What's best for a family dog if you work?

(77 Posts)
PatTheHammer Sun 22-Sep-13 20:29:58

Just curious I suppose what everyone does when clearly lots of people who work also own a dog.

I've wanted a dog for a while, bought up with labs as hugely loved family pets and love other people's dogs. However, work and then babies came first when I was younger. I never felt it was fair to own a dog when I worked full-time and so did DH.
Since I had the DC I've worked part-time but I still work part of everyday. Now the DC are a bit older (7 and 4) and my youngest has just started school. At the same time I have taken a decision to cut my working hours significantly as I was stressed and DH was promoted so we were not under so much financial pressure.
The DC are desperate for a dog too (not that I'm silly enough to think that they would help at all.....they are far too little) but I really remember my dogs as a child being such a fundamental part of my childhood.

Anyway, cutting to the chase. My working days basically start early but I finish at 1pm. I then have 2 hours till I have to do the school run. These last few weeks I have been thinking that would be an ideal time to walk the dog, if we had one. DH had a back op last year and he is keen to incorporate walking in the evening into his exercise plan so he would be up for taking the dog out later too. We spend a lot of the weekends walking as a family too and it does feel as though we are missing a dog!

Is 8am till 1pm ish too long to leave a dog most days? Not sure we would have much time to do anything other than give a quick walk round the block in the morning so dog would have to wait till afternoon for main exercise. Is this healthy?

There are other practical issues, small garden, need a larger car (which we are getting in December), not really sure what we would do if we went on holiday (our in-laws who are local hate dogs and all my friends and neighbours have their own dogs to look after or small children).

Basically............talk me out of it, it's a bad idea isn't it!

P.s: I have got time to commit to training and I don't really want a puppy or a pedigree dog. All dogs considered except overly large ones due to garden size!

Editededition Mon 23-Sep-13 06:57:58

I started reading, and was intending to say that the problem is not so much with having a dog, as with having a puppy....and then you said that you don't want a puppy!! smile

You will get a mixed reaction here, I think, as some people are adamant that dogs should not be left. However, we live in the real world and homes across the country have very happy family dogs who are left because the owners work; 5 hours is fine IMO, providing there is lots of exercise every day and the rest of their day is spent with the family. I would start talking to the breed rescues (Lab Rescue were inundated with dogs this spring, and I suspect not much will have changed). Be very upfront that you work 5 hours a day, so need a dog which is used to being left. I used to re-home, and would have been happy to move discussion forward on the details you have given here.

Leaving a new puppy for long stretches is very different, You have to be aware that training isn't happening when you are not present so pups learn to do their own thing - and that is when really bad or destructive habits can start, which are very hard to break. You wouldn't leave young children so don't leave young dogs, is a good rule.

On a slightly different note, it is very well worth chatting to dog-loving neighbours!! I do have to leave my dogs occasionally, but have a super neighbour who will always pop in and play with them in the garden, or feed if I have to be out over mealtime. Real dog lovers are a soppy bunch smile and will cheerfully help out in this way.....if you are happy to reciprocate now and then, and don't abuse the 'service'.

Best of luck in your search for the new family member

beachyhead Mon 23-Sep-13 07:07:55

On the days I work, we have a dog loving cleaner who lets them out in the garden, fusses over them and is just around. We also use a dog walker for long days.

We have someone move in while we are on holiday so the dogs stay at home.

littlemissnorty Mon 23-Sep-13 07:16:25

We have a fog flap for our lab and this summer he has loved it.

When I was on mat leave, the dog ignored me all day and slept in his bed.

Go for it.

aarrgghhwhatdoIdonow Mon 23-Sep-13 07:16:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

oohdaddypig Mon 23-Sep-13 07:24:16

I think edited's advice is excellent.

A puppy wouldn't cope but a balanced older dog would. I think it sounds like you have a lot to offer any dog.

On a bad day, our dog only gets garden time first thing and is then left till 1pm and he is fine. As long as the rest of the day is dog inclusive it's fine.

One thing to think about, which I didn't, is that it isn't just the walks you have to factor in but also what happens outside that time. A lot of people are anti-dog and so if you are planning on visiting them socially and mutt has already been shut in first thing, you have to work around that.

You end up seeing less of the anti-dog people. Some might say that's no bad thing [

Quodlibet Mon 23-Sep-13 07:30:10

Retired greyhound! They'd be happy to snooze from 8 til 1pm. They are large dogs but don't necessarily need a large garden, and lovely lovely temperaments.

VivaLeThrustBadger Mon 23-Sep-13 07:47:33

Inside a house greyhounds don't seem like a large dog. They're always curled up snoozing on the sofa in a corner.

So don't be put off by the size of them. They are lovely dogs.

PatTheHammer Mon 23-Sep-13 09:30:25

Thanks everyone, great advice!

I do love greyhounds, but I can see DH would need talking round. He is a bit against anything larger than a lab but also doesn't like small terrier type dogs.

I was sorting out the kitchen the other day thinking 'oh this quiet spot would be perfect for a cosy dog-bed' ....I shall start looking into things I think!

Unusually for us we have 3 long distance weddings to attend before the end of this year (we hardly ever get invited anywhere!). So I think it may be wise to think about the new year when they are all out of the way. This would also tie in with when DS turns 5 and I know some rescue centres are wary about rehoming dogs with children under 5.

I will certainly give my details to the local shelters though. We have a RSPCA, Dogstrust and 2 others locally.

Is it also worth telling them that I have school holidays off? i will talk to my neighbour who is a very experienced dog owner too as I'm sure she knows some dog walkers (Mondays may be an issue as although I leave later, 10am, there is nobody home till 4.30pm) and i'd like to talk to a few before deciding anything.

mistlethrush Mon 23-Sep-13 09:36:56

I would get (actually, we did get, last autumn) a lurcher. We got a lurcher because they can be a bit like greyhounds in enjoying their sleeping time - but also have the capacity to go a bit further too, on occasions. Ours gets a quick walk in the morning, a longer walk with a dog walker at lunchtime, and sometimes another road-walk in the evening depending upon weather and timings. At the weekend she has anything from one decent length walk to 3 or 4. On holiday she was perfectly ready to start rabbiting at 6.30am, back for breakfast, then out and about (walking and running (her)) all day, back for supper, then an hour's rabbiting last thing at night - so she was active for most of the day.

She's extremely loving, but quite laid back and prepared to sleep if there's nothing happening. She will play with DS whenever he wants her to. She doesn't shed much and doesn't chew - but those would depend on the lurcher mix you got.

She was a bit over 2 when we got her.

pm me for more info on where I got her etc if you would like it.

moosemama Mon 23-Sep-13 10:59:35

Hi Pat, long time no see! grin Can you believe our Jan '09 babies are all grown up and at school full time? Where did the time go?

I think what you are proposing is perfectly doable with the right dog, as you want an adult rather than a pup.

I have two Lurchers, one is nearly 8 and loves his walks and exercise, but is equally happy to snooze the day away and the other is only 16 weeks old so a work in progress so to speak (pics on my profile if you want to see them). My elder boy came from the same place as Mistlethrush's girl and it is an excellent organisation, run by really knowledgeable and dedicated people.

Lurchers come in all sizes, dependent on their mix. The elder of my two is part Deerhound, so scruffy coated and very solidly built compared to many Lurchers, but also has Border Collie in there, so isn't as long in the leg as some. Pip, my puppy is an unknown quantity, as he was found dumped in the road at less than 24 hours old, but he is very lightweight with legs that go on forever and almost definitely has Saluki in there, with probably some Collie and possibly terrier. Both can curl up into incredibly tiny little balls - basically, they fold up small. wink

Whippet crosses would be smaller than something like Deerhound, Greyhound or Saluki crosses and there are plenty around in rescues all over the country. Cinnamon on the Pointy Hounds thread has just had a trial weekend with a Whippet cross if you wanted to ask someone about what they're like.

I would advise you to go for a rescue from an organisation that has dogs in foster. Then you know what you are getting, as the dog will have been fully assessed in a home/family environment. Many of them rehome nationally and are careful to match the right dog to the right home, which takes a lot of the stress out of searching for the right dog.

PatTheHammer Mon 23-Sep-13 20:31:03

Awwww, Moose they are bootiful!

I think you lot might have sold me on the lurchers tbh. My neighbour has a friend that works at the Evesham rescue, so she's putting me in touch. I'm hoping we can arrange some settling in weekends or something nearer to the time when we have thought about it carefully.
I've even started putting the feelers out about dog-walkers and found there are quite a few locally. No shock really, as we are rural nearly everyone has a dog!

Dh still banging on about needing a bigger garden but we'll see wink

I think the fact that my 'baby' is going to school has made the dog-shaped hole in my heart even larger! Hope your DD is getting on well, Z has his first full week this week and I am most surprised by the complete lack of information we get from him. DD used to give us a full run-down of what the teacher was wearing and everything, we are lucky if we get 'it was good' now!

Quick question about the 'chase' instinct. We don't have cats so that doesn't worry us but is the chasing thing a bit of a worry when walking in the country? Do they chase livestock? We are quite rural and there are lots of fields around where there are sheep/cows etc near footpaths, or footpaths and common land where there are grazing animals.

moosemama Mon 23-Sep-13 20:45:12

grin Thank you.

Evesham Greyhound and Lurcher Rescue are fantastic they are in my top two recommended places to look for a rescue Lurcher - the other place being the one we got our older boy from.

As for the garden. My last house had a postage stamp of a garden and I had three dogs - one very large, one medium and one small-ish. As long as they had plenty of off-lead exercise every day they were fine and they still managed to have a good romp around the lawn, despite it's apparent lack of size.

I got a double whammy, as not only was dd starting school full-time, but I lost my old lady dog to Osteosarcoma back in April. We had said we wouldn't get another dog once we got down to one (we lost our other old lady Christmas 2010) but Lurcherboy had other ideas and simply couldn't cope with being an only dog. Between that, dd starting Reception and ds1 starting Secondary it was kind of inevitable that we would end up with a pup to give me something else to focus on.

The difference between boys and girls at school is amazing. My boys never tell me much (although all these years down the line I am now the master of drilling information out of them grin) but dd likes to tell me everything in detail.

Chase instincts vary from dog to dog. As with any dog, it's always sensible to keep them on-lead near livestock. Ex-workers or dogs from working lines are more likely to have a higher prey drive than some, but a good few Lurchers end up in rescue because they don't have a strong prey drive and end up getting dumped by people who want working dogs as a result.

mistlethrush Mon 23-Sep-13 20:58:29

My lurcher was probably a failed worker - and she definitely has a chase instinct, but she has not caught anything in the 11 months we've had her, and she has a clear idea that there are some tiny dogs that are smaller than rabbits and they really are dogs....

PatTheHammer Mon 23-Sep-13 21:00:48

Oh sorry to hear about your old girl sad. And I can't believe your eldest started secondary alreadyshock! I agree, an excellent time for a new pup!

Thanks for the chasing answer, just feel like I need to do some research really. My Brother's dog is a Lurcher cross but they have had her from a puppy and she has no chase instinct at all. They have a cat who she adores. She is an ideal family pet really, but she is massive. I did notice when I was looking at pics that they all vary in height quite a lot. Maybe one that wasn't so lanky would pacify Dh a little!

moosemama Mon 23-Sep-13 21:36:58

I didn't think Lurcherboy had much of a chase instinct, he's never so much as looked twice at livestock, but when confronted with a field full of rabbits a couple of months back he was definitely up for a bit of bunny chasing. Took me by surprise because he's such a lazy, passive lad in general, but fortunately I've always err'd on the side of caution when considering letting him off-lead. I don't think it would have been very different for a lot of dogs, regardless of breed in that situation though.

Pat, if you are looking for a smaller Lurcher, Whippet or Bedlington crosses will reduce the height. I have a soft spot for scruffy Whippet x Terriers (known as Whirriers).

PinkFairyArmadillo Mon 23-Sep-13 23:13:25

Another vote for whippets/whippety lurchers grin

I absolutely adore whippets. We have two and they're fabulous. Lazy little couch potatoes in the house and breathtaking to watch in full flight out on walks. They've both been easily trained to recall and although I wouldn't trust them loose around livestock they're trustworthy enough to spend most walks almost completely off lead.

They tend to be comical, charming and very, very cuddly. It's hard to sit down in this house without ending up with a whippet draped on you or resting up against you.

Scruples get loads of lovely whippets and whippety types in and they have the advantage of all the dogs being in foster homes (or still with their owners in some cases) rather than being in kennels waiting for their homes.

CMOTDibbler Wed 25-Sep-13 21:23:32

My lurcher is pretty small. We'd never let him (or any dog) off leash in a field/common where sheep and cows were grazing, but he has no interest in them at all.

ELGR are fine with rehoming to people with children, and as they foster they know much more about how the dogs are.

If you are in the Evesham area, you'd be v welcome to meet Cmotdog and see what he's like

PatTheHammer Wed 25-Sep-13 22:23:45

Ah, that's a very kind offer CMOT, I'm sure that would help immensely.

I'm trying hard with DH at the moment but he keeps on about not thinking about it till next year. Think he's just fobbing me off! My opinion is that if we want it to happen early next year then we've got to do the groundwork first!

PatTheHammer Wed 25-Sep-13 22:24:53

P.s Not in Evesham but not too far away, under an hours drive.

mistlethrush Wed 25-Sep-13 22:26:31

The Lurcher rescue we got ours from rehomes nationally too.

CMot's dog is a stunner and so friendly too.

VerySmallSqueak Wed 25-Sep-13 22:31:10

It is doable to raise a puppy in the circumstances you describe but you will need to enlist help and it's bloody hard work.Plus it's much better to rehome a rescue dog if you think you could do this.

An older dog will be fine - probably just catch up on extra zzz's while you're out.

If dogs were only allowed if there's someone home full time we'd have an even worse crisis with dogs needing homes.

BadSeedsAddict Thu 26-Sep-13 06:57:35

We have a collie and a whippet/collie cross, both rescues. We got them from dogpages (google it), one a private rehoming and one from a rescue on there. Both fine with being left for around that time. A lot of people want a puppy or younger dog; adopting an 'oldie' is a good thing to do as many are overlooked. An older dog might be more suitable to being left although it might be good to take a week or so off to settle them in? Old black labs are brilliant dogs smile

PatTheHammer Fri 27-Sep-13 16:19:05


the local dog rescue have a 2 year old Lurcher, she's quite small and apparently fits our criteria. We are going to have a look at her tomorrow, she's in foster care at the mo. Didn't think it would be this soon but will see what we can do, it won't hurt to look I guess.

At least DH seems fully on board now rather than fobbing me off......think he's secretly quite excited.


moosemama Fri 27-Sep-13 17:39:16

Oooh how exciting!

Good luck tomorrow and make sure you come straight back and let us know how it went. smile

I'd have suggested a rescue greyhound too.

PatTheHammer Sat 28-Sep-13 09:11:49

Trying not to get too excited about this afternoon!

Thanks for your PM Mistlethrush, had a quick look at the site and looks really useful.

I will come back later and let you know Moosegrin

PareyMortas Sat 28-Sep-13 09:19:17

Was coming on to suggest a Lurcher, but you've seen the light already. Good luck, you won't regret it.

DameDeepRedBetty Sat 28-Sep-13 09:44:27

Have lurked through thread, looking forward to hearing how you get on. Always so lovely to hear about an adult dog being rehomed!

mistlethrush Sat 28-Sep-13 10:03:30

Being in foster too is ideal - because it almost certainly means that she's already housetrained (something we had to sort out ourselves!)(despite our dog being over 2)

PatTheHammer Sat 28-Sep-13 14:51:36

Just got back from rehoming centre. After discussing it thoroughly they reckon the girl Lurcher is too boisterous and would be destructive in our home if left for long stretches.
However, they had a male 2 yr old at the centre who they thought may be ideal as he was much calmer. He was just getting back from a walk so we met him and he was absolutely lovely! We are booked in tomorrow morning to take him out for a walk and get to know him.

He's such a happy, gentle chap considering he was found as a stray in such a bad condition. He was real skinny and his fur was falling out. they are building him up gradually so he won't be ready for a few weeks but he is making amazing progress. They said he is almost back to ideal weight and having seen a photo of him 3 weeks ago I can see an amazing difference.

He is larger than we thought but DH liked him so fingers crossed!

mistlethrush Sat 28-Sep-13 15:19:22

Lovely ! A large lurcher doesn't necessarily take up a large space if they don't want to...

moosemama Sat 28-Sep-13 15:38:50

Great! smile

I always find dh is a right old grump when it comes to getting a new dog - then he's worse than me once he's met them. grin

He was really grotty about getting Pip, partly because losing Oldgirl hit him so hard, but he's the been the biggest sucker for him since we brought him home and spoils him rotten.

In fact I've just spent a fortune on new collars, leads and harnesses for him and dh didn't bat an eyelid. He actually went for the more expensive of the collars we looked at, whereas if I'd spent the same on me or the dcs he'd have been in a right strop. hmm

Good luck tomorrow and do come over to the pointy hound cushion, nothing we love better than a bit of pointy dog chat over there. smile

PatTheHammer Sat 28-Sep-13 21:31:52

Oh yes collars, leads, toys.....we don't even have a bed for him!

What the hell do we need? I had a quick look in the pet section of the garden centre today and it was all very bewildering, about 700 different types of dog-treat for a start! DCs were picking up loads of squeaky toys that looked annoying and crap.

If it does happen as planned then I think I need a dog personal shopper!grin

moosemama Sat 28-Sep-13 22:02:20

You don't need much. Basically just a bed, collar, lead and name-tag, plus food and water bowls to start with. I would also invest in a bottle of enzymatic pet accident cleaner such as simple solution just in case it takes a day or so for him to work out where the back-door is in your house.

Name-tags have to include your name, address and postcode. There's no legal requirement to include the dog's name and some people prefer not to and no requirement for a phone number, although it's obviously necessary if you want the dog to find it's way back to you should you get separated.

BUT, if you want to go shopping ...

First of all find out if he's been crate trained and decide whether or not you want him to use a crate at home. If you do, I'd recommend having a look here. They're very reasonably priced and we bought our pup's crate from there.

If you aren't using a crate, pick a nice comfy bed. Lurchers like their home comforts so the comfier the better. Cushion/Mattress styles are popular, but lots of people start out with a folded duvet to start with and get something more permanent when they work out if their dog is stretcher or a curler, iyswim. Mine have both. In the kitchen we have traditional plastic dog beds with memory foam matresses and various blankets and fleeces for them, in the living room they have soft beds.

He'll probably come with a collar, but you could get him a new one if you'd like. Lurchers tend to have quite small heads, proportionally to their necks, so either a fishtail greyhound style one (Lurcherboy has one of those) or a martingale would probably be best to prevent the collar slipping over his head. There's an amazing array of sighthound collars for sale and be warned, collecting them can become addictive. grin

You will probably want him on a long-line to begin with until you're sure he will come back when called. Flexi-leads aren't recommended, instead a long webbing line like this or even longer, attached to a a harness is preferable. It's not a good idea to attach a longline to a collar, as they can damage their necks if they hit the end at speed.

The rescue centre will advise you re food and it's usually best to keep them on whatever they're already getting for a while, before gradually changing over.

Toys. Not all sighthounds like toys, but mine both like tuggie ropes and plaits, frisbees and balls. You're absolutely right about annoying squeaky toys that will get ripped up in the first 5 minutes. It may be worth getting a kong to stuff with tasty food for when you have to leave him, as it's a great way of getting them to settle while you're not with them.

Really it's possible to spend as much or as little as you like, although personally the temptation to shop for my dogs is always a little too strong. blush

PatTheHammer Sat 28-Sep-13 22:15:46

Wow thanks Moose......personal dog shopper extraordinaire!

Some of those collars look gorgeous, I could really find myself spoiling him. The urge is even worse as I feel he's had such a tough start and needs some spoiling for a change. I must be realistic though!

moosemama Sat 28-Sep-13 22:30:18

I don't change do I? It used to be baby equipment, clothes and nappy covers, with Tree et al, now I scour the net for canine attire and accessories! grin blush

I was the same with my pup, as he had a very bad start (he was dumped in the gutter at the side of a road at less than 24 hours old). I just wanted him to be warm, comfortable and know that he was loved and would be taken care of forever.

I was very good to begin with though, just a basic puppy collar and one of our old leads, a puppy bed from Pets at Home, a couple of blankets, one or two tuggy toys, a puppy kong and a food bowl.

I've been waiting for him to get big enough for me to buy him a gorgeous collar and as he hasn't got a very narrow head I've been able to buy him a flat collar. Just ordered it today - it's the 7th collar on the list, Spins and Twirls. I've never spent that much on a dog collar before, but really wanted to get him something special.

There's certainly loads of fun to be had choosing collars for sighthounds and if you end up with one that's fine coated and feels the cold, there's a whole world of house-coats, fleeces, jumpers and waterproof coats to shop for as well. wink

moosemama Sat 28-Sep-13 22:31:42

Should have said. There are some links in the OP of the pointy hounds thread for recommended shopping sites. wink

mistlethrush Sat 28-Sep-13 22:38:00

I would get 2 economy double duvets from Asda or similar (sort of £10 ish) and 2 covers that fit them - then you will be able to wash one if necessary. I have several duvets ready to cut into sections so that we have smaller duvet bits that are really useful to put in the car, on things that need to be kept clean etc. The link I gave you has a great option for fleece and cordura covers - these can fit duvet bits too. We have a fleece one that gets used a lot and cordura ones for the boot of the cars.

The same link has someone that does fitted coats - cordura or just waterproof. mistlehound has a cordura one that's fantastic - it was used all last winter and it doesn't look used at all. The same person does fleece coats at a reasonable price - although there are plenty of links on the pointy hounds cushion for others that do them including a MNer.

GingerbreadMoomin Sat 28-Sep-13 22:51:13

Fingers crossed for you for tomorrow!

We didn't get our dog until I went part time after having our little boy, I condensed my hours to make my Monday a really long day and that's when Barney goes to the farm across the road for the day, he loves it there smile On my two other days he gets left for 4-5 hours and goes for a run over the fields for an hour when we get home.

Your children will love having a dog, my little boy gets excited coming down the stairs every morning to see his Barney smile

34DD Sat 28-Sep-13 23:51:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

digerd Sun 29-Sep-13 08:03:14

My niece has a lurcher/cross and he is such a softie. Last time I saw him he sat next to me on the sofa and gently kept pawing my arm for strokes with pleading eyes. Rolled over onto his back for chest strokes.
When he was much younger he did like jumping into the small canal at the back of my garden.

My 2 year-old 5 kilo furry lap dog took a while to settle in with her toilet regime but I did not crate her. She does have a bladder and bowels of steel I've disovered, so it was the move that unsettled her at first which is normal.
Good luck today with the walkies. smile.

PatTheHammer Sun 29-Sep-13 15:59:23

Ok, walkies went well. he is a very friendly boy but will definitely need some training. he wasn't too 'pully' on the lead and responded well to 'stay' when we crossed roads and went through gates and stiles etc.
He was very excited to go out (aren't they all!) but after the first few minutes of sniffing and weeing he had calmed down and was very biddable.
We couldn't let him off lead as he hasn't been tested for recall yet, and since he was stray they think we will have to test this in a very safe area away from main roads and any other dangers/temptations. He did enjoy a little jog on lead with me (which will be fab if he likes running on lead as I would LOVE a dog to be my running partner!).
He was interested but friendly and submissive with other dogs we met. We also happened across a cat. His ears pricked up but he wasn't overly 'pully' trying to get to it. the cat seemed not in the least bothered but kept a close eye (different story if the cat was running I bet!).

So next step is a homecheck next weekend and we have got to wait till he has had some more treatment from the vet before he can come to us for a trial. They have suggested testing what he would be like being left, since although he is very calm in his kennel they don't know if he would be the same in a house.
He was so lovely and adorable I really hope it works out but if they decide we are not best for him and he would be too lonely for 5 hour stretches then so be it. I would rather he had what is best for him and a friendly chap like that will have no trouble finding a home.

bellasuewow Sun 29-Sep-13 16:06:31

Three walks a day and a lovely family to fuss over it the dog will be in heaven and you sound like a very sensible and caring person. Lucky dog that has you as an owner If everyone was like you there would be no need for rescue centres.

WhatWouldFreddieDo Sun 29-Sep-13 16:10:04

Oooh I'm jealous. We have a Bedlington/Whippet X (a Whidlington, obv.) and she is a real softie. But she LOVES to chase - luckily I have learnt her posture when she's about to bolt, and can stop her streaking across 2 fields if need be ...

moosemama Sun 29-Sep-13 16:55:28

He sounds lovely Pat. Is he a smooth hound or a scruffy boy?

If you're interested in running with a dog, have you heard of Cani-cross? There are a few people on here that do it with there dogs and a couple of people who run with their dogs over on the pointy hound thread. They also take their dogs to Parkruns, which is perhaps more accessible.

The rescue sound very good. Home-trials are a great idea, although obviously tough for all concerned if they don't work out.

Wishing you loads of luck with your home-check and that it all works out for you and this boy. smile

PatTheHammer Sun 29-Sep-13 17:16:56

He's a scruffy Moose.....or at least he will be when all his fur grows back! He has the whippiest tail ever bless him!

I've done a few Parkruns actually last year when I was still fit (did 2 half marathons last year.....down to about 2-3 miles now!). Those running leads round the waist look ace smile

moosemama Sun 29-Sep-13 17:29:13

Aw lovely. I'm a sucker for a scruffy Lurcher. grin

Cinnamon, on the pointy thread does Parkrun with her greyhound and has just adopted a Lurcher girl this week so she can do longer runs, as pure greys don't tend to have as much stamina. She's just bought some harnesses and leads etc for running with hers, so should be able to point you in the right direction if/when you want to give it a go.

I am very impressed with your running. I got super fit doing interval training the year before last and dropped 4 stone. Unfortunately, I then became quite ill and have gradually put them all back on and lost my fitness over the past year or so. Just starting to edge back into it very slowly now. Running is out for me unfortunately, but I find lots of walking with my dogs is the quickest way to kickstart rebuilding fitness and I love doing it too, so it's a win, win. smile

CMOTDibbler Sun 29-Sep-13 19:45:05

He sounds lovely. I run with my lurcher (up to 15k together, over that he stays home), and just use a lead on a harness as it gives me a bit more control over his path position - but we run along pavements and he is a bit dim about trying to stop and visit people/bounce at the sight of postmen/sniff.

He loves running, and people wave at him from their cars and several people have stopped me in town to say they've seen us

PatTheHammer Tue 01-Oct-13 16:31:02

Eeeek.....home check done this afternoon and we now have a scruffy, hairy house guest at the weekend for his trial.
Sooo excited!

Must go out and buy things!

moosemama Tue 01-Oct-13 17:34:08

Fantastic news Pat! grin

Enjoy shopping for your hairy friend. smile

mistlethrush Tue 01-Oct-13 21:58:02

I have a scruffy. A zoom groom is really good for coats - mine really enjoys it.

moosemama Tue 01-Oct-13 22:01:37

We use a zoom groom for Lurcherboy too. He loves it, it's like a full body massage for dogs! grin

PatTheHammer Tue 01-Oct-13 22:33:20

....adds zoom groom to the list.

Do I need to feed him with an elevated bowl? The guy that did the homecheck said that is what they do at the centre. He suggested putting his bowl on an upturned bucket.

I'm going to go to pets at home tomorrow and get him some nice cosy blankets. I think he is bringing his bed and stuff with him for the trial but figured blankets and a few chewy toys wouldn't be that expensive.

Been looking at coats online, they look so cosy. Will have to wait till he is here to measure him up!

moosemama Tue 01-Oct-13 22:40:05

Elevated bowls are a good idea for the longer legged variety of pointy dog, yes, but a bowl placed on a footstool or upturned bucket would work just as well to begin with and the raised bowls can be a bit pricey.

That said, Lurcherboy doesn't have a raised bowl, as he's mostly raw fed, so lies in the middle of the lawn to eat his dinner! grin

PareyMortas Tue 01-Oct-13 22:45:20

Am so excited for you. I feed mine on an upturned washing basket, you can get elevated bowls but they cost mucho £. What colour is he? I'm very envious of him having a scruffy coat, mine are short haired the scruffies look cute, which isn't the first word most people think when they see a lurcher.

mistlethrush Tue 01-Oct-13 23:03:28

Cheap bucket with hole cut in top to hold bowl would be fine.

I got my lurcher coat from someone on LL who does made to measure coats - either 'tough' or just waterproof (slightly smarter) - and fleece lined. It did last winter very happily and doesn't really look used at all.

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 13:45:53

He's here! Currently curled up on the sofa next to me having cuddles :-)

Bit of an exciting morning, claimed the garden with lots of wees. Did one little spray inside ......simple solutions to the rescue, thanks moose!
Had a big walk round the field and met some new friends, desperate to get off the lead but not yet!
Came back and trying to chill out now but still a bit nervous.

We are going to leave him for half an hour or so in a bit and see what happens. Hopefully I'll come back to an intact kitchen!

moosemama Sat 05-Oct-13 14:55:54

Congratulations! grin

Hope all goes well and he settles in really quickly - and glad the simple solution helped!

We neeeeed photos y'know! wink

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 16:17:34

Gutted moose, we've had to take him back. He was distraught at being left :-(

They agreed at the rescue centre that it would be too stressful for him to have him the whole weekend. We've just got back and the house still smells of dog, except there is no dog :-(

He is going to need to be homed with another dog. He's so affectionate and lovely that we are all gutted, the DC and DH are heartbroken but in the end we could see it wasn't fair. He would not be in a room in his own and he barked and howled when we went out non-stop.

The rescue are gutted too, but they have told us to phone the greyhound rescue straight away to get on their list. They think a greyhound may be more suited and won't have separation anxiety.

DameDeepRedBetty Sat 05-Oct-13 16:23:15


It was all looking so brilliant wasn't it?! That sounds really bad separation anxiety, many months of intensive work to even start to make a dent in it. Hope he finds a good forever home soon with a friend to keep him company, he seems lovely.

moosemama Sat 05-Oct-13 18:25:37

Oh I'm so sorry Pat, what a terrible shame. sad I have been there myself many years ago. We took on a gorgeous collie from the Dogs' Trust and had to take him back the same day, as he kept attacking me. I was devastated, as he was lovely, had been fine with me at the rescue centre and I really wanted to give him a home and work with him, but I was bitten quite badly several times in the first couple of hours and I was going to be the one at home with him all day every day. He was fine with my dh and his best friend and I hadn't done anything to provoke the bites.

I volunteered for DT a couple of years later and found out that he'd gone on to be rehomed 3 more times and the same thing happened in each new home - always biting the lady of the house. Apparently he was rehomed to a farm eventually and was very happy there.

There's no guarantee that a Grey won't have separation anxiety either, I do know of a couple that have developed it, but a good rescue will make sure they have assessed every dog and only let you home one that is ok with being left.

It's always such a gamble with rescues. It could well be that SA was the reason he ended up in rescue in the first place. It's a very tough nut to crack - and I know because I have just been through it with Lurcherboy after we lost Oldgirl. It took a good couple of months of me doing nothing but work on it and practically being kept prisoner in the house - and that was with a dog I knew well, that didn't have SA already entrenched.

I would recommend getting a homecheck done by Lurcher Link as they are very, very thorough and would only home a dog with you that had been in foster and they were sure didn't have SA. Lurcherboy came from there and there are a couple of other pointy dogs on MN that have also come through them.

The other good one to approach would be Evesham Greyhound and Lurcher Rescue. They're another one that is really careful to match the right dog to the right people and have dogs in foster homes for assessment.

It's worth keeping up with their FB page to see new dogs as they come in as well.

I'm so sorry it didn't work out, but I'm sure the right dog is out there waiting for you and your family to give him his forever home and you will find him.

mistlethrush Sat 05-Oct-13 18:26:29

Pat, some of the lurchers that LL have are down as suitable as only dogs...

mistlethrush Sat 05-Oct-13 18:27:23

Cross post with Moose then...

CMOTDibbler Sat 05-Oct-13 18:43:57

We had a failed greyhound adoption as he had terrible SA which took a week or so to develop (as well as other issues). As racers grow up in kennels, they always have dog company, so being on their own can be v scary. Broke our hearts to take him back, but neither he or we were happy, and he rehomed to a home with other dogs very happily.

Your chances of success are much higher with a dog thats been in foster as they get to know them much better than in kennels - and expose them to much more of life so see them in lots of situations

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 19:10:20

Thanks guys. We are all still gutted here. It doesn't help that 'helpful' people keep saying that we didn't give it long enough.
We could tell he would be inconsolable whatever we did, the police would have been swiftly called by the neighbours the amount of racket he was making. I think it would have been selfish of us to put him through it for longer hmm

He will deffo get rehomed and now the rescue are updating him as 'needs another dog for company'. He will make such a great pet for a family with dogs, he was so gentle with the kids bless him.

Moose, I spoke to the woman at Evesham earlier and she said they had nothing suitable at present but they took my details. She was very helpful and gave me contact details for 2 other places, one in Bristol who foster lots of their greyhounds and also west of England rescue?
I've given my details to both, spoke to GRWE on the phone and they sounded hopeful that they might have a suitable dog but they will do a homecheck and come and have a chat with us first.

They also have Lurchers and whippets so I told her we were not fussy but we wanted what was best for the dog really and one who had been in a foster home, preferably with children would be a better bet.

Having a glass on wine now, trying not to think about missing hairy cuddleshmm

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 19:11:59

Mistle, I will have a look on Lurcher Link later. Do I just email them?

moosemama Sat 05-Oct-13 20:51:47

Pat, go on the LL website and read this and contact them to explain your circumstances and requirements and ask for a homecheck. Then have a look at the LL Homeless Hounds and finally Other Homeless Hounds.

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 20:55:10

I've done it Moose! I have already been emailed the questionnaire and I have filled it in and sent it back. Speedy service over on LL grin

moosemama Sat 05-Oct-13 20:57:07

That's great.

Yep it's a fantastic charity, lovely people and they really know their stuff. smile

PatTheHammer Sat 05-Oct-13 20:57:12

Ooops, just realise I posted on my phone earlier and the faces came out as hmm when I meant sad.

God, I must come across as a right stroppy mare when really I'm feeling sorry for myself and the kids, and the poor dog sad

moosemama Sat 05-Oct-13 20:58:08

I didn't notice Pat. Your sadness was clear through your words anyway. sad

mistlethrush Sat 05-Oct-13 21:55:14

Pat - moose's older hound is from there as is mine.

We only got shown 2 dogs from there - mind you, they had had at least one essay from me on what we were looking for and what we could offer...

I don't know whereabouts you are based - but LL are visiting Peterborough in force next weekend and there will be lots of lurchers to meet, and possibly some fostered LL lurchers there too. We went last year when we were dogless and it was good to see all the different lurchers around.

PatTheHammer Tue 15-Oct-13 22:17:15

Bumping my own thread to say that we have been going through GRWe and have been matched with a 4yr old Brindle Greyhound who is currently residing in Somerset. She looks beautiful and apparently is a gentle, easy-going girl who is used to being left for periods of time in her crate.
Just waiting to here back from the homing officer about when I can go down and meet her and if all goes well and she's not scared to death by the DCs then it's looking like we can collect her in half term.

So we are getting there eventually!

PatTheHammer Tue 15-Oct-13 22:19:45

Oh, LL have also been in touch and I'm going to ring them and let them know how it went. If it doesn't work out then they might have something lined up. The lady from LL was lovely and she wanted to be kept informed as she said it was lovely to hear about dogs being rehomed even if it wasn't through them:-)

mistlethrush Wed 16-Oct-13 09:45:30

Pat - is she with other hounds at the moment? Is she left alone for any periods of time? Some pointies do suffer from separation anxiety - sometimes this can be dealt with (we've managed to, and Moose has with her older lurcher) but greyhounds, coming from kennels, suddenly finding themselves in a home with no other dogs it can be a big change. Hopefully it won't be a problem, but just thought it might be worth mentioning.

PatTheHammer Wed 16-Oct-13 15:54:22

Hi Mistle- They have specifically been looking for one for us that has minimum risk of separation anxiety. That's not to say that she might not have a little bit when she first comes to us.

I get the impression that she is a bit unbothered by other dogs.

I'll know more when I have spoken to the other lady.

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