Preparing for our puppy

(51 Posts)
Luckystar1 Tue 06-Nov-18 16:15:17

I am hoping for some advice on preparing for the arrival of our puppy. A cocker spaniel dog, who we will likely collect in the next 2 weeks.

We have 2 young children, 2 & 4. I have his crate set up and ready, to get the children used to it being there. I have some toys. I left a blanket and soft toy with him so his mum can scent it in preparation for his home coming.

I had dogs growing up, but on a farm so they were most often outside. And frankly, they weren’t my responsibility!!!

I want to be prepared for what life might be like, and preparing the children as much as we can.

I have researched thoroughly, but I’m hoping for real life experience of puppies. Will the house be destroyed? I need to mentally prepare! Is training awful? Will the nights be dreadful?

Thank you!

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CMOTDibbler Tue 06-Nov-18 16:23:46

You need to be prepared for every waking moment thinking about the puppy for a number of weeks, and it is going to be really, really hard with the age children you have.
They will undoubtedly nip the children, steal their toys, wee and poo on the floor (which the children will stand in), chew stuff, and going for a walk will not be the idyllic experience you think of, but the puppy entangling children, kids beggaring off while you pick up puppy poo etc.

And yes, they wake in the night, and if you don't give them enough stimulation they do damage to the house.

But if you put the time and energy in, they grow into wonderful dogs

BiteyShark Tue 06-Nov-18 16:24:46

All puppies and households are different so everyone has different experiences.

What you might find very useful is searching out some of the puppy survival threads on here (there have been lots as they fill up quickly wink) to see some of the common issues people have encountered and the many different solutions.

Good luck. I have a now 2 year old working cocker spaniel and my MN name was in his honour as a puppy as he was a bloody bitey land shark grin

agirlhasnonameX Tue 06-Nov-18 16:26:40

Congrats on your pup to be smile
I have a 3yro, 11yro and a new puppy.
Things will get chewed it's inevitable, esp your kids toys! But as long as you are planning on constant supervision you can damage control.
Nights for ours where awful at first, but moving the crate to our room has completely solved his nighttime howling and we are now all sleeping peacefully through the night.
Training can be hard, but depends on the dog. Start early and be consistent and have everyone on board.
Biggest thing for us with our LO has been his jumping up on her and his fascination for trying to eat your hair! It can be difficult to get young children and puppies to both listen at the same time, it is very tiring and constant work (but worth it)!
Sounds silly but you could try pretending to be a dog and have your kids do certain things I.e you jump up, they turn away, you (pretend) nip and they yelp as dealing with this when it comes can be a bit of a fluster.
And the 'freeze' game is good for teaching young kids to stop running when pup is chasing or when an accident is looming.
Best of luck!

PuppyMonkey Tue 06-Nov-18 16:29:20

Gosh, with a toddler and a four year old too? shock I don’t envy you, OP.

I have older kids and a grown up DD too and it has been HARD WORK. Puppy is four and a bit months now, really well behaved and mostly house trained now, sleeps all night. But it is still quite overwhelming and exhausting and confusing.

He’s cute though.wink

Luckystar1 Tue 06-Nov-18 16:33:02

Thank you all so much! I am actually petrified grin after having read a lot I think we will have the crate in our bedroom from the get go. It seems like the most sensible option. I’ve battled enough bedtimes to know it’s not worth the aggro!

Thankfully we have a big garden so I’m hoping initially we will ‘walk’ there to get everyone used to the drill.

I suspect that much like preparing for a child, this is all well and good in theory, practice is a very different kettle of fish...

Can I ask a potentially stupid question...? At nighttime, when he wakes, do I take him outside to pee? Or do I leave a pad thing in his crate? Or what the heck do I do?!

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Luckystar1 Tue 06-Nov-18 16:34:51

Ps I do know I’m crazy (stupid?!) for getting a dog at this age, but we figured we’re knee deep in (literal) shit at the minute. Adding yet more will obviously be a breeze confusedhmm

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BiteyShark Tue 06-Nov-18 16:37:54

Can I ask a potentially stupid question...? At nighttime, when he wakes, do I take him outside to pee? Or do I leave a pad thing in his crate? Or what the heck do I do?!

Some people advocate puppy pads but I avoided them as I never wanted my dog to think it was ever ok to pee or poo in the house. I wanted to avoid any confusion. I therefore took mine out to pee at night but made no fuss and then back in his crate.

agirlhasnonameX Tue 06-Nov-18 16:43:06

Wouldn't put pads in his crate if you have a garden where no other dogs have been, so as pp said take him out but don't make a big fuss keep it low key and put him right back.
My 12 week old holds his bladder from 11.30-5.30 so again, can depend on pup!

CMOTDibbler Tue 06-Nov-18 16:44:26

I never use puppy pads as they just encourage them to wee on paper. We go outside with pup on the lead and I stand there boringly saying 'business' until they do what they need.

agirlhasnonameX Tue 06-Nov-18 16:44:44

* I suspect that much like preparing for a child, this is all well and good in theory, practice is a very different kettle of fish...*
^ and this, 100% true

Luckystar1 Tue 06-Nov-18 16:46:35

Perfect thank you so much. Jesus we will be crippled!

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BiteyShark Tue 06-Nov-18 16:48:05

Hope for the best and be prepared for the biting, jumping, pooing, peeing, damanding worst grin

Luckystar1 Tue 06-Nov-18 16:51:41

Can’t wait... what have I done?!

Be prepared for the onslaught of ‘fuck me this is dreadful’ threads from me...

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rookiemere Tue 06-Nov-18 20:54:28

Dog proof the garden from escape.
DDog has always been a placid puppy and from Day 1 happily entertained himself in the garden for ages which thankfully DH had made into fort knox

Theoscargoesto Tue 06-Nov-18 21:11:15

I have grandchildren about the same ages as your DCs, and as they don't live with me, I haven't been able to train them as much as I'd like! What I find is not so much the day to day at home things (once I'd remembered to never leave baby and puppy alone) but getting out for a walk, with a buggy and a dog and a toddler, means I need AT LEAST one other pair of hands. My advice, buy a rucksack type carrier for the baby then you have more hands free for the dog and the older one. Just be careful when you're picking up poo, in case the baby tips out!!

Monstersunderthebed Tue 06-Nov-18 21:22:29

I’ve got 3 labs. I got my first when my kids were 11, 10, 4 and 2. The pup was a little crocodile nipping constantly jumping on the little ones and took them by ugg boots fluffy jackets and dragged them across the garden. It was a handful but we eventually got to grips with it. Crate trained all 3. Latest one is 6 months and has been dry at night in his crate since 8 weeks old. Never used puppy pads never would. Once dogs around 6 months or thereabouts they are not crated since fully house trained but chewing is still an issue

MuddyWellyNelly Tue 06-Nov-18 22:00:09

I have a 3yo DS and a vizsla puppy. He's bigger than yours will be, which for some reason escaped my attention in the planning, so some of my issues won't be quite the same as yours. What I'd say is think very carefully about how you are going to section off spaces for the puppy and kids, and have it all set up. Even with one DC I often don't have enough hands and sometimes have to wrestle a puppy or a child out of the door at speed when games get too rough/either or both get too excited. We have a crate in the living room and although that's never where I put the puppy in time out (for getting too mouthy: the crate shouldn't be punishment so he goes in another room for that) I do frequently need to put him in there for safety. Eg the fire is on and DS announces "I need a poo" so I've got to rush to deal with that. If the crate is in your bedroom, would you have another safe space to separate everyone? Where will your kids be able to play with toys? Mealtimes are an issue for us as puppy can reach the table but yours will likely never have that pleasure . But being small will come with other issues like fitting through small gaps in fences or stair gates. I'm going to say good luck, come and join us on the puppy thread.

Luckystar1 Wed 07-Nov-18 07:32:21

I was anticipating having the crate downstairs during the day and upstairs at night. Is that unrealistic?! Ahhh!

I will also put a stair gate on the kitchen door so there will be three rooms at the back that the puppy can be in frequently but the rest will be blocked off using the stair gate.

The play room is beyond the stair gate so hopefully there will be safe areas for all!

Mealtimes... we have the crate beside the kitchen table so I was contemplating putting the puppy in there while we eat, and he will be eating his dinner etc then too.

I strongly suspect this all reads like a first time mum to be planning what the baby will do 😂😂😱

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Ticcinalong Wed 07-Nov-18 07:39:47

Good luck op! I am owned by a cocker too and they are gorgeous but demanding and active dogs.
Is yours a working or a show line? Mine is a worker, chosen because we do active sports and the dogs have a very busy life style. For a house with toddlers a show type would be a better choice, but cockers can be difficult as pups. Mine wasn’t but a lot earn the name ‘cockerdiles’ for their endless play biting.
Brain games, kongs and positive reward based training from an early age are really helpful to tire out the busy brain, as well as excellent socialisation as though most turn out happy little dogs the breed can have a tendency towards nervousness.
I think they are the best dogs however but with a 2 year old too you are going to need a lot of wine (or chocolate if you don’t drink) for the first year survival.

BiteyShark Wed 07-Nov-18 07:41:43

Depends on the size of the crate regarding moving it at night. We had the largest I could find on the internet so there was no way I would or could move it. I think it would be best to get two as I think even for a small one you would get fed up of moving twice a day.

Stairgates are great. I have two still up and it helps when you have to have doors open and I want him to be safe. I doubt I will ever get rid of mine because I use them for bringing in the shopping etc.

My dog liked his crate but refused to eat any of his dinner in it so depending on your puppy you may find that things don't quite go to plan when they arrive grin

BiteyShark Wed 07-Nov-18 07:42:32

Ticcinalong haha mine was definitely a cockerdile grin

Luckystar1 Wed 07-Nov-18 08:02:03

He’s a show line, thankfully (?!)

I’m a SAHM and my husband mostly works from home so I’m hoping he’ll be an additional help if I need it....!

Has anyone got any good and robust solutions for protecting wires (TV/Sky/DVD)?

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fleshmarketclose Wed 07-Nov-18 08:02:07

Good luck OP and don't be surprised when you get regular "WTF have I done moments" in the early months.
My tip would be to have a pair of crocs or similar against the back door because if you don't wear shoes indoors you need something quick to get on your feet when you are house training and have one second to avoid a puddle on your carpet. Seeing as it's winter I'd add a coat to the crocs as you do spend a huge amount of time stood in the wind snow and rain waiting for the dog to toilet.
Oh and rule of doghouse is that all puppies mentioned have to have their photo posted so we can all coo over them.

Luckystar1 Wed 07-Nov-18 08:03:41

Oh and I’ve bought a clicker as I’m hoping to start clicker training straight away. Not that I have a singular clue how to do it, but I have been reading...

And I’ve been given a good contact for puppy classes, but, the only one I could attend would mean I’d have to bring the 2 year old... doable? Or suicidal?!

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