Do I have enough time for a dog?

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Sister7, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. Sister7

    Sister7 New Member

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    I have really been missing having a dog in my life. I'm 25 and growing up we always had 3-4 dogs in the family. I grew up showing obedience up to open with my lab. My lifestyle now is very different, and I'm not 100% sure I could make it work which is why I don't have a dog yet.

    I own a townhouse which is pretty large (1400sq ft) but it doesn't have much of a yard. A dog would need to go on leashed potty walks. I do live within walking distance to a 600 acre park. The park is awesome, but in the winter it's already dark when I get home from work. I have a long commute an am usually gone about 10hrs M-F.

    My boyfriend lives with me, and is supportive of the dog idea. He works about the same schedule as me. However, he has never had a dog before so I would need to have time to train the dog and the boyfriend! He is really in favor of getting a puppy. I would love an adorable little puppy but I have no idea how you would go about potty training and everything without being home.

    I already have a room in the house that would be dedicated puppy zone and I'm sure I would need to use wee-wee pads.

    Can you raise a well adjusted puppy if you're out of the house 10 hrs a day? I don't travel much or have any other obligations, so the majority of my free time would be spent with the pup.
     
  2. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    I don't know about a puppy, but you could definitely make it work with an adult dog. If I can make it work with 2 jobs and going to school full time, anyone can make it work ;)
     
  3. hey_jude

    hey_jude New Member

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    I'm 22, work from full time (although from home- that's a benefit for me), live in an apartment, and got a border collie puppy none the less, and it was perfectly easy for me. Working from home helped a ton, but what also helped was going to the dog part for 3 months before I got my dog almost everyday (walkable for me as well) so I got in the habit. Now it's just part of my schedule to go everyday. I think if you can commit to 1 hour a day to a dog park, and 1 hour a day for the rest of the day spread out (between taking it outside, feeding it, playing etc), you can handle it. I will say that I bring Jude everywhere to make it better. If I go to the grocery store, he comes just for the ride so it's more interesting for me. I try to stop at petco every few days so he's stimulated. We also budget for 1 day a week in daycare. I personally consider the time commitment and expense commitment part of preparing for children one day!

    Good luck! It's possible its all about prioritizing.
     
  4. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    I think it would be VERY hard to raise a puppy being gone 10 hours a day...but it's probably do-able to get an adult dog, as long as you carefully look into the breed and whatnot. I don't know too many people who could handle a border collie puppy with both household members gone 10 hours a day....
     
  5. Artfish

    Artfish Drivey and Intense

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    It would be best to consider a dog no younger than six months of age. We both work full time and outside the house, live in a townhouse with no yard, and we have a GSD mix, about 45 lbs. It works because we do training, fetch indoors, then several weekly trips to either the offleash parks (when empty) or to the cattle pastures (also when empty). It would be SO MUCH EASIER if we had a yard but we make it work. Remember, there are lots of dog owners in NYC who make it happen just fine. :) With pups, remember that it is not just potty breaks that need to be dealt with, but SOCIALIZATION. When you get home from work, every single evening, will you have the desire and energy to load up the pup and drive to the vet, drive downtown, drive to a store that allows dogs, drive to puppy classes, drive everywhere to raise a well trained and well socialized dog? That is a TON of work that just cannot wait for the weekend.
     
  6. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

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    I also think a dog that is at least 12-18 months old would work better. They are still young enough to still have the fun parts of being a puppy (like being silly, getting the zoomies, etc) but they have better bladder control and are usually out the mega-chewing stages.

    If you are fully set on getting a young puppy, then I would look into having someone come over in the middle of the day to take the pup for a short walk, such as a dog-walking service, a friend or even an able senior citizen. Daycare is also a fabulous option for people who work long hours but still want a dog.

    What kind of dog are you looking to get? Another Lab?
     
  7. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    You and your boyfriend will probably want to stagger your schedules to make it work. My husband and I both work full time, but I take morning duties with the dog (walk her/train her/play with her) before I head into the office, and he comes home early to walk her in the mid-late afternoon, and finishes up work from home. We live in an apartment, so like you, all outside time is on a leash!

    Winter time is definitely harder, since it gets dark so early. There are a few ways we deal with it though. First, we found a dog park 20 minutes away that has lights until 10pm. Second, she goes to day care a lot in the winter when we know we won't be able to go to the park at night. We also take extra agility classes, to tire her out.

    If you get a puppy, it's going to be tricky. I am SO grateful that we adopted a 3-4 year old dog. She was house trained and could hold her bladder for 8 hours, was past the horrible chewing/mischief making, and I didn't have to stress about proper socialization. I would definitely look at an adult dog. Even so, I might look into hiring a dog walker to come mid day and let the dog out, at least for the first few weeks.
     
  8. Amanda885

    Amanda885 New Member

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    seems like you could do it..however i would get an adult dog..one that doesnt need too much training since you wont have enough time to maybe start with a puppy...just make sure that you can afford to emotionally and financially as well
     
  9. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    I never sold a pup into this situation . To me dogs should be in homes /// not into kennels .
     
  10. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    Sorry, but I can provide just as loving and stimulating a home as anyone else. If I didn't work the dog wouldn't eat.
     
  11. xpaeanx

    xpaeanx Active Member

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    IMO, a puppy wouldn't be a good idea. An adult dog would be fine though. Once you pick your breed, contact local breeders and breed specific rescue, it may take some time, but they'll be able to place you with a dog.

    Puppies are over rated anyway, older dogs are where it's at. Lol.
     
  12. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

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    By staggering our schedules, my fiance and I have raised two dogs from 6 and 10 months respectively to happy healthy dogs. And I work obscene hours. If I didn't have him, I could still have done it, it just would have required forking out for a dog walker.

    But definately go for a dog of at least 6 months . . . a puppy would be very challanging under those circumstances. Also, though I disagree with her, Grammy is right in one sense: it will be hard to find a good breeder willing to sell to you due to your age and circumstances. However, there are thousands of adolecent and adult dogs that are literally dying for a home, and who would do just fine in yours. And there is no need to feel guilty: an owner absent 10 hours a day is better than no owner at all.
     
  13. sammgirl

    sammgirl ACoops favorite

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    I'm probably going to get flak for this, but I think it's ok to get a puppy even if you work.

    I think it's unrealistic for people to say that they wouldn't sell a puppy to a household that functions on two incomes... no offense, but that's everybody right now.

    However, if you DO get a puppy, you need to work out staggering your schedule with your partner's schedule. When Harper comes, I'll be at work by 7:15 a.m. and home by 4:15 p.m. My boyfriend leaves for work at 11 a.m. and will be home for lunch at 2 p.m. for an hour until 3 p.m., then I'm back shortly after that.

    So you can see, the pup gets alot of interaction during the day and will spend very little time alone, which it will probably spend sleeping anyway.

    Plus, we'll be utilizing doggy day care and a dog walker which we can PAY for because we both WORK.

    Normally, I try not to post much about my life on here because I know that it can easily turn into a flame war. But, I am going to get a puppy and this is how I am going to do it.

    Plus, this puppy will also be going to puppy preschool AND a handling class with pro handler. Then it will be obedience and beginners agility...

    So, even though my household might be ideal to some, I bet there are plenty of breeders who would be happy to have their puppy go to a home like mine. And in fact my mentor knows me and my situation and is just fine with it.

    So there you have it. Sorry, but certain things ruffle my feathers and this is a "button" I guess. :)
     
  14. elegy

    elegy overdogged

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    sure. provided you have the ability to get the puppy out during the day. i work fulltime but i'm home over lunch every day (or if i can't come home, could- still do- take the puppy with me). there's no way it would have been reasonable or humane of me to leave 12 week old steve on his own for ten hours at a stretch.
     
  15. xpaeanx

    xpaeanx Active Member

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    The OP said she has a long commute and her SO has the same schedule. So she would have to hire someone to let the puppy out everyday. Around here, you're looking around $20/day... Which means $100/week or $400/month.

    An adult dog can fit into their current schedule with ease, and little expense. That's why everyone is recommending an adult. ;)
     
  16. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    There are exceptions . Today is different than when I bred . Then someone was home sometime during the day . My daughters took litter mates , but both SO and they came home during the day . Neither Kenneled and both easy to potty train.
     
  17. theresa92841

    theresa92841 Gigi Monster & Evil Puppy

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    I've raised two of my puppies while I worked. And was gone from the house 12 hours a day. I used an ex-pen when I was gone, so the puppy had more room. I had somebody come and check on her and play with her at lunch time. I took her to puppy classes and did stuff with her when I got home. One of my puppies was litter trained by the breeder before I got her and that was lovely.

    After she had all her shots, I took her to doggy day care a couple of times a week.

    It just took planning and consideration. I did choose small breed dogs that are really happy with long walks but can get by with running around the house and yard.

    I also knew that when I was done with work for the day, I would have the pupsters as my major commitment. And didn't try to do non-dog oriented activities during the week. I also would have puppy play dates at night.
     
  18. I live alone, and I work 42+ hours a week. Not quite as long as you, but I think it's close enough that I can offer some advice. You can totally make it work! I would recommend, if not an adult, then a puppy that is around 12 months old or older. If you do decide to get a puppy, you will need to have someone come over at least once or twice a day while you are gone to let them out. Also, please research the breed you are planning to get. I had no idea what I was getting into with Raja. She has more energy than you could even begin to understand.

    How I manage: I wake up at 4:30 in the morning, run five miles with her, then spend however long I can playing with both of the dogs before I have to leave at 7:30. Both dogs are crated when I am at work, though Tempie (at a year and a half) is finally being allowed out by herself on Saturdays when I work fewer hours. This took a lot of time and effort to achieve. When I get home, I run another five miles with Raja, play fetch for a couple of hours with Tempie, and spend the rest of the night letting them run off steam so that they can sleep with me instead of needing to be crated. My weekends also go to these same efforts with one addition. I take them to the dog park for about 4 hours. They spend the ENTIRE time running, swimming, wrestling, etc. Nonstop. All of this just keeps them somewhat sane and manageable during the week. As you can see, I have little to no free time. And that's before I add in the training sessions. I am currently looking at getting into weight pulling or something of the sort and hoping that, while it will still take time, it won't exhaust me quite so much.

    I'm not trying to scare you off. I'm just hoping you are doing research into the breed you want so you can find one that suits your lifestyle.
     
  19. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    And in contrast, my dog is content to sleep all day if I'd let him. I have to literally force him out of bed in the mornings, and even at that he rolls off the bed and onto the couch. Sure, we take walks, but my dog doesn't require 10 miles of running a day to keep him happy. Some dogs do. We do have multiple training sessions every day. We do unusual things in our training sessions from time to time to keep him stimulated (such as color retrieving, which we are actually working on now, instead of just trying to get lucky xD). It really depends a lot on the individual dog. Breed plays a role, but even within the breed, there are differences.
     
  20. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    Certainly not a baby. An older pup maybe. IF i were going to be gone that long I would prefer and older dog. THere are so many that need good homes and dogs out there that already have the starts of training it would seem the wisest way to go.
     

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