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Tell me about Dogs

(16 Posts)
LavenderRain Mon 08-Jun-15 22:25:52

DS has always wanted a dog, he's now 17 and a mate has recently got a puppy and he has talked about nothing else,
We have a 10 year old cat and thought I wasn't a dog person but I can now imagine a little dog trotting about,
DS loves cocker spaniels
Is having a puppy really hard work? Will I regret getting one?
I've told DS that he will be it's carer and he's willing to pay for everything,
So, what breed? I work part time so am home 4 days out of 7, medium sized garden, not huge but open spaces nearby,
TIA

Humansatnav Tue 09-Jun-15 05:43:04

How long would the puppy be left alone for on your working days ? Pupppys are hard work and its very intense for the first few months. Will your ds take responsibility? Cockkers are great, and I can see us getting one when our lab/ Springer cross is older ( currently 6 months)

tabulahrasa Tue 09-Jun-15 07:39:04

Having a puppy is a bit like having a small bitey toddler without nappies or a potty, so yes, hard work. If you're at work when your DS is at school you'll need to find someone to look after a puppy as they can't be left long.

basildonbond Tue 09-Jun-15 07:56:05

What is your ds planning to do when he leaves school? Will you be left looking after his puppy?

VivaLeBeaver Tue 09-Jun-15 08:03:39

They need walking every day.
You will need a dog walker the days you're at work.
You can't all go out all day at the weekend without sorting someone to let the dog out.
My dog wakes me up every morning at 6:30am as she wants to go outside for a wee.
They make a lot of mess, muddy footprints, etc.
You will need to dog proof your house when out. I've lost count of chewed shoes, handbags, coats.

They're the best thing ever.

LetThereBeCupcakes Tue 09-Jun-15 08:03:39

Dogs are fairly awesome, IMO. I have 2. Puppies are hard work, we had our boy from a pup and I'm glad we did it, but I wouldn't do it again. Our girl came to us aged 2, an ex-puppy farm breeder. Not toilet trained, never lived in a house, terrified of everything. I'd rather do that again than deal with a puppy! But I'm a bit weird in that I don't really like baby versions of things. I prefer the grown up bit.

When the puppy reaches about 9 months he / she will hit adolescence, which is pretty hellish!

Dogs live for 12 ish years, depending on breed. Will your DS still be interested when he's pushing 30? I'm not saying definitely he won't be - I was and still am obsessed with dogs, and he might be the same. Or he might not!

Only get a dog if all family members really want one and are prepared to take responsibility for the dog for it's whole life.

EdwinaLIzzard Tue 09-Jun-15 10:03:52

I have a 8 month old cocker spaniel and he is the most wonderful dog BUT please do not underestimate the work and commitment involved in taking on a puppy - it is a huge responsibility and I would think very seriously about whether your 17 year old son has thought this through………… it has to be a family decision.

I had previously always had cats, and they are a doodle in comparison!

The first few months are really hard work, and you simply have to put in the effort to ensure a well socialised, well trained and happy dog. Think back to baby sleepless nights, your house will never be free of mud and hair, no more spontaneous days out. My Ddog has eaten a chair, most of the cushions in the kitchen, shoes, skirting boards, but his chew toys are all in excellent condition grin

You must factor in the costs - not just food and basic equipment, but puppy training classes, insurance, vaccinations, monthly fleas and worm treatments, neutering etc

Yes, there is nothing more idyllic than a walk with your in morning sunshine, but think about the driving rain, the wind, the snow, sleet etc

I adore my cocker - but they are not easiest breed, they are friendly busy little dogs who thrive on human and dog company. I am home all day and my Ddog follows me everywhere, we walk for around two hours per day through the woods and fields, he sleeps at my feet, likes to snuggle next to me (or on my lap!!), he welcomes me enthusiastically like a long lost friend when I return from a trip to loo!!! What I trying to say is, you can't leave a cocker spaniel on its own all day - it would not be fair.

Having a dog is the most rewarding thing ever, those big brown spaniel eyes, melt my heart everyday - but it is a big decision and you need to consider all the pros and cons. Will your son really be want to be responsible for a dog for the next 12 years ………

LavenderRain Tue 09-Jun-15 10:54:55

Thanks so much for all your replies,
My son has always wanted a dog, his whole life!! He is at work, not school, he has an apprenticeship,
I would guess that the puppy would be left alone for around 14 hours a week, there is usually someone at home and my parents live round the corner and I'm sure they would pop in,
All my sons mates have dogs, his girlfriend has 2!
I'm a bit concerned about my Dcat, will he cope? He's my baby!

I know it will be hard work and I am sure DS will pull his weight, DD's are in their 20's and are keen. DH is meh, doesn't mind either way. He didn't want a cat but is now the biggest softie with it and often brings home Dreamies!

It's such a big step and part of me really wants it but then I change my mind,
It really is heart versus head!

holmessweetholmes Tue 09-Jun-15 12:44:51

We have a 9 month old dog. He is our first family dog. He is wonderful and I'm so glad we have him, but the first few months were indeed hard work. Broken nights' sleep were the worst bit for us. Went on for a couple of months until we eventually gave in and let him sleep in our room!

The main inconvenience is having to factor the dog into ALL your plans. You really can't leave a young puppy alone for hours. Things like a whole day out at the weekend are completely out of the question unless it's somewhere you can take the puppy or unless someone can look after him all day for you.

Scuttlebutter Tue 09-Jun-15 17:03:26

I think you should only get a dog if YOU really want one. Bluntly, your DS is 17 and has a GF, plus an apprenticeship. He is simply not going to have the time to commit to a puppy, and does he have the finances to support it's vet fees, insurance, food, grooming etc. if he is on a low income? I'd expect him to be flying the nest very soon, and certainly wanting to spend lots of time with his GF - I just can't see how a puppy would work for him. He's almost certain to be leaving home shortly, and you will then be left with a dog with a lifespan of up to 12-15 years. Is that really a commitment you want? If his girlfriend has two, surely he can get involved wiht walking/training/other activities with them? There are also masses of voluntary activities he can do - most rescues are desperate for volunteers, dog walkers etc. or he could walk dogs for the Cinnamon Trust.

LavenderRain Tue 09-Jun-15 17:09:07

You talk wise words scuttlebutter smile
Apparently DS will take dog with him when he flies the nest! (Which I don't think will be any time soon, DD is 26 and still at home!!)
He would love a lab but I said they are too big so now it's a cocker spaniel!
I've just been looking at the re homing sites for older rescue dogs but there arnt many available (except huge dogs!)

LetThereBeCupcakes Wed 10-Jun-15 07:40:28

Don't just consider size when you look at breeds - I have two labs. They mostly lounge around doing not a lot. My friend has cocker spaniels and they're nutters, running around all the time. They feel like they take up more space because they never stop moving.

If you're seriously considering a dog you need to think really carefully about which breed would suit your family. Then you can look at breed rescues as well as generic ones like Dogs Trust.

LavenderRain Wed 10-Jun-15 11:15:31

Thanks cupcakes I do have a soft spot for labs but was always put off by the size, but i see what you mean! And do labs smell more than other dogs??

LetThereBeCupcakes Wed 10-Jun-15 11:42:37

One of mine does, but she has a tendency to jump in filthy puddles! No, I don't think labs are particularly smelly really.

Sossidge Wed 10-Jun-15 22:54:46

Puppies are hell, they're toilet training, tantrumming newborn teenagers who need to bite. Note that a load of cute puppies are dumped in rescues once they're gangly and the reality has set in for their humans. sad
They're also the best thing on earth, ever. I read somewhere that a dog will fill whatever space it has, and it's true! A terrier can stretch out to take up a whole bed. Our girl is 16kg and always brings a toy to bed with her and uses a pillow!
You'd need to let the puppy outside every 20 minutes, teach her to move out of the way of doors, not be scared of cars, the doorbell, cyclists, hat wearers, other dogs, children, come back to you, drop it, and 10,0000 other things, all done with modern, science based methods, never punish her for your failure to let her know what you wanted her to do, mop up her pee, rush her to the vet, help her when she's a grey faced old lady. You will have to pull a blade of grass from her arse at some point, remove a tick, clean her teeth, find a million ways to entertain her (boxes and bottles have one last stop before the recycle bin), something in your house will get destroyed if you leave it in her reach. You can't go anywhere on a whim, what about holidays? Can you afford the best quality food for her, and insurance?
It's a 13-18 year commitment, one that will end in a broken heart and a horribly silent home, and it's worth every second. A million times over.

LavenderRain Thu 11-Jun-15 17:09:54

Thanks sossidge that bought a tear to my eye!
I am coming round to the idea but unfortunately DH is against the idea miserable bugger
Mind you he was the same when I bought home a cat and he loves him now smile
DS is so desperate for a dog bless him, he is even talking of an older dog now......
Watch this space!

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