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Advice please about whether it's fair to get a dog or not - please be honest

(12 Posts)
pollycazalet Thu 29-Nov-12 09:24:40

Hello dog experts

Have two kids 10 and 12. They both really want a dog. I would like one but not sure how fair it would be as we're out of the house a lot.

Dh and I both work. I am home a day and a half a week. 12 year old gets home about 3.30 and says he will take a dog out then.

If we had a dog it would be spending three days alone from around 9 until 3 unless we arranged dog walking service. And one day alone 9 - 1.

On the plus side we like walking as a family and I think this will help retain that habit as kids get older and want to do it less, DH runs regularly and could take the dog, I would be happy to get up early and do a walk.

We don't have a big garden but we do have an allotment and lots of parks nearby. We have two cats......

Dh and I both grew up with dogs so have a good idea of the commitment involved. My parents both worked so for a long time our dog was alone all week until sister and I got home from school - just like parenting in the 70s, I think dog owners were a bit more laissez faire!

I think that if you all really want a dog and arrange a dog walker it could work. Not sure about a 12 year old walking a dog alone, but that might just be me (guess it depends on the dog).

Assume you're thinking rescue / adult dog rather than puppy?

OwlLady Thu 29-Nov-12 09:52:37

two days working 9-3 sounds fine as long as the dog is walked and you have someone let him/her out inbetween

there are rules about children walking dogs without an adult but I cannot remember what the age range was

D0oinMeCleanin Thu 29-Nov-12 09:55:14

You'd need an older, calm dog who is used to being left alone and a dog walker for the two 9am to 3pm days, but it could work if you were willing to pay for the dog walker.

Have a look here. I am already in love with Mollie

My Dad has a partially sighted oldie and they're as not as hard to look after as you would expect. He has a habit of getting lost (as we can see him but he can't find us) and following the wrong person on the beach, but he's also deaf too, so can't hear us when we call him. People normally just bring him back to us.

pollycazalet Thu 29-Nov-12 09:56:09

Hi thanks for the responses.

I am thinking rescue not puppy yes, (thinking whippet which DH loves) but was worried about the criteria that rescue centres apply and whether we were around enough to be rated as potential owners. I know whenwe got our cats we had a lengthy addessment including a home visit.

12 year old is actually almost 13.

OwlLady Thu 29-Nov-12 09:58:58

you will have a lengthy assessment but that's a good thing for both yourselves and the rescue as it ascertains what kind of dog would be suitable and whether you are ready for the commitment. It's not to judge or criticise you, so just see it as a good thing smile and there are so many rescue dogs that need loving homes, you working 2 days a week and one morning that you are out isn't going to make a world of difference if you are responsible and have routines in place

D0oinMeCleanin Thu 29-Nov-12 09:59:43

Sighthounds are prone to separation anxiety so you would be better off re-thinking the Whippet, although they are lovely dogs, they don't cope well on their own.

D0oinMeCleanin Thu 29-Nov-12 10:03:04

Although two whippets would keep each other company grin

doggydaze Thu 29-Nov-12 10:04:28

polly - Hi. I have a 13 year old too and we are looking into a rescue dog. It probably depends on the dog and the child! I am not going to allow either of my DC to walk a dog without me being there until I am absolutely certain all parties are happy and confident. This might mean me doing a lot of lead training and recall training initially. I am happy for this to take as long as it takes.

Some friends of ours get their DC to do the morning walk. I see them dragging the dogs along to be honest and yanking them all over. Probably undoing any training that they did get!

But, your DC may be vastly different, if you all learn together?

pollycazalet Thu 29-Nov-12 10:23:51

Am not sure what a sighthound is.......

Sighthounds are dogs that were originally bred for hunting by sight such as greyhounds, whippets, salukis, podencos etc.

Ephiny Thu 29-Nov-12 10:43:01

I think it could work, with the right dog, and especially if you can get a dog walker or someone to pop in on the 9-3 days.

Bear in mind though that it might take the dog a little while to settle, and you might have to build the time up gradually to start with.

Do think about the long term as well, i.e. in a few years when your kids are maybe very busy with exams, maybe away at university etc. Of course your work patterns or all kinds of things might have changed by then, but it's worth keeping in mind, especially with a younger dog or long-lived breed.

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