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I should never have gotten the dog. What to do? - Page 4

post #61 of 90
I'll offer a different suggestion - if you're overwhelmed by your current responsibiities at home, and the dog is pushing you over the edge, can you delegate some other responsibilities so you can pick up the care & training of the dog? Have a family meeting and say "the addition of Pug seems to not have gone as smoothly as we would have liked. No one wants to get up in the morning, train him consistently, walk him, etc. AS a result, I don't think he's fitting in with our family. We have two choices (1) find him another home or (2) I will pick up the responsibilities of training and loving Pug in exchange for you picking up the responsiblities for X, Y, and Z." That way, you're not unilaterally deciding that Pug has to go, singling out your DH for not taking care of Pug, and showing your kids that there are consequences for their actions or lack thereof. And that life is a series of choices. Maybe when you get home from work, you all go out for a family walk. Which may mean dinner is pushed back 15 minutes. Or if you read 5 books a night, and they don't feed Pug, they only get one story. Our 5 and 3 year olds have just started a job chart. Every day the jobs change (they have 2 a day) and the care and feeding of our Boston Terrier is included. If they don't do their jobs for a given day, no reward stickers. And I do the jobs.

I don't know. You're in a tough situation. Good luck with whatever you decide!
post #62 of 90
My vote is to rehome too. Here's the question for those who agree: Should she go with the collegue's MIL who has expressed an interest or should she go with a pug rescue group?
post #63 of 90
I'd find out more about the MIL, but that sounds very promising to me. Sounds like they have a sense of what they are in for, since they know the other pup.
post #64 of 90
Thread Starter 
Wow... I was away for a day and the post moved and there are tons of replies!! Thanks all for your comments and suggestions. Just a few things I wanted to say after reading through everything.

On responsibility: I would like to think that if we were truly irresponsible, we would've dropped the dog off in a field or given him to the first stranger who walked by. As it is, we are very concerned over this and have been talking about it and struggling to find what's best for both the dog and the family. As I mentioned early on, we have had a dog before (same kind-- a pug) who we cared for and loved very much. In the mean time our pug is in good care with us-- it's not like he has free reign in the home pooping and peeing everywhere. It's just that he has accidents or sometimes goes into the corner to do his business (when he was just out!?). He sits before getting his food, he walks well on a lead, etc. He has a large yard and two kids who adore him. It's hard to give enough details so you can comment on my situation without listing everything and then have people assume the worst. SO, was it a smart decision to get another dog at this point in our life, with me working a lot and my husband doing zero around the house?? No, but I do *not* think we are irresponsible.

On my dh: Yes, it would be nice if he would step up. Heck, it'd be nice if he stepped up on a lot of other things too. *I* shouldl've known that if he can't do his own laundry or give the kids a bath or make dinner when he's home all day by himself that he couldn't handle a puppy. This was my mistake.

On putting the pug outside: Um, bad idea. Pugs are definitely inside dogs who love to play outside-- when it's nice weather (with an occasional romp in the snow). Plus, as someone else here said, he'd turn into a pugsickle!! We live at the foot of the mountains in France, right outside of Geneva, Switzerland.

On returning the dog to the breeder: I doubt it's an option, and I wouldn't do it anyway. They were a young couple without a lot of money, and they clearly were trying to start a business of breeding pugs. They were using the money to buy a male dog. They seemed to love them very much, but if we do sell ours, we'll sell him to someone we know. I mentioned that our dog's brother is with a good friend/colleague of mine whose in-laws would like a pug.

On what we'll do next: I don't know yet. I know we need to decide soon, but I am already a notoriously slow decision maker when there are big impacts. I really like the family meeting idea, and would like to take that approach. Our goal is actually to keep the puppy and maintain our family of '5'. But we have to have a plan to get over this period, and to get him trained-- without the entire responsibility falling on my shoulders. Maybe I can either walk the dog in the morning for exercise (which would frankly be good for me too). I wouldn't even mind walking him in the evening as well with the kids, but as I work often until 7:00 pm, I am usually exhausted and need to get the kids all ready for bed (and dinner since dh doesn't usually do that either). I'm angry and frustrated that everything-- now even the dog training-- falls on me. I do everything else, and I just can't handle another thing. Conclusion? Hmmm. Maybe it's keep the dog, lose the husband. Just kidding.
post #65 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReadingMama View Post
My vote is to rehome too. Here's the question for those who agree: Should she go with the collegue's MIL who has expressed an interest or should she go with a pug rescue group?
Absolutely the rescue group. Sibling puppies are a BAD IDEA. They bond with each other and not with you and that makes the training even harder (with an already difficult breed). If the dog were 18 months old or something I'd be fine with the idea of it going to live with a sibling, but not a months-old puppy. It's just never a good idea.

There's also the fact that this puppy didn't come from a good breeder. That means it now must be treated very carefully. Pugs have HUGE health problems and for the next two to five years any number of eye, palate, allergy, heart, hip, thyroid, etc. problems could surface. A dog that has been surrendered to rescue ALWAYS has a home and a support system with the rescue, even if its health problems get to be too much for the owner. A private sale/giveaway has no such protection.
post #66 of 90
Tara, tell me the number one problem you are having with the puppy--I see several, but tell me the deal-breaker. If we work on that one, and get that issue squared away, maybe you can feel more confident in dealing with the others.

(I'm committed to this thread now, but I'm not looking at any others! Not looking! Can't make me!)
post #67 of 90
Thread Starter 
It's house training. He seems to go outside really well, but then we'll find he pees on a coat left on the floor (despite the MILLION times I tell my kids or dh that if it's on the floor, it'll likely get peed on!), or in a corner. (or poos, but less often than pee)

I know you said one issue, but chewing is really bad too.

I'm off to work now, so I won't be able to check back in for a while. Thanks for your support!!!

Oh-- and the pug's name is Bacio (kiss in Italian).
post #68 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmagick View Post
Sorry, but I think this is very bad advice! This would make the situation even worse. To me, this is totally shurking responsibility. Dogs are companions and need interaction, training, etc. Sticking them out in the yard wont help. While I dont like the idea of getting rid of a pet without really trying to fix the situation, it is still better than completely ignoring the situation by sticking them outside, IMHO.

There are some dogs who do allright as "outside" dogs, but they are usually working or farm dogs, and the owners still interact and train them.
I wasn't advocating just sticking him out in the yard and forgetting about him! I just thought it may solve some of the pee/poop/hair issues in the house. Some dogs like being outdoors. Ours, an aierdale terrier, much preffered it. He was in the house as a puppy but then he got too big and would spend all his time barking at the back door to get out. So he lived outside from then on (still got lots of human interaction ) and was a very happy dog!

I amswered this post before it was moved, on parenting issues though...I don't know much about dogs, I was just giving my experience of the dog we had. It seems, from the more knowledgeable posters about dogs, and the OP, that this solution would not work for a Pug!
post #69 of 90
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Z Lake View Post
I know you said one issue, but chewing is really bad too.
Actually, I take that back as the other big issue (pee/poo is still the worst). Chewing I can handle in comparison. My dh would say it's getting up at 4:00 in the morning with the dog because he begins whining and barking-- for food, companionship, for who knows what.

So, dh goes downstairs (Bacio sleeps in his bed in a pen in our open entry/family area) feeds him, then sleeps in the guest room so as not to wake everyone up.
post #70 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by RacheePoo View Post
I too am faced with this decision, although on my part I love the dog and would do anything to keep him/make it work if it was just up to me.
Seriously???

Where are you? I would very seriously consider taking Coltrane if you really have to give him up.
post #71 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Z Lake View Post
It's house training. He seems to go outside really well, but then we'll find he pees on a coat left on the floor (despite the MILLION times I tell my kids or dh that if it's on the floor, it'll likely get peed on!), or in a corner. (or poos, but less often than pee)

I know you said one issue, but chewing is really bad too.

I'm off to work now, so I won't be able to check back in for a while. Thanks for your support!!!

Oh-- and the pug's name is Bacio (kiss in Italian).
OK--well, I'm going to give you advice that I would not normally give, because ordinarily I'm contemplating the entire family involved in housetraining and we work on exclusive crate training. In this case, it's just you, so I can't go about this the ideal way.

This is the way we housetrain our litters of puppies when we have too many of them to individually train, and the way I leave it set up if I am going away for several hours and my husband can't deal with the dogs.

You say you have a door you can leave open, which is good. If not, I'd advise you to figure out a way to leave access to the yard open at least during the day. Ideally, you want the door to be coming from a place where people are--kitchen, living room, office--not the basement or garage. OK, now around the opening to that door, on the inside, you are going to put his pen (I assume you have an ex pen--if not, go buy one. They're not expensive). A typical ex pen will give him a generous space inside, probably 10 sq feet. If the pen is on carpet, put a drop cloth or tarp on the ground until he's trustworthy--but you shouldn't need it, because 10 sq ft is small enough that it should trigger his "keep my territory clean" instinct. Inside the pen put his bed, his water, chew toys, all his stuff.

So now he should have a "house" with access to the outside, but no access to the inside. But he can still see the inside, and the kids can see him. Encourage them to take him out and play with him inside the house, train him, etc. Nobody should isolate or ignore him. But as soon as they are done, back he goes in his house. He is NEVER unsupervised inside your house.

When you are home, try to make pottying outside very rewarding. Consider putting a patch of mulch or pine shavings in the area where he usually goes, because dogs love to pee on different textures (this also trains him to confine himself to that area, which is really good). Bring cookies outside and praise and treat him for peeing. Bring cookies in your pocket for walks. Every outside pee or poop is treated like he just won the Nobel Prize. Try to put a word with the action--not a word that you use for anything else! We use "piddle," others use "make it"--whatever.

When he has been ABSOLUTELY RELIABLE in his little house for two weeks, double the size. If you have another pen, use it, but otherwise use gates or whatever you can. You can portion off the room with the ex pen (rather than just making a loop of the pen) too. Definitely no bigger than 20 sq ft. Continue the routine. Again, in two weeks make it a little bigger. The goal is for him to be in one entire room by the end of the summer--NOT the whole house--and for him to have had zero accidents in weeks. What builds success in dogs is just that--success. If he breaks even once, make it smaller again. A habit has to form that gets his mind into the groove of "pee can only hit the ground outside."

If he's been consistently trained all summer, and if he is not allowed back in the whole house, by fall you SHOULD be able to shut that door during the day and have him signal you somehow that it needs to be open. Pugs are NOTORIOUSLY bad about house training, which is why it has to be so deliberate and slow. I would not allow him the run of the house for, honestly, another year or more. But that doesn't mean he can be ignored, which is why it's so important to make an effort to keep him part of the family during the training.

OK, the 4 am barking. He should be able to make it 6-8 hours by this age, no more. So don't expect him to get through an entire night--six hours would be what I would shoot for right now. Decide when he's "allowed" to get up--say 7 am. Somebody has to take him out to pee and poop at 1 am. Make this a VERY businesslike pee. NO playing. Walk without making eye contact until he pees, quietly praise, back inside. Now he goes in his crate.

And now, simply don't open it back up again. He will SCREAM. He will howl; he will carry on like you're killing him. But in that crate he must stay, with NO stimulation, until 7 am. Then at 7, without fanfare, you open the crate and take him straight out again.

The first night of this will be torture. The second night he will still yell. By the time a week has gone by, he should be sleeping through until 7. Once he's been quiet until 7 for a few days, you move the nighttime pee back by 30 minutes, to see if he can go six and a half hours. And so on. I would not push for longer than 8 hours, and even that may be a stretch. Six may be all you get right now. For every month older he gets, move it back 30 minutes and be firm about it. By the time he is 10 months old or so, he should be going 8 hours.
post #72 of 90
I agree with the crate training advice. And please educate yourself about reputable breeders if you ever intend to get another dog in the future -- it sounds like you bought Bacio from a backyard breeder. Making money off the sale of the pups will never be the motivation of a reputable breeder, and the puppies they produce aren't likely to have been properly screened for health/temperament issues, which is why many end up being tossed aside by their well-intentioned owners.

Here are some links with good information about breeder selection:

http://www.woodhavenlabs.com/breeding/breeder.html

http://www.woodhavenlabs.com/checklist.html

Can I ask, what prompted your family to make the decision to bring a dog into the home (besides missing your other dog)? Did you really have no inkling of the amount of work involved in raising a pup?
post #73 of 90
BTW - what I found with our dogs (after dd was born and was up at all hours of the night) was that WE created the problem of them wanting to eat earlier and earlier in the morning. In other words, if I was up with dd at 4:00 am and the dogs came with me to her room, I would just feed them so that theywouldn't bother me 2 hours later and I could get some sleep.

BAD IDEA!!! That really backfired, as they both started waking up earlier and earlier and I realized what a pair of monsters I had created one morning at 2:30 am when I was feeding them.

If you stay firm on not feeding him until much later(we chose 9 am, as I am home anyway) then eventually that problem will correct itself.
post #74 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by thekimballs View Post
Absolutely the rescue group. Sibling puppies are a BAD IDEA.
Yeah, but this dog is going to a different home than the other pup. Her friend has one pup, and the friend's parents in law (I think?) love the pup and want one of their own.

I think that's fine.
post #75 of 90
Great advice as usual, Joanna! Nice to "see" you popping in. Our puppy is 3.5months old, just about housebroken (misses maybe once a week), and he is never unsupervised in the house unless he's in his crate or confined to the kitchen by a gate. He's just not ready for that yet, and it seems like it will be awhile until he is, partly because of not being absolutely housebroken and also because of getting into everything and chewing on everything, as puppies do. Letting him have the run of the house at this point would be way too stressful, especially if no one was taking the time to pay attention to his potty needs. We let him out for short periods when he's recently gone potty, to start getting him used to other parts of the house, and he also goes out in the yard alone.

Lady of Z Lake (great username, btw), I think finding a good home for your puggie is fine. Keeping a pet for life is a wonderful ideal, but sometimes it's just not possible. DH works at home and I'm home most of the time, and we both take care of our puppy, and it's challenge enough, so it must be very stressful to be the only one that cares for your puppy.

Best wishes to you! I hope you can figure this out without too much drama.
post #76 of 90
I dont like this thread at all... Dogs are not disposable ... the next cute little pup that comes along it will be the same old story ... i know your in a different country ... but for all you americans I would like to tell you that most dogs that are brought to shelters as owner turn ins are put to sleep within days of being brought there ... so if your fine having someone else kill your dog that is your option. This is just sad and sick ... and the reason i have 4 dogs and have rescued many.
post #77 of 90
oops, misread a post. Never mind.
post #78 of 90
Thread Starter 
Joanna,

Thank you very much for this advice. I am going to start using it right away, inlcuding trying the crate at 4 or 5 when he wakes up early tomorrow. A quick question about the pen situation in/outside... What do you do when he cries to get out and be with us *inside* the house?

I really do appreciate you spending the time to write that up and to help me out. This may sound strange, but I'm feeling up to the challenge, and knowing pugs take longer actually makes me feel a bit better. I actually do want this to work out. Tomorrow I'm going to get up and walk him and get some much-needed exercise myself.

We have our family meeting tomorrow evening, and Bacio is on the list of topics. Our goal is to keep him, but we all need to play a role in making this work, and it needs to be clear for all how to do it.

Thanks again, and I'll let you know how it's going.
post #79 of 90
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Can I ask, what prompted your family to make the decision to bring a dog into the home (besides missing your other dog)? Did you really have no inkling of the amount of work involved in raising a pup?
I'm not sure we had "no" inkling, but I think, as I do with many things in my life, that I tend to imagine best scenario and romanticize too much. I also hoped (though I suppose I knew deep down) that my dh would help out more. Admittedly, I have not raised a puppy, but as I mentioned, we had a pug from the time he was 1. And, my family had a dog when I was growing up. I just never took care of her (feeding, etc.) directly.

Quote:
Lady of Z Lake (great username, btw), I think finding a good home for your puggie is fine. Keeping a pet for life is a wonderful ideal, but sometimes it's just not possible. DH works at home and I'm home most of the time, and we both take care of our puppy, and it's challenge enough, so it must be very stressful to be the only one that cares for your puppy.

Best wishes to you! I hope you can figure this out without too much drama.
Thanks-- and thanks! I appreciate the kind words of support.
post #80 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Z Lake View Post
Joanna,

Thank you very much for this advice. I am going to start using it right away, inlcuding trying the crate at 4 or 5 when he wakes up early tomorrow. A quick question about the pen situation in/outside... What do you do when he cries to get out and be with us *inside* the house?
The short version is that you ignore him. The long version is that of course you have an obligation to make sure he's spending time with you and with the kids. But it has to be YOU that decides when that is, and how long it lasts. A dog who demands and gets his way learns that people are servants--it has to be the other way around. So if a dog is yelling in his crate, I'll ignore him even if I intend to take him out. I'll wait until he gives up or pauses, THEN let him out. Basically, dogs have to learn that the crate is a sound-proof box; yelling does nothing. Humans decide when you go in and when you come out. Once they accept that, then they actually start looking forward to the peace and quiet of the crate.
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