I am not even a dog owner yet but am very excited. I have been living in rental properties for many years now. My partner and I have recently moved into our first home and finally we can get a dog. We're definitely both dog people, and very much anti-cat, having both grown up with dogs in the household.
Our puppy is about 2 weeks old atm, so we can't take him home yet. We have made what we think is the right choice, but after some reading of this forum, I think it may not be a popular one. We choose to get a Labradoodle.
For most of the time we have been a couple we thought that our first dog would be a Labrador as we both had one as children. Recently, while our house was being built, we lived with a friend who had two dogs. One was a multigeneration Labradoodle. It turned out that the Labradoodle was a perfect temperament match for my partner who is a big affectionate goofball who loves to play.
I did a lot of research on Labradoodles, because I know they are a controversial crossbreed, and found that the breeder of the dog we had lived with seemed to be an ethical breeder. (I also found some breeders who were producing alarming amounts of litters, they scare me ) The breeders we selected have the hips of their breeding dogs rated and also have them checked for their prcd-PRA eye disease genotype. My partner is very pleased with this as his beloved labrador was struck down by genetic cancer. It does mean that this pup costs more than your average trading post labradoodle but, considering my partner's parents spent thousands on the old Labrador's cancers, we think the pup is worth it.