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Coronavirus dogs?

(36 Posts)
Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 09:56:11

Just reading an article about how many people are buying puppies to keep them company during the lockdown- or worse still to ‘keep the children entertained.’

This is a seriously worrying trend. Two people on our road who have never been into dogs have suddenly acquired a puppy and, when I was out with my three working retrievers yesterday for our daily exercise, she called across the road to me saying that she didn’t know puppies were such hard work. 😒😒

Having had retrievers, flatcoated and goldens for forty years, ours are working dogs who are out on the moors (usually!) three or four days every week, come rain or shine, I have massive concerns about this trend.

What happens when these people go back into their ‘real lives’ ? Kids back at school, parents out at work. Everyone wanting to go out with friends to restaurants, etc.? Will we see an explosion of poor wee doggies who have served their purpose then ending up in rescue centres?

Surely a dog is for life not just for a few weeks stuck at home?

OP’s posts: |
inwood Thu 16-Apr-20 09:57:07

Totally agree.

Soubriquet Thu 16-Apr-20 09:57:37

That is worrying

It’s like people getting puppies for Christmas

Mascotte Thu 16-Apr-20 09:58:46

Another example of how this crisis has demonstrated that most people are completely fucking stupid.

jinxpixie Thu 16-Apr-20 12:01:56

Where did you read the article?

Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 13:39:07

@jinxpixie two full pages in the Daily Mail. Even Rachel Johnson has bought a puppy.

One woman comments that the labrador puppy she has bought has ‘helped diffuse sibling squabbles’ and goes on to describe how she gets pushed around in a pram by her daughter! This puppy is not a plaything and shouldn’t be treated as such. She acknowledges that the puppy needs to rest and a working breed, like a labrador, needs around 22 hours sleeping at this age. Yes, that’s right 22 HOURS snoozing.

We have working dogs, golden and flatcoated retrievers and have loved and worked with these breeds for forty years. As puppies, these large breeds have their own set of needs in order to protect rapidly growing bones of dogs which will eventually weigh 35 to 40 kg.

Far more worrying is how these dogs are being bought to fulfill a temporary need for selfish people. What will happen when they return to their’real’ lives? Kids at school, dance classes, football, gymnastics and all the other after school/weekend activities? Parents back at work and socialising? Restaurants, theatre trips; the list is endless. What a nuisance that dog is going to be!

The lifespan of the average labrador is 12 years, not 12 weeks lockdown. The cute little puppy is going to be an energetic working dog needing several miles of free running exercise every day.

Our flatcoated retrievers can easily cover 12 miles every day in normal circumstances and I’m taking them out currently at 5.30 every morning so they can have a good gallop over the fields before anyone is up and about.

OP’s posts: |
BiteyShark Thu 16-Apr-20 13:46:53

* Far more worrying is how these dogs are being bought to fulfill a temporary need for selfish people. What will happen when they return to their’real’ lives? Kids at school, dance classes, football, gymnastics and all the other after school/weekend activities? Parents back at work and socialising? Restaurants, theatre trips; the list is endless. What a nuisance that dog is going to be!*

Whilst this may happen in some circumstances you have to remember that lots of people at home all the time prior to lockdown decided to get a puppy and then find the work too much and rehome it as you see on here from some of the threads.

There are others like myself that work full time and still manage to give the dog enough stimulation and attention it needs and ensure it is never left alone for long periods of time.

Some may go on and be great owners when 'life goes back to normal' just as others won't. I don't think this situation changes that tbh.

PuppyMonkey Thu 16-Apr-20 13:54:29

Sorry to derail, I’m intrigued about what a working retriever actually is. Working at what?

I have a golden retriever myself. He’s more of a dickhead retriever.grin

Agree with you about idiots getting puppies during all this btw.

Judashascomeintosomemoney Thu 16-Apr-20 13:54:58

Even Rachel Johnson has bought a puppy
Well yes but, to be fair, she is a long term dog owner rather than someone who’s never had a dog. But there’s a lot more in that article to be concerned about (bought ’sight unseen’ 😮) than just the fact these dogs are bought during lockdown. I totally agree with you, there’ll be a lot of these dogs ending up in rescue at the end of this, and a lot will be dogs with ‘issues’ due to not being able to socialise properly etc.

jinxpixie Thu 16-Apr-20 15:57:58

Oh Daily Mail that will be accurate then........

jinxpixie Thu 16-Apr-20 16:08:26

sorry that sounded snarky I didn't mean it at the OP. Just I would not lose sleep over a Daily Mail headline.

From my personal experience and a very anecdotal and very small group of breeders they have actually found the opposite. People due to pick up puppies during lockdown have backed out due to lose of earnings and uncertain future. So the breeders now have more puppies to keep and socialise and just hope that other people will want to purchase puppies that are several months old.

Windyatthebeach Thu 16-Apr-20 16:11:29

We had just got a dpuppy when CV arrived..
Have for socialise her in the current state of affairs...

Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 16:57:28

@PuppyMonkey - you've given me a chuckle! We're country dwellers living in the Peak District. Our dogs are involved in water retrieving trials. We're in a gun dog club and my husband, retired police marksman, still shoots with the local gun club from time to time where he works the dogs properly.

You made me smile with your description of your golden retriever. Ours is our old boy. He's nearly fifteen so retired now but still loves to be out on the moors but I would agree he can be a dickhead- like last week when he proudly 'retrieved' a stinking dead badger in the stream at the bottom of our garden and presented me with it in our kitchen. I was delighted!. We're playing decoy games with the flatties in our garden and our small pond, just to keep their brains active and I go running across the fields with them at stupid o'clock in the mornings before the world is awake, just to give them plenty of exercise and keep them sleek and fit.

@jinkpixie it doesn't matter where I read it today. Members of the breed society I'm involved with have been talking about it for a couple of weeks so it's not just a DM story. There is a lady in our village who has bought a 'chorky' - apparently a yorkie chihuahua cross. She's already grumbling that she didn't realise what hard work puppies are.

@BiteyShark I agree there has always been a problem with those who treat dogs as disposable as their last designer shirt but this is so much worse at the moment. Buying a puppy at 8 or 9 weeks old and it can't be vaccinated until after lockdown- Vets are only doing emergency procedures just now - means some of these puppies might be four or five months old before they can be taken for a walk. They can't be socialised by meeting other dogs and people so are at higher risk of temperament issues, nervousness, fear of strange surroundings and fear aggression, this latter, which could have dire consequences for them through no fault of their own.

OP’s posts: |
JustanotherWFHday Thu 16-Apr-20 17:07:59

Actually @lincolnfield vets are doing vaccinations now. So there should be no delay in puppies getting theirs. Same with worming and flea tablets. There are also plenty of ways you can socialise a pup during lockdown. I got a pup the day before lockdown. We stand out in our front garden and look at postman drive up in his van and deliver letters, same with bin men and noise of the bin trucks. We’ve taken pup for walks (carrying him as not due his injections yet anyway) to meet horses, sheep and cows. Our neighbours have a low walled front garden and 4 children and a well trained dog so we put our pup down in their garden and let them all play with him. Also a friend has let their dog into our garden on walks to meet the pup. Thee is a dog YouTube and pup has been listening to thunderstorms, fireworks etc on that. We‘be done a Skype session with a person who usually does the obedience classes to get information on training him and there are multiple resources online.

From next week when he gets his vaccinations (already booked in) he can go on walks and meet even more dogs and people and when lockdown is loosened in 3 weeks time he will still be younger than 4 months and can meet other family members.

So don’t tar all of us new dog owners with the same brush. For us we didn’t get a dog before as we can only take annual leave in one week chunks and felt it was unfair to get a dog and leave him only a week later. Now we have lots of time with him. And yes we didn’t realise just how hard of work it would be but that doesn’t mean we aren’t prepared to put in the hard work required.

PuppyMonkey Thu 16-Apr-20 17:24:03

Thanks for explaining Lincoln - ours would love to do that all day I’m suregrin

TheoriginalLEM Thu 16-Apr-20 17:29:30

I'm a SVN and feel this is a welfare disaster waiting to happen. The BVA have now allowed 2nd vaccinations to be given, putting more pressure on veterinary professionals re social distancing.

The socialization window will be missed and what about when we all go back to work and suddenly the dog that we were with 24/7 Is now left for upwards of 8 hours a day?

It worries me deeply and I would implore anybody considering getting a dog at this time not to do it.

Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 17:39:31

@JustanotherWFHday I’m sure there are some responsible people out there and what you’re describing sounds sensible and well thought out. Unfortunately though, not everyone is trying to do what you’re doing. For example, the woman I commented on who is allowing her children to treat a labrador puppy like a surrogate doll.

I knew someone who bought a cockapoo puppy for her children and when her children squabbled over who would hold him, they managed to pull him between them and dislocate his hip. Clearly prior to the lockdown but demonstrates why a puppy for the kids to play with, unless well supervised, and keeping the dog’s best interests in mind, is not a good idea.

Children and dogs are perfect for one another but they need careful supervision until the kids learn how to handle the dog properly.

Vets in my neck of the woods are having to prioritise their farm work. We’re right in the middle of lambing time so they haven’t the capacity for puppy vaccinations so small animal work is on an emergency basis only.

From what you said about your annual leave arrangements you do need to try to leave your wee puppy alone for short periods so that he can tolerate the separation when you do go back to work. Please do remember that dogs should only be left home alone for a maximum of four hours so when the world returns to normal, if you can’t be around for him, you might need to think about a dog minder/walker?

OP’s posts: |
powershowerforanhour Thu 16-Apr-20 17:40:14

Buy shares in Clomicalm- the separation anxiety is gonna be a mess.

Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 18:00:41

@jinxpixie I’m sure that’s true for some breeders. A friend in nearby Matlock breeds Dalmatians and I’ve been teasing her about the 101 Dalmatians Movie because she has a litter of nine just now, all spoken for, but no idea when or if they will be collected.

The person in our village I mentioned who has the chorky puppy ( sorry I know I’m being a bit rude but I can’t get my head around all these chockywocky poodleoodle dogs. Give me a proper dog any day!). She brings it out in a small cat sized crate and put him on the wall so local children can come and pet him as they go past her house. I passed today on my way to the chemist and the poor wee thing was in this crate, out in the sun, and looked terrified. I wonder how long she will keep him once the novelty has worn off?

My son and his wife have been involved with their local greyhound rescue over in Manchester for many years and currently have their two gorgeous and lovable rescue ex racing dogs of their own so abandoned and unwanted dogs are close to my heart.

We’ve had rescued terriers as well as our gun dogs over the years so to see people boasting about buying puppies to help them through the lockdown without thinking through what they are committing to is troubling to say the least - but as my husband has commented some people have children without thinking it through! 😂😂

OP’s posts: |
BeeBella Thu 16-Apr-20 18:15:57

I definitely hear this worry, however I am getting a puppy at the end of May too. For me, we were always going to get one in the summer (I work in a school so were timing it ready for the school holidays) but are now doing it sooner to make the most of being at home with pup to get to know and train him.

He'll come to school with me when schools return, so no worries there. He's staying with breeder til 10 weeks and our local vets are doing vaccinations now.

JustanotherWFHday Thu 16-Apr-20 19:04:50

@Lincolnfield we jace already started crate training and leaving pup on own for increasing periods of time. I am well aware of how long puppies can be left alone for and the pup is already signed up for dog day care for the 3 days we will be in the office per week after lockdown.

JustanotherWFHday Thu 16-Apr-20 19:06:19

And sorry if I seem a bit rude but your judginess is fairly off putting and I also have one of those ‘ chockywocky poodleoodle dogs’ - maybe if he’s not a ‘proper’ dog he doesn’t need all the training we are giving him?

Lincolnfield Thu 16-Apr-20 19:45:50

@JustanotherWFHday - apologies if I’ve hurt your feelings. I didn’t mean to but I just can’t get my head around all these new designer dog varieties. I’m sure you love your dog every bit as much as I love mine but I do think these strange crosses are a cynical ploy by some breeders to extract a lot of money from people for what are, in truth, a crossbreed and there are just so many of them, it’s mind boggling.we always referred to my terriers as ‘bitzers’ so - bits of this and bits of that. Very indeterminate heritage for sure!

I’m not being unkind, honestly. I struggle with the craze for French bulldogs and Pugs who can hardly breath and whoever thought crossing a Pug (breathing problems) with a Cavalier King Charles spaniel (heart problems) and selling them for enormous amounts as Pugaliers Or whatever they’re called seriously needs to be prosecuted. Just setting up loving owners for heartache and innocent wee dogs for suffering.

My gun dogs are in a different category, having been bred for centuries for the work they are intended to do. When I said they are proper dogs, it’s because they are dogs with a purpose like border collies, German shepherds, springer spaniels for instance. Flatcoated retrievers are the oldest British breed of working retriever and were originally known as ‘Gamekeepers dogs’ because that’s what they were.

The myth that these poodle crosses are hypoallergenic is, quite frankly, nonsense. Ask any vet. Even pure bred poodles will shed a certain amount of dander. Clearly not as much as a German shepherd for example, but enough to irritate anyone who is responsive to animal dander. It’s just another marketing ploy.

But having said all this, I honestly wish you much joy with your wee doggy. Any dog brings so much love, loyalty and sheer love of life to you so enjoy every minute with him!

OP’s posts: |
WhoWants2Know Thu 16-Apr-20 20:02:23

As an experienced dog owner, I wouldn't object to using the extra time at home to settle in a new pet or foster an animal. If you know what you're doing, it's a great opportunity.

I'm always dismayed by feckless people who get pets and view them as a lifestyle accessory and then abandon them, so now is no different in that regard.

thecapitalsunited Thu 16-Apr-20 20:55:43

Im a new dog owner and should be getting a puppy in the next few weeks. A date hasn’t been set yet to get my pup as my breeder was waiting for the announcement today. The litter was born in late-Feb so conceived well before all of this started. The breeder hasn’t had a litter for nearly 2 years so I’ve been waiting a long time. I know it’s not the ideal time but the puppies are here now and the breeder just doesn’t have the room for 8 growing puppies plus her adult dogs in the long term. So what do you do for the best?

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