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Should I get my 4 year old a dog? :/(28 Posts)
I have one child 4 years old about to start FT soon. I work 2 days a week(leave at 7 back at 6pm) and I'm a single parent. I am not having more children. I would get a small one as only have a 2 bed nice size garden however. I do know that a dog requires a lot of work and love and care which I understand it would be all my responsibility. We normally have one week a year away. Can anyone talk some sense into me ? As I wouldn't ideally choose to get One but it's for my child to grow up with. I would love to have a cat I am allergic ￼ anyone have a pros and cons to help me ? Thanks so much xx
I think it is too long to leave a dog alone. Cat would have been ideal but obviously not possible. Rats? Rabbit? Maybe a dog when they are secondary age and can help with walks etc.
Who will watch it the two days you are at work? It will need a walk before you go in the morning, where would your DC go? Would you take DC with you? What about last thing at night...DC would be in bed so what would you do?
Do not get a rabbit for a four year old!!!!
I think if your child is just about to start FT school I'd see them at least til after Christmas before any other new changes. Don't want them sad to go to school all day leaving the dog behind.
Do not get a dog for your 4 year old, also do not get a rabbit for your 4 year old or rats for that matter. You should get a pet because you, the adult, wants and has the time for one.
7am until 6pm is too long to leave a dog alone, even if it's only for two days a week. If you could pay a dog walker then you could make it work but I would think very hard about it. We had a dog before we had dc and although it has been lovely seeing them grow up with him, it has been hard work at times. Some examples - regardless of weather, they still need walking - is your ds likely to want to go out in the dark in the winter with you to walk him in the evenings? Do you have a lot of days out? You can't just get up in the morning and go for a day trip if you've not got anyone who could look after the dog for you. I understand your reasons for wanting a dog but I'm not sure I would in your situation, sorry
Just to add - I would think about it financially too - our dog is nearly 11 now and in the last year he has been diagnosed with diabetes and has lost his eyesight. Even though we have comprehensive insurance it has cost us an arm and a leg as we've had to put him on a prescription diet which the insurance company won't cover. Just something else to think about.
I’ve done a pro and con list for you.
The dog will be left alone for extended periods two days a week. This will likely result in the dog getting distressed, and possibly destructive.
That’s the end of my list.
Don't do it unless you 100% want to get one for YOU, not your child. I love my dog to bits but she is such hard work. She wears me out more than my baby most days. I agree that that is a long time to leave a dog alone as well.
You don't necessarily need a big house for a big dog first of all.
I don't think a small house should be the deciding factor on a dog breed's size.
I got my puppy when my DS was four.
They have grown up together and have a lovely relationship, my eldest DS is the dogs favourite out of all the other children (I have three).
But puppies can absolutely terrify young children because generally they like to bite and lunge. A lot!
Dont think that just because it is a small breed it won't be that bad, my friends tiny 8 week old Bichon brought me to tears relentlessly chombling on my exposed feet when I went to visit.
Those teeth are sharp, they can and often do draw blood.
Also, a small breed puppy will be absolutely tiny, you need to be especially mindful of accidents if your child is only 4 as it could be easily injured.
I would wait until your child is a little older and then maybe get Guinea pigs? A dog is a lot of work and you can't leave them all day
I also think that for those two days you'll need day care or a relative or something to care for the dog for you
There's a website called Borrow My Doggy where basically dog owners are matched up with people who love dogs but aren't in a position to own one, but are happy to take one out for walks. Would that work? You and your son could get the fun of one without the responsibility.
No no no.
I'm sorry but getting a dog for a family member is really bad idea, especially when said family member is only four years old.
Can you commit to 10-15 years of dog walking? As a single parent you'll need to take DS with you, every day no matter what. What happens if he's sick? Who will walk the dog? Who's going to look after it when you're at work all day?
Can you really commit to training a puppy? They need taking outside every 20-30 minutes when they're young - they need feeding 3-4 times a day, they need training, you have to take them out in the night...
Besides, if you're allergic to cats how do you know you won't be allergic to the dog?
Do not get a dog for a 4 year old, it’s not a toy. You can’t leave a dog from 7-6, don’t be ridiculous
Just don’t be so bloody irresponsible
Sorry, I don’t think it’s a good idea.
How will you walk the dog, OP?
Take this recent weather, as an example... I've walked our dog at 7am and 8pm to avoid the heat..
Your small child won't want to go on every walk with you, and small child dawdling and dog training don't really go together.
I think you need to wait until your child can be left alone for a hour at a time (10?)
No. And you don't actually sound like you want a dog.
As I wouldn't ideally choose to get One but it's for my child to grow up with Do not get a dog.
No, do not get a dog. My daughter really really wanted a dog, however, I really really really wanted a dog which is the ONLY reason we got a dog. You, the parent, the adult have to really want it. I am responsible for her behaviour (or lack thereof sometimes), feeding, exercise, general well-being. My daughter loves her dearly but never walks her . I did not expect her to walk the dog because I got the dog...therefore my responsibility.
You cannot leave a dog that long for the two days you are out.
Dogs are not a cheap option in terms of purchase (even a rescue will set you back about £150), upkeep - vets, feeding, insurance.
They are exceedingly time consuming.
My serious advice would be to get a pair of (same-sex!) guinea pigs. We got 2 when my DC were 3 and 5. They were phenomenal first pets - not scrabbly, not scratchy, hardy, fun little creatures who we all adored. One of them only just died aged just over 6.
As long as you can afford a dog walker for the two days you’re at work and you want a dog for you as well as your four year old then I think you’ll be fine.
I’m a single parent to a 9 and 5 year old and I’ve just adopted a Frenchie from a rescue. An older dog is much easier as they’ve already been trained. I decided to go for a Frenchie as they don’t need too much exercise, so if the kids don’t want to go on a long walk then it’s not too much of a problem. She has a walk first thing, mid day, then after school. At night time when the kids are in bed I just let her out into the garden for a bit.
If you usually walk with your lo to school that’s two walks you’d be doing anyway, so it wouldn’t be a case of having to make your lo go out for extra walks in the bad weather.
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