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Would this be ok?

(12 Posts)
Whiskerychinsrock Sat 14-Sep-19 17:46:01

Our lovely old boy was PTS in October last due to old age. We miss him very much and would love another dog. When we got him I was a SAHM and by the time I returned to work he was 10yo and there was nearly always someone at home as I worked shifts. Now I work 4 set days per week, DH works full time and teenage DC are in and out. I leave at 8am and get back at 5pm. I'm often back from 3pm but can't guarantee this. DH leaves at 8.30am and returns about 4.30pm. Teenagers are often about either some of the morning or the afternoon but there's no routine and I can't rely on this. If I got a dog walker in each day for an hour, would this be fair on a young dog? We would love a dog but only if we can be good owners.

OP’s posts: |
BiteyShark Sat 14-Sep-19 17:51:52

For some dogs yes it is probably ok but for us we send ours to daycare as a full day is just too long for him even with a dog walker.

You may also find a half day daycare might not be that much more expensive than a group walk and means they are on their own for less time.

Whiskerychinsrock Sat 14-Sep-19 17:56:22

I hadn't even thought of half day care! I've just checked and our local doggy day care offers this for five pounds more than a walk. Thank you! I will definitely look into this more.

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Wolfiefan Sat 14-Sep-19 17:59:06

Different dogs are very different. Also depends what you mean by pup. Puppies can’t really be left. Not if you don’t want your house eaten and you’d like them to be toilet trained. grin
With an adult dog you have the issue of where it would come from. A rescue may be difficult to find. Can you take time off work to settle a new dog in?

adaline Sat 14-Sep-19 19:58:14

8am - 5pm is far, far too long to leave a dog alone, which is potentially what's going to happen here.

Ours is 19 months now and can probably manage three hours alone before he starts to get a bit angsty, and that's only after a good 90 minute run about off-lead and me taking him home and getting him settled down before I go out. After that point he either wants a wee, gets restless or gets bored and goes off looking for entertainment!

A rescue won't re-home to someone who's going to be out of the house for upto nine hours a day, and there is absolutely no way a young puppy would cope on their own for that length of time.

You mention daycare, which is an option but be aware that not all dogs like it. Mine went and found it very stressful and became extremely anxious, so he's now looked after by my FIL while we work. He doesn't like spending lots of time around other dogs but loves human company - similarly group walks would be difficult for him for that reason.

At the end of the day it's down to the individual dog. You'll need to do your research with regards to breed and you need a back-up plan in case your dog can't be left alone and hates daycare! For every dog that's happy to sleep all day, there's an equal number who will mess the house, become destructive and howl after 30 minutes - you have no idea which your dog will be until you have it!

Whiskerychinsrock Sun 15-Sep-19 07:35:41

Thanks Wolfiefan. We specifically had a young dog rather than a pup in mind but like you say, finding a suitable one is like finding hens teeth. And getting an older dog means the risk of ending up with a dog that hasn't been properly socialised or trained and has issues such as separation anxiety. I went to puppy and training classes for 2 years with our last dog and don't think I'd enjoy an unsocialised dog.

Adeline, it would be 4 hours maximum followed by an hour walk, followed by 3 hours maximum, 4 days per week. And that is worst case scenario as there are often DC around.

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Whiskerychinsrock Sun 15-Sep-19 07:45:03

Also, what you've described are poorly socialised and poorly trained dogs who have been left without stimulation and company for too long. This is exactly what I want to avoid. I'm not a complete novice but I in no way think I know everything either. I know the importance of finding the right dog. I just wanted advice around whether it would be fair to start looking knowing that I'm not home full time.

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adaline Sun 15-Sep-19 07:48:48

@Whiskerychinsrock rescues won't rehome to you if that's the situation you describe. The advice is four hours in total per day, not four hours, an hour break, followed by another 3/4 hours alone.

You also need to plan for the worst case scenario - you have teenagers who aren't going to be living at home forever, nor are they going to want to plan their lives around the dog.

We have a dog and work full time but it would be impossible without the help of family. Luckily my in-laws loves dogs but aren't physically capable of having one full-time. So we do the vast majority of care and the dog basically goes to their house each day so that he has company, someone to cuddle him, and someone to let him out to the toilet.

It's not necessarily poorly socialised and poorly trained dogs who get separation anxiety. Some breeds are more prone than others and sometimes you can do everything right and still end up with an anxious dog!

adaline Sun 15-Sep-19 07:51:10

In other words, what I'm saying is don't go into this with a certain plan and expect it to go flawlessly.

Some dogs don't tolerate daycare environments, others don't like group walks. Some are happy to sleep all day, some need company and reassurance and get upset on their own. You won't know what type of dog you have until they're at home and settled - so you need to decide what you're going to do if the worst comes to the worst and you have an anxious dog who cannot be left alone.

BiteyShark Sun 15-Sep-19 08:02:01

* I just wanted advice around whether it would be fair to start looking knowing that I'm not home full time.*

Some people will consider it to be unfair to get a dog when you work full time (think of it the same with children grin). I just outsource dogcare but it does mean it's pricey but that isn't a problem for us but do factor that in long term.

BUT as previous posters have said it will depend on the dog. Mine loves daycare but not the big noisey ones in commercial buildings. He is terrified in them but in someone's home he loves it and at a newish one he adopted their sofa as his personal bed as soon as he arrived blush.

The only issue I didn't factor in when we got a dog when working full time is when the dog is poorly and cannot go to daycare. Fortunately up to now my work has been flexible and I have worked from home. If that hadn't have been possible I would have struggled as I don't have family that could step in.

Whiskerychinsrock Sun 15-Sep-19 08:40:05

Thanks for your thoughts Adeline.

Thanks Biteyshark, I also hadn't considered a more home style 'childminder' rather than a doggy daycare nursery. Not any different than family day care really. More food for thought smile Luckily I have lots of family nearby who would help in emergencies so that's one less thing to worry about.

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adaline Sun 15-Sep-19 09:41:39

I'm sure you'll be fine it's just worth having a back up plan just in case. For example DH is self-employed so if my FIL cannot have the dog one day then he can at least take him to work as a one-off. I also have the ability to switch my days off at short notice so I can do that if absolutely nobody else can have the dog.

It's worth thinking about what you'll do it the dog walker is on holiday, your dog dislikes daycare or is too unwell to attend. I never considered any of those problems until I had to - and it can be pretty stressful trying to find last minute care for a young dog at the eleventh hour!

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