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Hi There,
My brother's toy poodle had 4 pups recently and though I kept saying no to owning a pup, after 8 weeks of my brother asking and seeing how cute the pups were (and how much my daughter wanted one), I caved in and said yes to the last of the litter needing a home.
It's been a week since the pup came to our house and I am having major second thoughts which I feel terrible about! I knew it was going to be a lot of work but the reality of it seems even more crazy than I anticipated. I have 2 young kids (ages 7 and 4), 2 needy cats who are not getting the attention they are accustomed to, and this pup who I am constantly watching since I am trying to housetrain him. My younger child, though he likes the pup, seem upset since the pup is more apt to nip and bite him. SO, my house feels completely like a zoo.
I know it's only been a week and it'll probably get better but I am wondering if I am right for this in the first place! I am not enjoying this chaos and wonder if I ever will... I know, I sound really awful and I have been feeling terrible for feeling this way!!!
Plus, I just found a tick on the pup which makes me really scared since I am afraid of him bringing ticks and fleas to the house that can affect my kids and cats! Am I putting my kids and cats in harm's way? We already took the pup for his first check and he has had Revolution but how effective is it to control fleas/tick for the whole household?
As you can tell, I've never had a dog and am quite confused. I look at the pup and he is so cute and trusting - he really needs to be in a home where he will truly be loved. I take good care of him but I feel too stretched to enjoy it all and can't help but feel like I am exposing my family to potential harm with ticks and fleas. We have open space outside with deer and other animals so the cocern is high for ticks and fleas...
Should I start looking for a better home for our pup or am I being irrational? Thanks in advance for your help and for reading this long email.
 

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It sounds like you have your hands full. My best advice would be to worry about what YOU want. Don't worry about your brother wanting you to have one of his pups. Don't make yourself feel guilty if you can't care for a puppy right now.

Having a puppy gets better with time, but remember that along with housetraining there are other things you should be doing as well to ensure your pup grows up to have a sound temperament. Once he's finished with his shots I highly recommend a puppy class especially since he's already playing rough with your son.

I have never used Revolution, I use Frontline. I assume it works. It doesn't really REPEL bugs, but kills them upon contact. You may also want to look into natural repellants (some food additives or home made sprays) that you can use in conjunction with the Revolution.

Out of curiosity, did you brother plan this litter? If he's having trouble finding homes for his puppies, that might be a problem. Breeders tend to have significant interest in their litters before the pups even hit the ground. ;)
 

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Thank you so much for your reply MissMutt and for the photos! Your dog and cat are adorable and looks like they comingle very well. Seeing your large dog with your cat makes our tiny pup/cat issue look quite miniscule!
My brother loves his dog and wanted another one so before having her fixed, breeded her with his friend's toy poodle. He has given all the pups away free but still it is hard (heart reanching really) to find good homes for pups and will get his dog spayed very soon.
As for me, I still don't know what to do.
My husband says give this more time.
I guess I am afraid that if I do, I will hurt the pup's chances of finding a new home. Don't most people prefer 8 week old pups?
But since I don't know anyone who is looking for a pup, I guess my job is to do all I can to potty train him and get him socialized so that he has the best chance in life...
 

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I got my first puppy in December. I was completely unprepared for the amount of work and energy it takes to raise a puppy. My husband and I had a hard enough time making sure we were consistent between the two of us in dealing with the puppy, whether it was training, housetraining, correcting, etc. I can't imagine doing that with small children as well, because you need to be *very* consistent in everything in dealing with the puppy.

If it were me, I'd give the puppy back or find a home for it through Craigslist where you can interview/screen potential homes more strictly and get an older dog that is already trained and is already good with kids. But it also depends on your kids and how good they are at working with the puppy...and how long you're willing to deal with a zoo. It took about a month for our puppy to start being like a "real" dog where she started going to the door when she needed to go out, never nipped, was doing well with sit/down/heel/coming when called, but we also got her at 10 weeks, not 8. I would imagine that would take longer if everyone wasn't able to treat the puppy the same way to really emphasize the training.

What I'm saying is that I think you can do it, but it would probably be easier if you went with an older dog that is already trained. So it's up to you to decide how much you want *this* dog and if you want to live with a zoo for long enough to get it to be a real member of the family.
 

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Can you sign up for a puppy class? You won't be able to start until he has had his second set of shots, at most places anyway (usually at 10 weeks old). The classes are usually extremely helpful though, they show you how to communicate with your dog in a way the dog understands. If it were me, I would personally give it some more time, at least a few weeks, if not waiting until after a round of puppy class.
 

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We've used Revolution before, when the papillons were puppies. It was good to keep off the fleas in the winter/spring time (we have fleas year round), but when summer rolled around it was less effective. Not quite sure why, but we switched to Advantage and it keeps to fleas off.

Puppies are huge commitments. I mean, this dog will be with you for another 10-13 years? Are you prepared for that?

It kind of sounds like you're just having trouble with the puppy stages, which is normal. If you want to give it a try, do sign up for puppy classes.
Make sure you tell your kids how to handle to puppy. I have a four year old sister, and when we brought home J.C. he went for her the most. He'd start nipping and she'd start running and he thought it was a big game. Even after he stopped nipping at other people he'd still go for her because he thought that's how he's supposed to play with her. We had to teach her not to run when he'd start nipping, and if he did, to tell him NO! and to ignore him (kind of a hard concept for a 4 year old). We were always right there around the two of them so we could correct the both of them (make sure she said NO! loud enough and was ignoring him, and we made sure he knew that he had to listen to her, even though she's not like the adults). This is just what we did to sort of help things out. Other people might have better ideas though.
Also, make sure you have plenty of chew toys on hand, teething comes soon!

But eventually if the pup does get trained properly, all the chaos will eventually settle.

If you do decide to give the pup up, you could try and find a poodle rescue in your area. They could help you find a good home for it.
 

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Thank you so much for your reply MissMutt and for the photos! Your dog and cat are adorable and looks like they comingle very well. Seeing your large dog with your cat makes our tiny pup/cat issue look quite miniscule!
Haha, that's my signature image, it shows up in all my posts. The last picture of my cat and dog together was actually taken on the first day that they met. LOTS of members have cats and dogs living together, I think it is the least of the issues you'll have with your pup. Just be sure to keep them separate to ensure their safety when no one is there to watch. :)


My brother loves his dog and wanted another one so before having her fixed, breeded her with his friend's toy poodle. He has given all the pups away free but still it is hard (heart reanching really) to find good homes for pups and will get his dog spayed very soon.
I do hope he does spay his dog, because while companion animals make wonderful pets and have great temperaments, they aren't always the best for breeding. Besides, he might have more trouble finding homes if he allows his dog to have another litter.

As for me, I still don't know what to do.
My husband says give this more time.
I guess I am afraid that if I do, I will hurt the pup's chances of finding a new home. Don't most people prefer 8 week old pups?
But since I don't know anyone who is looking for a pup, I guess my job is to do all I can to potty train him and get him socialized so that he has the best chance in life...
If you are devoted to getting through the hardest part - the puppy stages - you and your pup will be just fine. Socializing is a big thing, especially with a breed so small that may be intimidated by large dogs and such. Try to have him play with as many people as possible - men (!!!), women, children, older people, etc. Once he is ready a puppy socialization class would really be great for him.

If you do all of this - the potty training, socialization, maybe some beginner obedience - you will have yourself a great little companion. Even if things don't work out, taking those measures would ensure that he'll get a good home. But I have faith in you, and as long as you're able to put up with the ups and downs of puppy ownership, you should be okay. I agree with your husband, give it time. :)
 
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