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Have I made a BIG mistake???

(72 Posts)
mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 19:13:38

We got our little sheltie puppy 2.5 weeks ago. My husband bought him for my daughter for her birthday. I have wanted one for a long time so I was all for it! He is adorable. Laid back, cute, gorgeous but I think I have made a mistake. I can't believe I was so impulsive and stupid. We have a 21 month old and a just turned 4 year old! We went to see him and I just fell in love....we all did. I just don't think I can do it? but at the same time I don't want to give up on him. I have been trying so hard to train him but I am just not getting anywhere. I literally follow him around constantly and when I can't watch him, I put him in his crate with his toys. But he poos and wees in his crate too! This is my first puppy so I'm a little overwhelmed. I said to myself it will be fine when he's trained but I just cant see a light at the end of the tunnel... I know it's only been two weeks and I don't expect him to be trained by now but he really just isn't making any progress. I take him out all the time into the garden. At least twice an hour. I wake up through the night to take him out too! I feel like I have him in the crate all the time but with two young children it's so hard... We should have waited. I knew it was going to be hard and everyone said I should wait but I thought I knew better. I was stupid.... Not only that I am completely stressed out with life at the moment... my marriage is at breaking point... I couldn't cope without a puppy and know I don't know how I'm going to get through this..... Please will someone tell me it gets easier...I don't want to get rid of our beautiful puppy. I love him, my husband loves him and so do the kids. The problem is not the puppy, it's me! My husband doesn't help whatsoever, with anything! Nothing in the house. Its all me, looking after the kids, cleaning shopping etc now a puppy...... I know it's my own fault and I am an idiot for getting him, but now I have him so I'm going to try my hardest.... I just dont know what to do...

HoneyDragon Thu 25-Apr-13 19:18:24


It's not going to get better. Do the right thing by the dog and return it to the breeder. If your husband won't look after the dog then he has no right to be devastated if it goes.

Or accept that you need to be a TON of time and effort in for at least the next year. There is lots of advice out there but the work has to come from you.

mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 19:35:05

To be honest, I am willing to put the time in... I'm just panicking right now about housebreaking him. If I knew I could trust him not to go in the house the second I take my eyes off him I think we'd be ok. He just isnt getting it, not even slightly. I watch him and as soon as I see him sniffing about as though he wants to go, I take him out. He sometimes does his business, sometimes not. I wait with him for ages then bring him in and he just does it inside... I take him to the door, using key words. Use keywords as he is doing his poo/wee , give him lots of praise. but he still does not even consider heading for the door and just does it wherever he pleases. I don't think he can smell previous accidents because I am mopping all the time... Once he is trained the dog will be completely spoilt by me, the kids everyone, it's just that it's hard while he's training. How long does it normally take? And how long is too long for a puppy to have not learnt...?

Floralnomad Thu 25-Apr-13 19:38:39

It could take many weeks to have him reliably house trained .

MillyMollyMandy78 Thu 25-Apr-13 19:41:50

We have a 10 month old Shetie, plus another dog. U have a lot on your plate so no wonder you are stressed out. Shelties are quite easy to train with most things as they are intelligent and eaasily pleasd.
However, they can also be timid and sensitive dogs. So can become easily stressed and anxious if you shout/ seem stressed. When our pup was little she was anxious and refused to go toilet outside. But this didnt last long. Lots of praise and encouragement and she will be clean in no time at

Chocoflump Thu 25-Apr-13 19:43:53

It will take many weeks to have him reliably house trained but not only that, you also have to put on alot of work socialising and training him! Once he's housetrained he won't automatically turn into the perfect dog.

yesbutnobut Thu 25-Apr-13 19:44:50

I don't think you should keep him the crate all the time. A crate is meant to be his refuge, not a prison. As long as you take him out once an hour and praise like crazy when he does his business, you will get there. You may want to read one of the puppy books - I used Gwen Bailey's The Perfect Puppy - as an introduction.

If on the other hand you really don't want to put the time in (and it does sound like a bit of an impulse to get a pup for a 4 year old) then get in touch with the breeder whilst he is still so young. Nothing wrong with admitting a mistake, but if you keep him try to enjoy him. He's not going to be toilet trained overnight so try to play with him and have fun with him instead of focusing on this aspect.

WTFisABooyhooISBooyhoo Thu 25-Apr-13 19:45:18

umm, house training can take months!

i dont mean to scare you when i say this but i have an almost 3 year old retriever and they are hard work if you expect any sort of reliable behaviour.

harder than having a newborn and a toddler (and i have experienced that!)

you really would need to have your DH's support 100% for you to even attempt this tbh. if he's not going to muck in your just wont be able to manage. not with little ones.

if i was to decide to have my dog again, i'd wait til youngest was at school.

Ruralninja Thu 25-Apr-13 19:46:08

It will take ages to housetrain him - other posters will not agree with me I know but I don't think you can train a dog solely with praise - they also need to know if you don't want them to do something. I felt completely terrible ticking my dog off when he didn't get housetraining, but it made all the difference.

However, and this is a BIG however, you have only had this dog 2.5 weeks - that is no time at all in terms of training and commitment. Absolutely none. The dog deserves to be given the best chance to be trained and happy - that's the deal with a dog.

Perhaps set a time limit (another 2 weeks?), read up on the subject, be consistent, get the rest of your family involved and perhaps speak to the breeder as well and then if you still think you've made a mistake you have to take it back - it would be terribly unfair on everyone and the dog to carry on. HTH.

mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 19:47:45

We do spend a lot of time training him, we have taught him sit, lie down, paw I know it's not much but he does get lots of cuddles and play time with us. He seems really clever but he just doesn't get the house training side to it. I'm not going to give up on him... I'll just have to keep trying and hopefully i'll get through it..

finosel Thu 25-Apr-13 19:51:21

You ve just written exactly what I feel- my kids are slightly older (4 and 6) but I ve noticed they re not that interested in the do really- when I broached the subject of him leaving they both cried!!!!
We were all keen to have him ( 11 wks now) but Sod's law it's me who s spending all my time with him and currently I feel trapped by a puppy!!!! Let me know how you go- I'm not sure at the moment what I'm gonna do but wonder whether a puppy should be making me this miserable???

WTFisABooyhooISBooyhoo Thu 25-Apr-13 19:51:45

it isn't a case of him 'not getting it'. he's only tiny. his bladder is still tiny and he's still learning his own signals for when he needs to go and knowing to get outside quick enogh. he also needs to learn the right 'signals' to give you so you will let him out. he doesn't come with a built in translation guide to know what signals humans look for to let him out for the loo.

mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 19:53:32

Thanks everyone, He is allowed outside for walks from today so maybe it will get easier then. However, we didn't get out of the drive today. He was terrified of everything and just wanted to hide behind me. He's not like that in the house though and in the garden. He loves running around and playing with the kids x

tabulahrasa Thu 25-Apr-13 19:56:54

I took about 6 weeks for my puppy to connect at all what was happening with housetraining and about another 6 weeks weeks to get to the point where he was mostly housetrained.

Housetraining does make a difference - and it does get easier...but he won't suddenly turn into a nicely behaved adult dog just because he's peeing outside.

I found having a puppy harder than having children to be completely honest.

Mine is 9 months and what I have is still not a dog, it's a 6 stone furry toddler.

Are you just having a bit of a panic? Or do you genuinely think this might be too much for you?

WTFisABooyhooISBooyhoo Thu 25-Apr-13 19:58:27

OP if you are sure you want to persevere with him ( and it will be hard work) then i would suggest you do lots of research into training and, very importantly, socialising him. spend the next few days flooding yourself with information so you know what you are really taking on and how much commitment it requires. be realistic with what you can do and dont let yourself be swayed by emotional pleas from teh kids and especially your DH who wants nothing to do with caring for teh dog!

Earthworms Thu 25-Apr-13 20:00:32

Disclaimer, I don't know about dogs, but I did find that with small animals if you clean an accident up with household cleaners, the ammonia seemed to draw them back.

Go over the area with laundry detergent, it seems to 'reset' the area in their mind and they don't go back to piddle there again

kilmuir Thu 25-Apr-13 20:02:56

why doesn't husband help?

needastrongone Thu 25-Apr-13 20:09:20

Can you ask dh to help more. I am relieved to see mine when he gets in from work, that hasn't happened since to kids were little.

Sounds like you are doing fine but overwhelmed. Totally understand that, my kids are 13 and 11 and the puppy has been as much work as they were. He's six months now and we have put tons of work in, hours in fact and I can see the groundwork starting to show through a bit.

Not sure what to say really! Hope you are ok. I am in the midst of puppyhood with a hubby who adores him and older dc and will still be glad when he's an adult!! However, whatever you are putting in now you will get back.

Good luck. Be realistic. Take care.

mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 20:09:50

I know just housebreaking won't make him the perfect dog but instead of me being so obsessed with housebreaking him, id be able to spend more time with him and enjoy him. I am deffo not going to give up. i am going to give it at least a couple of months. i think i am just panicking and having visions of a 5 year old dog still pooing and weeing everywhere..

finosel- i will deffo let u know how i get on and please let me know how u get on too!

my husband will not look after the dog. i know that. i'll have to do it alone like everything else

i spend any spare time i have reading up on puppies and how to train them... there are so many different opinions . im confused

ChickensHaveNoEyebrows Thu 25-Apr-13 20:12:15

Oh, I recognise the panic in your posts. We got our dog in a whirl of excitement and then I spent a good 6 weeks regretting it. Puppies are hard work, and it's pretty relentless. That said, I now have a 21 month old springer/cocker cross who is awesome in just about every way. The training never stops, though. It is a full on commitment for over a decade (hopefully). The difference is, now I know my dog and I love him, so I don't mind the hard graft. In fact, I rather enjoy our two hour long walks whatever the weather. I couldn't have done it while my DC were small, tbh. Now that mine are at school, I'm about to do it again <checks self for signs of actual madness>

needastrongone Thu 25-Apr-13 20:12:27

Why did he buy the puppy in the first place then? That's crazy and rather selfish if you don't mind me saying? Sound like you have a lot on your plate anyway.

needastrongone Thu 25-Apr-13 20:14:41

No way chickens? Are you really? Dh wants another in 18 months, the thought terrifies me at present!!!

Smiles at puppy asleep on my feet and occasionally letting of smelly trumps to remind me he's still there!

clam Thu 25-Apr-13 20:14:51

Oh don't give up! This will pass, I promise. After all, how many adult dogs do you know who still wee/poo in the house?

Our dog is just 2 now, but I was a regular on the puppy thread here not long after we got him (check out round about June/July time 2011 on the search facility). Everyone else's puppy seemed to have got it long before mine and I do confess to sitting on the steps in the garden at 6 o'clock in the morning once, sobbing!

He will get it. Be patient but get your dh trained!!

mummyof2kidsx Thu 25-Apr-13 20:16:09

i will say to him things like, keep an eye on the dog for 10 mins while i do this/that but all he will do is shit the door of the room he is in and start playing computer games. i tell him to watch him so he can prevent the accident but he just carries on playing his computer game/ watching tele and lets him poo and wee and thinks he should be shouted at. i tell him he is only a baby and doesnt understand how to tell him he needs to go out yet so its not his fault. he says im neurotic and i am thinking about it too much. he wont clean poo. he gets up for work at like 6 am and wont even let him out for a wee/poo and says i should get down. I should have known, hes like this with everything...

ChickensHaveNoEyebrows Thu 25-Apr-13 20:17:05

Yep, I am. New puppy comes home on Saturday. I will no doubt need gin and the odd slap over the coming months, especially as my anxiety is giving me gyp at the moment. Still, I've done it once and I can do it again <stoic face>

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