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Adopting a dog - 6yo(24 Posts)
I've had some really good advice on here when DP and I have been researching dogs and I was hoping we could get some more info if possible.
We have been okay-ed by a local breed specific charity. They seem to mostly rehome due to change of circumstance. We both work FT but DP works from home mostly, I can take the dog to work and we also have family nearby who are willing to help out. We have also looked into doggy daycare and can afford it and may put the dog in for a couple of regular days anyway. No idea if this is stupid or not but the logic is it might do them some good to be with other dogs ie socialising and if we aren't around it means that they get their exercise in and wouldn't be left alone. We live in a "green" area and there are plenty of places around.
Anyway - the charity had a dog for us, a three year old but the owners have pulled out. We are disappointed but expected it. The charity potentially have another who is six years old but have suggested that we may think that the dog is too old. They have qualified this by saying that the dog is active. When we first started researching (ie did lots of extensive googling) the internet suggested rehoming older dogs as first time owners. Obviously it depends on the reason for rehoming but much of what we read indicated that they tend to be calmer. Lifespan and activity are a factor in this as we are a young couple without kids. Lifespan for this breed is 10-14 years on average. Thoughts please wise people? We have so much to think about and really want to do the right thing.
I adopted a dog last year who was 8. She is amazing, so full of life, loves walking and chasing but really settled in the house. She took about 4 months to really feel at home with as she had been with the same owner from a pup. I would definitely recommend a slightly older dog.
6 isn’t old if it’s a breed that is averaging 10+ yrs... it’s just not young.
I think there are a couple of advantages.
It would be fewer years committment if you found it wasn’t quite how you thought it would be having a dog.
If you have children in the future you’ll have an older, calmer, dog who probably needs less exercise.
If you’re not planning on having children I’d probably go for a younger dog as you are both young and active.
That said, it does depend on the breed.
I wonder if there’s anything about the breed that makes them ‘old’ dogs early. Would you say what breed you’re looking at...
Our rescue is 5/6 and thinks he's a puppy, nothing "old" about him apart from a slight unwillingness to learn new tricks. I'd meet him and go from there.
Insurance will be higher but it would increase anyway
My Ddog is about to turn 10 and we still get asked if he's a youngster when out walking as he is usually bounding around like a baby. He definitely sleeps more and plays less during the day, but I presume that would be a bonus rather than a negative given your work situation?
Would be worth meeting the dog and seeing how they fit with you.
Thanks all - we are looking at getting a lab.
The rehoming charity have said that they will assess the dog once they have them and we can meet if we want. As they’ve said that the dog is active I assumed this meant that the dog would maybe be a bit more playful and not really that “old”. Also if we were rehoming from somewhere like Battersea or RSPCA we wouldn’t necessarily be put off by age and not one aged 6. I only really keep thinking about it because of what the rehoming charity said about us thinking the dog may be old!
We have talked about kids but that’s a way off now.
I think perhaps we should meet the dog and take it from there. I’ve asked the charity for more information so let’s see what they say!
Age is tricky with dogs, they definitely are slowing down by 6/7 but many breeds are only half way through (or less) of their life. I would want a full vet check first as insurance may be prohibitively expensive without previous history, you need to know what you are getting into.
Sitting with my 7 year old dog having his 5th nap of the day, fo expect less energy than a young dog but still good for long walks at weekends - breeds though vary a lot - typically my dogs breed live to 13/14, some don't make it past 8
I think it really depends on the breed but more importantly the dog. I know some dogs at that age still act like they are puppies whereas others are obviously really slowing down
Re insurance - I looked up pet plan insurance and it didn’t seem much more than if we had got the three year old. Obviously this is without knowing full medical history. The charity have also said that if a dog has pre-existing medical issues they will assist with the cost of care.
I think labs tend to stay puppyish for longer so 6 years old is not really old at all. We adopted a Springer at 8 years old and he was such a bundle of energy, we had him for years and just up until the very end he would walk for miles and play for ages.
As long as you know the history of the dog as much as possible, if you are considering children especially, I think adopting is a beautiful thing to do, especially for dogs who are older than the typical puppy age as they tend to have less interest, through no fault of their own at all.
Good luck and hopefully you have him soon!
My rescue is 5 and as mad as a box of frogs. He's a lab sized crossbreed. I often get asked if he is a puppy. Good luck in finding your DDog Op.
Been talking to DP this evening and he’s not as keen ☹️ He’s worried about vets fees and insurance, longevity of life and would we be doing it just to get a dog or would it be for the benefit of us AND the dog. It feels like a difficult decision also because we have no info on this dog other than the age and breed.
I was out at the weekend with BIL's 13 year old lab, and he's still going strong, no health issues at all. He's kept on the slim side of normal weight which I think really helps keeping him active
I prefer older dogs. My favourite rescue ever came to us aged eight. We had him for five blissful years and he was full of beans until he passed away after a short illness. My husband insisted our next rescue should be younger to save heartache. He’s two, a doggy teenager, I can’t wait for him to calm down a bit more!
6 isn't really old but I say the rescues comment was simply because many people react in similar way to your DH. Young labs can also have health issues (lots of hip/elbow issues in breed) which may limit them & tbh you never really know how long you'll get with pets, I've had a seemingly healthy dog keel over at 5.
I would wait to find out more info & whether this dog is suitable for your family before you write it off, as could be ideal and the health issues minor/inexpensive.
Pet plan hasn't really upped my oldies premium more then couple pound a month over the years, have to pay 25% of vet bills and £125 excess but that's preferable as many start low when young then ramp them up so eventually becomes unaffordable by time dog actually is likely to need it.
Thanks all - I agree with you all. Waiting to hear from the charity is driving me crazy, I keep refreshing my emails! DP is undecided / wants more info and we haven’t been able to talk much about it yet. To have more info would be good and I think also to meet the dog.
ILoveAutum - yes the owner changed their mind and decided not to rehome. Back to waiting now!
I really wouldn’t be put off by age vi have an almost 11yo collie/poodle who still bounces around like a puppy and can happily manage a 5-6 mile walk without pausing for breath. She sleeps longer now after a walk, but has no age related problems and I fully expect her to still be with us for many years to come.
I personally would go up to half the expected life span of a dog - just for the heartbreak factor. Which is a sad thing for all the fantastic old dogs. Cuddling my old boy now.
Thanks all - unfortunately we didn’t get the dog as their owners decided not to rehome.
I am finding the whole process a bit frustrating as we haven’t heard from the charity. We did look at another and got rejected for working full time. We’re continuing to wait for the right dog but not enjoying the wait!
If you'd like a lurcher instead, EGLR don't reject FT workers. We've got lots of lovely dogs in foster at the moment (my foster pups both have homes to go to now thankfully)
Thanks CMOTDibbler - we don’t want a lurcher and have selected the breed we want. We are aware of the work involved, have tried to cover every scenario and the charity that have approved us and done a home check are happy to rehome to us, just waiting for the right dog to come along - or indeed for the owners to follow through with the rehoming! Sorry - i am ranting a bit, just very impatient today.