Working with dogs

Discussion in 'The Fire Hydrant' started by JacksonsMom, May 30, 2014.

  1. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    So I have this new job opportunity to work near my dads house. It's a boarding facility but they also have training, grooming, etc.

    The guy I spoke with said he's interested in someone 30-40 hours per week at the moment and also someone who is willing to learn training as well as do kennel work. He has been a trainer for over 30yrs, he said, and is having health problems so he can't handle the bigger dogs as well anymore.

    I have another job opportunity to possibly work at a pet store so basically retail.

    Those that work with dogs -- do you find you get worn out... or not want to work with your own dogs as much when you get home? I'm worried about making myself not like dogs as much by being around them all the time... :rofl1: I don't know, I seem to think it's something I'd enjoy and I know it's not going to be easy... but it's what I know and what I'm good at.

    It's not really the career path I was looking at overall but it could work for me for the next 2 years while I finish my schooling. But who knows maybe it will lead to something more.
     
  2. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    I worked at a very small scale daycare, and even with that I would go home and be like "GO LAY THE BLEEPITY DOWN! I'M TIRED OF DOGS!" but I know people who also don't feel that way at all.

    I can't wait to get out of the pet industry, though at least right now it's just retail. I'm just so done with stupid people and annoying dogs.
     
  3. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    I would be burnt out some days, yes. Especially with kennel work. After a long day of dealing with idiot dogs barking up a storm, I'd get home and be like, "STOP BARKING BECAUSE YOU ARE HAPPY. MAKE NO NOISE."

    But I was typically gone all morning at school, then working for 4 hours, then going home. So essentially 12-13 hour days. I typically don't want to do anything with the dogs after being gone that long regardless of where I was gone.

    And the kennel facility I worked at had too many dogs in too small of an area with too few staff and supplies. The dogs were well taken care of, don't get me wrong, but a pleasant environment it was not. I think I would have been much happier and less stressed had the conditions been different. The place I work at now has a very nice boarding facility, and they max have 20 dogs at a time, with 2 people on staff - that is the minimum I'm used to, with only one person. LOL
     
  4. Julee

    Julee UNSTOPPABLE

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    Everyone I know who has worked in daycare or boarding has come to hate it at least for a while. Myself included.

    I'd do much better if I was working for a daycare or kennel and had set hours, rather than pretty much having to do it 24/7 for sometimes weeks at a time with no real break.
     
  5. AllieMackie

    AllieMackie Wookie Collie

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    I didn't get burnt out working at the pet food store, in fact it often made me eager to get home to Finn and do fun things/give him new presents from work. LOL.

    The daycare? I worked there before I could have a dog of my own, and even then I said hellllll no to dogs after work. :p
     
  6. straw

    straw New Member

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    I work about that many hours at a daycare/training facility now and I really enjoy it. I do more training than daycare, granted. I only have two daycare shifts a week and I'm happy with that.

    We DON'T do boarding so the daycare dogs are pretty much all regulars... meaning I've known most of them for months or more, they know me and the routine and are very easy to get along with now. It might be different if the group was constantly changing because boarding dogs were coming in or going home.

    I'm usually pooped by the end of the day. Sometimes mentally - I just want to drive Venice to the park and mindlessly throw a ball for her or let her run. Sometimes if it's been busy and I've been running around, I'd rather just plunk myself in a chair and work on tricks with her.

    If anything, working with dogs all day has increased my enthusiasm for dogs. On the other hand, it has left me with very little patience for idiot owners. We use almost exclusively positive reinforcement and negative punishment at our facility, and when I've spent a whole day talking to people about how to toilet train their dog without slapping his face in it, or WHY they shouldn't put a prong on their reactive dog and yank on it, I really have no patience to spend time with people who don't share my training philosophy.

    But I think your coworkers can make all the difference. I love my colleagues. They are great people and I look forward to going to work just to see them. I've made connections in the dog world and pretty much just really love what I do.
     
  7. FG167

    FG167 New Member

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    It eventually wore me down. I worked outside in pretty hard conditions and by the time I got home I was exhausted, disgusting, and wanted to eat and then sleep.
     
  8. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    Working at a pet store/dog walking/occasional in home dog boarding was JUST ENOUGH for me, I got lots of fun (short) times with dogs, goodies for Merlin, and am excited to see him at the end of the day and still had energy.

    Doggy daycare I only did for 2 months. It wore me out. At the end of the day I was gross, tired, hungry and just wanted to shower and sleep and never hear another bark. Our daycare had plenty of staff and was well managed, but still, it's a lot of work, a lot of noise, and dogs are usually there all day.
     
  9. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    Lol all of these answers are kind of what I was afraid of :p

    Maybe I should look elsewhere. Or go to the interview at the pet store.

    I know I did dog walking during the day for 2 years just on my own through care.com and didn't mind that, but I want something a bit more 'official' and need a real paycheck as I'm working on my credit right now etc.
     
  10. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

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    I think it really depends on what you do. In a boarding facility where your job is to take the dogs out to potty, play with them one on one, do some training, et cetera, I think that's a lot different than a lot of daycare settings. I don't work at the daycare (although I've considered it... just about anything is better than what I'm doing right now) but I know it's a lot of watching the dogs together to make sure nobody is being a jerk, separating when things get a little crazy, and cleaning up pee/poo a lot. It doesn't seem very glamorous or, really, fun.

    OTOH with my job I just teach and train. I had nights where I worked 8-5 at the radio station, then drove to the training building, taught three hour long classes, then went home at 9pm. I'm dead at the end of that day... but it doesn't make me not like my dogs or not want to work with them. In some ways it actually makes me eager to go home and interact with them. Because they are so good LOL. Payton and Auggie are so smart, Georgie is so eager, I love to go back to them after teaching "the masses" shall we say. It makes me appreciate them and what we have going.
    I think I've also said it before, it's very emotionally fulfilling for me. My students adore me and we have a lot of fun. People always have such nice things to say. One lady told me "You're just so good with dogs. I love watching you teach." and it was like my heart was just going to swell. It makes me feel good to help people have a better relationship with their dogs. Even when I'm feeling burnt out and wish I didn't have to teach that night because I would so much rather sit at home and watch Real Housewives and maybe drink some alcohol - that only lasts until I'm actually in the process of teaching my class, and then all those feelings go away.

    So I think it just depends on what you're doing, and also your personality in general. It energizes me on multiple levels to work with people and their dogs. Not everybody is going to feel like that.
     
  11. Maxy24

    Maxy24 Active Member

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    I work at doggy daycare and boarding. I don't find that I have less tolerance or want to do less with Tucker when I get home (aside from normal I'm tired after work stuff), but I've found it makes me sort of feel different about him sometimes. It's strange, like I start viewing him as...generic dog. I almost feel detached from him, like he's just another random dog that I don't really have a relationship with. Once I spend some time with him doing something I get over it though.
     
  12. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    I think this happens to most people who work with a large quantity of somethings (lol kids, dogs, people) you come home to more of those things and are like on "work mode"

    Especially in daycare situations, it's so much less one-on-one with you than you'd expect (I call it working with a "herd" of dogs lol), so you find yourself just kind of an auto-dog-pilot where it's not fifi, max, sophie etc... it's just working with "these dogs" and maintaining the sort-of-chaotic peace and cleanliness of this group of animals

    Usually only takes a minute of Merlin's antics and sitting down with him to realize how wonderful it is to work with ONE DOG lol and remember I'm not at work but I totally understand where you're coming from.

    I think I would love day care 10000% more and would've stayed if there was one-on-one time, but honestly, it was really just a lot of cleaning and making sure nobody fights lol
     
  13. meepitsmeagan

    meepitsmeagan Meagan & The Cattle Dog Crew

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    I have mixed feelings. I work in both daycare/boarding and at a private dog park.

    Daycare/boarding... yeah, I'm getting burned out of certain aspects. Mostly because it is LOUD. Since I've moved up to "office work" it has helped a lot, but I still do deal with the dogs a few days a week. Most are great, it's the few that aren't that really ruin it. Also, owners. Owners are the worst. I think if you stay away from them you are golden. :rofl1: My awesome coworkers help make it fun, though and I really do enjoy it a lot of the time.

    The dog park is pretty fun. It's basically just cleaning, socializing with our clients and providing information. I don't want to say it's relaxed, because my boarding job is definitely more relaxed, but it's a different type of environment because it isn't always GOGOGO.

    So yeah, some days I feel burned out but others I love it. I'm no help. :p
     
  14. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    I would try it. Definitely wouldn't hurt and you can't know how it will fit you until you try!

    I do think most jobs go through cycles of burnout too. I know I do with mine.
     
  15. Dizzy

    Dizzy Sit! Good dog.

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    My first ever job was working in a boarding facility. It's hard work, smelly (so much poop), loud and cold and wet a lot.

    It's a good experience though, and if this is just a job whilst you finish schooling then I'd say go for it. Not like you're tied to it forever, and you can always leave and find another job if you hate it ;)

    You might love it.
     
  16. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    I feel like I would enjoy training a lot more than kennel work. Most people around here just need basic training and I'm good with that. I am working with my grandmas crazy Goldendoodle this weekend and as much as he can annoy me otherwise, I do get a lot of pleasure out of seeing him think and learn and see his potential.

    I'm a little worries this place might be more into Aversive type training for some strange reason though. I talked to the owner on the phone and got that vibe. I don't think I could train in a place that I don't agree with the methods.

    My dad keeps telling me to try Petsmart but I know as a trainer there, you're mostly doing retail I think?
     
  17. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    I would get soooo burnt out at a daycare. I turned down a FT daycare job, after doing a working interview for like 2 hours I thought holy crap who would want to do this all day.

    Pet store and vet tech job don't bother me at all. Pet store was minimal dog interaction, just talking about them like I would on Chaz lol. And as a tech, what I do at work is so different from how I spend time with my own dogs that it doesn't affect me. They're still how I want to spend my free time and unwind.
     
  18. DJEtzel

    DJEtzel New Member

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    IME, if you don't like the people and the pay isn't great, or there are main philosophy's you disagree with, you are going to get burnt out fast working that much.

    I worked in shelters for a few years, and left for the politics, pay, and philosophies above all else. It was rewarding, but tiring - kept me very fit.

    I love training and don't get burnt out a single bit because I work with awesome people doing exactly what I love to do and the way I like to do it.

    eta; working in an office with a ton of people coming in and calling that have no idea what they're talking about in regards to their animals and how they can't afford them- that gets tiring. But, the physical stress is non-existent so there is not much stress stacking.
     
  19. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

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    I could see this as a problem. I don't 100% agree with my head trainer on everything but at this point, I teach my classes and she does hers and they don't intersect or anything, so it's not a problem. Our classes are slightly different from each other but it's not like she's out there dragging dogs around on prongs and I'm over here with a clicker or anything like that. We aren't worlds apart in training methods. But if that WERE the case, yeah, I wouldn't be able to deal with that unless they just gave me carte blanche to do whatever and weren't going to hassle me about it.

    As far as PetSmart goes, you do a lot of retail, and you do sales of your own classes, and also, you are a Cookie Cutter. I've never done it myself but my understanding from people I know who have done is is... you must teach 100% how PetSmart tells you to teach. You are not supposed to deviate. If you train somebody in a method that is not "the PetSmart way," you can be personally held liable if something bad happens. I considered doing it years ago, but at this point, no way would I do it.
     
  20. Paviche

    Paviche Duuuuude.

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    It really depends on the place but IME I definitely get burned out on daycare. I've worked at 3 different daycares and the experiences were all different. The first one was small and great until we became lax about a particular aggressive dog and then it was very stressful and difficult, but I was also just a kid with no experience (16/17.) The second was small and horribly run and it was a nightmare. It got to a point where I would drive by a park, see a young lab (or whatever) and instead of thinking "Aww" all I could think was "ugh, I bet that dog is a nightmare." It didn't damage my relationship with my dog at all but it damaged, at the time, how I viewed dogs which I hated. The last one was huge and although we had problem dogs, it was much easier to deal with because it was run well and I had an amazing team of coworkers. Still, daycare is not for me and I have no intention of ever doing it again.

    In the end, you really won't know unless you try it yourself!

    As far as PetSmart... I just started at PetSmart as a trainer. The classes are definitely very cookie cutter, and there is a curriculum you have to follow, but I'm able to put my own flair on things and have my own style of training (within the confines of +R and -P, but that's fine with me.) My understanding is that Petco is much more strict about training (trainers, specifically.) If I was teaching more advanced stuff, it might bother me, but honestly even through the Advanced classes it's not super difficult material, so working off a curriculum doesn't bother me. My Area Trainer really drilled the point that you can ADD to the curriculum, but absolutely cannot subtract from it. It is floor work (facing, cashiering, helping customers) as well and you do have to sell your classes, so that's something to consider. If you aren't looking to be SUPER SRS TRAINER (which is awesome and I hope to be eventually, but I'm not there yet) it might be an option worth looking into. :) But I've only been there about a month now and I'm talking mostly about what I've been told/trained, so take it all with a grain of salt.
     

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