Should we get another dog?

(44 Posts)
JustaScratch Sun 19-Jan-20 16:19:20

We have a 2.5yo labrador cross. We got him aged around 6 months as a rescue and he's been brilliant. We have a fairly large house, big garden with lots of good walks nearby. DH doesn't work and I usually work from home, so we are able to give him plenty of exercise and attention. We also have a six year old daughter who loves our dog and he is brilliant with her. We had a conversation the other day about how we wouldn't rule out getting another youngish dog if we saw a rescue that needed a home.

Lo and behold - today we've seen an ad for a husky, same age as our lab cross who needs a new home. No cost, it's a rescue. Sounds like a lovely dog and we are finding ourselves sorely tempted. We would obviously meet the dog before making any decisions and introduce him to our dog and our daughter. We have the space, the two dogs could play... It is a big decision though - more commitment, more cost, more mess...

So lay it on me - pros and cons. Should we get another dog??? And should it be this dog?

OP’s posts: |
TeacupRex Sun 19-Jan-20 17:22:20

Please read up on huskies - they are very very different to Labs! They need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation, after all they were bred to run and pull sleds, otherwise they can become bored and make a shambles out of your home and garden.

Sadly I see a lot of young huskies rehomed around the 1-2 year old mark, people have bought them because they're absolutely beautiful and wolf-like, but often were unprepared for how much of a handful these dogs can be once they hit adolescence. They are excellent escape artists and often have a strong desire to explore - recall can be non existent! They are talkative dogs and love to howl - can potentially be very noisy! They generally have a more cat-like, independent temperament which can make them stubborn and a challenge to train. Huskies are also super heavy shedders.

Obviously all dogs are individuals and may not always conform to the general breed traits but it's important to consider the possibilities.. Huskies tend to be a more challenging breed for the average pet home.

I'm curious about the rescue - most responsible ones charge an adoption fee and don't do 'free to a good home'. Do they offer home checks? Will the dog come neutered? Will they be on hand for advice and support once the dog is adopted out? And if it doesn't work out, will they take the dog back?

Whitney168 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:26:57

Have a read of both the positive and, most importantly, the negative points of the breed on the Sibe Club website OP:

Beautiful dogs, but far from the average pet. There is certainly no shortage of them in rescue.

Whitney168 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:28:01

(Although my answer to the more general question of 'should you get another dog' is yes, sounds like it would be a nice idea. Just think very carefully before making it this one.)

mrscatmad31 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:28:43

I really wouldn't advise getting a husky, they aren't easy! Doesn't sound like a rescue if it's free?

Pipandmum Sun 19-Jan-20 17:30:17

A other dog sounds great but as other posters have said huskys are different and you need to be sure it's the right dog, gets on with your other dog and your child.

whiskyremorse Sun 19-Jan-20 17:34:31

A friend with rehomed huskies says it is very limiting as they can't be let off lead due to their strong prey drive. Perhaps consider how that would work with your lab if they are trusted off lead and you get a second dog who cannot be? That applies to any rescue you consider of course.


Scarsthelot Sun 19-Jan-20 17:37:21

I would be very wary of a rescue that rehomed dogs, for free

How do they pay their opening costs?

Wolfiefan Sun 19-Jan-20 17:37:56

No cost?
Rescues charge a fee so is this someone looking to ditch a problem dog?

Herpesfreesince03 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:39:16

Don’t get a husky. There’s a reason why it’s being given away for free

Herpesfreesince03 Sun 19-Jan-20 17:39:45

@Wolfiefan that’s exactly what it’ll be

Whynosnowyet Sun 19-Jan-20 17:40:47

If you get it you really won't be acquiring another ddog...
Ime.. Far far more to one than that.

Wolfiefan Sun 19-Jan-20 17:45:34

Yep. I wouldn’t get a private rehome in your situation.
Nobody buys a pedigree and then gives it away for free. Not unless it’s eating the house, aggressive, etc etc.
And any decent breeder would take back a dog when the owners needed to rehome. So it’ll be from crappy breeders too. sad

SomeLikeItTepid Sun 19-Jan-20 17:49:12

No decent rehoming centre would rehome any animal without asking for a charge. It's a (very weak) way of making sure any animals don't end up in fighting circles.

Also, like pp have said husky types are particularly hard to own due to their breed characteristics. They are ultimately a working breed that need a lot of exercise and stimulation. Labradors will fall into line, most huskies won't without a LOT of very, very hard work.

Mummaofmytribe Sun 19-Jan-20 17:49:53

I wouldn't get a husky personally. Both the huskies I have known were persistent escapees with no recall. And both lived in family situations with responsible adults who did heaps of training, inclufing one doing a specialised residential course. Those dogs just wanted to run and run and didn't give a crap about their owners once they got out.
Also, all the rescue shelters where I live are chockers with huskies and husky crosses, and I imagine my friends experiences are common, hence the dogs being surrendered when people give up in despair (not right, I know, but I can see how desperate you'd get)..
Your existing dog sounds great: the perfect mutt smile I'd wait for a similar dog and you'll all be much happier. Anyway, that's my twopennorth

Topseyt Sun 19-Jan-20 18:01:24

I'd have the same reservation as Wolfie about there being no cost. Proper rescues do need to cover basic overheads, so aren't free. There should also ideally be home visits to assess your suitability.

Huskies are beautiful dogs. There are a couple that I see sometimes round here. They are sled dogs though, and the epitome of a working dog, apparently even the show lines ones. A young husky needs lots of exercise. Way more than your average labrador or other family dog.

I remember a family break we took to Finnish Lapland one December many years ago. There were plenty of huskies where we were. They seemed never happier than when they were towing sleds, which they usually did all day long. When stood down for rest time they got very impatient and would whine, stamp their feet madly and give off.

I'd say that they must be high maintenance dogs for the most part, with a high prey drive and exercise requirement. You have to be very sure that you can cope with that before taking one on. Unfortunately, those traits are probably the reasons why they so often end up in rescues.

Research it hard first. Be sure it is for you and your family.

JustaScratch Sun 19-Jan-20 18:11:05

Thanks for all the replies so far - the rehoming situation is curious and we don't know the full details. We are in Spain, and I don't think things are so tightly regulated here - it's a young man who is rehoming it after being sent it by a rescue centre by mistake - it definitely sounds like there's more of a story there, but it's being offered through a smallish expat group where people tend to know each other so no immediate reason to think they're being dishonest.

OP’s posts: |
JustaScratch Sun 19-Jan-20 18:12:15

Lots to think about - we definitely don't want to rush into anything as we believe that a dog is a life commitment and becomes part of the family so we want to make the right decision.

OP’s posts: |
Wolfiefan Sun 19-Jan-20 18:13:06

That’s your reason.
And mistake? Surely they would return it.
Dodgy as.

Herpesfreesince03 Sun 19-Jan-20 18:15:40

Sounds like a disaster then op. And the expats may be helping rehome it without knowing the full story. And how the hell does someone get sent the wrong dog by a rescue which they then apparently have to keep and rehome themselves? The whole story sounds dodgy af. Follow your head and find a more suitable dog, either from a proper rescue or reputable breeder so you actually know what’s going on with the dog

JustaScratch Sun 19-Jan-20 18:21:15

It's a very good point actually - when we got our current dog he was found abandoned by some friends of friends who already had two big dogs and couldn't keep him - BUT they registered him with the local rescue centre who then charged us a fee to have him examined by their vet, chipped and given all his vaccinations, so even though he never spent any time in the rescue place, he was still registered there. This situation sounds very strange and like they are at best a bit clueless.

OP’s posts: |
Herpesfreesince03 Sun 19-Jan-20 18:27:50

I’d say it’s probably half true. The dog came from a rescue but the new owner can’t handle it. They can’t face the embarrassment of returning a husky they’ve managed to convince a rescue they could cope with, so made up a (pretty ridiculous) excuse that the rescue gave them the wrong dog and they’re stuck with it so they’d trying to rehome it privately. Either way I wouldn’t touch that dog with a ten foot barge pole

Herpesfreesince03 Sun 19-Jan-20 18:30:41

Ask the owner which rescue it came from. If they give you an answer then phone the rescue and ask about it. I bet the owner won’t even tell you though..

Scarsthelot Sun 19-Jan-20 18:36:13

it's a young man who is rehoming it after being sent it by a rescue centre by mistake

They sent the wrong dog? And he never contacted them?

This dog will have lots of issues. Could be something simple that training could resolve or something quite awful and dangerous.

No one gets sent the wrong dog by a rescue and just thinks 'ah well I will just have this one's, or 'I know, I will keep it and rehome myself'

What about the dog he was meant to rescue, where is that one?

Whynosnowyet Sun 19-Jan-20 18:42:41

Our husky is walked 5-10 miles every day and gets home like 'is that it?'...
Can't be off lead.
Walled garden is 10 feet high.
Hair - - did I mention the hair?
Keeping her cool - a challenge in summer and that's UK summer...
Specific kennel if we go away must have a roof and fully enclosed.
Ours is a quiet specimen husky but one's that aren't are not always popular...
Tread carefully op is my advice.

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