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I'm 24 years old, recently moved out on my own, have two male adult cats. I grew up around dogs and cats. My apartment building allows small dogs, and my mother has a shih tzu that I adore. I thought it would be a good move for me to get a dog too, since I spend a lot of time at home.

I'm recently unemployed and searching for work, so I thought it would be a good time where I'm home for the time being. However, I am not getting as much from EI as I thought I would so finances are a major concern for me right now. I definitely can't afford dog obedience classes.

I bought everything I'd need before I got her: a crate, a bed, dishes, a harness, a leash, a collar, toys, treats. It was expensive, naturally, and I know I would end up eating a lot of those costs.

But, and I feel foolish for writing this, I am so overwhelmed. I feel like she just needs so much attention. I always thought of myself as a cat person because I need a lot of quiet time to myself. But I missed having a dog around to take for walks and for general companionship. In spite of that, I think I've got in over my head. I want to make it clear that Tessa (the puppy) actually is fairly good compared to other horror stories I've heard... I just don't know if this is right for me.

It's very draining to have to watch her constantly. Even though I have experienced raising puppies when my parents introduced them to our household, I didn't anticipate how difficult and mentally exhausting it would be to have to do everything by myself. It is completely different and I've broken down crying at least once already.

She's a puppy (about 8 weeks old), so of course she's trying to chew wires and slippers and my chairs. My cats, even though they have been exposed to dogs, are not impressed with her presence. They hiss when she tries to play and one of them has already slapped her a few times. Though they are curious, I am concerned about them getting into a fight. Also, I feel like I'm neglecting the cats because the puppy needs so much of my attention.

My apartment is not that large, only a one bedroom with a combined living room/dining room. When she runs around I worry that it's not a big enough space for her - and for the cats.

She sleeps in a crate at night, but she generally wakes me up two or three times crying. I find myself resenting her for that, though of course I realize that's not her fault. In time, I know she will probably learn to sleep through the night - but this is just something on top of everything else. I am on the third floor and having to run down two flights of stairs every 3-4 hours is taxing.

She is adorable, and I do love her already, but I... I am concerned that getting her might have been a mistake. It's very embarrassing to admit that and I have not spoken to anyone about it. I've had her for 4 days (got her Tuesday and it's Friday) and these feelings are not going away. I know that if I bring it up everyone is going to tell me to give it more time. But if I am going to return her, I'd rather do it now before I introduce her to anyone else or get any more attached.

I know people are going to think I just didn't put enough preparation or thought into this. Maybe that's true. I did think about it for 2 weeks but maybe I let myself get swept up into the excitement of the idea. Now I am facing a reality that seems to be wearing away at me.

I find myself really missing the days when it was just me and my cats. I have entertained thoughts about returning her to the breeder (I know that the breeder would accept her back; it was written in the contract). I just don't know if that's the right decision or not. Any input is greatly appreciated.
 

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puppies take up soooo much time and if you arnt commited i dont think you should keep the puppy. im 24 too and living in a apartment on the second floor (only got two floors my neighbour and i share a massive garden) so i know how it is running up and down stairs im doing it right now with my little letty whos 10 weeks and my fudge whos 1 year, belive me it is very worth it! but i totally understand that not everyone wants to be doing it, maybe you thought you were ready it happens to lots of people that when they think about getting a puppy it seems like heaven and then in reality they are just overwhelmed by their needs. if you dont want to keep the puppy and the breeder will take her back there will be someone just perfect for the puppy out there, but if you return the puppy please dont go and impulse buy again just remember the commitment that dogs and puppies take, not just your attenion but your dog relies on you, you are there world and their everything.
 

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Puppies are a lot of responsbility. They are like infants in dog form. They get attached to you. If you want to return her, now would be the time to do it if you're going to is my opinion so that she won't get attached to you and someone else can get her and she can adjust to their routine and get attached to them.

If you decide to keep her, let me reassure you that all the things you're going through is part of puppyhood and will fade away. She will learn how to respect the kitties (the kitties will teach her respect) and sleep through the night. She will learn how to stop chewing on the wires. It's ok to get overwhelmed and cry. It's ok to come on here and vent. All the stuff you're going through is normal.

Good luck with your puppy.
 
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Puppy blues are so so so so so common!! The number of posts on the forum about people struggling to cope with puppies, honestly its so common. When we first got Zoey we weren't sure whether we were keeping or fostering her, and there were so many times in that first month I thought I couldn't cope with her and should seriously hand her over to someone else...its a normal feeling to owning a puppy.

She's six months old now, doesn't need watching 24/7, is mostly housetrained, and judt easier in general :)

Its your decision at the end of the day, but it will get easier as she gets older. Puppies are a LOT of hard work, and you need to be prepared for that. Theyre a big commitment and a lot of responsibility! They also bring a lot of joy and happiness too, and are totally worth the work put into them.

Red
 

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First of all I want to give you a hug, it's okay...sometimes we just aren't a good fit with a particular dog or cat. Taking on a puppy is almost exactly like having a human baby. That isn't for everyone...exactly why I've only adopted adults.

I would say give the puppy back to the breeder, it will find the right home that way. Then I would tell you to start researching rescues and shelters, PetFinder too. An adult dog maybe 2-4 years old and socialized with cats might be perfect for you.

An older dog is usually already housebroken, has it's personality developed and can be very tolerant being left when you go out, happy at bedtime, and respectful of the cats. I'm a former cat person too. Dogs do take more attention, but if you have the right one you can have time for everyone.

Some of our cats will lay beside our dogs, groom them, everyone sharing food. Two of them are so dog friendly that when one of the pooches is across someone's lap, the cat will curl up on the dogs back for a warm nap.

And there are some things you can't do so easily with a cat, a dog can run errands with you. Get outside and take an invigorating hike with you...if you find the right pooch you can have the very best of cat world and dog world together!
 
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I'm with the others here.

Especially for a first time owner, puppies are HARD. They're cute, and they can be fun sometimes, but all-in-all, they're going to make you want to rip your hair out and give up. I'm pretty sure all of us who have raised puppies have felt the same way as you do now, at least briefly. You either want to just make the little demon creature go away, or you're giving yourself an ulcer worrying about the tyke.

Please know that this is just puppyhood. It gets better, it really does. This isn't the fun part and don't feel bad for not enjoying it. It will get better. As she grows and matures, she will become more independent and less of a helpless, screechy, poopy little slug. And when you're past all of this, you're going to look back, smile, and really appreciate the dog you have in front of you.

Stick with it, keep looking forward, and one day, you're going to look down and realize that you no longer have a puppy. You'll see that you have a mature, far calmer, far less needy mature, happy, loving dog that you've bonded with and who can nap on the couch while you have time to yourself.

Hang in there.
 

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I have had the puppy blues too. I got my Sam 1 week after my Harley passed. He was a pistol, hard to control, bull headed plalina bad boy. I am disabled to boot.
But I stayed with it, and believe me many times I thought about calling his breeder to take him back.
Well long story short, I stuck with it, disabilities and alll, and he has turned out to be my best bud. Worries about me, has to be with me, and listens.
He is 14 mos old now.
If you do stay with it you will be rewarded, but if you can not hang on, now is the time to return him to the breeder.
No one will say you are doing the wrong thing.
 

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Yup, another voice in the chorus: I had wicked puppy blues, considered returning Calypso, etc etc. You can see from my avatar how that turned out.

A couple other thoughts:

1. You deserve a break from time to time. Getting a playpen for Calypso was probably the single most important thing I did that allowed me to deal with her babyhood-puppyhood. If you can't borrow a suitable playpen or dog-specific exercise pen (ex-pen) from an acquaintance, you might try looking at thrift and consignment stores for a cheaper one.

2. Also on the break, and until a playpen happens, most of us would recommend that you have Tessa on a leash, attached to you or to your desk, when she doesn't really have to be in her crate but you need/want to work, Internet, etc. Of course Calypso chewed things...I made sure all the computer and power cables were out of reach or painters'-taped to the wall, and decided my desk and desk chair were just going to be sacrificial offerings. I also keep an old cardboard box in my bedroom that has become Calypso's go-to "boredom chew" since she outgrew the traditional puppy "all the world's my chew toy."

3. Dog obedience classes themselves aren't necessary; you can provide Tessa with exactly what she'd get out of them with some time, social networking, YouTube, and about $2 on a clicker. That would be, dog interaction/socialization (making sure that all interactions are positive--like meeting your mom's shih tzu --and won't expose Tessa to microbes before her vaccines are done), and training (most of us on DF are *nuts* about the training videos of kikopup/Emily Larlham, which are posted on YouTube!).

4. I don't know where you live or what your options are, but my town hosts community vet clinic days that have been miraculous as far as affordable vaccines and flea/heartworm prevention go. Maybe there is something like that in your area?

What kind of dog is Tessa?
 

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Puppy blues are very common BUT if you just realized you don't want a grown dog eventually (even a well behaved one) maybe returning the puppy while it is still young would be for the best.
 

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I recently got a puppy on 19th Janurary and i have to say i had to question if i was really ready even though id be longing for a puppy for years and was able to wake up easily unlike when i had my last one. I have to admit i felt like you do atm Jessie was constantly trying to chew my clothes even underwear, would nip my knickers as well as everything else on me and others, would go manic alot, endless amounts of pee and poo's etc. Thing is i stuck with it and my parents helped me out by babysitting her when i needed a break for the first month.

In time she settled down and stopped chewing and nipping and i have to say she has to be the best behaved puppy ive known. It is tiring getting up 3-4 times in the night but at 12 weeks old she will most likely sleep through the night and if not then soon after.

Please try stick with her you will be rewarded with a good puppy. If you really cant cope and dont want her return her to the breeder
 

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i also want to say for the first month i was extremly exhausted as i was never up so early and all day and all the getting up in middle of night nad lack of sleep got me having seizures( im epileptic ) but not many of them then i had migranes for a month and got some really good migrane meds from the doctor.

I also have other disabilities though i can walk and all that and i have to say Jessie knows before me when im about to have a seizure. I love having her and she is lots of fun. If in future i was to get another pup id go through it all again
 

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How do you think your puppy feels? She will pick up on your unhappy state and your night time resentment. What can she do though? She is totally dependent on you.

Can you not teach her things like putting a collar and leash on her calmly? Walking on the leash without pulling (even if only in the apartment). Teaching her ‘door etiquette’ – how we leave our apartment and how we behave returning – calmly and quietly, no pulling, whining or screaming.

Play with her at certain times, than put the toy away making it clear that play is finished, give her a Kong stuffed with yummy food and get on with your own jobs.

Do not put food in her bowl but into a food dispensing dog toy such as a Dog Pyramid or Kong stuff a ball so she has to work to get her food.

Teach her to sit, lie down, stay 2 feet away from you for 2 seconds and so on. Mental strain of those above should help wear her out and allow the bond between you to grow.

Re toileting at night – is it not possible to use puppy pads or just old newspaper whilst she is so young and needs to go in the night?

I don’t think you have given her a chance, I think you assumed she’d sleep all night and most of the day and comes pre-programmed to know how to behave. Whilst you’re not working you have the ideal opportunity to set the rules and routine in place.

Good luck and start enjoying the company of the most wonderful creature in the world.
 

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I don’t think you have given her a chance, I think you assumed she’d sleep all night and most of the day and comes pre-programmed to know how to behave.


I don't see this anywhere in the OP's post. S/he is home all day all the time with a hugely demanding, time-sucking, life-sucking little thing, and isn't sleeping very well because of it! Puppy Despair is not a matter of trained vs untrained, or even expectation vs reality. I actually ended up *not* having the problems I was expecting to with Calypso, and I still sunk into postpuppy depression for a couple weeks after getting her.

OP, it's important to remember two things:
1. You CANNOT be The Perfect Dog Owner, so cut yourself some slack. Take some chances to put Tessa in her crate and go out for a walk, spend an afternoon at the library, take your neighbor's grandkids to the playground. Maybe you could call in reinforcements and have her spend a day with your mom? (That would actually be really good as far as socialization is concerned!)

2. Even though you will never be The Perfect Dog Owner, Tessa is going to turn out just great. :) Dogs are awesome like that.
 

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First a hug :huddle: Puppies suck! it's good they're so darn cute otherwise we'd strangle them; jks :D

I'm exactly where you are, only a little further down the road. My own Tessa, a lab/collie/aussie mix,is 15 weeks next Tuesday. In the month I've had her she has physically and mentally exhausted me; and I have the bruises, scratches, and bite marks to prove it. And yet I wouldn't change a thing, although I do think I may be going a little insane, lol;).

My 14 year old girl had passed in December (I had her as a puppy, but I was also 8 at the time), and all I could think about was getting another dog, but only a puppy would do. I would start fresh, she would be my bestest buddy and we'd have that romantic notion of dog-owner relationships that the movies always tote about. Boy was I wrong!:rolleyes:

Puppies are a ridiculous amount of patience, attention, and love; and trust me, you'll never fully be ready for one. I would personally give it more time, but it's your decision. I know your apprehension. I'm 23, recently graduated my college course and I am living at home with my mom, working a few split shifts a week and looking for a career. Believe me now is not the perfect time for me to be raising a puppy either, but I don't think I would have recognized it before actually having one in my life (stupid movies make raising puppies so easy). Though I'm not sure when would be a perfect time for a puppy (is there really one?). Luckily I'm just as stubborn as my girl Tessa! ;)

I've cried more times then I can count, had moments where I resented Tess (especially when she bites me constantly), and gotten snappy with my mom and others; but on the flip side I've also been really proud of the simple moments, like when Tess learned 'high five' randomly, or the first night she slept through the whole night, or the moment when she begs to get on the sofa and just naps on my foot. It's moments like those that totally erase the bad days that make me think she'd be better off somewhere else.

If you do give her back, then know she'll find a great home. I would, however, talk with your breeder and ask for advice. If they were reputable and concerned at all for their pups, they would first try to help you along with advice or some remedies to your problems (if only to have someone to talk to) before re-homeing the pup. Just from experience, my cousin who breeds working GSDs, always recommends the owners to give it a little more time when they start having the puppy blues or 'buyers remorse' because really 4 days isn't very long at all. You should know most dogs, especially puppies, are pretty resilient when it comes to being re homed and bonding with the new families and adapting to new family schedules. And don't be fooled into thinking that if you return her and get an adult it will be any better; there are loads of "adopted adult rescue...think I made a mistake" threads here too.

When I first had Tessa I was ready to take her back within the first week too, but her previous foster family and the rescue I adopted her through told me to wait it out, that it would get better, and if I had any concerns to phone them to talk. I did, and we've made it a little over a month now!

If you do decide to keep her, you won't be sorry. Sure there will be tough times, but eventually the good times will out number the bad. I will admit that I don't think I'd have made it through the first week without my mom and all the others who have surrounded me with support and offers to watch Tessa while I have some time to myself.

I wish you luck! And if you do keep her and need advice, Dogfourm and it's members are incredibly helpful and know exactly what you're going through.:thumbsup: plus there's loads of us on here that are surviving raising a new puppy/dog so we can always vent out the bad days (as Sundog reminded me, DF is a great place to vent;)).
 
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