Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Thinking of getting a puppy, need advice

Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
The wife and I are thinking of getting a puppy. Very preliminary at this stage. I'm doing research to see if this is even a good idea. I'd appreciate any advice, experiences you'd like to share, etc.

We're looking at possibly trying to get an American Eskimo. Maybe a Shih-Tzu. Possibly a Pomeranian. The Eskie is first choice. It's the one all parties like. We went to a pet store for fun, and my wife and her mom fell in love with a Teddy Bear. Half Shih-Tsu and Bichon Frise. They loved the short hair on the puppy and how cute it looked. I told them I thought a Bichon was ugly. Found a book and showed my wife, and she agreed. She's still interested in the Shih-Tzu though, altho she's kind of hesitant because all the pictures we've found show that they have incredibly long hair and she doesn't like that. I'm not a fan of the Shih-Tzu. Pomeranian is the backup choice. We both hate yappy dogs, but love how it looks. Might not be a good choice, it's just that we have a good friend who has an awesome one. Had some birth defect where the Pom couldn't bark, and it was trained really well.

At the moment, it will be mainly a house dog. Our backyard is almost all dirt, so we wouldn't want to let the dog in and out of the backyard and into the house. We have a good amount of tile, so we can dedicate a room or two to potty train the dog on newspapers until it's ready to go outside to do its business on a regular basis. Wife's a little worried about the dog tearing up the house, but I've never known a smaller dog to really destroy a house other than chewing up some shoes. We'd likely keep the dog just downstairs. I estimate it at 1400 sq ft. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but that should be enough room to roam until we can take it out for walks. We both work, and are gone from about 8 to 6. I'm not sure if that will be a problem with those dogs. Oh, and a baby may be in the near future. Have to consider whether a puppy and a baby is a good idea, or how long we'd have to wait before getting a puppy.

Please give me your advice/opinions and let me know if I've forgotten some crucial info you guys need. Thanks for your help.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,363
What you want to consider is the type of dog you are looking for. An eskimo is a working dog and so will have lots of energy to burn. It will need lots of exercise and room to run otherwise it might not behave well in the home.

1. What sort of temperament are you looking for?
2. Size of dog? Large/medium/small
3. Long hair/short hair?

This is a start in narrowing down your choices.

Oh, a baby in the picture soon? It's best not to get both too close together. A puppy is very much like a human baby in that it is very needy in the beginning (lots of waking at all hours, needs to be let out for "business" many times a day, etc).
 

WTNLVR

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 30, 2005
Messages
623
A young puppy needs lots of attention- like a newborn. Needs to go outside almost every hour when young and needs lots of exercise no matter the size. Smaller dogs need to go out more often when young as well-smaller bladder. If you both work I don''t really see how you have the time for a young puppy unless you work close to home and can come home a few times a day to take care of it. It will become destructive with the lack of attention and you can''t crate a dog all day long- it''s not fair to the dog. What about adopting an adult dog??
 

Kaleigh

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 18, 2004
Messages
29,570
If you don''t have a big back yard, then you realy need to look into a smaller dog. A puppy needs a lot of care and you need to be able to spend a lot of time with a puppy. If you both work, which I assume you do, adopting an older dog may be the best way to go. And Bichon''s aren''t ugly.
I have 2, and they are adorable!! But to each his own.
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
19,132
I agree that a puppy is a big task if both of you work away from home. We didn''t get our dog until I was home full time. I just didn''t have the heart to leave her in a crate 8 hours a day, even if one of us came home to let her out for 30 minutes at lunch it would still be back in the crate until after work. We had our dog for 1 1/2 years before my oldest came along which was long enough for me to train our dog, get her almost out of the crazy lab puppy years but not too long that she couldn''t easily adjust to a new baby. Dogs are a lot of work, sleepless nights in the beginning,constant cleaning and having to leave events early to get home to let the dog out when they are young or not being able to travel without finding a dogsitter or putting it in a kennel. I adore dogs, would do it again in a heartbeat, just want you to know it''s a full time job/commmitment. If both of you work and are planning on continuing to do so, I think adopting an older dog is a wonderful idea. then you don''t have all the puppy issues to deal with. there are so many 1-2 year olds dogs out there who need homes.
 

jcrow

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
7,395
we got our yorkie when he was a puppy. and he was my first puppy/dog experience. i agree, it takes lots of work, attention & time to raise a puppy. do you have someone who would be able to walk the puppy during the day when you are at work? when ours was a puppy, i was in college and able to come home to walk him. plus, i had someone to come walk him during the day when i was gone, too.
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
Messages
4,101
I''d rather have 10 more kids than another puppy!!!!! That said, I adore my dog. He was just a very difficult pup. He''s a Rhodesian Ridgeback and they are known for that so at least it wasn''t a total surprise to us. The puppy stage lasted about 18 mos. My boys were 3 and 5 at the time so I had a lot to do already without rocking a dog to sleep...Yes, I said rocking a dog to sleep. He had a bad momma dog that refused to nurse after 3 wks. so the breeder had to bottle feed 9 puppies. Needless to say, he''d be an 85 lb. lap dog if we''d let him. We''re now in a new devolopment with a dirt yard and it has been a pain with a fully grown very calm dog. And babies and puppies don''t usually mix. Babies are very needy (obviously) and dogs can become jealous - especially a young dog that still requires a ton of attention. My advice is to get the yard done, have a baby, and then a year or two later get a dog. And, BTW - any dog can become destructive, small or not...Especially if left alone for extended periods of time. My friend has a mini chihuahua(sp) and that little beast has done more damage to her home than my big guy could/would ever dream of. I think it requires a tremendous amount of time and energy to have a nice dog. I know people do, but, I couldn''t imagine leaving a pup from 8 - 6 every day. They don''t just train themselves.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
As everyone has mentioned... puppies are a great deal of work, take a lot of time and patience to train right... and dogs regardless of size can be destructive beasts if they don''t get the right time and attention growing up. We had one beagle and one terrier of some sort at the shelter that were little beasts... both had amazing focus and could destroy anything if they put their minds to it.


I would really encourage you to look at calmer adult dogs or frankly, a cat. 8-6 is a not a puppy friendly schedule and willl probably result in a lonely bored dog which equals behavioural problems, frankly.

There are many great shelters and rescues that have wonderful adult dogs, well trained and well behaved and looking for a nice calm home. They will bond with you and love you and be loyal to you just like a puppy will... and they will fit your lifestyle much better at this point in time.

Please, take a look at some adults before you discount their value in your life.
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,749
Date: 2/21/2007 4:55:31 PM
Author: Miranda
I''d rather have 10 more kids than another puppy!!!!! That said, I adore my dog. He was just a very difficult pup. He''s a Rhodesian Ridgeback and they are known for that so at least it wasn''t a total surprise to us. The puppy stage lasted about 18 mos. My boys were 3 and 5 at the time so I had a lot to do already without rocking a dog to sleep...Yes, I said rocking a dog to sleep. He had a bad momma dog that refused to nurse after 3 wks. so the breeder had to bottle feed 9 puppies. Needless to say, he''d be an 85 lb. lap dog if we''d let him. We''re now in a new devolopment with a dirt yard and it has been a pain with a fully grown very calm dog. And babies and puppies don''t usually mix. Babies are very needy (obviously) and dogs can become jealous - especially a young dog that still requires a ton of attention. My advice is to get the yard done, have a baby, and then a year or two later get a dog. And, BTW - any dog can become destructive, small or not...Especially if left alone for extended periods of time. My friend has a mini chihuahua(sp) and that little beast has done more damage to her home than my big guy could/would ever dream of. I think it requires a tremendous amount of time and energy to have a nice dog. I know people do, but, I couldn''t imagine leaving a pup from 8 - 6 every day. They don''t just train themselves.
8-6 is waaaaayyy too long, IMO, to leave a dog by itself. We would never have gotten one dog, let alone the second, had I not had a job where I am able to come home for lunch every day. What''s the point of being man''s best friend if you''re hardly spending time with your man, ya know? Plus, you have to think about who will keep the dog if you and your wife decide to take a trip, stay overnight somewhere, etc. Have you thought of looking into doggie daycare yet, and what that would cost? Relatives who''d be willing to help out? All serious things to think about.
 

musey

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 30, 2006
Messages
11,242
Choose your breed based on its personality, not how it looks. You'll thank yourself later. FI and I wanted a pom, but didn't want to subject our neighbors to a yappy dog (we live in a condo complex). We ended up finding a papillon/pomeranian mix, which is even cuter anyway! (see avatar) Colby's very quiet and relatively low maintenance.

That said, I can't imagine having gone through his first six months while working a full time job. It happened to be a good time when I knew I wouldn't be working, and I did the majority of the leg work with training him, etc. while FI worked. It really was like being on maternity leave... I've heard a lot of people say that a puppy is even more work than a newborn (I am sans-child so I don't have any personal experience on that matter). So, if a baby might be on the way soon, you could consider devoting ALL your time and attention to that change. However, if you are 100% certain you want to get a dog, it would be easier to get it before the baby comes than getting it after (so it will hopefully already be trained and reliable before baby arrives).

Even after the puppy period, a dog majorly complicates your life. FI and I can't be away for more than 7 straight hours MAX (that is not daily, that's 1-2 times per week). Colby could last longer, but it's not good for him (physically OR psychologically) to be left alone for more time. Depending on your state laws and restrictions, it can also be impossible to put your dog in day care until he's 6 months or older.


Anyway, getting a dog--especially a puppy--is a HUGE decision. We spent an entire year considering whether it was a good idea and what breed would be best for us... and even now I still worry about future life changes that might complicate life for him.
 

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
Awesome feedback, guys, thanks so much. Keep em coming.

I know it's a lot of work, but that's why I'm asking now instead of getting a dog and then asking for advice on how to handle it. Waiting a couple years is not a problem.

I should explain more about our location. Where we live, it gets up to 110 in the summer and drops to about high 20s or low 30s in the winter (we did hit 17 degrees one night, but no snow).

Waiting until after we fix up the backyard is not a problem. I dunno if any of you remember my house thread from a several months back, but I have both a back yard and a side yard. We were thinking of turning one into an area for kids/dogs to play in. EVERYONE has a dog in this area. I'm trying to find out whether they all keep them inside, outside, or what. Our yard is 8000 sq ft or so. I'd say only about 1/3 to 1/4 is taken up by the house. The rest is ... well, it's dirt right now but eventually it will be landscaped into something. Not enough for a labrador or anything big like that. That's why we're trying to stick with medium sized to small dogs.

We both work, but I'm flexible enough where I can shoot home every now and then if I had to. The other thing is, my mother-in-law might stay with us. She was ok with the dog surprisingly. If she comes, she could help out with the baby and/or the puppy. Plus, we both like the idea of making her walk the dog since both need exercise.

No offense about me thinking a Bichon is ugly. I happen to think bulldogs are cute (well, so ugly that they're cute; I love how they look when their tongue is hanging out). I know cute and bulldog isn't exactly a combo most people think of, but I do. It's all personal opinion. I know a bulldog has the temperament that makes them easiest for us to take care of. Unfortunately, the wife has shot that down. She's not thrilled with my other two choices: the Chinese Crested dog and the Sphynx cat. Too "ugly" for her too.


Oh, and if any of you know a website that breaks down breeds based on personality, I'd love to know. We're open to anything really. We just need help educating ourselves on what kinds of dogs are out there. Adult dogs are a possibility at this point too. My wife found out about the American Eskimo cuz she has a coworker with 3 of them and she saw the pictures of them all over the coworkers cubicle. She gets them from a local shelter she volunteers at so that's one possibility.
 

fire&ice

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Messages
7,828
By Am. Eskimo - do you mean Am. Eskimo Spitz? If so, they are quite nice dogs. Not too small - but not medium either. They do require a lot of brushing and do leave dust bunnies around.

Yeah, a pup pup is going to need for someone to let it out every couple hours or so. After 3 months - every 4 hours is pushing it. 6 hours is doable for their bladder - but the mind control isn''t there yet.

Good luck and I am glad you are taking the time. Most breeds will have a "club" website with good information. Another suggestions is Yahoo lists. They have a list for just about every breed.
 

zoebartlett

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2006
Messages
12,450
I''d recommend going to the American Kennel Club site. http://www.akc.org/index.cfm. From there, you should be able to go to a specific breeds'' Parent Club.

http://www.akc.org/breederinfo/breeder_search.cfm. This is what we did when we researched the type of dog we wanted (and have yet to get due to now owning 2 kittens). Each parent club''s site has great info., including names and contact info. for breeders across the country and in Canada. Good luck!
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
Messages
4,101
http://animal.discovery.com/ This is a link to Animal Planet. They have very useful tools for breed selection. We found it very helpful when determining what type of cat to get. Poke around there, you''ll find a pet compatability finder, etc. I''m laughing at the Sphynx cat!!!! That''s what DH wanted!!! We got a ragdoll instead. Longhaired, big, soft, snuggly vs. ummmm, no hair - ewwwwwww!

I think when your yard is done you have more than enough room for any type of dog. Cummon, my lot is 6000 sq ft and I have an 85 lb. dog. Also, it is a common misconception that large dogs need large yards. A beagle, for instance, will need a lot more room to run around compared to a Great Dane which has a relatively docile personality. It is important to think of temperment first!!!! If you want a low key, tolerant, non stinky, non shedding dog, I highly recommend A Rhodesian Ridgeback hehe!
 

pricescope

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 31, 1999
Messages
8,266
I love Rhodesian Ridgebacks!
About Eskimo, sorry i had to come out gross but i think you need to know...it's very hard to keep their pavilion clean...sorry.

ETA: Also if you are looking for a calm, not to be exercised a lot hairless dog and are willing to adopt - a Greyhound kicked out of the racing tracks after age of 4 do not need to run, all they want is to curl up on your couch and be loved. Sometimes they have problems with men though but they are so beautiful.
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
Messages
4,101
Date: 2/21/2007 7:21:13 PM
Author: Pricescope
I love Rhodesian Ridgebacks!
About Eskimo, sorry i had to come out gross but i think you need to know...it''s very hard to keep their pavilion clean...sorry.
Admin., Do you have one? A ridgeback, that is?

And Codex, Admin. has a very good point...Anything with long hair (I''ve learned this from my VERY long haired cat) needs to have it''s ''pavillion'' cleaned, ahem, every time they use it. If you get a dog while you have a little one in diapers you will be spending a fair portion of your day bum wiping.
 

pricescope

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 31, 1999
Messages
8,266
I think my mutt''s grandmother has an affair with one Miranda
, i just think they are gorgeous and very smart, very smart!
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
Messages
4,101
Date: 2/21/2007 7:31:22 PM
Author: Pricescope
I think my mutt''s grandmother has an affair with one Miranda
, i just think they are gorgeous and very smart, very smart!
hehe...Too smart!!!!! I think he''s smarter than us...He KNOWS he''s smarter than us!
 

widget

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2004
Messages
4,255
Author:codex57
We'd likely keep the dog just downstairs.
Is your bedroom upstairs? If so, I think you shouldn't get a dog.

Doggies need to sleep in the same room with their humans...if not in bed with them!

In my opinion, anyway....


widget

PS: Great idea about adopting a greyhound. I've heard they're regular couch potatos!

ETA: Would this hold true for whippets and Italian greyhounds too?
 

Apsara

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 31, 2006
Messages
185

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
Date: 2/21/2007 7:40:46 PM
Author: widget
Author:codex57

We'd likely keep the dog just downstairs.
Is your bedroom upstairs? If so, I think you shouldn't get a dog.


Doggies need to sleep in the same room with their humans...if not in bed with them!


In my opinion, anyway....



widget


PS: Great idea about adopting a greyhound. I've heard they're regular couch potatos!


ETA: Would this hold true for whippets and Italian greyhounds too?
We're still deciding where we want to sleep. We have a downstairs bedroom and 3 bedrooms upstairs. It's just the two of us. In any case, the downstairs thing was mainly just during the day. I don't have a problem with it going upstairs at night when we're both home. I'd actually like it to sleep on our bed near our feet or legs. That would be cool. I wanted to confine it downstairs during the day mainly so that if there was a problem of some kind, it would be confined to one floor of the house. It's not a huge deal really. I mainly want it inside cuz I'd feel bad if it were out in 90 degree heat or 30 degree weather (altho an American Eskimo Spitz should be able to tolerate cold ok).

We don't want a lump of a dog. Ok, I wouldn't mind, but my wife wants something to play with. Just nothing like an australian sheep dog that can run for miles. My favorite dog is actually a Siberian Husky, but those things can run for days and can get really antsy if they don't have enough exercise. I'm not in enough shape to give it the proper exercise.

I like greyhounds. That's an interesting suggestion. Thanks! Any reason they don't like guys though? I'd want to play with the dog too.
 

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
Date: 2/21/2007 7:26:35 PM
Author: Miranda
Date: 2/21/2007 7:21:13 PM

Author: Pricescope

I love Rhodesian Ridgebacks!

About Eskimo, sorry i had to come out gross but i think you need to know...it's very hard to keep their pavilion clean...sorry.
Admin., Do you have one? A ridgeback, that is?


And Codex, Admin. has a very good point...Anything with long hair (I've learned this from my VERY long haired cat) needs to have it's 'pavillion' cleaned, ahem, every time they use it. If you get a dog while you have a little one in diapers you will be spending a fair portion of your day bum wiping.
Hahaha, yeah. But I figure if I'm ok wiping a baby's butt, why wouldn't I be ok wiping my dog's butt (or trimming it)? They'd both be part of my family.

My roommate in law school had a dog for a while (landlord found out). I had no problems picking up its poo. It even had diahrea one time that I had to clean up. Not my favorite thing in the world to do, but it's just part of the deal.

I'm ok with shedding. We have a Dyson. I hear they're quite good with animal hair.
 

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
Wow, Ridgebacks look cool. They don''t sound like a good first dog though. Plus, me and my wife aren''t the biggest people around. I want to make sure I can properly control my dog.

My wife used to have a cat that slept on my head. I wouldn''t mind if my dog did that, but an 85 pound animal on my head may be a little too much.
 

fabcrab

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 2, 2006
Messages
507
Yeah I got my shih-tzu from petfinder.com and she''s amazing!! It took a lot of patience at first, but now I can''t imagine my life without her.

I think you should get a shih tzu (I''m biased of course!). They tend to not be as stubborn as other breeds, making them easier to potty train. She is also very independent, so leaving her during the day isn''t much of a problem.
 

fabcrab

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 2, 2006
Messages
507
Oh I forgot to mention, shih tzus barely shed at all. My husband is highly allergic to other dogs but somehow not to shih tzus. I think it''s because their fur is more like human hair. The only thing is they''re verrryyy high maintenance with grooming since their hair tend to get matted a lot.
 

codex57

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2004
Messages
1,492
Interesting. After seeing the Teddy Bear, my wife started asking me about the Shih Tzu. Her mom liked it too.

Do they really get THAT hairy though? All the pics we''ve seen of adult ones show them to look like Cousin It from the Adams Family. We like how they look as puppies, with the short (curly?) hair.
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
our neighbors have a sweet retired greyhound, but she is really anti social with other dogs...she''s super passive and if other dogs get near her she shakes horribly and starts shedding. she loves people...all she does is hang out on their couch and sleep. she''s a little TOO passive for me...kinda boring actually. haha. when they had their baby, she had NO interest in the new addition at all and i think it made her a bit anxious. they ended up letting the dog go to the gal''s parents because they adored her, and she was much happier at their house where it was quiet and relaxed all the time. so if you plan to have kids and stuff, not sure if the retired greyhound is the best route to go for a family pet, but this is the only one i have had experience with. she was a sweetie though.
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
Messages
4,101
Date: 2/21/2007 8:33:26 PM
Author: codex57
Wow, Ridgebacks look cool. They don''t sound like a good first dog though. Plus, me and my wife aren''t the biggest people around. I want to make sure I can properly control my dog.

My wife used to have a cat that slept on my head. I wouldn''t mind if my dog did that, but an 85 pound animal on my head may be a little too much.
Hehe...I''m 5''2" and 105 lbs. on a heavy day. I just walked in the door from a walk with the dog. I have no trouble controling him and what''s more, my 4 year old 35 lb. daughter has no trouble either...She walks him, too - He looks to her for verbal guidance. Dogs should be under verbal control at all times, anyway...Especially with kids in the household. I think people think that just because a dog is small it should be able to jump on or at people and bark (I know some are just barky breeds) and be generally uncontrolled. Small dogs can really hurt people, too...I guess their teeth are smaller.......OK, OK, enough of my 101 reasons why I think the entire world should have a Ridgeback. No, I don''t think you''d want an 85 lb. dog on your head, but, it could be worse. My precious new kitty sleeps with his cute little face in my face......And his butt in DH''s hahahahahahahahaha (I take too much pleasure in this)!
 

rjdodd

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2007
Messages
108
From what I''ve heard I agree with the greyhound suggestion for a realllllllly lazy dog - saw some at an adoption day recently and they could barely be bothered to get up and say hi.... They just love to curl up on the sofa and not move. Not personal experience mind you - two adopted mutts for us. But if I was looking for another dog I would strongly consider an ex-racer greyhound.

For what it''s worth this doesn''t apply to whippets, which were crossbred with terriers way back and are more active, though not hyper like border collies. Did anyone else see the whippet racing on animal planet this weekend? 200 yards in 11.2 seconds.
 
Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    June’s Birthstone Trinity
    June’s Birthstone Trinity
    Memorial Day Jewelry 2020
    Memorial Day Jewelry 2020
    Van Cleef & Arpels Perlee Clovers Bracelet
    Van Cleef & Arpels Perlee Clovers Bracelet

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top