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Mutt or mixed-breed dog profile

Get to know your amazing mutt’s blended background.

Whether your dog is a purebred or mixed-breed dog, learning about their genetic background can explain a lot about your pet’s personality, habits and overall health. And when it comes to mutts and mix breeds, or pups made up of two or more breeds, their colorful backgrounds can offer a lot of valuable intel.

What is a mutt dog? 

A mutt is just another name for a mixed-breed dog, which means that a pup is a make-up of two or more breeds, Dr. Aliya McCullough, Fetch’s on-staff veterinarian, says.

Are mixed-breed dogs usually big or small? 

When it comes to mixed-breed puppies, it can sometimes be challenging to determine what size they’ll grow. But, a good way to predict their eventual size is by looking at every breed that makes up your dog and judging what each of their full-grown sizes is. Like other dogs, mixed-breed pups can be small, medium or large.  

RELATED: Bulldog breed profile

What are common health issues associated with mixed-breed dogs? 

Learning about your pup’s different breed crossovers can help provide insight into your pet’s health. While there are no health issues that specifically affect mixed-breed dogs, these pups can be affected by hereditary diseases specific to their breeds, Dr. McCullough shares. 

If your mixed-breed pup develops an illness or underlying condition, talk to your veterinarian about the right treatment plan. Knowing which breeds your mutt is will help you and your veterinarian predict what potential conditions they may experience and ways to get ahead of them. 

Adopting a mixed-breed dog

Are you interested in adopting a mixed-breed dog or any pet at all? We think every pet deserves a home and encourage you to check out our shelter partners

If you’re planning on adopting a mixed-breed pup, preparing for your new life with them begins before leaving the shelter. Dr. McCullough has some helpful questions you should ask before leaving with your new best friend so you can be sure you're able to provide them with the best care: 

  • What is the breed mix? 
  • What is the health and behavior status of the dog? 
  • What is the dog’s history? 
  • Why is the dog in the shelter? 
  • How did the shelter find the dog? 
  • Has the dog been adopted before? 
  • Is the dog housebroken? 
  • Does the dog get along with children and other pets? 
  • How does the dog act toward strangers and new environments? 
  • Does the dog have any medical or dietary issues? 
  • Is the dog protective of food, people or toys? 

While there’s no definitive way to predict how your mixed-breed (or any dog!) will behave in their new environment, asking questions and being patient as they get acclimated to their new setting will help to guarantee a smooth transition. 

The Dig, Fetch's expert-backed editorial, answers all of the questions you forget to ask your vet or are too embarrassed to ask at the dog park. We help make sure you and your best friend have more good days, but we’re there on bad days, too.

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