By Eric Bittman, CEO/President of Warren London

Picking out a pet as a couple can be a cause of stress in a relationship.  The biggest choice is usually deciding whether you want a big dog or a small one, but it can be much more complicated than that.

There are many factors in determining what breed you and your partner should choose. First and foremost, consider your family size and future plans. Some dogs are known to be great with kids, while many breeds are too aggressive for little kids. Some of the best breeds with small children in the house are Beagles, Poodles, Labs, and Golden Retrievers.

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Another factor can be how much exercise you’re able to give to your dog. Some dogs — like French Bulldogs and Pugs — need walks and exercise but would be great apartment dogs. Other breeds, including Huskies and Labs, require a lot more space and are quite energetic. If you and your partner aren’t home much or live in a very harsh climate, a dog who is happy spending most of his time indoors would be ideal for you.

And sometimes, you have to choose a dog because of his personality. When my wife and I lived in New York City, our main concern was getting a pet that would be happy in a small apartment. My allergies to longer-haired breeds and a dislike for heavy shedding also narrowed our options, but we still had a big number of breeds to consider. One day, my wife told me that she saw a cute Boston Terrier on the street with the funniest personality, and after a little research, we were able to make a relatively quick decision. We loved the breed so much that, after a year, we added a friend for Maurice — our new pup, Brittney, also a Boston Terrier. We can’t imagine our lives without these cuddly black and white pals.

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No matter how you decide what kind of breed to bring into your family, you’ll know when you find the right dog!

For more information about Eric Bittman, click here. Stay tuned for next month’s Dating with Dogs column.