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Giving up my pup(104 Posts)
I’m heartbroken so please go easy on me - I really don’t what to do for the best. I’ve never had a dog and always wanted one. I would always dog sit for weekends, walk friends’ dogs etc. I work from home, DC (5 and 8) are both at school so now seemed an ideal time. My husband much prefers our cat but reluctantly agreed to get a dog. We got a pup as I was nervous of a rescue dog with an unknown history, having once witnessed a rescue dog snap at a child. She’s 5.5 months now, we’ve gone through all the sleepless nights, the worst bits of the early days...but I’m really not enjoying it. I love her & we enjoy our walks which have also helped to lift my depression a little, we like puppy class, the school run etc. but my goodness it’s hard work, she’s full of energy & is getting quite big (she’s a cockapoo). We do puppy classes but she’s pulls badly on the lead & is so strong. She will wee & poo outside but still wees in the kitchen if I don’t pick up the sniffing signs quickly enough. I know she’s young & that she will grow out of the puppy phase but I’m not enjoying it anywhere near like I thought I would. It feels like having a very difficult 3rd child at the moment. I’ve contacted the breeder & she’s happy to have her back. But should I give her back, will I regret it? Or should i wait it out & hope I enjoy her more with time?
If you're not enjoying having her I don't think you'll give her the love and attention she deserves.
Please give her back to the breeder so can be trained and looked after in the best way.
Did you not think this all through before hand?
Have you tried getting a 121 trainer? See if they can help.
What size poodle is her mum? Cockapoos are normally not difficult very to train.
I would suggest getting a 121 trainer first to train you how to look after your dog. Puppies grow into dogs. It’s the work right now, which makes the dog.
My 4 yo cockapoo at about 12kg is just about classed as a medium dog, he goes out for a couple of walks, runs around the garden, plays ball a bit with one of us. Easy peasy.
She's going into her teenage phase - it will be hard for the next 4-5 months and then slowly get easier again.
Cockapoos are very high energy dogs - they're a mix of two working breeds, after all. They need a lot of work to keep them calm - a good two walks a day plus training and brain games in between.
If you want things to work out long-term, you need to put the work in now. If not, then the best thing to do would be to re-home to someone who has the time to dedicate to a dog.
It's great that you took the sensible decision to buy your dog from a responsible breeder who will take her back if necessary.
Hopefully that takes the pressure off so that you really have the space to work out what it best for you and the dog.
Could you have a talk with the breeder about the timescale for your decision about whether or not to return her - and maybe have a further week or two to sort out your feelings?
It will get easier when she is reliably toilet trained and has learnt more about how to walk well n the lead, but if the spark of love/pleasure isn't there, then for her sake and yours you shouldn't feel trapped into keeping her.
I'm sorry, but I think this is an absolutely horrible example to set for your children. This is not a case of the dog being aggressive and dangerous, where of course you would need to put your family's well-being first. You want to get rid of the dog strictly because it's a bit of work (no kidding!) and an inconvenience. What will you tell your children? Mummy binned off the dog because she doesn't feel like dealing with it anymore. When you become a mother, there are many times when you feel "I’m really not enjoying it anywhere near like I thought I would." Every mum feels that way because it's hard work and a massive adjustment. However we don't toss the baby out because they're an inconvenience. You made a commitment, and the reasons you want to break the promise you made to raise and love that poor dog are selfish and completely unreasonable.
Yes ofcourse I thought it all through, this decision was years in the making which isn’t why I’m so heartbroken now. I have read every book I can on the subject, but I guess nothing prepares you for the reality of a dog if you’ve never actually had one before. It’s not the training as such, I’m doing all I can & putting the time in, going to the classes, reading the books etc, it’s more the day to day reality of having a growing boisterous dog in the house that I wasn’t prepared for. As I say, I’ve done the sleepless nights & cleaning poo off the crate of the early days, but I suppose this teenage phase is what I wasn’t prepared for.
If she is strong on the lead have you considered a harness? That would be the first thing I would look at.
Second thing I'd do would be praising her when she does her wee and poo outside. She's still very much s baby, would you give your children back if they felt like they were hard work? Of course not. It sounds like you didn't give this too much thought.
If you really think you can't cope with her then please give her back to the breeder so that she can find a home who will enjoy her.
The first year was pretty shit with my cocker. I would love to say I enjoyed it despite waiting over 20 years for him but I didn't.
However, he will be 3 towards the end of the year and he is my life. I love him so much I can't wait to get home from work. It will get better. Despite what people might tell you having a puppy can break even the strongest of folk.
Do you really want to give her back? Or is it you want the lovely adult dog you dreamt of?
If it's the latter then there are things that you can do to make it bearable. 1-1 training makes the world of difference. Some activities where you both work together like trick training, puppy agility, scentwork etc can strengthen that bond. Doggy daycare occasionally can give you a break.
Aquamarine how horrible and unnecessary of you. I said right at the outset that this is a heartbreaking decision for me. I wouldn’t dream of commenting on someone else’s mothering, as you have chosen to do, but if anything I would imagine that it might teach my children that they have the right to change their mind. From what I understand, most people give up their pups in the first few weeks when the sleepless nights are too much. I’ve done all that. It’s not my children who will be caring for the dog in 12 years, but me. As I say, I’ve wanted a dog for years but never owned one, I didn’t know what owning a dog would be like and I’m not sure I enjoy it the way I hoped I would.
How about dog day care to give you a break?
It's great that you took the sensible decision to buy your dog from a responsible breeder
I take it that you’re joking? Nothing responsible about someone breeding mongrels for money.
No most dogs are given up at 5-7 months hence why the rescues are bursting at the seams now due to people giving up on their Christmas puppies.
You need to man/women up - obviously having a puppy will be hard work and it will go on for maybe 14 or more years but you get back what you put in.
If you do give up the puppy you need to acknowledge that dogs are not for you and that you will never have a dog again.
I think you've had some really unkind replies, OP.
Having a dog is really hard work, the change is huge. I feel for you, and you won't be the first person to be overwhelmed.
For the vast majority, it does get easier - but for a few people having a dog will never quite work and that's okay - you're doing your best.
I wouldn't think about the long term and freak yourself out by thinking it'll be like this for years, it most likely won't! - take things days by day.
But your wellbeing is priority, and if you continue to really struggle then returning the pup would be totally understandable.
My pup is in the teenage phase and he's an absolute fucking arsehole. High energy, stubborn, untrained (he's a rescue) and very strong already at 17kg. Nightmare on lead, ignores me and won't concentrate for a second. So I get it! It's all consuming and exhausting.
Actually, most young dogs in rescue are between 9-18 months old, because that's when they're out of the cute puppy stage and into the throes of teenage hell. Teenage dogs are stubborn buggers and can be really testing, even with the most patient of owners.
The puppy stage is nothing compared to the teenage months - stubbornness, mouthing, hormones - puppy behaviours combined with the strength of an adult dog - they're not easy to deal with. Mine is 16 months and just this evening had a mad moment - barking, mouthing, jumping - yet he's been really good recently - the madness does get further apart as they get older and calm down a little.
Like I said, cockerpoos are not easy dogs to own - they're a combination of two very high-energy dogs and need a lot of exercise and stimulation in the early years. How much exercise is she getting and what is her general routine like? Maybe people on here could give you some pearls of wisdom that could help!
One thing that made me feel better was this. We have a couple come into work with two gorgeous dogs - an old Labrador and a young springador. The young dog was always impeccably calm and well-behaved and I always felt really embarrassed because my similarly-aged dog was a right nightmare! Then, I met them outside of work and my goodness, what a difference! The young dog is actually reactive to other dogs and was barking and pulling all over the spot - it made me realise that all dog owners struggle with something - no dog is perfect, especially not young ones!
I think you should wait a while longer and try to make it work if you aren't 100% sure OP.
I have a 10month old and I hate him, he's a total arsehole and so embarrassing to be out with. I've had dogs all my life, but never a puppy and honestly don't think anything could have prepared me for him. There have been times I've thought seriously about giving him up....
But he's just a baby (a big one) and I made a commitment to him. He didn't ask to be brought into our lives and he was desperately wanted, so I've promised myself no matter how much of a prick he turns out to be, to stick it out with him, persevere and pray he calms down.
When it came to him actually going you'd probably realise how much you really love and want him. They love you unconditionally and I think they can teach us to do the same. He could turn out to be the best little dog you could wish for.
Hope it works out for you whatever you do
Gatsby thank you the ‘absolute fucking arsehole’ did make me laugh!
I think people have judged that I rushed into this. I didn’t. I’m not some spoilt arsehole toying with this dogs life and breaking my children’s hearts, honestly I’m not. I researched and read for years - I mean years! - and was so sure this was what I wanted but I’ve never lived with a dog. I’ve been around plenty & like I say pet sat and walked whenever I could but I wasn’t raised in a family that had dogs & have never lived with them day in day out. So yes this teenage phase has been a real shock, worse than the tiny pup phase, because as someone has said she’s much stronger & bigger now but is still zooming round like a loon & mouthing & jumping. And although I go to training & follow all the guidelines I do lack confidence that I don’t know what I’m doing as I’ve never had a dog before. So now she can get up on the sofa. I say no, she stays up. I say no, she ignores me. I pull her down & it starts all over again. I don’t want her on the sofa cos in those really excited moments she’s right up the face height of my kids.
Because I’m at home all the time she does get a lot of outdoor time, so we do the school run then a big free run in a field (her recall is excellent), a lunchtime walk & an evening walk. If I need to be out with work one day she has a dog walker who takes her out in a pack so she gets plenty of socialisation. We do puppy class once a week. I am honestly doing everything I can, I am trying my best for her, and I do love her, but I’m not enjoying it like I thought I would and as I say I have wanted a dog my whole life!
We have a rescue, adopted at 10 weeks of age and we naively thought he'd be fine as so young.
My partner can't stand him at times! He is 9/10months now and he's been very hard work. Ripped our sofa up, chewed everything in sight. He has separation anxiety which is such a ball ache!!!
We paid for a dog behaviourist, could this be an option? He's still annoying (lovable) but he's slowly getting there!
He is my baby so I let a lot of things slide but my partner is the firm one and he's said a few times we can't have him anymore because of the stress!
Three walks a day could mean she's quite overstimulated - one of the most important things to teach a dog is how to be calm and settle down.
Ours only gets one long off-lead walk a day, occasionally two if the first one was cut short for some reason (normally weather related!). He'd be far too hyped on three - it's just too much "on" time for him. He has his main walk pretty much as soon as he gets up - so for me that's up, quick coffee and out. We normally go to the woods or to the beach and he has a good run about off-lead. Sometimes we meet other dogs and he has a play, other times he's just with me. We practise recall and other tricks too - my current one is wait - so he has to sit (off-lead) and wait for me to call him - we got upto 30 seconds today! He's a beagle so this is a huge accomplishment for us.
A walk that's more than just a regular walk/run is much more tiring to them. Try and incorporate tricks and training into your walks. I also fed taking mine to the pet shop exhausts him - plus he loves it because he gets loads of fuss and treats. We try and go once a week or so after a walk.
It sounds like you're just struggling with the teenage months. I found 9-11 months particularly REALLY hard and had real "what the fuck have I done" thoughts. You're not alone, I promise!
I really resonate with the confidence part, OP. It's very difficult when you haven't had the experience of getting (successfully) through the shitty teenage phase, it's hard to imagine it gets any easier or know you're not doing something wrong. I've only had adult dogs before and it's been a BIG shock for me.
Reassure yourself you're doing a great job, it's nothing you're doing wrong! Your pup is behaving very normally for his age. All the training will pay off. He's just into everything, their impulse control is non existent and they have selective hearing. Try upping the reward value of treats when training, that can help.
Keep consistent - every time he's jumping in the sofa, keep calm and lead him off. I must do it a thousand times a day, but it's slowly getting better. I'm envious your pup has great recall!
Are you pretty convinced on re-homing, or do you feel 50/50? I change my mind hourly! But I think I know deep down I know my pup is stuck with me. I don't think anyone else would put up with him
The best thing I did when I was overwhelmed with our rescue was to put him in day care one day a week for a couple of months. Just having one day where I didn't have to fret about him gave me enough of a break to regather my strength, and guess what? I missed him when he wasn't around.
I also spent a lot of money on a 121 behaviouralist because I quite quickly recognised I had to learn as much as the dog.
So get some help, and find a way to give yourself a break. Honestly, if you keep going for another six months you'll have a lovely dog at the end of it.
(Although lol about 'breeders' taking mongrels back that they've charged hundreds of pounds for...)
No I’m not sure at all, that’s why I posted here as I just don’t know what to do for the best. Like I said before I’ve never done this before & like a poster has said I’m thinking WTF have I done?? But now after her mad half hour of zooming and snapping she’s cuddled up with me sighing & huffing in her sleep 😴 I love her very much and thats why I also don’t want to let her down, by not knowing what I’m doing, & I don’t want to end up resenting her 😭 although I reassured at all the people who say their teen pups are arseholes 🤣