Dogsitting traumas! Abu?(20 Posts)
Just to set the scene.. I have a terrier, 8yrs old. My mum lives nearby and has a 4yr old cockerpoo and 1.5yr old schnauzer. She got the cockerpoo not long after my dad died and the dog is very over emotional (problems as a result of all my mum's emotions being poured into her when she was a pup!).
My mum will happily have our dog to stay if I have to go away for work or if we go on a holiday that's not dog friendly. Our dog is no effort or trouble at all.
Her dogs, on the other hand, require two walks every day, at pretty set times which isn't easy when I work and have kids to look after but I make it work. Its nightimes where the problem occurs. Last year she went away for the first time, leaving them with us for 5 nights (sleeping in their beds in the kitchen). Every night, if any of us set even so much as a foot out of bed (and I often wake up in the night and need a wee or my dh has to get up v early to travel to work) they'd start whining. And continued for the rest of the night, keeping us all awake, sometimes from 4am!
After five days I was shattered.
Spoke to her and we decided to trial taking them back to her house at bedtime, so they're in their own environment, and going down there first thing in the morning to get them. We're trialling this tonight ahead of her going away for 7 nights in a couple if week's time.
She's now making me feel very guilty about this, saying she doesn't like the idea of leaving them there alone and asking why they can't just sleep in our/ the kids bedrooms as then they won't whine... apparently! My view is that dogs don't belong in bedrooms and it's just pandering to them! Dogs are dogs and much as I love them, they don't belong in my bedroom (and DH hates the idea too).
So, am I being unreasonable here? Should I just give in and let them sleep upstairs for an easy life (assuming they won't start whining if I go to the loo in the night of course!)
Can you compromise and have them on the landing in a crate? Make a little safe space for them that smells of home.
You shouldn't leave dogs alone in a house all night, it would probably be very distressing for them and they may hurt themselves.
I wouldn't like them upstairs either, plus there's still no guarantee they will settle there either.
Is there no one who could stay at your mums house at night? Or has she looked at pet sitters who do this for s living?
Others may disagree but I would say that if you can bear to have the dogs in your room for a few nights just do that. Your mum looks after your dog (who may be "no trouble at all" or maybe your mum is just very polite!) and she has presumably looked after you for many years. Unless there is some massive back story of her taking advantage of you I would just do it to keep her happy.
I have a dog with seperation anxiety (rescue) so they have always slept in our room although the other picks and chooses between upstairs and downstairs. But I would only ever find a dog sitter that was ok with this.
I think if you have agreed to it knowing what their normal set up is (unless they are just playing up away from home? Otherwise assuming the sleep in her room) then I think you prob should have expected this and let them be comfortable or just said you couldn't do it.
I would never leave them somewhere alone over night but that's because I have my own anxieties.
So basically you are not unreasonable for your house rules of no dogs upstairs but you are to impose them if you knew the dogs aren't used to it and should have said no.
Just to clarify other house rules like not on the furniture wouldn't put a dog out (well maybe the manipulative ones) like sleeping solo if not used to it.
Obvs my post isn't really helpful in sorting out the prob but I think if her hol is soon it might be too short notice to find someone who can fit the bill and as you've agreed having had them before and knowing what's coming then I would say just do it for her.
I don't think they should be left home alone overnight as if anything happened ( fire / theft) you would never forgive yourself , the obvious answer is either you or DH takes them home late and sleeps there and then bring them back to yours in the morning - simple .
I think you have to suck up with the howling this time given it is close to your mums holiday. Afterwards you need to sit down and clearly say it isn't working for you to see if you can both come up with a solution that is good for everyone.
My dog sleeps in our bedroom, but at the dogsitters he sleeps in the conservatory. You are being reasonable, your house your rules.
I think it's fair enough if you and your dh don't like dogs in your bedroom, but if you've said you will have them to stay, knowing about the separation anxiety then taking them back home every night is probably not very fair either. Your mum is likely to worry about them getting stressed, and if you aren't there you'll have no idea if they are stressed or not so can't really reassure her.
The whining does sound very annoying, but it isn't really for you to decide what is pandering or not - presumably your mum has them in with her at home, so any 'damage' is long since done.
Personally I'd do what we did with our puppy when he was little. Start them off in the kitchen and let them come in with you in the early morning. Or do what my mum did when one of our family dogs got separation anxiety and let them sleep outside of your room.
They sleep in the kitchen at her house quite happily but if they go away with her anywhere then they sleep with her. Also, if she has overnight guests at her house, the dogs go in her bedroom as the basic issue is that if there's any change to her routine (ie its not just her and them, alone) then they'll play up).
I've considered staying at her house with them but when my husband is away for work I can't leave my own children at home alone!
We had agreed to leaving them at hers, after the last holiday, but she'd assumed it might just be one night, but since then my insomnia is much more persistent so the likelihood of my getting up in the night is much higher and therefore I may need to take them back to her house most nights.
She wouldn't countenance a dog sitter or kennels.
My dog is not allowed upstairs and sleeps quite happily in the kitchen. He has stayed with relatives when we go away and cried all night! DD has a little lap dog and when she stays she manages to sneak upstairs and into one of the kids bedrooms where she sleeps quite happily
They are becoming distressed away from your Mum and their familiar environment. Show a bit of compassion and allow them upstairs for comfort.
Surely her not being there/being alone is a change to their routine?
Other option is one of you camps downstairs for their stay.
I really think it's awful to leave them home alone over night
could you absolutely not bear them in your bedroom? my dogs sleep in bed with us and its just become what we do. We always said no dogs upstairs too
Could you see how that works for one night? with the agreement that they go to your mums if they don't settle?
Just a thought. When they start through the night could you not grab a duvet and pillow and schooch downstairs on the sofa. I suffer from insomnia and often do this anyway to not wake DH. Often the change of scenery gets me back to sleep quicker anyway. The dogs might settle quicker if your around them downstairs.
I definitely couldn't get back to sleep on the sofa!
Perhaps one compromise option would be to allow them to sleep in a child's bedroom (kids are nearly teens so pretty sensible). That way they'd feel less anxious but they wouldn't be in with us / disturb us. Well, hopefully anyway....
My own dogs don't sleep in my bedroom.
However, when I had a friend's dog to stay (they were about to go on holiday when their usual dog sitter fell seriously ill) he whined so much the first couple of nights that I moved him into my bedroom for the rest of the time. He was happy and I could sleep.
Back in his own house he slept in the kitchen as usual, no problem.
Try him in with the children. It doesn't seem worth all the fuss, to be honest.
Pragmatically if you want a good nights sleep you will have to compromise on the dogs upstairs rule. I don't think you should leave them at her house if they are anxious.
I'd not be happy for my dogs to be sleeping home alone, with them lord only knows what could happen What about giving it a whirl with the pooches sleeping in a kid's room, as you mentioned above?
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