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How soon to leave new puppy with friends if we go on holiday?

(42 Posts)
Buda Thu 04-Jun-09 09:30:56

Getting a lab puppy on 21 June - she will be 8 weeks old. Wondering about trying to book a week away from 15 August. Friend who has a 2 year old lab has said she would take our puppy or we have some friends who don't have a dog or I know a breeder who takes dogs. Dog will have been with us for 8 weeks and will be 16 weeks old by then.

DH is worried that it is too soon and the dog will be traumatised. (I think he would have been less worried if I had suggested leaving DS at that age!!!)

Any ideas?

I don't think pup, will be traumatised in any way, however I would be very worried about pup picking up bad habits that might be hard to break, I wouldn't leave a puppy of that age for a week, sorry.

hatwoman Thu 04-Jun-09 09:38:35

I don;t think the dog will be traumatised - but of those options I would say the friend with a lab is definitely the best - she knows what she's letting herself in for. 16 weeks is still pretty young - he will be quite a handful still. you'll have to face the choice of giving your friend quite precise guidance re training (using the same words as commands, and same methods etc) or just letting the training go for a week.

hatwoman Thu 04-Jun-09 09:39:42

it's also a bit of a shame - they grow so bloddy quickly - to miss that time with her.

bella39 Thu 04-Jun-09 11:14:16

I don't think the pup would be traumatised in the way humans might think (i.e. missing you), but she would still be at that critical socialisation age, when any bad experiences stay with them for life.

If you have to go, I'd opt for the friend with lab but as hatwoman says the housetraining could go completely to pot.

Wouldn't do it if it were me, tbh.

Good luck.

Buda Thu 04-Jun-09 11:49:51

You are not being helpful! grin

Aargh. DS breaks up from school on 19 June, we get pup on 21st and then that is me here in hot Budapest till school goes back on 1 Sept. Bah. Double bah.

I do have a friend who is the oracle on everything and she would train pup better than I could. Wonder if she is around? She has 2 dogs - perfectly trained. 3 children - perfectly trained. One DH - fairly well trained. Suspect she will be away though.

bella39 Thu 04-Jun-09 11:58:27

Actually, it probably won't be as bad as we've made it sound. It's not ideal, but if you could leave her with the friend with lab or The Oracle, am sure it will be okay.

KingCanuteIAm Thu 04-Jun-09 12:19:36

Is the Lab well trained? There is nothing like a well trained, friendly big brother to teach a young pup some manners grin

I would be hesitant to do it but you never know, you could get some free dog training out of it and pup will come back having had a great social week!

Buda Thu 04-Jun-09 12:34:28

Hmm. Not sure he is that well trained tbh. He was a bit of a nightmare at one point but has calmed down. Certainly quiet when I visit.

KingCanuteIAm Thu 04-Jun-09 12:42:50

They often are a nightmare when young grin

I would go on how he behaves now more. The other factor of course is, will the labs in question even like your puppy? Some adult dogs just do not entertain pups, they are hard work! Sometimes they won't like them at all and sometimes they will be ok for a while and then decide they have had enough. Just socialising them together is sometimes not enough to make them mates!

hatwoman Thu 04-Jun-09 13:11:17

bit like children ay?

Merrylegs Thu 04-Jun-09 13:36:39

Pup will be fine!

It sounds like you have lots of really good options for leaving him.

How laid back is the 2 year old lab? Let them play together before you go if you are worried. It will be great for his socialisation to be with another dog.

If the older lab really can't stick him, leave pup with your dogless friends. He won't even know you've gone. Honest.

Buda Thu 04-Jun-09 13:41:34

Thanks Merrylegs - just what I wanted to hear! My dogless friends have had a dog in the past so are not clueless.

KingCanute - that sounds about right!

My problem now is that DH is bound to ask what you lot thought and I will have to be honest and say that most said not to go.

Decisions decisions! I knew I should not have given in on the whole "can we have a dog?" question. Should have stuck to my vague "yes, one day" answer.

OrangeFish Thu 04-Jun-09 13:47:16

I'm totally convinced the puppy will be fine, and wouldn't get any permanent bad habits or succumb under the bad influence of a previously bouncing old labrador.

It's a puppy, a dog, not a human baby loosing contact with his birthmother. The worst that could happen is that he pretends not to know who you are when you go to collect him. (yeah, I know... I was trying to help) But as soon as he sees you serving his food his unconditional love will return.

(that reminds me of leaving my then 4 months old yorkie for a week with some friends, the dog had the best time of his life: totally spoiled rotten, from being allowed to sleep on a bed to dig the flower pots in the living room. He got away with murder but was back to his normal well behaved self within a couple of days after my return)

Buda Thu 04-Jun-09 16:35:29

A friend suggested asking the breeder we are getting the dog from if he would have him back to 'board' for a week. We go to see the dog on Saturday so will ask.

Merrylegs Thu 04-Jun-09 18:49:19

Buda- why does your DH think the dog would be 'traumatised'? Your pup needs food, water, a safe place to sleep and some exercise. I presume whoever you leave him with will provide that. So where's the trauma?

You (or DH!) OTOH may well be traumatized by the poos on your floor, the 5am wake up calls, the chewing of your furniture, the general madness that is puppy-hood, and may be glad of a break. Enjoy it and come back refreshed and ready to love your pup again!

(We got our pup in an April and in July left him in kennels for week whilst on hol. He was absolutely fine and now goes into kennels really happily as he has been used to them from a young age. He is a friendly and sociable dog and most importantly not anxious because he knows when we go away he will be OK and we will return).

OrangeFish Thu 04-Jun-09 22:07:58

To be honest... dogs don't care for us as much as we do for them, yeah, they may be more loyal than cats but as long as there is someone in hand to scratch their ears they don't care if it is you, the neighbour, the postman or even the old woman saying hello to them at the supermarket.

hatwoman Thu 04-Jun-09 22:27:34

shock how very dare you orangefish. they love us.

OrangeFish Thu 04-Jun-09 23:49:17

Nah, they love to have a caring owner, but they are not exceptionally peaky of who that person is. grin

According to the persons who trained us our dogs, the only way a dog will experience anxiety when the owner is not around, is when the pecking order is not properly established and the dog thinks the owner is their puppy and needs to keep his/her under constant surveillance.

OrangeFish Thu 04-Jun-09 23:50:21

picky not peaky... Thanks god my dog can't check my writing (yet...)

Buda Fri 05-Jun-09 01:50:10

Merrylegs I have no idea why DH feels like that. He didn't about DS!!!!

Am pished now so not talking much sense.

bella39 Fri 05-Jun-09 08:48:00

Hope you've sobered up now, Buda grin

My concerns were not that the dog would miss you, but that you would not be around during quite a critical period of his socialisation. If you can totally trust the person you leave them with, that's fine. The same goes for the house training - as I said it could all go to pot.

Anyway, I will be in cold damp UK all summer with my menagerie plus new pup, so maybe we ought to do a house swap? grin

Buda Fri 05-Jun-09 09:11:16

Sobered up but hungover. Got DS up for school and remembered I was supposed to bring in cake for the class!!!! Aaaargh. Thankfully said cakes were made and in freezer but I was supposed to defrost last night. Thank God for microwaves!

It's cold and damp here today so you might not fancy a house swap! grin

OrangeFish Fri 05-Jun-09 09:47:10

Critical period of socialisation? exactly, the most people and dogs puppy gets to meet the better.

I may recommend a book that is fantastic for doggy potty training, it is called "How to housebreak your dog in a week" very simple, you just select a schedule that fits your lifestyle and follow it for a week.

bella39 Fri 05-Jun-09 09:58:19

Yes, orangefish, that is one side of it. The other is that negative experiences will leave their mark too.

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