First time owner advice

(6 Posts)
EllieMookins Wed 06-Feb-19 20:58:10

Looking for advice about any every aspect of dog ownership, more specifically if we should start looking for a breeder/rescue.

We're a family for 4, dc are 7&5 and mad about dogs. We've had family dogs stay they're completely house trained so I'm assuming this doesn't count at all and the kids have endless energy and love the outdoors and beach/woodland areas nearby, although we've been indoors a lot over winter practically hibernated. We have a car big enough for a larger breed to travel safely and I'm a sahm who can be with the dog all day (although they'd need to be carried for school pick up and drop offs in playground or tied to a railing outside with other dogs who are out for the school run). We have an enclosed decent sized garden and I've grown up with family dogs and dh has grown up with farm dogs, but haven't been a part of training them so again I doubt this counts!

I don't want to regret the decision we make, for the past 3 years we've talked, looked up breeders, looked at the sad adverts on pets at home and even visited the dog and cats home, we do want to add a dog to our family and now the kids are bigger and we I can devote time I'm reluctant in case I'm an awful dog Mum blush

So I guess my question is am I overthinking and is the puppy stage as awful as I imagine? What's the worst thing about having a puppy and how long does the puppy and nipping stage last? How long until I trust they're not going to pee all over the carpet? If it makes any difference we'd love a lab, haven't got a breeder in mind but I think we'll speak to the rescue first, I'm a little reluctant as they're a larger breed and with the kids I need to make sure I know their history.

Considering we've spoken about this for years the initial stage feels so daunting!

OP’s posts: |
ColdCrumpetsandButter Wed 06-Feb-19 21:16:38

Puppies are hardwork. Also they are relentless. If you do want a puppy rescues often have them to.....

Good Fb Group is Dog Training Support and Advice.

Ps please don't leave your dog tied up anywhere. Not worth the risk!

CMOTDibbler Thu 07-Feb-19 10:39:52

Puppies are a PITA. Lovely, but they are jumpy, bitey, chewy monsters who wee in your slippers. Heaven knows why I volunteer to foster the little beggars! My current two are four months old, and are pretty good in terms of sleeping and being left, but very much a work in progress on toilet training.

But it is worth putting the hard work in, as it determines the next 15 years, but it will feel relentless for at least 2 months as you just have to think about them all the time

CMOTDibbler Thu 07-Feb-19 10:41:01

But they are cute!

PositivePeach Thu 07-Feb-19 11:00:13

Puppies are awful. They are hard work, you'll lose your patience and your sanity! But - it is absolutely worth it.

You sound like you've put some real thought into this and have a great set up already. I would absolutely recommend getting a summer puppy, trying to toilet train in the winter is a miserable task.

adaline Thu 07-Feb-19 11:54:53

Labrador puppies can be a lot of work - just to warn you! They get big and strong very quickly so if they're not well-trained they can be very boisterous and hard to control - not aggressive as such, but just very excitable and not quite aware of their own size and strength! They're also very strong chewers and nip and mouth a lot. Will your children be happy being leapt at by an overexcited, teething ball of fur? Puppies mouth and nip and your children will get hurt at some point.

BUT once the first few months are over it is SO worth it. Our beagle is one now and I have to say the worst times were 2-5 months old, then 7-11 months. He's calmed down a LOT in the last month or so, is much happier being left alone and is much calmer in the house (though of course he still has his moments).

My advice would be - train them to walk to heel as soon as possible, train a solid recall (not hard in labs) and train them to be left alone from the word go. We didn't do the latter and it made things quite difficult for us at first, though he's fine now and happy being left for a couple of hours.

Get toilet training started ASAP as well, don't use puppy pads, take them out as often as possible including through the night, and don't expect too much! Good luck - they're the best companions ever. Put the work in early and you'll reap the rewards when they grow up.

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