|Barked: Sat Dec 29, '12 10:05pm PST |
|I think we all feel that we'd be remiss not to educate you before you try again with another puppy.
First, having a dog who didn't sell reflects really poorly on the breeder. I'd be fine with a breeder who insisted that all pups stay until 10 or 12 or 16 weeks old, but I would run like hell from one who had a puppy weeks or months after selling the others, unless there was an upfront explanation such as the dog not conforming to breed standards in a way that didn't affect his health. Dogs from good breeders are often sold before they are conceived, and certainly before they are ready to go home. Puppies do need to potty every few hours, and they also are very destructive and rambunctious when underexercised. It causes them enormous stress and anxiety to be alone for long periods of time. They consider it rejection and punishment, and will desperately try to get back in with the pack. Lack of supervision also makes it almost impossible for them to learn the house rules. This is how we end up with umpteen threads saying "my dog just will not be potty trained! She sneaks off in the other room and pees behind the couch!" (Duh! Dogs don't get potty trained without being watched constantly!) All of these needs are very hard to meet while caring for a baby or working full time. People whose lifestyles don't match the needs of a puppy should look at adopting an adult dog with no separation anxiety. There's no nice way to say this last bit, but your ideas about dog ownership are totally screwed up and going to cause a lot of heartache for everyone. You returned a defenseless creature to an unhealthy and potentially unsafe situation. The right thing to do, if you can't handle the dog, is to eat the financial loss, work on the problems as much as you can with whatever time you can spare, and rehome the dog. Perfect dogs do not exist. At some point, you will deal with some health issue or behavior that's incredibly expensive, inconvenient, or both. It's not uncommon for puppies to have loose stool or frequent infections- their immune systems are immature, and it takes about five seconds of your attention wandering for them to eat dead animals/poop/trash/rocks/chicken bones/etc. That can mean a lot of extra trips outside when you don't feel like it, a lot of yucky cleanup, and a lot of expensive trips to the vet. If that doesn't happen, you may deal with spay incontinence, or impacted anal glands, or prey drive toward squirrels and cats. You will almost certainly deal with what seems like a horrendous, unimaginable amount of nipping and/or chewing. Fear aggression is extremely common, and even happens in dogs from top-tier breeders. It's obviously even more common if you choose your breeder based on convenience and price. The only way to be a good dog owner is to think about whether you can meet a dog's needs for togetherness, attention, and exercise, and then be committed to solving problems that arise with creativity and persistence, rather than throwing up your hands and complaining about your bad luck. Much like you don't get to return your son if he develops a serious illness or starts spitting on other children in daycare, you don't get to give up on your dog when he's inconvenient. Fearfulness in a young puppy is so very fixable- it's solidly on the lower end of things you're likely to deal with in the course of a dog's life, or even in the first year. If you were overwhelmed by the prospect, you just do not have the energy and commitment needed to raise a puppy right now (and most people raising a baby probably don't!). In the interest of preserving your sanity and not depriving a puppy of a home where he'll get what he needs, please admit to yourself that this is not the right time, and educate yourself by reading books, forums, and websites before you consider it again.
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