Need help with game plan

Discussion in 'Labrador Rescue' started by coachrhino11, Oct 22, 2017.

  1. coachrhino11

    coachrhino11 Registered Users

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    I just found site. My wife and I are contemplating rescuing a lab. We have no pets, and a 6 year old daughter. We are not really experienced dog owners. We've both always wanted a larger dog inside, a dog that will do well with children and we can train easily and work with and enjoy. We enjoy taking jogs, being active but we work full time and can't come home for lunch. So, either crating 8-9 hours or allowing him/her to roam house. This is our biggest fear. Our daughter is a little bit fearful of dogs and that concerns me. We don't want a puppy and honestly don't have time. So, we've been eyeing a few that are around 3 or so. House trained, crate trained, good with kids. Thoughts, ideas?? We are home owners and have a great neighborhood for dogs, but our backyard is on small side.

    Wondering if house gets destroyed if we don't crate and is crating that long cruel?
     
  2. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    Hi and welcome. I definitely wouldn't crate a dog of any age for that length of time; it's not fair on him, you'll likely end up with behavioural problems due to boredom and it's also bad for joints. It's not ideal to leave a dog alone for that amount of time, especially sociable dogs like Labradors. They thrive on activity and human company, and will become bored and possibly destructive if left alone all day. I would encourage you to look at options of doggy day care or a dog walker who takes him out during the day, so his day is broken up more. You could leave him with a couple of frozen Kongs in the morning as his breakfast (I wouldn't feed from a bowl if I was leaving a dog for long periods; using a Kong instead will give him some enrichment to get his food), have someone take him out for an hour or more at lunchtime, then leave him with a couple more kongs when they leave.

    Here's an article which may help: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/should-you-get-a-labrador-if-you-work-full-time/
     
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  3. Jojo83

    Jojo83 Registered Users

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    All dogs, not just Labs, are social creatures and need interaction to maintain health so crating for that length if time is a definite No for the reasons @snowbunny gives.
    Although the dogs you are interested in are 'house trained, crate trained, good with kids' when re-homing these behaviours may nit be so evident initially as the dig is in an aluen environment and not sure what is expected of him/her. It can take several weeks for a dog to settle, in that time you have to be prepared for a few problems.
    If your daughter is at all fearful I would focus on helping her overcome this fear before introducing a dog into the home. Do you know people with dogs that she could spend time around? It is important that the dogs are calm, friendly, and used to children. It may be worth contacting a trainer/behaviourist who would work with you and your daughter with their own dog/s.
     
  4. edzbird

    edzbird Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    We both worked full time when we got Belle (a stray, aged around 18 months). She was not crated. She had a walk in the morning before work, and I came home at lunch time to give her another walk. She had a 3rd walk in the evening. She was a really laid back dog and not trouble at all. That lunch time walk and interaction was important.

    It's just a personal thing, but I never leave a dog alone with chews/toys/kongs, I am paranoid about accidents with them.
     
  5. coachrhino11

    coachrhino11 Registered Users

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    Wow, honestly we might not be ready for this commitment just yet in our life and I certainly don't take it lightly. Reason I came here for help and guidance. Doggy daycare is outrageous and honestly that's money that could be going for my daughter's college fund and pay down mortgage, guess that makes me selfish. An hour walk from a dog walker everyday? Big money again and most do not walk an hour or more, try 20-30 minutes, not to mention some stranger entering my house with key...no thank you. My daughter wants a cat which we've had before and I always wanted a dog and a cat. This is frustrating but you all bring up excellent points and I do feel guilty about thought of leaving a dog in a crate all day or not letting him go relieve himself.
     
  6. kateincornwall

    kateincornwall Registered Users

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    I think its also worth bearing in mind that rescue dogs need extra settling in and reassurance and I speak from experience ! We have our six year old Lab , plus a small dog that we rehomed seven months ago ,she was incredibly well behaved but I do put a large % of this down to the fact that we are retired and with our dogs , a lot . I`m sorry but if day care or a dog walker is really not possible , I reckon a cat would be a more realistic option , good luck ! Just to add , our rescue girl Nelly has severe joint issues, she is not yet three years old , our Vet thinking that its a mixture of bad breeding but also being left an awful lot without enough activity to allow joints to strengthen and muscle to build .
     
  7. JenBainbridge

    JenBainbridge Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    A dog is definitely a much bigger commitment than most people give credit for.

    Labradors especially are very very social dogs and love to be with their family, 8-9 hours a day is a long time to be left. They don't tend to play much on their own or entertain themselves so it will be long lonely days for them. It's likely they would get bored and start destroying things - youndefinitely can't leave one in a crate for that length of time. They also require a good amount of exercise - not huge but cold rainy walks on dark mornings when you've got a long day of work ahead aren't always pleasant.

    My dog is never left for more than 6 hours with an hours walk in the middle. So it's 2.5 hours each side. We've spent up to £200 some months on daycare and dog walkers depending on how busy we are. But we committed to getting Stanley so will do everything we can to ensure he's happy and healthy.

    Not trying to be negative - dogs also bring a million amazing things to your life. They're fun, loving and a joy to be around. But I think you're right not taking the decision lightly. If get one they have to be a top priority that you enjoy looking after :)
     
  8. coachrhino11

    coachrhino11 Registered Users

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    Thanks everyone who contributed, we will probably postpone lab life at this time unfortunately. Maybe eventually, but unfortunately our jobs are both too far from home and it just wouldn't be fair to the dog.
     
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  9. kateincornwall

    kateincornwall Registered Users

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    I think this is a wise decision , and wish you luck in the future .
     
  10. FayRose

    FayRose Registered Users

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    That's probably a wise decision under the circumstances you are in.

    You could contact a local rescue centre and find out if it would be possible for you, as a family could walk any of their dogs. That way, you could be helping the rehoming centre and also getting to 'know' dogs and their behaviour and needs. It may also help your daughter to gain confidence with dogs. Then, if in the future your circumstances change and you are able to have a dog and someone be at home more, you would have a bit of knowledge and experience.
     
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  11. Karen

    Karen Moderator Forum Supporter

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    I salute you for taking this so seriously and giving it due consideration. At some point in time you'll have time for a dog - maybe that is just not right now.
     
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  12. charlie

    charlie Registered Users

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    Welcome from Hattie 10 years and our rescue boy Charlie 6 years. Good for you considering getting a dog from all angles. Rescuing a dog is a massive undertaking and they mostly all come with some baggage. When we got Charlie at 9 months old I had 3 out of 4 children still living at home, our other dog, I worked part time, my husband works in London daily and travels overseas a lot. It was and still can be a lot of work, training, walking whilst fitting your life in too. Of course I wouldn't change Charlie for the world we love him so much :heart:

    Your time will come to welcome a rescue dog into your life and you will know when that is. Good luck with getting a Cat :) x
     
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