So you are thinking of getting a Dog

IMG_8968Yes, a Dog!

I say this for a reason as they don’t stay small, cute and cuddly for long unless you get one of though small dogs I guess, still, they don’t stay as exciting new puppies forever.

I got a puppy last summer. It was one of the best days of my life and yes it’s up there with BOTH my weddings (I had two but married the same man twice…A post for another day)

My husband and I decided to get a Golden Retriever. When I say we decided it was more I decided and convinced my husband they are the best dogs all round and not that big. The last part was a lie, which 9 months later he has cottoned on to.

Now where to start? What to think about?

Puppies, dogs, and pets, in general, take up a lot of your time. I have had dogs all my life up till I was 21 as family pets. Now I got my own.

The lady we got our adorable Theodore said to us “You are not taking home a Puppy you are taking home another species baby”. And boy was that and is still true!!

One thing I wasn’t prepared for was the toilet breaks during the night for the first 3 months. We were woken up every 3-4 hour by a crying puppy needing the loo and you have no choice but to go. This way they are house trained quickly. After taking your puppy to the loo they don’t understand that is “back to bed time” not “playtime” so then you need to get you puppy back to sleep.

We live in a terrace house and thankfully have patient neighbours’. But this did mean I would end up having to stay in the living room out of sight waiting for him to sleep before sneaking off to bed. He finally settled without crying at 6 months.

During the day your puppy wants and needs to play. They need constant attention and you have to give it to them because a bored puppy means broken belongings.

Now there is the walking.

When we first started walking Theo it was in the summer holidays and we didn’t need to rush to get anywhere but when we went back to work our get up and go routine was out the window. With the bigger Theo got the early we had to get up to walk him no matter how dark and cold it was outside.

6am – Up and Feed Theo

6:15am – somewhere in all the excitement of feeding cats and a puppy put on your clothes, boots, coat, gloves, hat. Get the lead, poop bags and treats.

6:30 – Walk Theo

Once hour later return with a muddy or wet Dog, clean your dog leaving you just enough time for breakfast and to get ready for work.

What about when you get home you ask? Well, there is no time for sitting and having a cuppa, especially if it is winter you need to get ready and walk your restless dog before he knocks you over with excitement and it gets too cold.

Other things to think about; that quick drink on the way home from work. Gone. Your dog needs feeding and probably the toilet. That spare of the moment weekend city break. Out the window. Where’s the dog going to go?

Have you enough space?

We made our dog a den under the stairs when he was very little but now he sleeps in the kitchen because he is big and well we need our storage space back.

Oh and dogs don’t like change so we are having to get him used to his new sleeping arrangements. Yes, he is crying again.

Oh did I mention he wakes up at 6am on the dot everyday. Yes, weekends too!

Other things to think about;

How big will the dog get?

Where will you put the dogs’ bed?

Where will your dog sleep?

Where will you keep the dog food? Most dog foods are better values if bought in bulk and need to be out of reach.

Outdoors space? For the toilet.

Access to a park, where you can let your dog off the lead.

Commitments

Lifespan (will you still want your dog in ten years time?)

Training

Money

Renting? Are you allowed a pet?

Holidays

To be honest the post could go on forever I have only mentioned a few things and not even in detail.

But the best thing is your dog! If you treat him well and give him the few things he asks for he will be your loyal friend for life. Even if he does drag you through a muddy puddle. Did I mention training?

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