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Discussion Starter #1
I want to get peoples' opinions or suggestions on this.

I'm a 25 yr old male living in a decent size 2 bedroom alone who is out of the house for 8-10hrs a day for work. Depending on the day I could be at work till 3:30 to 5. Very rarely later than that.

Do I have a lifestyle that I could own a dog without it being depressed from being alone during the week?

Are there breeds that would be better than others?

Please help!
 

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Most dog owners work. The big question is, what will you do when you aren't working? Do you go out on most nights? Are you willing to spend most of your non-working and non-sleeping hours exercising, training, and playing with your dog?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
During the week, I don't go out at all. On the weekends I do but not for long and most places I trip to can accommodate a dog. I am very wiling to spend most of my time to devote to my dog. He/she wouldn't leave my side.
 

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Yes, you can own a dog but IMO, adopt an older dog. Having a puppy could be a challenge, not that it can't be done but I think an older dog (not a puppy) would be easier.
 

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Many adult dogs would do just fine with that sort of schedule. I would not recommend a puppy though. A dog over about 9 months of age shouldn't need a bathroom break during a typical <9 hour work day and many (esp. larger breeds) are okay up to about 10 hours. If I am going to be gone more than about 9.5 hours, I try to have a friend come by to let the dogs out for a break but I have rarely been stuck in traffic or something up to about 10-10.5 hours and the dogs have been a bit anxious to get outside but no accidents indoors.

One of the very high energy breeds might not be a good choice unless you are highly active after work and on the weekends, but even then its not bad. I have a ridgeback and foster pit bulls (two high energy breeds) and work a regular 40 hour week. I just make sure that they get exercise every afternoon for 2 hours or so, try not to go out on weeknights more than about once per week and if I go out on the weekends, allow a few hours before that for a good long hike or jog. And of course, there are dog-friendly activities too, my dog has even gone out to a bar before :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
This is all great news. I was just looking at AdoptaPet.com and figured an older dog would be a good idea. My other question is what the average cost may be. Not necessarily for the initial adopt (which is what I plan to do) but for food on a monthly basis
 

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This is all great news. I was just looking at AdoptaPet.com and figured an older dog would be a good idea. My other question is what the average cost may be. Not necessarily for the initial adopt (which is what I plan to do) but for food on a monthly basis
That depends some on where you are, obviously higher cost of living locations will cost more for general services (like vet care, boarding etc) but about the same for items like leashes, collars and such.

Here's a rough breakdown for my dog (the fosters have everything except food provided to by the rescue)
Initial set-up (collar, leash, tags, etc): about $30-50 plus $50-100 for a crate if needed or desired.
Food: $50/bag for 28 lbs of grain free high end food which lasts about 5 weeks.
Monthly heartworm, flea and tick meds: about $20/month
Annual vet visit: about $75 for check up, rabies, and booster shots for distemper/parvo and bordetella shot (some people give less often, I give yearly since we have so many new dogs coming through)
Optional stuff: Toys like KONG or nylabones $8-12 each (long lasting, maybe 1 each/year needed), consumable treats and raw bones $5-10/month, harness $40, extra leash or collars $10-15/each, dog bed $25-50, training classes $80-100 for a 6-8 week session, boarding $25-30/night.

I would guess I spend about $100/month on average. Of course, we ended up at the vet's this morning with an eye injury so I'll probably be out $100-200 for that.
 

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When I was your age, I had roommates, and I got a rescue puppy, walking him in the morning, having the roommates take him out for potty in mid-day, and then I walked him, played with him, and trained him in the evening and interacted in general.

I'm a little older and I have a much older dog. I feed him in the morning, he sleeps all day, then I walk him when I get home, feed him, then he sleeps in my room while I work on the computer, then sleeps in his bed when I'm ready for bed.

In general, I'd recommend that you get a rescue adult that fits your lifestyle and energy/exercise level.
 

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I think a rescued adult would be fine for you. Skip all that peeing everywhere and biting and get right to the good stuff!

Expense wise, it really depends on the size of the dog. Kabota is 45 lbs (an adult rescue, btw), and a 24 lb bag of good food is usually around $50-$55. That lasts him 6-8 weeks. Flea treatments, heartworm meds, any medication actually, is all determined by size. The bigger the dog, the more expensive. The same goes for doggy beds, crates, harnesses, collars, etc. Grooming is by size, too, but also breed. My groomer charges $35 for a dog Kabota's size, with his regular fur. It's more for a dog with poodle fur, hand stripping costs more (terriers with wire fur get that) and bigger dogs cost more.

In any given month, I probably spend $100 - $150, depending on if I have to buy food in the same 4 weeks as a grooming.

Keep in mind, though, vet bills can be a pain. I spent $101.30 last Friday because Kabota has a yeast infection in one ear. Other than annual checkups in which nothing needed to be done, that's the cheapest vet visit I've had yet. If your dog eats something stupid and ends up with gastroenteritis, you're looking at $500 easy. Does he have an obstruction and need surgery? $1,000.

Just be prepared.
 

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I agree with adopting an older dog - it doesn't even have to be that old, just old enough to be past the puppy stage. Mel was about a year when we got her, and while we try to avoid leaving her alone all day, sometimes it can't be helped and it's never been a problem.

Definitely be prepared for a big initial cost - not just for purchase/adoption, but for all of the various accessories you'll need. If you're anything like me, you can walk into a pet store to buy a $10 collar and walk out with $100 worth of treats and toys and goodies, so be careful.

Most importantly though is definitely having a rainy-day fund for emergencies. I've walked into the vet not knowing anything was wrong and walked about hundreds of dollars later. My mom's cat has cost her almost $2000 in emergency vet fees over the past two months (she's older though, and she's always been sickly). It's not the anticipated costs that are an issue - it's the ones you don't see coming.

Also, do be prepared for life to get more complicated. You think "oh, I don't go out much, it's all good," and then you forget about that day trip you had planned or that vacation you wanted to take or going out for a drink after work on a Friday evening. We've been bringing Melonie along on vacations with us, but it's not always possible, and sometimes it limits what we can do and where we can go/stay. Your life has to get a lot more flexible, so just be prepared for that.

That being said, I think you'll be fine, as long as you're willing to put in the time and you can afford the money!
 

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Also, do be prepared for life to get more complicated. You think "oh, I don't go out much, it's all good," and then you forget about that day trip you had planned or that vacation you wanted to take or going out for a drink after work on a Friday evening. We've been bringing Melonie along on vacations with us, but it's not always possible, and sometimes it limits what we can do and where we can go/stay. Your life has to get a lot more flexible, so just be prepared for that.
Try to get hooked into the local dog community now. Go to training sessions, volunteer at a shelter, attend agility or other sports shows. That way, you can find out the names of good trainers, groomers, vets, dog walkers, dog sitters and kennels. You'll also find out who to avoid. Plus, you can interact with lots of different dogs and maybe get a better idea of what you want in terms of breed/mix, size, energy level and personality.
 

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I think a rescued adult would be fine for you. Skip all that peeing everywhere and biting and get right to the good stuff!

Expense wise, it really depends on the size of the dog. Kabota is 45 lbs (an adult rescue, btw), and a 24 lb bag of good food is usually around $50-$55. That lasts him 6-8 weeks. Flea treatments, heartworm meds, any medication actually, is all determined by size. The bigger the dog, the more expensive. The same goes for doggy beds, crates, harnesses, collars, etc. Grooming is by size, too, but also breed. My groomer charges $35 for a dog Kabota's size, with his regular fur. It's more for a dog with poodle fur, hand stripping costs more (terriers with wire fur get that) and bigger dogs cost more.

In any given month, I probably spend $100 - $150, depending on if I have to buy food in the same 4 weeks as a grooming.

Keep in mind, though, vet bills can be a pain. I spent $101.30 last Friday because Kabota has a yeast infection in one ear. Other than annual checkups in which nothing needed to be done, that's the cheapest vet visit I've had yet. If your dog eats something stupid and ends up with gastroenteritis, you're looking at $500 easy. Does he have an obstruction and need surgery? $1,000.

Just be prepared.
Like you said, "a puppy is a long way around to the adult dog you really want." I LOVE that quote from you, because it sums up why i got an adult rescue, here are some pros of adopting an adult dog:

they can 'hold it'
they 'know who they are'
they are calmer
they are just thankful for anything you can give them

Puppies:
love them dont get me wrong but they are a bunch of trouble
will need a potty break during the night... prepare to lose sleep
will need a potty break half way theu the day at least... prepare to lose your lunch hr LOL
bite, chew, pee, poop, dig, destroy, whine, bark, & are otherwise obnixious (i say this with lots of love believe me no one goes more gaga over 'poopies' then i do but im being honest, when i get a pup i know what i might be getting myself into which means im the crazy one if i will willingly do that to myself LOL LOL xP
 

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they are calmer
Really? No one told Kit.

Check out petfinder.com. It's a great resource: a compilation of animals in shelters/rescues in your area.

Cost can vary a lot by dog. I just bought flea meds and they weren't less for smaller dogs. Well-visits at the vet usually run me around $100/year with shots. Food varies by quality and area: I pay around $30/month for a decent quality food for a 40lb dog. Obedience classes (highly recommended for a first time owner) are variable: going rate here is $90/6wks. I pay the same on a recurring basis for agility classes. The biggest expense for a first-time owner will be at the beginning, since you have nothing. Here are a few one-time purchases made at the beginning that I won't have to make again: leash, collar, harness, and tags, 2 crates (one for the car), several sturdy toys, grooming supplies (nail trimming stuff, brush), life jacket, food and water bowls. Add that to the expendables: food, treats, chews/toys, poop bags, shampoo, etc., and it can really add up. It's particularly hard for a first-time owner cuz you're starting from scratch - no old stuff to help ease the expense.
 

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Haha yeah where you live can vary some costs a lot. For me classes and vet expenses are much more than what everyone else has listed. In my area classes range between $160-210 for 6-8 weeks. The only cheaper option for quality classes is a club that would be a 45-60 minute drive from my house which isn't a feasible option for weekday classes. About a 3 hour commitment on a week night for a class is too much for my schedule. For my vet simply going in and SEEING a vet is $50 for the exam, goes up from there if they do any tests and for any meds I leave with. An eye or ear infection averages $120-150. Vaccines that don't require vet to see the dog I just have to pay the cost of the vaccine itself and a tech gives the shot.
 

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We budgeted about $1500/year for our dog, but that went out the window in the first week - he got over excited, tripped himself down the stairs and $400 later his broken incisor was out. We won't be going through that much in chews/toys as he doesn't play with toys and he doesn't like chewing (unless its on food). He is, however, going to cost us a lot in grooming, as he has a long, thick, double coat (about $65-70 for a basic grooming). We use a different kind of dog food to his regular kibble as treats at home (so its cheap!), and something a bit stronger as treats at obedience.

Classes provided at the shelter here are $160 for 6 1 hr sessions, or $120 if you adopted your dog from the shelter.
 
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