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Hello everyone,

I want to emphasize that I'm here to seek advice, not because I'm at my wit's end.

A little over a month ago, our 10-month old puppy died in a tragic accident. She was beautiful, loving, and went way before her time. We rescued her at 5 months of age and she had almost no classic puppy traits.

A few days ago, we rescued a 3-month old puppy. He is the classic puppy. He's rambunctious, chews, and has little respect for authority ("no", "stop", "OW!" etc). One major thing he does is the barking back-talk. He is ever so cute and we are trying our best with him.

I'm concerned because I already feel a little tapped out and wonder if I was "ready." I have cried several times about our recently diseased puppy, mostly when I do similar things with our new little guy (same walk areas, same treats etc). I also think of our old pup when I am struggling, wishing she were here to comfort me like she always did. It's particularly hard because our new little dude is requiring so much effort and giving so little back. I feel disconnected with him and am worried that I will somehow never love him the way I did our other puppy.

I am very much a dog person, having had 7 throughout my life. I am concerned that I have not fully grieved over our previous loss and that I'm in a state that is not ideal for raising a young pup. I had been feeling better over the last few weeks and my partner and I had mutually agreed that we were ready to let another fluffball into our lives. My partner and I are very relaxed people and this puppy's talking back, barking, constant chewing have us nervous that he will not be a good fit even when he is older.

We have committed ourselves to trying it out with him before we make any decisions. We do not have unlimited funds for training and have 6-8 hour work schedules with lunchtime visits possible. We are dedicated to him but recognize that re-homing may ultimately be an option, should we feel absolutely unfit for him.

I'm looking to all of you for insight:
Is my lingering/returning depression "normal"?
What should we do about our new pup situation?

thanks in advance for your help.
 

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We recently had a puppy that died of parvo within a week of us bringing him home and I still grieve him (or the dog he had promise to become) often, and that was back in March. I imagine it would be even harder with a wonderful pet that you had a strong attachment too.

For your second question puppies are EXHAUSTING! I would say he will settle in, but some of it is going to be you settling in too. Dog personalities aren't dissimilar to people personalities in my mind. There are lots of them and they change over time. The thing will be are you willing to make the commitment to be flexible with those changes.

Side note: Try really hard not to compare this guy to your last dog. It's like comparing one person to the next. Love him for who he is, and I guarantee you will start developing an ease in your relationship over the next few weeks/month.

Good luck to you!
 

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Grief has no required time to end. If you're still grieving, let it run its course. There is no right time to stop loving a departed pet.

But if you feel overwhelmed with your current landshark and not truly ready for a new pup, it's best to rehome this one while it is small and cute and likely to get snapped up fast, and wait until you really feel up to it. Have you talked to your partner about your struggle?
 

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Hello everyone,

I want to emphasize that I'm here to seek advice, not because I'm at my wit's end.

A little over a month ago, our 10-month old puppy died in a tragic accident. She was beautiful, loving, and went way before her time. We rescued her at 5 months of age and she had almost no classic puppy traits.

A few days ago, we rescued a 3-month old puppy. He is the classic puppy. He's rambunctious, chews, and has little respect for authority ("no", "stop", "OW!" etc). One major thing he does is the barking back-talk. He is ever so cute and we are trying our best with him.

I'm concerned because I already feel a little tapped out and wonder if I was "ready." I have cried several times about our recently diseased puppy, mostly when I do similar things with our new little guy (same walk areas, same treats etc). I also think of our old pup when I am struggling, wishing she were here to comfort me like she always did. It's particularly hard because our new little dude is requiring so much effort and giving so little back. I feel disconnected with him and am worried that I will somehow never love him the way I did our other puppy.

I am very much a dog person, having had 7 throughout my life. I am concerned that I have not fully grieved over our previous loss and that I'm in a state that is not ideal for raising a young pup. I had been feeling better over the last few weeks and my partner and I had mutually agreed that we were ready to let another fluffball into our lives. My partner and I are very relaxed people and this puppy's talking back, barking, constant chewing have us nervous that he will not be a good fit even when he is older.

We have committed ourselves to trying it out with him before we make any decisions. We do not have unlimited funds for training and have 6-8 hour work schedules with lunchtime visits possible. We are dedicated to him but recognize that re-homing may ultimately be an option, should we feel absolutely unfit for him.

I'm looking to all of you for insight:
Is my lingering/returning depression "normal"?
What should we do about our new pup situation?

thanks in advance for your help.
I see two different problems wrapped up as one

#1 based on pup's behavior, dog personality wise this dog may not be a good fit your your household

#2 you may still be upset over your past pup's death.

Let's take #2 first. Let's be real here. 4 million perfectly healthy happy and trainable dogs are abandoned every year. 2 million get adopted. This means any dog you keep has a 50/50 chance of never making it out of the shelter alive. Consider that fact when you decide to 'rehome' the dog. Is your past grief so raw that you'd have this new pup put to sleep?

#1 - dog's behavior makes you wonder about the future of that pup in your household. Yes, dogs individual personalities, but they are also shaped by the environment they are brought into and the training you impart on them. I think you are overreacting to a pup being a pup and need to realize things will mellow with age and to deal with these behaviors through training, not through giving the dog up...again, realizing that 50% of dogs given up end up being put down.
 

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Thank you to everyone extending their support. Grief is a tough thing to deal with, but I am working through it the best I can. I think I was just surprised by how it crept up on me all of the sudden once the new pup arrived.

We know that he's just being a classic puppy. I wish there was a way to determine what his personality was really like, because right now, he's just a eat/sleep/bite/bark puppy. Definitely a human newborn :p. He has started trying to climb onto the couch with us and whines while propping up on the bed frame in the mornings. I think this is a sign of affection?

Our issue is compounded by the fact that he has had all kinds of worms, despite vet care prior to our rescuing him. We have him on the right meds currently. He's still a chipper little dude but we are sometimes wary of too much affection for risk of infection ourselves.

My partner and I have been talking a lot about our situation. We have no full intention of rehoming because I know the risks that akodo1 mentioned. But I will say I am thinking about it, almost like it is a backup plan if things don't work out. We have contacted his foster home and they are completely understanding and are willing to take him back. In addition, they said he had many suitors besides us, so he would go fast.

It breaks my heart that I feel this way. It confuses me as a dog lover and a dedicated dog parent. I want to move past this. I feel like I am weighing down my partner and preventing him from fully embracing this new puppy. I feel like this is puppy blues plus grief...but what if it's not? How will I know? I want what's best for our little guy, I really, really do. :(
 

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Akodo1, telling someone if they give their pup back to the foster who gave it to them, that puppy has a 50% chance of being euthanized is a scare tactic at best, and knowingly cruel to someone already upset about the situation. Guilting someone into keeping a dog they may not be prepared for will not help the dog OR the people.

Adult dogs run a high risk, depending on the shelter and the location! Imminently rehomeable puppies from fosters RARELY run that sort of risk. My local pounds have an over 95% adoption rate. Terrifying someone with 'your dog might die if you rehome it!!!' is mean and unlikely at best given the situation.

Not everyone is suited to every dog at every point in their lives.

@woofthereitis Would your foster be willing to take the puppy back for a few days/a week? It'll be confusing for the puppy but nothing a three month old can't easily get over, and give you and your spouse some breathing room. If it feels better without a puppy in the house.. maybe it's best to home the puppy while small and cute. An adult dog out there, already well out of the landshark chew barky anklebiter phase, might be better suited with your situation. Less of a connection to the memories of raising your last pup if the dog is already raised, and might bring up the grief of your lost pup a lot less..
 

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Hi woofthereitis,

Whether you and your partner decide to keep this puppy is really up to you. I don't have a strong opinion either way.

I would like to second what Redwood has said. I agree that keeping a dog out of sense of guilt is not enough. You're looking at making a fifteen plus year commitment. You've got to feel more than a sense of guilt and duty. You owe that to yourselves and to your dog. As I understand, you would be returning the puppy not to a kill shelter, but to a foster home, and it sounds like the rescue group would be able to easily find a good home for him. To me, this sounds like a win-win situation.

I have rehomed two dogs, and I firmly believe that both dogs are better off. Both were rescue dogs. The first dog turned out to be a really poor fit for me and my family. I kept him for eight weeks trying to make things worked out, but with the wise advice of my mentor here, I decided that I needed to find him a new home. I contacted a rescue group that helped me place him into a private, no-kill shelter, and he was adopted within three hours by a much more suitable family. That dog is micro-chipped with the shelter's information and they guarantee their dogs for life. Without going into the story, I rehomed the second dog with a very close friend of mine and I still retain legal ownership over him.

You and your partner will need to decide whether to keep this puppy. But, I will say that you can rehome this puppy in a responsible way if that's your decision.
 

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I'm so sorry to hear about your puppy... when they leave us it is never easy, no matter how long we've had them, and no matter the circumstance in which they do. Time heals all wounds (or at least eventually numbs them), and there isn't a time frame on grief, so try no to be too hard on yourself regarding that. ♥

I just posted almost the same exact entry regarding your new pup a week or so ago. Ours is at the same stage, though a little older. She is defiant, not cuddly, barks back, doesn't understand the meaning of NO/OW/STOP, doesn't come when called if she has something more interesting in mind to do, gets super rowdy with our other dog at the wrong times and ends up starting fights, etc. etc. We also felt disconnected from her and that we were "fostering" her rather than being her forever home. We questioned what her personality will be like when she's older and if we really were the right home for her. There were many moments where seeing a cohesive furry family group in the future was very hard to envision.

We have had her for almost 2 months now, and it's just now starting to get easier. I'm starting to understand her more and learn what works with her. Vice versa, she's starting to understand the routine of her new life and what is expected of her. I am learning her triggers and how to avoid/manage them. Every day the positives of having her are far outweighing any negatives that we previously saw. She is starting to get lovey with us and now when she sees us, she "sees" us (if that makes sense).

You've had new pup for a few days, and while I completely understand wanting to rehome sooner rather than later, if that's ultimately what is going to be best, I think you should give it a little bit. Some will start to change within 3 weeks... others may take 3 months. Every dog is different. While you got really lucky with your first pup, new pup is his own being, so try to see him in his own light, and not as a comparison (that was a little difficult for me at first, since our first dog was so much easier to handle as well).

Ultimately only you will be able to make this decision, but to be honest from what you have written, it sounds like you have already made up your mind... that you are committed and are going to keep on. You just need some support - and I can definitely give you that, since that is what we decided as well. :)

Keep with it, vent, know that you aren't a bad person for feeling like you might need to rehome your new puppy who is proving to be a challenge, because you obviously care enough about the situation for find an online dog forum and post about it. :) Things will get better, I can almost guarantee it, because you DO seem to be genuinely dedicated to your pup, and that's really all that is needed. Everything else will eventually work out - but remember that you have to give it time.

Good luck!
 
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