male therapy dog who can do high stress situations. We have 4 boy pups in this litter and I have high hopes one will be right for the job.
So what do I prefer? I LOVE boys. Give me a choice between puppies in a litter and I will almost always fall for one or more of the boys over all the girls. I love how they adore me. I love how they worry about me. I love the bond we develop and share. I’ve had many girls in my life who were interesting and fun, but I never had much trouble letting them go to a new home after they retired from breeding and they never looked back. All of them were happier in the new home than they were with me with almost no regret. Sweet Major, Merlot’s half brother, we let go live with Stacey and family in AZ when he was 5 years old. He mourned us for over a month and it struck me hard hearing about his sadness. He did bond with them, he went on to become an amazing Therapy dog for them, but it wasn’t an easy transition. On the other hand, I had Zelda here for 3 months. She never showed any signs of stress, was happy to go with me, then was happy to be back with her family when I dropped her off earlier this month. She didn’t worry about the past or the future, she was in the moment and enjoyed the adventure and experience for what it was. The girls personalities allow me to have this foster program. Without that adaptability, it would never work.
Tell me about your experiences with males vs females? Do you prefer one sex over the other? If so, why?