Puppies and nursing

  1. Hi! I am single, live alone and am thinking about getting a puppy. I was wondering if anyone believes this is do-able. I don't want to be cruel in getting a puppy and I really do want to make sure it is well taken care of.
    I work 12 hour shifts three days a week but would be willing to hire a dog walker to come take the puppy out. I would also plan to take the puppy on a 15 to 20 minute walk in the mornings before work and in the evenings when I got home.
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    About Nurse3242

    Joined: Jan '16; Posts: 24; Likes: 6

    10 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from Nurse3242
    Hi! I am single, live alone and am thinking about getting a puppy. I was wondering if anyone believes this is do-able. I don't want to be cruel in getting a puppy and I really do want to make sure it is well taken care of.
    I work 12 hour shifts three days a week but would be willing to hire a dog walker to come take the puppy out. I would also plan to take the puppy on a 15 to 20 minute walk in the mornings before work and in the evenings when I got home.
    What will happen when the dog barks and the neighbors complain? You meet a new guy and he doesn't like dogs or is allergic to them? You move and your new place doesn't allow pets? You decide to further your education and have even less time for the pet?
    I get really sick of seeing people whining about "having to give up their pet" who they "love so much". If your life is very stable, get the dog ...if it's not, it might be better to wait. You can always get your puppy fix volunteering at an animal shelter.
  4. by   Racer15
    I personally would not get a puppy. Twelve hour shifts can turn into 14 hour shifts, sometimes you're too tired for a shower, let alone a 15 minute walk. I have a dog, but she is 16 years old, I got her long before I was a nurse, so she was fully housebroken quite awhile ago, but I still have days where I panic because it's been 12+ hours since she went out and I'm stuck at work. I probably won't get another dog as long as I am single, and I would not even consider a puppy. But that's me.
  5. by   Cat365
    I have had dogs all of my life and I've raised them all from puppies, but it is not easy even without 12 hour shifts. Some things to consider.

    How old of a puppy? I read somewhere that a puppy generally needs to go outside as often as their age in months plus one. So a three month old puppy needs to have a potty break every four hours. That seems basically true to me, except for the first week or two of house training. I took all of mine out a lot more than that the first 1-2 weeks.

    What size of puppy are you considering? What breed or mix of breeds? How is your living situation set up? Do you have a fenced in yard? Where do you live? What is the climate like? Have you owned dogs before? How willing/able are you to train a dog? Are you willing to take training classes?

    Some people train small dogs to use piddle pads. Large breed dogs have larger teeth and stronger jaws. My Great Dane was actually very well behaved for a puppy, but when he wasn't it didn't take very long for something to become completely demolished. He could be trusted alone outside a crate in the house by the time he was a year old. My current lab mix wants to eat everything and she can't be trusted at 14 months. I might consider leaving her alone unsupervised when she is 3-5 years old, maybe.

    Puppies should be confined. An unsupervised-loose puppy is like turning a two year old with sharp teeth loose in your house for hours. Dogs need boundaries and rules to be enforced consistently, but some breeds need more "leadership" than others. Some breeds need a lot of activity and interaction and some are more couch potatoes. So if you want a dog study the breed and consider if you can match that dogs need.

    I raised my last dog while working 12 hour shifts, but I made sure I never worked two in a row when the dog was little. I work nights and I think that actually made things easier. I asked my mother to puppy sit in the evenings and I set an alarm to get up every three hours during the day. I still take her to doggy daycare every couple of weeks just to blow off steam, but you can't do that until the dog has received its full round of puppy shots. I also am a member of our local obedience club and attend class at least once a week.

    I have decided that I will not be getting another puppy for several years and not at all until I can get my house set up differently. I plan on sectioning off a portion of my garage and making an indoor/outdoor kennel that I can safely leave them in while I work. I currently have a large fenced in backyard, but the one experience of a very muddy Great Dane who walked in through an open window and laid down in the middle of my freshly washed bed convinced me that a doggy door with direct access to the house was not my idea of fun. Also, can you imagine what else might come in through a Great Dane sized doggy door?

    Long and short of the story is that it is doable with proper planning and commitment, but puppies are more work than you think. You might consider an older puppy, they are a bit less work.
    Last edit by Cat365 on Nov 8, '17
  6. by   Been there,done that
    I personally feel life is better with a dog.I have had 3 that all have a piece of my heart. If you have the energy to walk the mutt in the morning, and are willing to spend $$ for a dog walker.. you will be an excellent owner.
    Enjoy! let us know what fur kid you got! Get a rescue dog .. its the way to go.. not a puppy from a dog mill.
  7. by   Been there,done that
    Quote from Sour Lemon
    What will happen when the dog barks and the neighbors complain? You meet a new guy and he doesn't like dogs or is allergic to them? You move and your new place doesn't allow pets? You decide to further your education and have even less time for the pet?
    I get really sick of seeing people whining about "having to give up their pet" who they "love so much". If your life is very stable, get the dog ...if it's not, it might be better to wait. You can always get your puppy fix volunteering at an animal shelter.
    No, just no. Who CARES about a new guy. Love me, love my dog. OP will have 4 days/ week to adventure with her pup.. beats a "guy" any day.
  8. by   Crush
    I walk mine before work every day and when I get home. I have a dog door that they can utilize when I work. When they were puppies I had a person come let them out ( sometimes my mom, sometimes the pet sitter, or my son ). My dogs bark some but not much. So far no complaints from neighbors.
  9. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from Been there,done that
    No, just no. Who CARES about a new guy. Love me, love my dog. OP will have 4 days/ week to adventure with her pup.. beats a "guy" any day.
    I wish everyone thought that way!!
  10. by   NurseSpeedy
    When I moved out on my own I made the decision to leave my lab with my parents/brother. She grew up with us all from when she was 3 months old. I tried bringing her by my new apartment (I only worked 8 hour shifts at the time) and she wouldn't continue walking up the steps. She was able to see down through the cracks and was terrified. I had to pick her up and carry her three flights. I figured she'd be happier at her original home.

    Had a neighbor who lived above me in a condo who brought her cocker spaniel after a divorce. She would leave at 6:30am and return around 9pm. I knew this because the poor dog cried nonstop until she returned. Everyday. Did not stop to sleep or eat. I was exhausted because I had an infant who I was now walking in a stroller outside in the Florida heat in order to get her a nap since she couldn't sleep inside with the barking dog. I talked to the woman and was told that the dog just needed to "adjust". After three months I called the sheriffs office and asked if they would just talk to her because I couldn't do it anymore. Another month later she apologized and found a home with a lot of land that would take in her dog since she didn't want to continue to stress the dog out either.

    A dog that's a little older and used to being left alone may work with a very dependable dog walker who could get them out to go to the bathroom. If you have a fenced yard and a back porch it would also help, provided the dog isn't one to dig its way out. We tried that with our lab since she loved it outside. Found out she loved it outside the front of the house even more because she would dig under the fence and just sit at the front door until we came home. Nice that she didn't wander off, but funny that she preferred to stare at the front door rather than run around in a big backyard. Neighbors told us they would just see her sitting there for hours staring at the door.

    About 10 years ago a coworker found a stray momma cat would ended up having kittens. For financial reasons he could only keep the momma and found homes for the kittens with coworkers. There was one left that I took home. He would of had to go ton the pound if he didn't find a home soon. I don't know if it's because I had dogs all my life but the cat seems more like a dog (maybe because the kids had named him Scooby before I got him. He was already responding to the name and boy does it fit him now!). He comes when I call him, he's my little shadow, very vocal when he plays (even at this age), and a great temperament as long as I don't bring ANY OTHER FURRY CREATURE HOME. The best thing is after he was done being a kitten he didn't cry when I was gone and he has a liter box to use when I'm away with a bowl of food and water.

    If your in a house, the crying pet probably won't be an issue if you get s young animal. If your in an apartment or a condo, it's a big thing to consider. Your neighbors will likely tolerate it for a couple of days (not everyone but most) but if it continues they aren't going to put up with it for weeks or months. Baby animals cry. My kitten did it when I was gone but guess what? My neighbor just got a puppy so she couldn't complain! I also worked 8s then and only part time days. I just know I'd be heartbroken if I had to give up my animal because they couldn't help but cry when alone. The noise violation by law here is $125 each time the sheriff comes out and sited the incident so it can get costly. Not to mention if an apartment/condo they can force you to remove the pet if it becomes a nuisance.
  11. by   Pepper The Cat
    No don't get a dog. Get a cat. Cats are awesome.
  12. by   NightNerd
    I would not get a puppy, but please consider adopting an adult or senior dog. Obviously temperament needs to be taken until account. If you can find a laidback, calm dog who doesn't require a ton of training/housebreaking, you will certainly have a wonderful pet for your situation. Save the puppy for a time when life is a bit more predictable.

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