Buying a puppy in a time of immense grief.

(35 Posts)
Justwantaneasylifenowplease Mon 13-May-19 22:44:48

Me and DH have wanted a dog for years, but have put it off. Not the right time etc. etc. We have just had another failed round of IVF and are in a period of 'grief' I said in passing during the cycle, well if this doesn't work we are getting a puppy!
I've started to meet breeders and I am head over heels in love with one ..... is this the right time, or is there never a 'right' time ! Help

OP’s posts: |
Aimily Mon 13-May-19 22:50:10

I think it's a good plan to follow through with. You said you'd do it so go for it, especially if you have found a pup you love already!

I've been reading your last thread and my heart truly goes out to you, you sound like someone that's got so much love to give, and deserve so much happiness, my dog has provided so much positivity to my life over the last 4 years, I love him to bits and from what you've said, I think you'll give a puppy a perfect home.

I wish you so much luck and an easy toilet train! Xx

Sup3rCooper Mon 13-May-19 23:05:52

Sorry to hear your sad news. I too am grieving but for different reasons - I've lost both my parents this year.

I'd like a dog right now but something deep inside me is saying NOOOOO! So I feel that it's not right for me because once I come out the other side of all this, I know I wouldn't actually want a dog because it's not something I usually hanker for!

If you've always wanted one though then I think yes it's right for you

purpleme12 Mon 13-May-19 23:08:49

I guess it depends what kind of person you are.

If you're a pet person and you know you'll love and look after them then why not. Sometimes it's what you need.
I know I wouldn't be without mine

nellyitsme Mon 13-May-19 23:31:41

I did and it helped me to keep calm and less stressed. I had attend to my pups needs and not my needs so much. It's an awful time for you both

IfOnlyOurEyesSawSouls Mon 13-May-19 23:36:22

Go for it.

Pets are so comforting in times of trauma.

Kaddm Mon 13-May-19 23:42:20

I would say go for it but just make sure you have a plan if you and your dh both work outside the home, for who is going to look after the puppy. They stick to you like a shadow for a long time. What kind of puppy have you fallen in love with? They are amazing but very hard work in the early days.


Mamabear12 Tue 14-May-19 00:09:58

Firstly, I am sorry to hear about your struggles with fertility. I think it depends on getting a dog during grief, if you are able to take care of it and give it the attention it needs. Plus its important to do research before buying a breed, to make sure it is suitable for you.

Last year was an awful year for me, two close friends died from cancer, far too young and then my father died as well. This all happened within 4 months! We had always talked about getting a dog, but like you say it was never the right time. I had put our names on a list and it just so happens a couple months after my dad passed, I got the email saying our puppy had arrived in the litter. We wanted a specific coat, colour and female (small australian labradoodle - the best dog ever). Anyway, my dh was against it at first saying we are not ready etc. I told him that I needed this dog and we are at least going to go see it. We drove 3 hours and I knew it would be a sure thing once we saw the dog. We can only say good things and that it was one of the best decisions we have ever made. She has brought so much love and joy to our family. We thank our lucky stars all the time that we got her. She has been nothing but joy. However, some people do have struggles during the puppy stage. We had ours from 8 weeks and she was a very easy puppy. I do think we chose an extremely smart and easy breed. She is so easy to train and understands things sometimes the first time I say it.

Good luck on your puppy search!

user1468246318 Tue 14-May-19 07:41:34

I think as long as you understand that you will be giving this puppy a home for the rest of its life, and all being well you might also have a baby at some point then definitely go for it.

I had my fur baby 2 years before my daughter was born, I was desperate to try for a baby but we weren’t in a good financial place so we’re having to wait. He was just what I needed, someone to love and care for, they are honestly so much like a child anyway that he filled the hole for me. Our dog was quite needy, didnt sleep through for a while and didn’t like being left alone etc. I loved the cuddles, unconditional love and the walks to clear my head. We went on dog friendly holidays to Cornwall and I really treasure the time we had just the three of us.

I hope everything works out for you with the IVF treatment but a dog could be just what you need to get through this x

squee123 Tue 14-May-19 07:46:44

as long as you have suitable arrangements to ensure the dog won't be left at home alone all day whilst you're at work and are happy to keep the dog if you do have a baby at some point (fingers crossed for you) then I'd say go for it

adaline Tue 14-May-19 08:03:23

I'm so sorry for your losses thanks

You need to think really carefully about whether you can provide a puppy with everything it needs. Do you work? Who is going to look after the puppy? Toilet train it? Feed it (Pups need 3/4 meals a day at first)? They can't go for long walks either when they're young either.

When it grows, are you happy to walk it at least once a day, every single day? No matter how shit you feel or how bad the weather is? I struggle going out in the biting wind and pissing rain - it's really not enjoyable but if I don't go my dog will destroy my house through boredom! It helps that we have a walker/daycare so I don't have to go out everyday - it gives me a break from it all which is definitely much needed sometimes!

I would also consider whether this is the right time for you to get a puppy. They can be somewhat of an impulse purchase when going through pregnancy loss - but they need a lot of work and input and unlike children they don't grow up! They need walks, attention and company every single day for the rest of their lives.

You also need to consider how dog friendly your lifestyle is - as in, do you go for holidays or weekends away? Are they dog friendly? Whose going to watch the dog if you go out?

Lots to think about but it you put the work in they're the most amazingly loyal companions.

missbattenburg Tue 14-May-19 08:55:40

The only caution I would give is that puppies require a lot of work but also a lot of patience. They can really test you and it's not unusual for people to go through the puppy blues as they get used to life with one. Only you can know, but this might be too much on top of the grief you are already feeling?


RRJR Tue 14-May-19 09:04:45

A lot of couples who go through failed IVF and miscarriages are encouraged to get an animal. Usually because you have all this love to give but not ‘anything’ to give it to, if you know what I mean?
By no means is an animal a replacement for a desperately wanted baby, but it’s something to give some of that love to.

I know a couple who unfortunately miscarried at 20 weeks. They got a dog a couple of weeks later and they have been besotted ever since.

TheCraicDealer Tue 14-May-19 09:13:50

My DAunt got a puppy very shortly before her partner was diagnosed with cancer and subsequently died. There's no doubt that the pup "saved" her once her DP died; she was her her reason for getting up in the morning, got her out of the house to get fresh air with walks etc. DAunt is a functioning alcoholic, and being recently retired there was a real concern amongst her siblings that she would spiral- I genuinely believe the dog stopped that. However as DAunt was struggling with a terminally ill partner and then grief, unfortunately there was understandably very little focus on the dog's behaviour or training. As a consequence, a year on, DDog can't be left (or DAunt won't leave her) for more than half an hour or so because she goes mad, and it seems DAunt doesn't have the heart to train her properly. DDog is spoiled, snappy and barky, and with young DC in the extended family it makes it very difficult for the family to spend time with DAunt.

So basically, no problem getting a dog when you're in a vulnerable place, but you've got to make sure you're strong enough to not "baby" the dog like my DAunt did. It won't make you or DDog happy in the long term. I'm so sorry about your disappointment, be kind to yourself thanks

Justwantaneasylifenowplease Tue 14-May-19 22:43:53

We definitely have the appetite and ability to train a puppy. DH works for home frequently so she wouldn't be left alone daily. I understand fully that it's a life long commitment. As sad as it sounds I just want something to love and care for. We are going to see the puppy again on Thursday. She's still only very little, so we wouldn't be able to take her home for a few weeks.

OP’s posts: |
squee123 Tue 14-May-19 23:54:17

when you say she wouldn't be left along daily, does that mean she would be sone days? Because realistically that isn't going to work for a puppy. Also even adult dogs shouldn't be home alone for more than 4 hours in a 24 hour period according to the major animal charities so you might need to plan for some doggy daycare. I hope you can make it work for you and the puppy as it sounds like it would really help you.

adaline Wed 15-May-19 05:08:42

How is your DH going to supervise a puppy while he works?

They need pretty much constant supervision in the first few weeks and months.

BiteyShark Wed 15-May-19 07:52:59

Only you know whether the time is right thanks

However, try and put emotions aside and look at it purely from a practical viewpoint.

Can you afford a puppy (lots of threads list costs)?

Have you researched the breed? Breed behaviours will dictate how easily they will fit into your household?

Can you manage a puppy? Look at the threads on here for how different each one is particularly around how long they can be left, toilet training etc? Not being left alone daily isn't specific enough. Lots of puppies can't be left for small periods for many weeks.

Loopytiles Wed 15-May-19 07:58:27

Very sorry about your fertility situation.

Is DH likely to continue to wfh frequently, eg if he changes roles?

I don’t think it’s fair on a dog to be left at home regularly for long days, even if taken out by a walker.

I know two couples who bought cats in similar circumstances, who later (very happily) had DC and re-homed them. Both couples were in rental accommodation, and the cats had health issues that meant there was regular mess to clean up.

Justwantaneasylifenowplease Wed 15-May-19 08:47:16

Yes we are in the position to afford her. DH has no plans to change roles in the immediate future. I work FT, we have a secure yard and the ability to lock the laundry or garage and allow her in and outside space through the day if we needed to. (Obviously not initially) those who say dogs can't be left alone. Does everyone who owns a dog not work then? Initially we would take some time off. But the reading I've done says it's good to stick to your routine as much as possible.
Breed suits our lifestyle, both very active

OP’s posts: |
TheVanguardSix Wed 15-May-19 08:57:45

OP, it’s an excellent decision.

Although I have kids, I’ve had a few miscarriages and a stillborn daughter which will always leave me with a sense of sadness, damage, and failure (just to add: these are my feelings, not putting them on anyone who goes through difficulties around conceiving).

I found myself struggling with the loss of fertility and the end of trying for babies as I got into my 40s. And I do think that if I’d popped out kids easily, I may not have struggled with my baby making window closing.

Anyway, we got a puppy (going on 4 years ago now). Oh my goodness, he is love, therapy, companionship, and joy on 4 legs. He’s the glue that binds us and he’s just totally loved and treasured by us. We have time to dedicate to him, which is key. So if you’ve got the time and the desire to really invest in and engage with a dog/pup, go for it!

I work part-time. I’m out of the house for a total of 4 hours a day in two separate chunks. So I walk our dog in the morning and again in the afternoon (2hours a day in total). Ours is a chocolate lab-vizsla cross.

Look into breeds and really do some investigation. You want to get a breed that’s ok with(eventually) being home alone. Labs are the best all rounder, in my opinion. Vizsla purebreds can be a bit anxious. Ours is called a vizslador (I never use this term) and he’s been an amazing friend. The cross tends to work really, really well.

BiteyShark Wed 15-May-19 09:01:01

I work full time with mixture of home and office.

I took 1 month at home when I got my puppy. He could then be left for a couple of hours as we had built up to it but not for any more so he went to daycare. He still goes to daycare at 2.5 years old because 3-4 hour is his limit as I watch him on a camera.

I can tell you working at home when toilet training is bloody hard as you can't take your eyes off them and have to take them out after every play, meal, drink, sleep and frequently inbetween. You can't just let them outside as you need to be out with them to praise them each time until they are fully house trained (depending on the puppy this can take many weeks).

I ended up working late at night to get it done when my DH was then able to take over puppy minding. Also depending on what your DH does be aware that they chew and can whine so conference calls and meetings will be difficult until they are older and calmer.

QOD Wed 15-May-19 09:02:07

My chihuahua is my second child (first via surrogacy)
I love every hair on her smelly little body
She’s amazing and hilarious and brings so much joy to our lives
She also sleeps for HOURS and can be left for around 5 hours

squee123 Wed 15-May-19 09:33:26

Lots of people leave their dogs alone all day. It doesn't make it right. They are pack animals and unlike cats they aren't happy alone. The welfare charities don't make the recommendations up for fun. They see far too many dogs dumped and/or with behavioural problems as a result of being left. Sadly far too many people put their desire for a dog over the dog's welfare.

I'm not saying don't get a dog, but plan for how you will avoid leaving it alone for long periods e g. with a good local daycare.

Alternatively there are some very dog-like cat breeds. Mine follows me round the house, runs to the door when I get in, demands constnant cuddles and plays fetch.

Nousernameforme Wed 15-May-19 10:24:42

You really do need some decent amount of leave i would say at least a month preferably 6 weeks or so leave to get pup settled in.

Then once they are up to date with jabs and have been neutered you can look at a doggy day care. They are about £15 a day round here so you would need to factor this in to dog costs on top of food flea treatments etc.

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