How To Shop For A Breeder:
There is no breed that is predictably better with children than any other breed. You want to look at individual dogs. However, guarding breeds, or breeds that were bred to bite and kill things, or chase and nip, like terriers and some herding breeds, should be looked at carefully if you have young children.
A reputable breeder is still your best bet for getting a healthy dog. The American Kennel Club or the United Kennel Club can direct you to national breed clubs who can provide you breeder referral lists. Generally speaking, the names contained in these lists are club members who have agreed to breed their dogs in accordance with club's breeding guidelines. You can also search the Internet for local breed clubs of the breeds you are considering. Avoid web sites that offer puppies and dogs for sale.
In general, you want to find a breeder with whom you have a rapport, because in the end, it is that person's judgment upon which you must rely. Look for a clean kennel. If you have children, you should find a breeder who also has children However, good breeders who do not have children or whose children have grown up will recruit children to help gently handle their puppies from three weeks of age.
Good breeders will actively expose the puppies to numerous people, places and things during the early weeks of life, in safe, controlled ways. Good breeders will also expose puppies to lots of gentle physical handling.
All breeds have a number of genetically inheritable diseases. The most common are hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, various eye problems like retinal dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). But each breed has its own list of diseases. You should know the diseases for which there is a greater than average risk in the breed/s you are considering. This information should be available on the national breed clubs web sites. Be sure to discuss these diseases with the breeders you contact. A reputable breeder will provide you with documentation that the sire and dam of the puppies you are considering have been cleared for various disorders. There is genetic testing available for numerous inheritable diseases.
A normal healthy puppy should be friendly and curious. At this time, there is no way to scientifically test for aggression, therefore you should see as many adults related to the puppies you are considering. See the grandparents if possible. See momma dog. Do not consider puppies who are not sociable; who hide or run away from you and never warm up to you. Do not consider puppies who object to being held or gently handled. Do not consider puppies whose adult relatives display the traits described above.
Ask yourself, “Does this puppy/dog behave in accordance to the breed description?”