Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Should we take on a dog?

Remember when I wrote this post?

Things to think about before getting a dog

Well, my boyfriend and I dog sat a gorgeous dog at the weekend. It's my boyfriend's sister's dog, and she lives with her Grandad who is 93 so she just can't care for him. She's one of those impulsive people who buys a pet without thinking and then gives it away not long after.

husky alsatian cross mix
He looks just like this gorgeous boy

At the moment the dog isn't being walked much. He gets taken out in the car a lot but she leaves him in the car while she completes her errands and then takes him back home.

My boyfriend and I just fell in love with him over the weekend. I went to work yesterday while he had a day at home, and when I got back the dog was so pleased to see me, it was adorable. The problem is he is a husky alsatian mix, and we both work full time. I can't help but feel it's cruel to take on a dog in that situation.

My boyfriend and I were thinking about it, and were thinking that perhaps we could hire a dog walker. His sister has offered to walk the dog while we're at work, but I would probably feel more confident if I was hiring someone to turn up at the same time every day. They cost around £10 a day, which ends up at around £200 a month, or £2400 a year! However, we wouldn't need to hire someone in holidays and as a teacher I get a fair few of them.

Another issue is we would like to travel, particularly living in Australia. It wouldn't just be a dog we'd have to consider in that situation though, we have family that needs a lot of our time and would struggle without us being around. We would have to think about a dog if going away on holiday. This would make a difference particulary for weekends away. Thankfully I think my Mum would be happy to dog-sit, but I don't think she was thinking of a big dog when she suggested that!

Cost is another issue. If he needs vets bills that would eat into our savings. We both work full-time in fairly well paid jobs though, so at least we are in a position where we would be able to cope. I'm sure a lot of other people own pets in less financially secure situations.

We also don't own our house. I don't think the landlord would particularly mind, but if she does, or if we want to rent elsewhere, it would be very difficult to rent with a large dog. I think we would have to buy a house which would add a massive headache to relocating.

Looking back at the post I wrote about dog owning before, I put 'you need to be sure about your life'. I am so much more sure than I was when I first wrote that post. I live with my boyfriend and it's great and we're very committed to each other. I'm looking for other teaching positions but I'm pretty sure teaching is the career I want to stay with (just perhaps not with teenagers). I'm happy to start thinking about owning my own home and finding a long-term job that I can blossom in.

The most I will commit to at this stage is a trial run with the dog. However, I can feel us falling for him and I don't know if it would be a good idea just to put my foot down, and walk away from the hassle. I'm sure we could find him a loving home with committed owners if we advertised him well. It's a tough one. In many ways he's ideal as I would like a dog that I can take running with me and he's good with children and other animals. What do you think? Do you own a dog?

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