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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi we are wanting to add a new member to our family.The problem is I suffer with anxiety.We got a labradoodle puppy 2 years ago however I found it very stressful especially with a 2 year old at the time.I managed a week and then a friend agreed to take her(She subsequently developed an autoimmune disease and has cost £5000 so far) I sought help from my doctor and hav been feeling much more relaxed.We then tried rehoming a rescue in January however after being reassured that she was fantastic with kids etc she growled and barked whenever one of our 3 children entered a room and she went for one of my daughters friends scaring both myself and the child.We consulted a behaviourist who said that she was avert under socialised dog and may never accept children.A risk we could not take due to the fact we have 3 of our own and constantly have a house full of children.We are desperate for a dog.I have never owned one but have lays wanted one and have always been surrounded by them,my sister has 2 black labs and a cockapoo.My hubby has always grown up with dogs.I suppose I am just looking for advice on how to get over my anxiousness about puppyhood.I think I have read too much.Some things say don't give cuddles etc as they will not see you as the pack leader but we are an affectionate family who don't want just a dog but want another member of the family.Our youngest is due to start school full time next week and we feel it is a perfect time.I worry about the fact that I am a preschool teacher and I work on a wednesday and Thursday for 4 hours.How do I go off and leave a new puppy.I fear that I will get a puppy who suffers with everything bad I have read about.Seperation anxiety,severe barking,not sleeping at night,not toilet training etc.I spend all day every day thinking about owning a dog and wanting a dog and then I panic.I just need some advice please.
Kind regards
Clare
 

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Hi Clare, I fully appreciate and feel for you with your history with dogs and see your concerns. Dog ownership is a big commitement with caring and training plus a financial and emotional commitement. However if you want a dog for your family and are willing to put in the effort and time, a cockapoo could bring your family much love.

There maybe a few opinions you could consider, find a good breeder and a well bred & raised puppy, your puppy could stay longer with the breeder for fuirther socialisation and training too, when you are at work for 4 hours twice a week you may consider a dog walker or dog day care.

With some planning this could work for you, but please just enjoy the experience :) :)
 

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I work part time and my hubby works for himself so after a couple of weeks off Billy had to get used to being left for around 4 hours too. We used a puppy pen around the crate and it has always worked well. Maybe you could tie in picking up your puppy with some holidays to get him or her settled.
Try not to get anxious as puppies pick up on this, just make your decision then stick to it. A cockapoo can be a wonderful pet especially with young children.
Good luck, H x
 

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This sounds really tricky. New puppies of any breed can be very hard work and
I found actually quite stressful so I would be a bit worried about this adding to your anxiety. On the flip side if you can get over the initial 'hard work' of having a puppy and can make sufficient arrangements that both you and the puppy are happy with for when you are working then a dog dog could certainly be beneficial in helping with anxiety and cockapoo's are certainly a joy to own.
Please feel free to ask as many questions as you like on this forum to help you make a decision - there are some very experienced owners on here which will be able to give you great advice - I have personally been lucky enough to be helped on many occasions!!
Good luck with whatever you decide

Colin & Bettyx
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you everyone for being so nice.We have certainly made up out mind on the breed as my sister has a cockapoo and one of my daughters friends has one and we have all fallen in love.I think I have been made even more anxious by reading to much and by family making me feel like a failure with my last attempt.I have lost faith in myself:(( Jo I contacted Anne at broad reach dogs who told me to avoid working cockers as a parent because the pup would be too boisterous. I have contacted a few breeders and explained my situation but they have all either told me to not even consider owning a dog or they have not been willing to keep them a bit longer to get them used to toilet training etc as they just seem to want to get rid of the puppy and have the money :((
XC
 

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There have been lots of threads on here about working vs show cockers
and particularly about the working strain being more boisterous...some will swear they are and others , well the opposite. I have a show / toy poodle mix and she is VERY active. I believe a lot of it is down to the individual personality of the
dog. I think you need to take you time, find the right breeder ( easier said than done) and then make your decision.
 

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Hello, Lovely to meet you.
Everyone's situation is different & ultimately it will be you that needs to make a final decision but I will tell you my story.
I started with depression & anxiety really badly when pregnant with my now 4 year old. It was an horrendous time & I also suffered with panic attacks and OCD about dirt etc. It was a long journey & I am now back to about 95%. I am not sure I will ever be 'cured' but I understand alot more about myself & what stresses me out.

We wanted a dog for the whole family & I also wanted one to get me to go outside more (as I am still a bit of a 'stay at home' type). When we got Dexter I have to be honest & say that for the first couple of weeks my panic attacks returned & I did feel stressed due to the poo in the house etc. But what I have noticed is that he also gives me a sense of calm at the times when we are out walking together or just sitting at home. He is still a puppy & so still getting over some toilet issues, biting etc but each day he is getting better & we are getting more confident. My family are a huge support to me too.

I can see that he will be a huge benefit to me and he is a breath of fresh air in our family too. The boys are all getting older now & have different hobbies & interests; Dexter is the glue that encourages us to go walking together.

I don't regret for one moment getting him - you need to be prepared & have a strategy ready to deal with whatever the puppy needs and then RELAX....the more relaxed you can be, the more relaxed he'll be. Its hard, especially when lots of children are running around your house too - but unlike children, puppies seem to grow up incredibly quickly & so the 'baby' stage is fleeting really.

I do hope this helps you. (PS a big glass of wine also helped on occasion !)
 
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Hi personally I would wait until your youngest is a bit older. 4 is still very young and you will feel anxious having a dog around a small child. I have two kids of 6 and nearly 3, our dog is 2. It is very stressful having a puppy, as they do bite, scratch and chew things up. We got a dog while the children were that young because I was confident I could handle the stress and training (of kids and dog) So if you are already anxious wait until the kids are a bit older and a bit more able to understand any rules you have for playing with the puppy. You then should feel a little more able to handle the tough work and have a great family dog at the end of it.
You could try volunteering as a walker at a local rescue center to build up your own confidence with dogs?
 

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Hi Clare,

Welcome to the forum :welcome: and well done for being so open about your concerns. I too suffer from anxiety/depression and know how hard it can be to not worry.

I have an F1 Cockapoo called Saffi from working lines – in fact we bought her from Broadreach Dogs. I’m surprised that Anne advised you to go with Show lines – Saffi is boisterous but so are 90% of the Cockapoos I’ve met be they from Show, American or Working backgrounds. I imagine the secret would be to set ground rules early, teach your children to handle the puppy in the right way and tire the puppy mentally and physically. There is more about Saffi on my blog which can be accessed via my signature. If Anne is not willing for you to have one of her Cockapoos I would try Jukee Doodles – a lot of their pups are on here and whilst they have a long waiting list they’re very good at providing advice and helping people choose a Cockapoo whose nature is perfect for their individual situation. They also sometimes have older dogs available to the right homes.

Regarding our concerns:
- ‘Looking for advice on how to get over my anxiousness about puppyhood’. I would set up a strong support network – this forum is great, find a breeder who will support you through the early days, ensure all your family are on board and find a local puppy course and start as soon as you can. Start walking in your local parks so that you can meet other dog owners. Puppyhood is hard but it’s not impossible – if you’ve successfully raised three children it should be a breeze in comparison!
- As for cuddles… I think it’s nonsense not to cuddle your dog. We cuddle Saffi ALL THE TIME and she still knows who is boss!!! I’ve included some ‘Saffi cuddle’ pictures to put your mind at rest.
- Re the time alone. As others have mentioned try to coordinate getting the puppy with your school holidays so that they can become accustomed bit-by-bit to being alone. Failing that ask a neighbour, family member or pay a dog sitter to visit the puppy in the early days breaking that time up.
- Like you I had worries that we’d get a puppy with loads of behavioural issues. You must remember that books like Gwen Bailey’s ‘The Perfect Puppy’ cover EVERY eventuality. Of course every puppy has its own temperament but when you bring a puppy home at eight weeks they will, in some ways, be a blank slate – how YOU raise them will determine how they develop. It’s good to be aware of the potential issues that you might face but not to be overcome by them.

It sounds like you’ve had a difficult journey so far what with having to rehome the rescue dog. I hope you find the right breeder and wish you the best of luck.

Turi x






 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you all again for the great advice.Turi it's nice to know I'm not the only crazy one out there :) I have been walking a ladies beagle for the last 5 weeks and keeping her with me in the day which has been good. My sister suggested it but although it is good it is not the same as having my own.I miss her when she goes back :((
Karen my older 2 are fine and my youngest is the type that will always want my attention.I can see him being at home when he's 30 :))
XC
 

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I'm yet another one who has suffered from anxiety and sometimes depression since a child. Most of the time I have it under control and lead a normal life but it flares up every so often and makes life difficult. Had a horrendous flare up two years ago which took nearly a year to get back to normal from. Not having had such a bad one since my father died 10years ago, it came as a shock. So I sympathise.

I have had dogs nearly all my life, but had a gap of nine years before getting Polly last year. We were all working and I was travelling a lot, so it didn't feel fair to get one after our last one died. But it is lovely having Polly. Although she is a tie and my travels have been somewhat curtailed - or should I say amended! - it is pure joy to walk with her on beaches, the moors, etc. She is such a pure bundle of joy! You have to smile when she is around!

Yes, having a young puppy is stressful, but everyone finds that the case! Just look at threads on this forum! And like everyone else I went through a stage with her when I wondered if I'd done the right thing! But it gets better. Just remember that! I had even more stress added when I tore my calf muscle when she was 5 months old! I wouldn't advise it! I couldn't walk her for six weeks. :( It made life difficult. But she and I both survived, although with my husband and son walking her, training went out the window during that time!

Just remember to relax and enjoy every minute. Even the problems with toilet training will get better, although for a while with Polly I did wonder if that would ever be the case! It seemed like two steps forward and four back! They are only little for a very short time and it is a special time. Now Polly is 9 months old and we are so close. And I can't count the number of times she makes me laugh out loud in a day! And do cuddle your puppy. It's very relaxing and so nice!

Good luck with whatever you decide to do. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
How do I know if the breeder is ok or not.I have found an advert in the Friday ad for 8 week old cockapoos they have the mum and the dad is pra clear.They say they have been well socialised.The owners are willing to hold on to the pups until they have had both vacs as long as I put down a deposit.Does this sound ok?
xC
 

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Getting Ready for your puppy

Hi Clare,

I've stumbled across some free downloable PDFs that you might find helpful. http://www.dogstardaily.com/free-downloads

We made the decision late last year about getting a puppy and have had some similar poor experiences in the past. The Gwen Bailey book is also excellent.

We will be bring our boy home around May 11th.
 

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Hi,

Ohh I too suffered from anxiety and had frequent panic attacks in my teens and early twenties (it's getting more common amongst people these days!!) however I got it more so when my son was born, along with OCD's etc.. I was lucky as I could see the signs and got help and it was only a case of baby blues.

When I got our pup Jarvis I was smitten, also not naive, as I knew it was going to be hard. I must say the first week was so hard, sleep deprivation and worry. Worry as because he cried all night (non stop one night!,) I thought I was causing him huge stress and anxiety problems for the future . I literally broke down to the vet nurse who assured me to leave him and he will be fine. I was doing the right things, radio on, crate covered, blanket smelling of mum and litter and of me, radio low. I was told to use ear plugs however kept taking them out to see if he was still barking lol!! I was anxious about noise getting to my neighbours (another thing to consider). I tried to hide my worries as like children they pick up on everything!!

However, when I cuddled my bundle of fluff and looked into his eyes my world seemed a brighter place.

It is like having another child, cleaning up after constant, but like children they grow and blossom and the sleepless nights don't last long and the toilet training does get easier.

You just need to be prepared for the stress of the first few weeks (or months) as you may suffer, as I did, the 'puppy blues'

I also work in a pre-school few hours in the morning mon to fri term time. For the first few weeks I hired a pet sitter for an hour to split the morning £6 a day then I had this half term so I am hoping he will be ok after that. maybe try to aim for the summer holidays, without the rush of getting kids ready for school and you can be around to give them the attention they need in the first few weeks. Also will be less impact on your tiredness, as anxiety breeds from it.

saying all this they are so worth it.. without support of my vet and the guys on this forum I Would have worried more. You are not alone, big or small someone on here, or somewhere, is going through the same :) I really couldn't be without him xx




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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thank you I think because I associate my last bad attack with our last puppy I feel it is going to happen again however I don't feel I can move on or feel complete if I don't succeed at the one thing I have always wanted.I realise that I have lost the trust of my family and friends because of my past history with dogs and I now feel a bit embarrassed to ask for their help
XC
 

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Ann & Zoe lovely to read your real life experiences ..

Chumpheys dont be embarrassed to ask for help, if a puppy is your dream and something you truly want, I am sure you will and can make this happen, just be realistic and ask your breeder and family for help and support .. the first few weeks will be full on.
 

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How do I know if the breeder is ok or not.I have found an advert in the Friday ad for 8 week old cockapoos they have the mum and the dad is pra clear.They say they have been well socialised.The owners are willing to hold on to the pups until they have had both vacs as long as I put down a deposit.Does this sound ok?
xC
Can you share the link? :)
 
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