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Should we get a dog?(28 Posts)
So me and my partner are looking at maybe getting a dog. He's always wanted one, I'm not fussed really. I've told him that I want it properly trained as I can't stand badly behaved dogs, I've looked after dogs before that don't know their own name, jump up on you etc and it's rude, I don't want that. So training would happen. I know of somewhere where agility training takes place too which might be good for the dog.
He works from home currently, I travel to work. But I'm worried about what will we do if circumstances change and he can no longer work from home. What do we do with the dog? We do have a kennel at the house, but the dog would have to be introduced to that obviously.
I have seen one that I like. It's an anatolian shepherd, but it's apparently lazy and laid back which doesn't seem to match up with how the breed normally is so maybe it's true, maybe not. I would only get it though if it was fine with cats as I would really like a cat again. Sadly our one died recently and I miss him so much, really want another cat.
The size of the dog doesn't bother me, I own a horse so unless it's bigger than him it's not going to surprise me.
What do you think? Get one or not? Or need more info?
An anatolian shepherd? A 60kg/10 stone dog who is bred to have the following characteristics:
- distrustful of strangers that it did not meet when a puppy; this will include guests, other species, the gas man etc.
- independent nature (i.e. not very biddable)
- forceful character
- unlikely to back down in confrontation
- atheletic with great stamina
Sounds expensive and dangerous, to me.
For kicks I just looked up the energy requirements of a AS. They are the same as a fully grown man (2000+ per day, more if they exericise regularly).
On a decent kibble that's the best part of £100 per month...
To get an Anatolian shepherd as a first dog is really not a good idea.
To get any kind of shepherd/husky is ill advised if you aren’t an experienced handler.
They’re extremely wilful (particularly girls), very hard to break, notorious chewers etc and they grow like weeds in the first few months, so you will have essentially a fully grown puppy by about five months.
You say the size of the dog doesn’t matter but in this instance I’d say a smaller would be better. Have you considered a working spaniel? Again, a lot of work but my god they’re worth it.
You sound outdoorsy with the horse etc and they thrive on things like agility. Maybe worth looking into?
No dont get a dog and thats why - * I'm not fussed really.*
Read the numerous threads on here of people that are despairing and giving up their puppies........please dont be another one .
If you're not going to make the dog part of your family, please don't get one.
If you're 'not bothered' you definitely shouldn't get one.
Get another cat instead.
Caring for a horse AND a dog is hard work. I know because I've done it. You would have 2 animals to train and exercise, a bit like having another horse really. You feel guilty when you're with the horse because the dog is deprived of your company, and vice versa. If you compete at all, who will care for the dog while you are away all day? You can't just leave them shut in a hot horsebox. Your husband would have to dog sit, would he be happy to do that?
Dog and horse is fine if you don't have to work, but there will just be too many demands on your precious time. The fact that you are indifferent to getting a dog is also a very good reason not to get one.
Get a cat.
Dogs are a huge commitment, you really have to invest a great deal of time, money and energy into having a dog.
If you're not 100 percent then that's enough reason.
You'd have to be absolutely mental to get an Anatolian Shepherd. Complete recipe for disaster.
Unless you're 1000% certain, don't get a dog. If you have to ask - the answer is almost definitely no.
Have you ever done any research on Anatolian Shepherds? Your post suggests you've done absolutely zero.
'I'm not fussed really' = do not get a dog.
I know of people who breed Anatolians.
They are generally very calm and placid and laid back dogs.
They are also absolutely enormous, not at all easy to train (bred to work independently) and being a natural guarding breed once they hit maturity at around three years old if you haven't adequately socialised and you don't have good control of them you are going to have big problems.
They are, as you would expect, extremely territorial, they tolerate strangers rather than greet them generally.
Ditto with other dogs.
More and more are turning up in rescue, probably because people are buying them for status and quickly realising once they start hitting adolescence they have taken on an animal they just cannot cope with.
I don't think they would be a good choice for a first dog tbh.
Also, you mention agility.
Zero chance of that with an Anatolian.
First of all this is a giant breed, they are not suited to agility and second they are naturally very placid and lazy and third, they are not biddable/eager to please/easy train dogs.
Training is ongoing. You can’t just instantly train a dog. And even the best sometimes has an off day.
Your life and finances has to take the dog into consideration at every turn. Walking and insurance and can’t be left too long etc etc.
You are not truly wanting a dog. Don't get one.
The wiki page for Anatolians says this:
"The Anatolian Shepherd dog was developed to be independent and forceful, responsible for guarding its master's flocks without human assistance or direction. These traits make it challenging as a pet; owners of dogs of this breed must socialize the dogs to turn them into appropriate companions. They are intelligent and can learn quickly but might choose not to obey."
"An Anatolian that has been agitated may be too angry to be controlled and cannot be stopped on command.
According to Turkish shepherds, three Anatolian Shepherd Dogs are capable of overcoming a pack of wolves and injuring one or two of them. "
Not a good idea OP.
Agree with others-don't do it
Your first paragraph shows not only that you're not too bothered but also how fixated you are on having a well trained dog.
Turning an 8 week puppy into a well trained dog can take 18 months of hard graft. In that time, expect sleepless nights, poop clear up inside and out, endless apologies to strangers/neighbours when the dog doesn't do as it's told-it's hard work and not to be underestimated.
We have a Labrador and at 6 months he was reasonably well behaved but those puppy instincts can take over up until 18 months/2 years. He's 4 now and a joy but I remember being at home even when he was 1, ringing my DH to come home as I couldn't cope anymore....
As others have said, get another cat.
This is true, my border collie is well trained, but it took a long time.
I would argue as well that to have a truly, genuinely 'well trained' dog, you really need a breed that desires working with people, that wants to please and has good food and prey drive/easy to motivate.
An Anatolian, all livestock guardian breeds for that matter actually, are renowned for being hard to train.
They generally have low food and prey drive so can be difficult to motivate in the first place and don't really care for working/pleasing you.
They are bred to work independently from people.
A typical collie say, would sit a thousand times if you asked it to.
A typical Anatolian might sit once if it feels like it, possibly twice then that's it.
It isn't going to repeatedly sit just because you asked it to.
I agree with every other post. Its 10-15 years of ongoing training/ reinforcement.
As your DP works from home you're perfect candidates for borrowmydoggy. Look after or walk someone elses dog on a regular basis without a full time commitment.
You could get a pre-trained, older dog. I’m currently looking into getting one because it is much easier in comparison to getting a puppy and going through the bother of training it. However!! If they have problems they will cost you in vet bills. As will a puppy when it gets older. Keep that in mind.
Getting a puppy is not all fun and games and can really take the energy out of you.
Chances are you need that energy and money for yourself and your child(ren)
The over-all cost of a puppy/dog is no joke. Do not underestimate anything. Replacement of furniture, furnishings, shoes, toys, teddies and wiring is likely.
Thanks for the responses.
We saw the dog yesterday and not getting it. It wasn't suitable at all. The size of him didn't bother me but I don't think he was as described sadly, maybe he would be away from the rescue, but the people there agreed that he wouldn't be suitable. We did look at some others and one place suggested we consider a puppy, which my partner wanted, but I was against it as neither of us has trained a puppy before.
I know the hard work involved, I own a horse. 10-15 years of training is nothing, I've got another 20 years with the horse and he weighs over half a ton. A dog is simple in comparison to that idiot that still tries to act like a foal. It's ongoing training too, but worth it when he's going lovely.
Money wise as well, again, I'm no stranger too. Overall between me and my poor insurance company we've spent about 12 grand on my horse in 4 years and that doesn't include livery bills and feeding him. That's a few surgeries, numerous saddle changes and other injuries. He's been a difficult horse, not all his fault as he was in pain for some of it. I'm not a quitter though, I've come very close to giving up with him, mainly due to thinking he was suffering and not wanting to continue that, but I went with what vets told me and persevered. He's thriving now. If we got a dog, even if it turned out to be worse than described, I wouldn't get rid of it. I can't do that to an animal. I would get help to train it better. But it wouldn't be going back, we would work on its issues to help it.
I'm going to keep checking on the rescue sites, looking for a suitable dog that is fine with cats as we are getting a cat today after finding one yesterday. Probably looking at a slightly older one, but if there is a younger one that is fine with cats we will get that one.
I'm not hearing much mention of your DP in the update OP. He's the one who wants the dog, so is he on board with the training and the dog for life concept, as in this scenario where you're not fussed and he wants a dog, then he should be thinking these things through.