Opportunity to re-home old, grouchy dog - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 11-07-2013, 12:45 PM - Thread Starter
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I need some help making a decision and perhaps getting others' perspectives regarding my dog.
Louis is a small schnoodle, nearly 14 years old. We took him in before kids came about when he was just over 6. His previous owner married a man who perceived Louis' protective nature over the woman a nuisance and they were not willing to work with him. He spent the majority of his time crated.
When he came to live with us, he was timid and very protective of me. He came with me everywhere, he was my first baby. His position on the totem pole did get knocked down a few notches when DD was born, and he suffered ulcers and many months of stress. We rallied and worked to get him better integrated with the baby, and all was relatively well for a few years.
As he is getting older, his odor and grumpy personality are making our lives unpleasant. DD (5yo) doesn't like him anywhere near her, and admittedly, DH and I are reluctant to pet and love on him like before. He paces everywhere on our hardwood, and the sound is greatly bothersome for me. He also nipped at the baby (5mo) when I had ds on my lap and he just touched the fur on his back. I know his hearing is nearly gone and his sight is questionable, I don't blame Louis for nipping at all, it is just a wake up call for what could happen by accident.
So, DH came home from work the other day saying that he has a coworker that would be interested in taking Louis. We had no intention of re-homing him, but apparently this woman grew up with a schnoodle, and when DH mentioned that the poor guy gets a less than warm reception at home, she offered to meet him and possibly take him off our hands.

I'm torn. I want what is best for him, but I'm not sure what that is. I worry that re-homing might cause a surge in his anxiety. But, it could quite possibly improve his quality of life. She obviously works and he would likely be alone more than he is now. But, is being alone worse than being ignored and shushed all the time??? I'm not sure
Thanks for reading all of this! If you have any input, I would greatly appreciate it.

Wife & Momma to Echo 2/20/08 and HP 6/11/13
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#2 of 4 Old 11-09-2013, 02:44 PM
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Personally, I'd have him put down.



But, is being alone worse than being ignored and shushed all the time???  I'm not sure


YES, it is!  


You don't want him anymore and, if he's going deaf and blind AND would be alone the majority of the day, that new home would be an even worse situation for him (the only home he's known is gone and he's with a total stranger for only part-time).  It's not like you can explain this change to him and he'll be seriously confused.  He's suffered, in the past, from such a severe change of locale (you said he had ulcers and  stress for months).  Don't do this to him again, it would be cruel.  Allow him to go with some dignity.   


REAL re-homing means giving him to someone that will be there for him, ALL the time, at this end stage in his life.  At age 14, and with what sound like some health issues, he's nearing the end of his life.  He deserves to be cared for by someone who will care, or to die with ease.


Why does he have an odor?  What does the vet say about this?  Is it because you are unable to properly care for him (ie: bathing & brushing him regularly?) or, is there a health reason?


It's so sad to hear stories like this.

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#3 of 4 Old 11-09-2013, 06:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you for your response.
His life with us isn't horrible. He gets excellent food, lots of time to wander outdoors in a large yard with our other dog, he sleeps in bed snugged at DH's feet. We are gone from the house somewhere between 4-8 hours a day and both dogs are in a bedroom with toys and soft beds, not kenneled. When we leave for overnight, we pay a petsitter to stay at our house so they don't have to be kenneled or alone in the house all day.
There are three reasons for his odor. He has reflux and even wih meds, he coughs and the stomach acid smells. He is in dire need of teeth cleaning but the vet doesn't think it is a good idea at his age to have it done because he isn't likely to survive the anesthesia. And thirdly, his anxiety is so bad that he cries and nips and whines whenever washed or groomed. We have been asked to not bring him back to two different places. So, we wash him ourselves, but the anxiety is still there and it isn't a pleasant experience for anyone. It doesn't happen often.
I hope these clarifications help you get a better idea of what is going on. He isn't loved on as much as he used to be and is often shooed away due to his odor and demeanor.
He isn't an abused, poorly cared for dog.
So, I will take from your comment that you would believe him to be better off stayin with us. I don't believe his condition or our treatment of him warrants him being put down. I was genuinely curious about others' opinions on which situation would be best. Thank you for your opinion.

Wife & Momma to Echo 2/20/08 and HP 6/11/13
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#4 of 4 Old 12-01-2013, 02:06 PM
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I agree with the PP, sadly.  Older dogs often have a lot of trouble readjusting to life with a new family, and with his anxiety issues the adjustment might just kill him. 

I'm struggling with something similar.  We have a very anxious 10 year old greyhound and he has terrible teeth, body odor and everything else (despite our best efforts).  I am also currently in my first trimester, so I can't even be near him without gagging.  It's very very difficult.  But in our case, we feel we made a commitment to him to do everything we can to give him a good life and I try to make myself feel better that even if I don't have any real attachment to him (he was my husband's dog and we never bonded) I still do everything in my power to make sure his life is pleasant and comfortable. 


It sounds like your dog has a happy life and it's your own discomfort and irritation you'll have to manage.  I don't have a lot of help there.  I struggle every day with my feelings toward a dog I don't really want anymore and I have plenty of guilt over it.  Perhaps finding a groomer for special needs dogs would help.  But do what you think is best for him.  If this co-worker is very committed and would love him and treat him well, perhaps you could start by having him spend a day or two here and there with her to see how he reacts.  Good luck.

Beautiful baby girl born 8/13/2012. Little star baby lost at 10 weeks pregnant, 12/18/2013. Rainbow baby girl born 12/22/2014.
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