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The right circumstances to have a dog

(12 Posts)
CactusFred Wed 18-Jan-17 22:05:41

I live in a semi rural location with lots of dog walkers and lovely walks and not having a dog to enjoy this with seems criminal to me and I desperately want one!

Both DH and I had dogs as kids but have never been in a position to as adults because of living in flats and full-time etc. Now we are in a house with a medium garden.

He works full time and I work 3 days a week/22.5 hours. We have a 4 year old and 2 cats.

Basically 4 year old starts school in September and I'm looking to change my working pattern to cover school run. I'm hoping, employer willing, that I can work more from home- and my mum is moving near us and could pop in if needed.

I'm hoping to therefore home a dog based on those circumstances once child has started school if I'm able to change my hours.

I'm looking for advice.

What dogs are best to have with young child (he's v respectful of animals and gentle with the cats)?

Dogs that are better with cats and is it better to have the dog from puppy rather than rehome in this case?

I plan to take time off to settle the dog in and work from home more when he first arrives. I'm just concerned about going to work and leaving the dog for long periods. If I was out four hours a day would that be too long? I'm also considering one full day and other shorter ones with my mum having him one day (she's willing and able and it'd do her good).

Would it depend on the breed?

I'm willing to spread my hours to accommodate the dog but am I being unreasonable even considering it?

I have a friend who works full time and leaves dog at home all day with radio in and I couldn't do that! I don't want to go ahead with this if I'm being cruel.

Honest opinions most welcome. I honestly only want to do this if it's reasonable to do so.

Thattimeofyearagain Wed 18-Jan-17 22:10:47

In my honest opinion it is doable. Not a puppy though.

Working24x7 Wed 18-Jan-17 22:11:38

Hi we have just got a dog from a puppy a labrador and it is so wonderful it has changed all our lives. We also have a DS and 2 cats who remain the bosses. The labrador has a soft mouth and is very gentle, but my DS didn't like him for the first 2 months as his puppy claws were sharp - now he sleeps with him in his room. We don't leave the dog more than 4 hours ever or else he would eat the house.......... Dog sitters/walkers are good value to fill the gaps.

CactusFred Wed 18-Jan-17 22:15:02

Working how were the cats when the dog first arrived?

Working24x7 Wed 18-Jan-17 22:42:33

The male cat left home for a week and the female hid. After a year the dog is best friends with the male cat and they sleep together in front of the fire. The female cat lives the dog adores both of them.

user1477282676 Wed 18-Jan-17 22:46:43

We got a dog last year...our main reasoning was that I work completely from home so someone would always be there. I now realise just how important this was...our dog HATES being alone even for two hours.

We just moved house and made the mistake of leaving him in the new house garden for a few hours...he adores being outside and he'd visisited the new house a lot...he went NUTS and our new neighbours all thought we were bad pet owners!

Our dog is a Maremma...not a breed I'd recommend for anyone with less than an acre!

I think a nice mutt is the best way to go...mixes are often easier to contend with depending on the breeds of course.

Otherwise a spaniel is lovely...or a greyhound. My brother has a greyhound and they're very, very chilled out. They run like the clappers when you take them out and then sleep a lot!

Sparklywine Thu 19-Jan-17 08:00:50

Hi Cactus, you could be me! We got our cockapoo puppy last August just before four year old ds started school. We have three cats, aged around six. It's been fine. We researched the breed to get one that would be good with children, and not want to hunt the cats down (although I think all dogs will give a good chase!)
Two of the cats will be in the same room with pup now, one is hard as nails and one is mastering walking very slowly and batting pup away. The other keeps out of the way but isn't fearful which is progress. Stair gates everywhere!
I also work three days a week, 10-5. What I would say is that you can't leave a puppy on their own, even for an adult settled dog it isn't recommended for more than three hours. On my days off, pup gets left in a safe and secure conservatory with water, a safe toy, comfy bed and radio 4 on, for school drop off and pick up, so no longer than half an hour.
On my working days she goes to doggy day care for the day, it's £15 a day and she loves it. She's been going since she had her injections, and its fab of her socialisation. Honestly she rushes in without a backward glance.
I'd say you've got a good set up but would need to look for care on your working days, I don't think even working 10-3 you could get by with a walker popping in, you need to toilet train a pup and socialise them extensively.
If you're considering an older rescue that's different I think, others will let you know, but an older dog might be happy to snooze all day, I've read greyhounds are good for chilling (but might be lonely. You'll have to get two, ha!)
Good luck with whatever you decide, do go for it, I have no regrets, pup has been fab for our family and I'd forever regret it if I'd gone through life dog-less.

CactusFred Thu 19-Jan-17 12:09:14

Sparkly wine that's great advice thank you.
What breed do you have?

Sparklywine Thu 19-Jan-17 12:14:07

Cockapoo 😘

CactusFred Thu 19-Jan-17 17:35:55

Lol sorry I totally missed that at the start of your post. Thank you!

Much to consider 😀

LumelaMme Thu 19-Jan-17 19:12:43

All I'd say is that most dogs can learn to live with cats. We have two working bred-dogs, both of varieties reckoned to be cat-haters. One ignores the cat and the other worships him.

Mrsladybirdface Thu 19-Jan-17 20:30:16

I have similar set up and also got a cockapoo just before youngest went to school.
Best decision ever.
I work 5 hours a day but have a dog walker take dog out for 2 hours in that period.
We've been pretty lucky that our dog is happy to be left up to three hours (I've watched her via the iPad)
Plays with Kong and then goes to sleep..occasionally loOKs out of the patio doors 😊
She knows the routine and goes into the snug as we are rushing out of the house

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