Pets
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WWYD? Puppy Issue (long, sorry)

Hello!

We got a puppy a couple months ago. She is a beautiful, sweet black lab. She is gentle around the baby. However, when we got her, we were living on a large piece of property with my parents. We  recently relocated because my husband got a new job, and we are in an apartment.

1. We had 2 cats and one dog, but had to leave a cat with my parents because the apartment folks only allow 2 pets. Parents wouldn't keep dog. Cats are both sulky and sad to be split up - were best friends.

2. With my husband now working (finally!), I am now full time caretaker of puppy, and she craves constant attention. This is so hard with a baby who also needs attention, not to mention, she is not yet really leash trained, already weighs 40 lbs, and walking her with baby is tough. She is used to being outside a lot on the farm, and she has tons and tons of energy.

3. I am taking her out for a short walk and potty break every 2-3 hours, but she eliminates on the carpet anyway. We walked and sniffed and played for 30 mins the other day, came back inside, and the first thing she did was poop! I think she is holding it until we are back inside. Grump!

 We try to go to the dog park as much as possible (again, tough with baby) but she still needs to run run run. Apartment living with this pup seems unnatural and I find myself always annoyed with the dog and starting to resent her a bit.

I need advice. I want her to be happy and have a great life. I want her to get the exercise and attention she needs. I don't know what is best: should we look for a home for her with a loving family and big backyard? Will we adjust and I just Ned to give to time? Will my cats adjust too? I miss the cat we left behind...DH says that since I am puppy's primary caretaker, it is up to me. Help! TIA! 

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Re: WWYD? Puppy Issue (long, sorry)

  • A friend of mine recently went through a nasty divorce.  Long story short, he had a yellow lab, and moved into an apartment with the dog while the wife kept the house (that had the grounds for the dog to run). 

    These dogs really need a lot of exercise and attention to thrive.  His dog began to resent him and go to the bathroom in the apartment, even on his bed.  The dog even became depressed. 

    He had to make the difficult decision to re home the dog.  After much searching, he found a great family who had the time and attention to give to the dog.  The dog now has completely changed, is beyond happy, goes to the beach, has a yard and kids to play with and run.

    I guess you know in your heart what you need to do, but just wanted to share that story with you.  Those dogs are not apartment dogs.  Good luck.

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  • You do not have to rehome your dog, you need to train your dog.

    It is totally possible to have a lab in an apt. Ideal, no but totally doable. I did it and my lab is now 13 and totally fine.

    Here is a link to some really helpful advice. Try tethering the dog to you so that he is never alone. Also, I would definitely crate train and use NILIF

  • The pup might just need some super exercise time. When I was about to lose my wits with my aussie shepherd, I put him in puppy day care. Twice a week at first for about 2mos, then once a week for another month. It calmed him down, gave him the socialization he craved and now he is much happier dog. I bring him to the dog park and take him on walks still but now he isn't so freaking hyper and demanding. I recommend puppy day care to all my friends who have high energy pups. Good luck!

     

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  • I also agree with PP. Labs can live just fine in apartments. You need to provide adequate exercise - dog daycare is an excellent idea! As much as you can afford. They often times sell packages too (50 visits for X amt of money - or two months unlimited...etc..). Unless you're really walking this dog for 2+ hours a day, taking him to a dog park daily, utilizing a dog walker for mid day breaks, and using dog day care - it isn't fair to say there is no way to meet his exercise needs. There is a way, you just have to put the work in. He won't be a puppy forever, and his exercise needs will lessen. A lot of his unwanted behavior at this stage will decrease with adequate physical and mental stimulation. 
    funny gifs Anniversary
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  • Thanks for the information and advice. I guess my husband and I should sit down and talk about whether we can give this dog what she needs. Our schedules and wallets are tight, but if we can make it work, we will. What we want most is for the dog to be happy, so we need to figure out whether we can make that happen or if we should find her a home with a big backyard and kids, etc. Thanks! Off to do some soul-searching...
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  • The time to discuss whether you could give the dog what she needs was before you adopted the dog.  They are living, breathing animals who have emotions.  They aren't trash or possessions to be schlepped around and pawned off on whoever because you don't feel like it.

     

    What you do is man up like a responsible adult and start training the dog more and exercising the dog more.  bell training for peeing.  obedience training for mental stimulation.  dog park, dog daycare, puzzle toys, dinner fed out of the kong.  positive reinforcement training and NILF can go a long way with a puppy.  When we were potty training our foster puppy we kept him on a very regular schedule and never left him unattended in the house so he didn't have the chance to pee anywhere.

     

    Puppies are a lot of work but they also deserve better than to be shuffled around b.c. the people responsible for them think its easier.

    image "...Saving just one pet won't change the world...but, surely, the world will change for that one pet..."
  • It truly amazes me how people think there are these mythical perfect homes out there with big back yards, kids, etc and that there are enough of them to go around for all the unwanted dogs.

     

    My home is not at all perfect for my pets, except for the fact that I would do literally anything I needed to to keep them happy and healthy.  All they need is a family that is in their corner period, and will make it work, period.  I wish the regulars were back here.  We have one who post divorce lived in an apt with 3 dogs and a cat; woke up at 5 am every morning to run her dogs so they got enough exercise.  One who still fosters and drives transport and did so with her son.  One with 9 dogs who was on bed rest at the hospital for 6 weeks and has raised her toddler successfully with multiple special needs dogs.  It doesn't take anything other than caring deeply about your pet to make these situations happen.

    image "...Saving just one pet won't change the world...but, surely, the world will change for that one pet..."
  • Kellbell, I was sincerely seeking advice because I want what is best for this dog, and I am not used to keeping an animal in an apartment. I walk her every 2 hours for about 20 minutes, and I try to take her to the dog park every day. It is HARD with a baby to do all of this. My hands are really full...and she has endless energy despite my best efforts. 

    Thank you for your kindness and thoughtful advice. Sheesh! 

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  • ...and I also asked because I miss my cat that we had to leave with my parents, and our other cat is having a hard time adjusting to losing his buddy. :(
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  • image kellbell1919:

    It truly amazes me how people think there are these mythical perfect homes out there with big back yards, kids, etc and that there are enough of them to go around for all the unwanted dogs.

     

    My home is not at all perfect for my pets, except for the fact that I would do literally anything I needed to to keep them happy and healthy.  All they need is a family that is in their corner period, and will make it work, period.  I wish the regulars were back here.  We have one who post divorce lived in an apt with 3 dogs and a cat; woke up at 5 am every morning to run her dogs so they got enough exercise.  One who still fosters and drives transport and did so with her son.  One with 9 dogs who was on bed rest at the hospital for 6 weeks and has raised her toddler successfully with multiple special needs dogs.  It doesn't take anything other than caring deeply about your pet to make these situations happen.

    I wish there was a "like" button for this. I've only been really back here for about two days and there have been so many "think about rehoming", or "I had to rehome" responses that my head hurts.  

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • image Emerald27:

    Kellbell, I was sincerely seeking advice because I want what is best for this dog, and I am not used to keeping an animal in an apartment. I walk her every 2 hours for about 20 minutes, and I try to take her to the dog park every day. It is HARD with a baby to do all of this. My hands are really full...and she has endless energy despite my best efforts. 

    Thank you for your kindness and thoughtful advice. Sheesh! 

    She was being kind. She was also being truthful. And I doubt her post was directed completely at you. There have been a lot of "rehome" responses to other posts lately, too. This board didn't used to be like that. In fact, you (general you, not specific) used to get flamed for even thinking about rehoming. I don't miss the flaming, but there has to be a middle ground. 

     Do you have the funds to hire a dog walker, or do a few days a week of a doggie day care? Dog could get some extra exercise, you wouldn't have to do it. We have a play for a day doggie day care in my area that's about $10/day. Obviously prices will vary, but it's probably worth it for your sanity.

    I understand that it's hard with a baby, but as Kel said, that should have been discussed before you got her. Dogs are a lot of work, as you are finding out.  

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • Also, dogs aren't capable of resentment. 

     Just sayin'.  

  • image Emerald27:
    ...and I also asked because I miss my cat that we had to leave with my parents, and our other cat is having a hard time adjusting to losing his buddy. :(

     

    I was nice before.  Am I supposed to pat you on the back that you have a habit of not fulfilling your commitment to your pets and dumping them on other people?  They're not disposable and  your inability to think through your decisions and fulfill your commitment affects them.  

    image "...Saving just one pet won't change the world...but, surely, the world will change for that one pet..."
  • image kellbell1919:

    The time to discuss whether you could give the dog what she needs was before you adopted the dog.  They are living, breathing animals who have emotions.  They aren't trash or possessions to be schlepped around and pawned off on whoever because you don't feel like it.

     

    What you do is man up like a responsible adult and start training the dog more and exercising the dog more.  bell training for peeing.  obedience training for mental stimulation.  dog park, dog daycare, puzzle toys, dinner fed out of the kong.  positive reinforcement training and NILF can go a long way with a puppy.  When we were potty training our foster puppy we kept him on a very regular schedule and never left him unattended in the house so he didn't have the chance to pee anywhere.

     

    Puppies are a lot of work but they also deserve better than to be shuffled around b.c. the people responsible for them think its easier.

     

    Couldnt have said it better myself. I dont think this has anything with the dog being a lab, its a puppy and puppys are crazy til they are about 2years old, but trainable and labs are very smart! You knew you were in for alot of work before you got a puppy right? Obviously you and your husband discussed it, and decided to get a lab, you read up on labs before you got one and knew they are very high energy right? If not a bulldog could have been a better fit for you. Also i think it is wrong for your husband to say this is all your responsibilty..he needs to be doing 1-2 hr training sessions when he gets home from work, you both agreed to get the dog and now its time to do the work and i promise if you do you will have a great dog in the end. My dog was a nut job when he first got him he is a resuce (lab golden mix)...he is now 5 and you really couldnt ask for a more low maintenance dog, but believe me we put in the work and trained him and it isnt easy. You got the dog..you keep it unless you really can find a better FOREVER home for him.

  • I have a "non-designer" labradoodle (puppy of labradoodle and lab mix) and I live in an apartment. We literally rescued him off the street without really understanding his needs...and he got needier as he got older.

     However, we have been making it work despite his intense energy. I can't really speak to raising a dog and a baby because i only have a dog, but I do think that things should be able to work out with training.

     If your dog is older than 6 mos, they should be able to be fully housebroken and not go inside...I housebroke my dog having no idea how to do it and the internet helped a lot. He was going inside for attention at times even after he knew better, and I got him to stop by simply ignoring his accidents (not punishing or making a scene, just cleaning and not saying anything to the dog) and literally doing a "happy dance" and giving treats when he went inside. He was not fully accident-free until i started ignoring the accidents and showing him that he can't get attention that way. I would suspect that is what your dog is doing. 

     As for the energy, hopefully it will taper off when the dog matures! They are really excitable dogs!

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  • ack, sorry, I danced when he went OUTSIDE!
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