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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi there,
my name is Patrick - dog lover since childhood - and writing here to get a good, honest and sincere opinion on wether getting a dog is the right decision. I am mainly scared of two things (1) being a bad god owner.... and (2) destructive behavior which might get me in trouble.

I did every bit of planning, and I will use this forum to put all detail on the table and let you judge, whether getting a dog is the right decision or not. :ponder:

First-off, what dog?
I researched over a year the right breed and my decision boiled down to either an Australian shepherd or a vizsla (in both cases a puppy). I am very sportive myself and keeping up with a sportive dog will work fine. I will get a vizsla (female) since they are very clean, affectionate and also (a lot) cheaper, which allows me to budget for a dog walker, care-center and whatnot if the need might arise.

Where do I live?
I currently live in a 65 square meter apartment in Budapest. I know - not the ideal environment. I plan on moving back to Munich in half to three quarter of a year where the environment for dog lovers is perfect (forest, english garden, mountains, etc.). Additionally, it is getting increasingly common in Germany to allow (well behaved) dogs at the work place (work-life balance, etc.)
Here in Budapest, I have a main park next to my apartment, approximately 5min. away and a few other parks in close distance. It is a good location to walk the dog.

What does my week look like?
I am working for a big four company and believe (?) to have enough time for the dog. I usually wake up at 5am, latest 6am. Work starts at 8am, 9am or occasionally even later. I can walk the dog in the morning for an hour, during my break around 12am/1pm for about 20min., after work 5pm/6pm and again around 10pm or 11pm again for an hour. The weekend will be very dog oriented and I plan on regular taking a train to outskirts of the city.

Why now?
For me, owning a dog never was a matter of "if", rather "when". I believe to have enough time now to raise a dog and investing the same amount of dedication into raising a puppy will get harder the more I wait since I am expecting to have increasingly less time the more I wait.

My main fear:
Truly... two things hunt me. One - not having enough time leading to hyperactivity and poor behavior. Two - coming home and seeing the couch ripped in thousand pieces. My flatmate will be here and supervise the dog in the beginning. It will eventually happen though, that the dog will stay alone for 3 hours (or more, as he grows older)

Up and downs:
I know that owning a dog means having up and down, a lot of sacrifice and responsibility. I am up for it... and I have no doubt that owning a dog is the right decision. However, am I the right match for the dog???

Any feedback and experience, especially from vizsla owners, is welcome!!!!!
Thanks for your help! :thumbsup:

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Welcome! I think posting for advice shows you're well on your way to being a great dog owner!

I don't mean to discourage you, and maybe others will have different experiences but all the vizslas I've known have been seriously high-strung/wired. They're pretty intense dogs. I think vizslas are very much working dogs, that need a lot of physical and mental stimulation. Just based off your concerns, I think an aussie would be better suited for your lifestyle. They are less independent and have a more mellow temperament(in relation to a vizsla).

However, if you have your heart set on a vizsla I would definitely recommend puppy/obedience classes. Have you considered doing agility? Also, if you're scared about destructiveness you can look into crate training or an x-pen.

I'm actually surprised that a vizsla is less expensive than an aussie.. But either way, in the long run it's better to get the puppy that will best suit your lifestyle regardless of cost. The cost of daycare/walkers add up and will most likely exceed what you saved.

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When I was looking for a puppy, I was actually debating between an Aussie and a Viszla as well. I ended up choosing the Aussie.

Around here Viszlas are a lot more expensive, 2-3x more than the Aussie breeders I talked to. I also used to walk a few Viszlas and while I loved walking with them I figured I didn't want to own one. They are very very sensitive, and training needs to be handled as such. They also are very one person driven, they bond with one person and are very very loyal to that one person. From my experience they also tend to be prone to a high amount of separation anxiety. They require a lot of exercise, a couple clients actually run 6-10 miles a day and the dogs are still not tired and still end up restless.

They are intensely focused and loyal but require a lot of exercise. Fun dog for someone who is a runner/hiker.

Aussies are also high energy. (I swear my 11 week old can already run circles around me and I am a fit person!) Yet they tend to be able to relax more and enjoy their cuddles and down days more than the Viszlas. They love training and challenges and are wicked smart! Though you do HAVE to keep them entertained or they will do it themselves.

It sounds like your timing is just fine. I took a week off to settle Aayla into her home, and then after that is left alone for 3 hours periods during the day when she was 8-9 weeks old. Now at 11 weeks she is fine for up to 5 hours. She has a pee pad, safe toys and a bed in her playpen for when she is alone. We live in a condo with a small yard. It will be hard doing potty trips every hour if you don't have a yard so I would suggest potty pad training until the pup is older and can hold it. I walk her in safe areas (avoiding dog high traffic areas until her vax are done) twice a day for about 20 minutes then do 3-5 training sessions a day with her kibble. She only gets food with training or in kongs so that helps keep her entertained.

I do really suggest not letting the pup wander around alone until after teething is finished and they can prove they will not destroy the house. Otherwise you will come home to destroyed items and it will be so much harder to potty train.

Sounds like you are really thinking this out which is wonderful and makes us happy here at DF! Welcome and when you do get the pup, show pictures!
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