Could I get a dog?(9 Posts)
Posting for opinions of experienced dog owners to ensure I make a sensible decision.
I have wanted a dog for as long as I can remember but it is only now that I feel I am potentially in a position to get one . I have previously been in rented accommodation but now own my own house, have been there for 6 months and feel that the time may be right. My concern is that I am at work 7am-6.30pm 3 days/ 2.5 days alternate weeks with occasional commitments that mean I may need to go in to work during the night ( on average 3 times every 2 months) - sorry if that all seems a bit complicated!
I have recently found a doggy day care that looks after the dogs of many people from my place of work and they also do obedience training/ agility during the day for a small extra cost. There is also a lady very close by ( same street) that does dog walking.
I'm am aware of the implications and long term commitment of taking on a dog. I can afford the daycare/ dog walking costs and long term vet bills.
I have always been in love with labradors and have been considering a puppy- I have family who would stay and help train for however long necessary but I know this is a massive commitment. I've also been looking at rescue centres and would me more than happy with the right rescue dog.
I think what I'm asking is would it be completely selfish for me to get a dog now with my work commitments or is it reasonable?
Sorry for the long post!
Sounds like you have thought it through with the options of the doggy day care and dog walkers, these would be necessary for your long days, I'd say go for it! You've put a lot more thought into it than a lot of people do.
Sounds possible. The only thing I would say is be very careful getting a puppy when you need to rely on family to help you out. If they let you down, you're potentially quite stuck in a difficult situation. At least if you adopt a rescue (even a young one), they should, in theory, be toilet trained etc and doggy day care/walkers are therefore an option - not so for a puppy, really.
You sound extremely aware of what owning a dog entails. It's meant as a great compliment because so many people don't!
However, a puppy would be really, really hard even with all your plans in place. Day care wouldn't be appropriate for the first month until vaccinations are all done. Pup really needs such intensive input for the first year and I'm not sure it would be possible with so many other people sharing the care. It would be very confusing and training wouldn't be consistent.
What about a young dog, a year or 18 months old? Many, many in rescue, lots of smaller rescues have their dogs in foster homes so basic house training and other training has been done. Also, issues like separation anxiety wouldn't be present or at least you'd be told about them and be able to make informed choices. A retired, young greyhound would be a great choice!
I would not get a puppy unless you can take several weeks leave. I say this as I sit in the dark kitchen waiting for pup to nod off so I can go up to bed! It's takes time to bond and toilet train and get them used to being left and teach lead walking and deal with the chewing/mouthing.
You seem to have a handle on how you could cover the working days. I can't see why a slightly older dog wouldn't work. But do allow settling in time.
Sneaky (ok blatant!) plug for black retriever x rescue!
Yes you can have a dog using day care and dog walkers which is what I do when I am in the office. However, if you really want a puppy you are going to need to settle them in over a few weeks (I took 1 month at home before going back into the office). Also check whether there is a lower age limit as one day care near me was 4 months of age which would have been an issue had I not found somewhere else.
Also with puppies unless you plan to let them pee in puppy pads in the night you are going to need someone to look after them during your odd night time work to let them out every few hours for a pee.
Thanks for the replies and advice. It's helped me realise that now is probably not the best time for me to get a puppy but I will definitely look further into getting a rescue dog. I'm glad that it doesn't seem completely unreasonable - as long as I find the right dog to suit my lifestlye ( and there has to be one out there surely !)
Also thanks for the tip about greyhounds, I do have a bit of a soft spot for them - they are a decent size and I've always preferred the larger dog breeds - and the ones I've met have always been so gentle! I'm going to start looking at rescue centres but I'm not going to rush into a decision just because I want one now!
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