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Welcome to my advice column.  Remember, I am only a dog like you.  My opinions are to the best of my knowledge but are only opinions, researched or what I feel is correct..  The writer of this page is not responsible for any actions the reader may take as a result of reading this column.  If that is OK with you, keep reading.  If not, then go back and enjoy the other pages.You can address your questions to Hobo by email with the topic Hobo's Advice (click on my picture) 
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Beardie Temperment
Dear Hobo - We were thinking about getting a beardie, can you tell us what is the Beardie temperament?  Docile or independent?  Obedient or willful?
This recent question has been asked by quite a few people in one way or another.  So let me kind of combine all the answers I have given in private replies.  Keep in mind that my opinion may be biased.  I think beardies are all of the above.  In fact, I think most breeds are all of the above.  The temperament of a dog is based on many factors which include breeding, environment and training.  When interviewing breeders (yes you should do this) you need to hear the words "I breed for temperament."  Fortunately, in the case of beardies, I believe most breeders put temperament high on their list of desirable traits.  The next two factors, environment and training, are up to their new owner.  I have spoken of training before - I believe that all dogs should go through puppy classes or basic obedience.  These classes are not only for the dog, but for their owner.  I also believe in positive training.  Treat your best friend with kindness and rewards and you will be rewarded with an obedient dog.  You may hear from many experienced breeders and people who show dogs that they often do their showing before entering the dog in obedience.  But remember, these people already know the basics of obedience and are using these methods in one way or another (they are referring to training for obedience competition).  So if you are new to dogs, meaning you haven't had obedience experience, then take some classes.  Besides helping you and your dog, obedience classes are great places to meet others with similar interest.  Finally, the topic of environment.  This topic is too extensive for a single column.  Even so, I will try to make a point.  Beardies are smart and have lots of energy.  They need companionship, exercise and something to do.  If you leave them alone for a long time, they might just find something to do that you don't like.  That doesn't mean that they are destructive or even as highly active as a lot of other breeds.  Given a couple walks a day, or a nice yard to play in (you provide the playing), they will be happy.  But if you lock them up in a room, and go to work all day, then you might not like the results (but then why get a dog if that is your life style?)  On the other hand, beardies don't want constant confusion - they like quiet time too.  If your beardie goes under a desk or in a closet, then he is taking a break.  No dog, for example, wants a two year old yanking on his tail for eight hours.  So as an owner, you are responsible for the environment.  Now for my usual "with that said" remarks.  Beardies have a wonderful temperament, they are good with kids, they love to play and they are obedient if trained to be obedient.  They can be "willful" or even stubborn but they are eager to please.  Some beardies are extremely docile, others are independent.  I think beardies strike a pleasing balance.