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Looking for advice about owning a dog(6 Posts)
Ive never owned a dog before, have been daydreaming about having one as a companion for some time now. Its just me and dd at home, and I'm out at work for 5 hours 4 days a week - is this unsuitable? My Dm could pop in to check on dog fairly regularly if necessary. Is this a realistic situation..?
Depends on the dog.
A puppy is unlilely to cope with this but an older, calm dog who is already used to being left might.
I wouldn't rely on your DM because things happen. Also, popping in to check isn't of much value to a dog who might be bored, other than a chance to have a wee. Better to cost in a walker each day because then the 5 hours are broken up and the dog gets to DO something.
General things to consider when getting a dog:
- be absolutely clear what you really WANT which is different to what rose-tinted glasses might say you are prepared to do. Do not be distracted by looks. If you want a steady dog who is calm and cuddly but you do not want to do 2 hours of walking a day then don't get an energetic working breed. If, on the other hand, you love daily hikes in the wind and rain then a pointy hound who hates the cold might not be for you.
- be clear on the costs. These will vary but factor in regular vet fees (fleas, worms, vacs), food, insurance, walker, grooming, leads and toys. Battendog costs me about £10+£80+£25+£120+£45+£25 each month for each of those.
- be clear on the impact to your current life. It limits where you can go, how long for (e.g. a dog left for 5 hours a day will not appreciate being left any longer behacuse you wanted to go to the shops or meet friends). Holidays: dog friendly or you will need someone to look after the dog. Transport: car may need changing. House: tends to get messier/muddier/hairier.
- do your reasearch ahead of time on dog behaviour, body language, training.
I guess what I am saying is that dogs are truly wonderful but they do change your life a LOT. If that's what you want, great. If you are just thinking it would be nice to have something warm and cuddly at home then maybe a dog is not the right answer?
All of that is meant to sound practical and helpful. If it sounds negative then I am very sorry.
Thanks missbattenburg, this is the kind of advice I was after. Sadly I think a dog is a rose tinted daydream.
Maybe a cat is more suitable, they seem to be lower maintenance.
Cats are great! We have two cats and a greyhound, and if I lived alone and worked I would definitely not have the dog as it's so much responsibility and you're always watching the clock making sure you get home in time to feed, water, and let them out for the toilet. If you want something cuddly then get a cat from a shelter. They all have quite different personalities and some are way more affectionate than others. The rescue centre will match a suitable one.
Would you consider an older rescue dog. I was a first time owner and took on an 8 year old terrier. She is adorable, she loves to play and enjoys quite long walks. When home with me she just lazes about and sleeps. Older dogs in Rescues are likely tohave a more settled background as they are often there after the owner is no longer able care for them.