Oh wise Mumsnet dog lovers...(16 Posts)
Help me. We are thinking of getting a family dog. Well it would be my dog as I am currently a SAHM and when I do work it is from home. DDs are 5 and 2. DH is quite an experienced dog owner, and I had a beloved dog at home from age 12-22. We live in London, biggish house, small garden, but RIGHT next to large, dog friendly park.
We do have 2 rescue cats, one is very chilled - the other a bit mental.
I have always felt pretty strongly about rescuing not buying, but I am struggling to find options for a home with young children and cats (and not a large dog)
So perhaps I have to go the breeder route? If so our favourite breed is a miniature wire haired dachshund.
Any opinions or wise words? Would it be a good idea to go to a breeder and then rescue another dog in the future when our girls are older?
This is not a decision we take lightly, and is forming as an idea in my mind... So some MN opinioning would be ace
(If you look at my past threads we were looking at moving to NY in the near future, that is now definitely not happening)
I must admit that I always have rescued previously but have found it increasingly difficult in recent years, mainly as the breed I like have so many issues that I wouldn't risk with a child. If I were on my own I would be a lot less fussy!
There are rescues that will overlook children, mainly smaller ones or try one called many tears that has lots of small dogs and puppies?
Dogs trust is also really good at matching dogs with families but it may not be a breed you originally went for.
There is nothing wrong with going to an ethical breeder if that's what suits your needs and family. Better than that taking on a dog that does not suit your lifestyle.
As for dachshunds, they are not a breed I would choose to have speaking from personal experience if I'm honest. They are cute but fiesty, tempremental, difficult to train and plagued with health problems. When I have to deal with them at work most try and have a snap which puts me right off. My friend also has one and shes a nightmare despite every other one of her dogs being lovely and this has made me a bit biased
Here's where loads of people say Staffies or greyhounds...I think it depends what your looking for in a dog really. Personally neither would suit me but there are hundreds of breeds out there to pick from!
Can I have a greyhound with cats though? I love staffies, but would have to be a puppy I think...
Will look at Many Tears thank you x
If you are interested in a puppy it may be worth contacting the dogs trust in Kent ( Canterbury branch in particular) as I was reading in the local paper yesterday that they have rescued 150 pups since December that are being illegally imported from Europe , the problem is growing so I assume that they have a regular puppy supply . Battersea also get a fair amount of pups in ( we got ours from them ) .
I have lurchers and three cats, and they are brilliant dogs. Mine both came from EGLR who rehome to people with children of all ages, one was born with them and the other was handed in at 6 months. Alas, over the next few months they will have a lot of puppies, and I know they have 8 just about t come in
Yessss I am loving the info coming in. I adore lurchers!
We're thinking about a rescue hound too but am worried about our rescue cat....
My understanding is that Dachshunds are generally very terrier like in temperament - stubborn, headstrong, highly prey driven, reactive, high energy.
Not for me.
I also feel quite strongly about dog health and don't believe the modern Dachshund holds much similarity to the dog it was originally bred to be and to continue breeding the stupidly long backs and small legs, i think that's cruel.
I suppose you probably could find a cat friendly rescue dog and i daresay some of the dogs there will love kids but based on the fact that you can never be 100% sure of history, you can accurately gauge temperament in a kennel environment and I'm not convinced on the effectiveness of some rescue's assessments, a rescue dog is not something I would personally consider with young kids.
Rgt rehomed a greyhound to me when I had two cats. The local branch said they had two suitable dogs who hadn't got a good prey drive.
We fostered and then adopted a miniture pinscher. She was only 6 months when we fostered her so she was able to be socialised with children and other animals. I didn't know much about them, but they are lovely dogs (well she is). My neighbour in London had a miniature schnauzer. He was chilled out and great with children and other animals. Another breed to consider. A rescue pug might be an option. I usually get flamed for mentioning pugs because people here can be very passionate and very rude. There are rescue pugs based in London and they are in need of good homes. They are great with children and other animals. Although like all over breed dogs, they have problems.
Loads to think about, thank you. I need to find a smallish breed (or at least one that is ok with small garden) good with young ones and crazy cats.
Garden size is not really relevant if you put the effort into exercising the dog properly , our dog is a very active working type terrier mix but he is confined to our patio area in the garden as he wrecks the garden / eats stuff that is poisonous / digs huge holes / attacks birds and cats . A garden is never a replacement for a walk .
Of course any dog we have will be regularly walked. DH grew up with rescues and a collie, and we always had terriers, so I think we are aware of what we would be taking on. I spend half of every day roaming the park with my wild toddler at the moment anyway
If I were you I would consider the following:
- Your two year old is very young, will it work out between him and puppy? Two year old can be quite loud, may find it difficult to follow instructions about how to behave around a puppy, may still hit, pull hair, etc. Puppies can be exuberant, they have sharp little claws, they jump up and they play bite. Usually the combination of young child and puppy is not a happy one.
- If you go down the rescue route find a rescue that carries out a good assessment of the dog and fosters with a family similar to yours. Anything else is too much of a risk with young children. Adults can adapt their behavior around a dog with problems while training is taking place, DCs are more at risk of being harmed. Beware of the recent fashion for importing dogs from abroad. These are in many cases feral dogs that have had little or no socialization and have lived either on the streets or in kennels, they are an extremely high risk option with young DCs.
- Garden size is almost irrelevant. The dog will go out in the garden either for toilet (once trained) or to bark, which you would want to stop by recalling the dog in the house. If you are out in the garden the dog will be happy to stay out with you no matter what size garden (the exception is a minuscule yard and a high energy puppy). Walks are essential but don't rely on the park full time. Dogs need to be stimulated by a variety of different walks. Have you considered how you will manage multiple walks a day, in all weathers, with an unruly young child and an unruly puppy? Some child friendly areas do not allow dogs like playgrounds and school yards, and on the other hand you will need to arrange child care for when you take the puppy to training classes.
- There are good breeders out there but why did you pick this specific breed? They are not the easiest of breeds. For a small family dog why not a miniature poodle for example?
Smaller rescues are more flexible regarding adoptions with younger children. As you're in London, you could look at
Pro Dogs Direct Most dogs in foster homes
Silver Fox Dog Rescue Most dogs in foster homes in UK. (a lot of their dogs are fostered in Scotland/N Eng but some are in the south).
Black Retriever X Rescue (not only retrievers)
UK Romanian Dog Rescue with kennels in Guildford and dogs in foster.
Griffon Adoption Group UK Gorgeous, gorgeous failed hunting dogs.
Yes, a lot of these work with rescue partners abroad. Yes, some of their dogs are from the streets. Many are abandoned when they're no longer cute puppies, when they are repeatedly having litters (because numpties won't neuter/spay). However, reputable rescues work very hard with their dogs to socialise, train the basics, will check if they get on with cats/children/other dogs etc. Rescues have also employed (through fundraising) people to come and walk dogs regularly and get them used to a home environment, using fosters when they can.
I had 2 foster dogs from abroad, staying 2 months each with me. Lovely dogs, very sociable, house-trained, could be off lead within a month or so. Very good with children. Not all rescue dogs are suitable but, again, a good rescue should be upfront and honest about this. You should always be offered a homecheck, follow up checks after adoption etc. They, as much as you, don't want failed adoptions because they haven't got the manpower/funds to deal with this and so work very hard to match successfully. All good rescues will offer to rehome where it hasn't worked out. Join their FB groups and you'll get a good idea of the people/supporters/dogs they are promoting. You can always offer to foster in the beginning, giving you peace of mind.
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