Australian Shepherds are easy-going, remaining puppy-like even in their adult years. This courageous dog makes a good watchdog for the home. Aussies are excellent with children, even with an active child, as they love to play. They are devoted, loyal friends and guardians, for they are naturally protective. Affectionate, very lively, agile and attentive—they are eager to please, with a sixth sense about what the owner wants. Australian Shepherds are highly intelligent and easy to train. Though aggressive when at work with livestock, the Aussie is gentle with human friends. Australian Shepherds are not the kind of dog to lie around the living room all day or live happily in the backyard with only a 15-minute walk. They need much more exercise than that and something to occupy their mind daily. Socialize well to prevent them from becoming suspicious of strangers. Working lines may be too energetic for people who only have a moderately active lifestyle. Some like to nip people’s heels in an attempt to herd them, and this behavior needs to be corrected, teaching the dog that humans are not to be herded. The Aussie is a quiet worker. This breed is not usually dog aggressive.
The Toy Poodle is remarkably intelligent. Highly responsive, it is said to be one of the most trainable breeds. Sweet, cheerful, perky and lively, it likes to be with people. Delightful, very amusing and keen. Socialize these dogs well. They make very good watchdogs for their size. Toy Poodles are generally good with other pets and dogs. This little dog can be good with children, however is usually recommended for older children who know how to display leadership skills. Make sure you are your dog’s firm, consistent, confident pack leader, providing daily mental and physical exercise in order to have a trustworthy, mentally stable dog. Toy Poodles are good for city life as well as country living. Given enough exercise, they are not active indoors. They will lie right next to you and are more sedate when indoors, although they love to play outdoors and are a highly intelligent breed, so they do like lots of thoughtful activities to stimulate their mentality. They will do okay without a yard. These are active little dogs that need a daily walk. Play will take care of a lot of their exercise needs, however, as with all breeds, play will not fulfill their primal instinct to walk. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe, open area off lead, such as a large, fenced-in yard. Poodles shed little to no hair and are good for allergy sufferers.