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Anxious about getting a new puppy/dog

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    Anxious about getting a new puppy/dog

    So my family and I decided it's time for a new dog in the family. I really wanted to adopt an elderly dog from the humane society but my husband and daughter want a puppy. Our other dog is nearing 11 and my husband said he didn't want two elderly dogs at once. Fair enough. And of course my daughter who is 8 years old, wants a puppy. (and I'm okay with that since she volunteers to walk older dogs at the humane society and donates her own money there once a year.)

    I've been dragging my feet on it though! I have the most wonderful Border Collie Australian Shepherd mix. She's literally the perfect dog, so well trained and so sweet natured. I guess I feel like by getting a puppy, I'm having to face that she truly is getting older and we probably have a few more years left (I mean hopefully she lives until she's 17 but of course we never know!)

    It's hard to want another dog when you have the perfect dog already. She's my partner in crime, always by my side. But, for the sake of the family, we are going to check out a puppy this weekend. I do think it would be great for my daughter right now.

    Has anyone else felt so anxious about getting a new pup?

    If you are feeling anxious, listen to your gut. Wait, enjoy your perfect dog, a puppy will rock the boat like none other. Puppies to me are soooo much work, although cute, still non stop work. Your 8 year old daughter walking dogs is much different than staying on top of a puppy 24/7.


      Originally posted by Gesaffelstein View Post
      If you are feeling anxious, listen to your gut. Wait, enjoy your perfect dog, a puppy will rock the boat like none other. Puppies to me are soooo much work, although cute, still non stop work. Your 8 year old daughter walking dogs is much different than staying on top of a puppy 24/7.
      Agreed. I was sure I wanted a very young puppy this time, after not having one that young since 1992. As of the oldest's death in February, mine were 9 & 14 years old and relatively trouble-free for years. I just got an 8 week old puppy two weeks ago, and it really is a lot of work. I'm still glad I did it and haven't changed my mind, but I went into it sure of that. If I was anxious or unsure about it, this time of getting up in the middle of the night and watching her like a hawk to prevent accidents or chewed shoes would be a nightmare.

      Can you compromise with your family and get a young dog? Maybe a year or two old? They might be housebroken, or ready to learn, and will probably settle into your household a lot easier. You also won't have to buy two types of dog food.


        I lost my dog in February and said I wasn't getting another. Period. Then I met a 2 yr old Aussie that is so sweet and calm - she melted my heart on sight. But I thought about it for about 3 weeks before I said "yes". If you don't feel this way, then I agree with the above replies. Second, if it's your 8 yr old daughter and husband wanting a puppy, shouldn't it be their (by default your husband's) issue of dealing with puppy's training and care?? How does THEIR pet choice become YOUR responsibility?
        Savor those rides where you feel like a million bucks, because there will be those where you feel like a cheap date...


          Original Poster

          I should clarify that I guess I'm more anxious about losing my current dog in a few years more than any new dog. I just feel that getting another dog really makes me emotionally confront that reality. I do feel like getting a new dog before she passes would be the best. I just can't believe how the years have flown, it goes so quickly. I swear she was just a puppy herself.

          Also I'm expecting the family to all help with the puppy's care. They all will be expected to attend any training sessions, my husband will be taking the puppy on a morning walk/or play session before he leaves for work. My daughter has been (without my asking) cleaning up our current dog's poop to prove to me that she is willing to help.

          I am excited but do overthink things in all aspects of life. I told them we will only come home with a puppy if we find one that feels right to our family.

          I only mentioned my daughter walking dogs at the humane society not because I'm expecting her to be fully responsible for a puppy (unrealistic at her age, she can help but it'll be a family project) but because I have some friends that are really against anyone getting a puppy and not adopting older dogs. I feel that my daughter does her part with the humane society and I think she can get one puppy in her life and it's okay. Once my elder dog passes (hopefully not for 5 or more years) I would like to adopt a middle aged dog from the humane society too.

          Really it's a good time to get one. My older dog is still playful, my daughter more responsible, we have a backyard and plenty of dog parks around.

          I'll have the time to dedicate to the puppy, especially since my horse is getting the summer off to rehab. It's really a perfect time to take the plunge. I guess it's more about the fact that no dog will never be like my dog but we can enjoy and love another too. Just a step towards a new chapter.


            I understand what you're saying. My dog that I lost in February was 14 1/2 years old and probably the most perfect dog I'll ever have. She was so tuned into me and definitely MY dog. I started worrying about losing her probably 3 or 4 years ago when I realized it was quite possible that I could lose her, and my son to college at the same time. She held out an extra 6 months, and went rather quickly and unexpectedly to a probable bleeding spleen tumor. I took her home from the vet with anemia and the heartbreaking decision not to do emergency surgery on such an old dog for $8-10k. She was still happy and doing well, but tired easily. I bought a few weeks with her before she just got too weak. I was completely heartbroken, and still am.

            I've always had two dogs at a time, with staggered ages, since 1995. It really does help to still have a dog around the house when you lose one, even if it's not your favorite. I call the younger one the "emergency back-up dog". I was a single dog household for 4 months after my dog died, left with my sweet 9 year old with a few issues. I just took the plunge on a new emergency back-up dog two weeks ago. She's dog #5 since I moved out on my own in 1992. I don't know if any dog will ever top #3, but that doesn't mean I don't have room to love other dogs, too.

            You can adopt a puppy, not purchase one if that matters to you or the people you're worried about who think you should only adopt older dogs. My puppy, her mother and siblings were transported up here by a rescue when the puppies were just a few days old. She's not the first puppy that I inquired about, and not even EXACTLY what I preferred, but she's the one that worked out while still checking most of my boxes.


              Original Poster

              Mango20 yep that's totally how I'm feeling! You definitely understand where my head/heart is at right now.

              Your thoughts about not being able to top dog #3 but still having room to love others in some way-is what I'm feeling. Just need to take the plunge I think.

              We are currently trying to get one from a rescue, they are slow right now due to COVID19. I figure if it's right, it'll all come together though.


                Personally, I'd go for a young adult, rather than a puppy. Puppies can be really hard on an older dog.

                chief feeder and mucker for Music, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now). Spy is gone. April 15, 1982 to Jan 10, 2019.


                  I completely understand what you're feeling. I've had the perfect dog twice (an ACD and a Pembroke corgi) and as the years crept by, my anxiety about losing them increased, even as I tried never to think about it. But in both cases, I had adopted another dog several years before, and having that remaining dog in the house really helped me through the inevitable loss. And even though the remaining dogs hadn't been perfect in my eyes at first, they quickly became that way!
                  "Dogs give and give and give. Cats are the gift that keeps on grifting." —Bradley Trevor Greive


                    Original Poster

                    chestnut mare beware I'm glad I'm not alone in the feeling! Aren't we lucky to have had such great dogs to even feel this way?!

                    I agree that having a dog in the house does help with the loss, so that's why I'm thinking it's a good time.


                      Your daughter will only be young for so long. She is perfectly capable of taking care of a puppy( with your supervision) and it will be a good lesson in responsibility. Not only that she and the puppy will have more than enough energy to wear each other out!

                      Puppies are work, but there is nothing like the exuberant , energy filled antics of a puppy to bring out the joy of life. Our current 10 year old shepherd mix is now on her 2nd puppy in just a years time and she is handling it well. It has even brought out what puppy is left in her!!

                      Any major life change brings anxious feelings and adding a puppy is a life change


                        My two dogs are four years apart (one is 5 and the other is 1). I fully did that on purpose so that I'd theoretically always have at least one dog.

                        May sound cold and callous to some to calculate it like that, but I never want to be without a dog. Someday the younger one will help me through losing the older one.


                          Original Poster

                          B-burg Dressage I don't think that's callous at all. I feel the same way. Each dog is different and amazing in their own ways. I simply could not live without a dog!


                            Just committed to a puppy today. Yikes! Haven’t had a puppy in 20 years. Lost my last old girl in November and we’re currently dogless. New puppy will be ready to come home in August. Sometimes I’m really excited and sometimes I’m wondering what the heck have I done!🤪
                            Trump lies, people die.


                              We did the older dog adoption vs a puppy. There are days I wish I got a puppy without all the baggage, but something to be said for a sweet dog that is already potty trained. I don’t have time to deal with all the cute puppy antics, training needs,etc. So my 4 yo mixed breed that is fairly chill was a great fit.

                              Puppies take so much time and energy. Make sure you have the time, and don’t plan on the husband and kid to help. It’s nice if they do, but make sure you choose for you, moms always want to make kids happy. If my kids want a puppy they can get one when they get their own place, they have a lifetime ahead of them.
                              "Anyone who tries to make brownies without butter should be arrested." Ina Garten


                                Original Poster

                                IndysMom yay!! That's exciting. It'll be great.

                                But I understand the "what am I signing up for?!" Feelings ha ha


                                  Original Poster

                                  luvmyhackney oh yes for sure! I think a puppy will be good for us all right now. Like I said above, we will have the time thanks to COVID19 and it really won't ever be such a perfect time like it is now. Especially with my horse having time off because of soundness, I think focusing on a puppy will be good for us all.


                                    When I was a kid, we had an older Bichon and suddenly wound up with an emergency puppy (sister in college got him and couldn't keep him). We were worried about it being too much for the old gal, but they hit it off like gangbusters. She had a good "back off" snarl, and he was chill and smart enough to learn that all play time was on her terms. Then as she got even older she started losing her sight and would stick by his side in the yard to have a seeing eye dog.
                                    "Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out." ~John Wooden

                                    Phoenix Animal Rescue


                                      Original Poster

                                      kateh aw what a sweet relationship they had! Thanks for sharing. My dog is still playful and often initiates the playing with my parent's dog, a younger mini schnauzer. And while she's not afraid to tell a puppy to back off, I think she's typically very fair about it!

                                      I'm getting excited. We are checking a puppy out on Sunday, we will see if we bring him home


                                        After the first couple of days, it's been non-stop play around here with my 9 year old dog and now 11 week old puppy! My older dog was very nervous about having a baby around at first, and tried to avoid her as much as possible. She needed a lot of reassurance. On the third day, she played with her a little, and it increased from there. Now that the puppy is a little bigger, they play hard, a lot of the time. I've found my older dog likes to play in the morning, then have some alone time upstairs by herself, then play more in the afternoons and evenings. There's usually a big play session shortly before bed, which hopefully helps the puppy sleep longer. My dog #2 was 11 years old when I got #3 at six months old. She still had plenty of energy to play (she lived to 15 1/2). I think as long as your dog is healthy and not arthritic, she'll be fine. If she won't tell the puppy to back off, you might have to enforce some time apart.