Finally caved in....

(16 Posts)
clairlycrazy Fri 30-Sep-16 18:37:34

It's been a few years of DDs and DS begging for a dog. Recently, I decided that it would be a nice idea as a surprise Christmas present after eldest DD's GCSE mocks. DH has approved so now it's just the planning that needs to be sorted.

My main question is should I buy a puppy from a breeder in my local area or is it best to adopt from the RSPCA. What are the risks with a RSPCA dog and similarly with a puppy, would it be impossible to train one with no dog experience in a fairly short amount of time and would I have to take a lot of time from work?

As well as this, are there any breeds of dogs in particular that are very child friendly but also playful? If so would be great to know!

MumOfTwoMasterOfNone Fri 30-Sep-16 18:44:51

We have a cocker spaniel who is extremely child friendly and great with babies/children. They can be a bit bonkers but ours calmed down massively after about 2 years but he does need exercise and stimulation.
Rescues tend to tell you can/can't be homed with children/small pets etc.
If I had my time again, I would probably try and rescue a dog. But I'm so grateful for our doggy who is just gorgeous and a member of the family.
You definitely need to research breeds and choose one that will fit with your lifestyle.

MumOfTwoMasterOfNone Fri 30-Sep-16 18:54:29

We have a cocker spaniel who is extremely child friendly and great with babies/children. They can be a bit bonkers but ours calmed down massively after about 2 years but he does need exercise and stimulation.
Rescues tend to tell you can/can't be homed with children/small pets etc.
If I had my time again, I would probably try and rescue a dog. But I'm so grateful for our doggy who is just gorgeous and a member of the family.
You definitely need to research breeds and choose one that will fit with your lifestyle.

Wolfiefan Fri 30-Sep-16 19:01:02

What sort of hours do you work? No responsible breeder will sell you a pup if you work long hours.
Consider doing a breed selector quiz online for some ideas or visiting discover dogs show.
Think about the amount of time you can spend grooming and walking and the amount of space you have.
If your children are younger I would recommend trying to go through a rescue like blackretrieverx that fosters dogs rather than using kennels. They will be able to give you a better idea of what you are taking on. And will give longer term support if you need it.

pigsDOfly Fri 30-Sep-16 19:02:08

Bringing a dog into the house at Christmas is not a good idea, unless of course, your Christmas is going to be very calm and quiet.

A good breeder will not be able to sell you a dog at such short notice - a good breeder's will have a long waiting list for puppies - so unless you're planning to buy from a puppy farm a breeder is out of the question.

Don't know anything about the RSPCA and how they work but I would hope they wouldn't allow a dog to be rehomed for a Christmas present.

And no, you can't train a puppy in a short space of time. Training takes time and commitment and is on going. And house training a puppy can take quite a few months with some of them. Obviously if it's an older rescue it might already have some training but it also might come with some behavioural issues.

Might be better to look into it a bit more, decide which breeds might suit your life style and maybe get one when you have more time to commit to training it.

Costacoffeeplease Fri 30-Sep-16 19:19:02

What is going to happen to the puppy/dog when you go to work?

You can't leave a dog more than 4 hours a day, and you can't leave a puppy more than about half an hour at a time

I'm not sure you realise the implications of having a dog, and especially a puppy. Have a look at some of the threads here where people have 'done all their research' and are then surprised that an 11/12/14/18 week old pup is nipping/jumping up/weeing on the floor, and want to give them back

TrionicLettuce Fri 30-Sep-16 20:15:19

As well as the excellent points raised by pigsDOfly the "surprise" element is not a good idea.

Any decent breeder or reputable rescue will want to meet the whole family before they decide whether you'd be suitable owners for one of their puppies/dogs.

Anyone (breeder or rescue) happy for you to just turn up alone, hand over your money and take a puppy/dog is not someone you want to be buying/adopting from.

tabulahrasa Fri 30-Sep-16 20:28:07

Nobody worth having a dog from will let you have one without meeting all the family.

Nobody worth having a dog from will let you have one if you both work without you at least having care plans in place (and some not even then).

Nobody worth having a dog from will be letting them go at Christmas.

If you want a puppy from a decent breeder, you'll be looking at going on a waiting list for a planned litter - usually about a year in advance.

Mybeardeddragonjustdied2016 Fri 30-Sep-16 20:34:26

If your kids are over 5 get yourself to Dogs Trust. Organise a lunch time dog walker and you are good to go!
Heinz 57 and you won't regret it!!

clairlycrazy Fri 30-Sep-16 21:11:13

Okay so perhaps not for Christmas then...

The house will be quiet, with just the five of us so having an excitable puppy isn't so much of an issue.

DC are all in secondary school but I do ask about child friendly as we have younger nieces and nephews who visit frequently.

I own a small firm so can easily work from home when needed, just might need to pop into work occasionally, but if a dog needs 24/7 attention I can always take a few weeks off completely as holiday leave until he/she has adjusted to home.

I know I need to do a bit more research which I why I started this thread! grin Definitely not planing on "sending them back" either!!

Costacoffeeplease Sat 01-Oct-16 00:44:51

You'll need more than a few weeks off for a puppy - how about 18 months?

Littlebee76 Sat 01-Oct-16 07:22:53

Please please please go to the rspca and adopt a dog from them, they usually have dogs of all ages and they are all desperate for a living home and a second chance to be happy.
It breaks your heart going there as you want to take them all as they all give you such sad eyes just wanting you to pick them.

The rewards are massive. In the past I've had pups from breeders which have all been amazing dogs, but you can not compare it to the feeling if bringing home a rescue dog which is what I've just done and she's perfect.

Littlebee76 Sat 01-Oct-16 07:23:37

* loving home!

neonrainbow Sat 01-Oct-16 07:35:09

You don't say whether you've had a dog before but i would look at getting a young dog say 1-2 years old from a rescue. They will have been character checked so if you need one that is good with children then hopefully you'll have an idea of that. Also puppies are bloody nightmares and is nice to skip the pain in the arse puppy stage. They're cute but apart from that you're just waiting for them to grow up and stop being such a pain.

Look into clicker training for whatever dog you get. It's really easy once you have taught the dog the basics of it (I've clicker trained my cat too) and you can teach them anything with a clicker and some food. Depending how much time you want to spend exercising and grooming depends what sort of dog you should get. Also what you want to do with it - eg obedience, running, agility or none of the above?

Sparklywine Sat 01-Oct-16 07:50:04

Hi Clairly, just to put another unpopular perspective on this for you, I recently got a overpriced crossbreed cockapoo puppy, and she is a delight. Not had a dog before, but have cats so am aware of the responsibility and ups and downs of pet ownership. Between my husband and myself we had four weeks off when we got her at ten weeks old, to socialise and get her used to the house and our ways of living (sort of agree with the Christmas comments, it's not reflective of day to day living and could be overwhelming for pup, but if you've had her a good couple of weeks they might just love the excitement and want to shred all the wrapping paper!). I am at work three days a week so she goes to doggy day care and gets lots of outdoor time, cuddles and play with all sorts of dogs. She loves it as she loves other dogs and is very confident around them. I'd recommend the breed as being loving and family friendly although ours is a bit dim grin. We go to puppy classes once a week and she's really picking up recall. Stay is also not an issue as she's quite lazy for a cockapoo, not jumpy and mad as I'd read. Yes she wees on the floor if we don't pop her out on time, and the nipping is ramping up as her teeth come in, but I'd researched getting a dog for a good year before we got her, around the breed and also puppies in general, so nothing has been unexpected, and the bond and love we all have for her already has been a joy. My nearly five year old ds is slightly wary of the jumping and nipping but we're teaching him the right ways to react and they're becoming little pals. A series of stair gates ensures puppy/cats/ds can all retreat when things get too much. I can't recommend dog ownership enough, and getting a puppy means they adjust to your lifestyle. Plus the sheer zest for life they have makes the usual puppy issues melt away. Can you tell we love her! As an aside, this forum can be scary but everyone does love their dogs and wants to give good advice, it's just sometimes a little biased in a certain way so take what you need from all the posts, to be honest you sound well set up and out to do the right thing by everyone. Good luck and sorry about the waffle, been up since 6am with child and pup so get used to some early mornings again! grin

clairlycrazy Sat 01-Oct-16 09:13:57

Sparklywine thank you very much, it can be a bit daunting at times posting....

I understand I will probably have to research more, for some stupid reason hadn't even considered DH can also take some time off after I am back at work!

Dog classes and daycare (for once I'm back at work) sound like a good idea also, I will have to look into that. We even still have the baby stair gates in the attic I think so will have to bring them down. But might decide to adopt in the end, it sounds like a good idea but was just worried if there were any downsides I hadn't yet heard of.

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