Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Pooches: When Were you Ready for a Dog?

Owning my own dog as an adult always seemed like a far-off distant dream for me. Something about as elusive as owning a vacation home in Europe.
When I first moved to Chicago, I worked downtown in advertising where an average day meant leaving around 8:00 at night. Which would sometimes be midnight. Or even 3:00am.
Plus the other nights there were always people to meet out, which could also be until 3:00am.
It wasn't until I was a bit older, changed careers and I had my first summer off as a teacher that I realized I really could be a dog owner.
At the same time, I've been meeting so many great, younger people just starting out who are ready now. And they are fantastic pet owners.
Just curious...when did you know you were ready for the responsibility of your own dog as an adult? Were you always ready, or did it take you a bit longer (like me!)?

Also: Figuring out Miss M was the one for me!

20 comments:

Michelle said...

Oh man, I was born ready! But I waited, and waited...and waited. We could have had a dog in our very first apartment but I'm glad now that we didn't get one. We ended up moving three more times in the next 10 years. and looking back I don't think that we would have really been ready for one. Luckily our last move was into our own house and the one thing that would make it complete was a dog. We just celebrated Gracie's second "gotchaversary" yesterday. I was ready for her.

tiarara said...

I waited for 2 years and had serious dog envy before I went and got Leroy, my labrador mix pup. I knew it was time when our office shifted to a home based business model

Shannon King said...

For Taylor and I, it was a matter of "we're getting this dog whether we are ready or not and we will make it work." I don't think anyone is ever really ready!! We joke all the time that no one tells you how hard having a dog can be at times (potty training, fixing bad behaviors, $$$$). But we know that the rewards far outweigh the trouble and we wouldn't turn back no matter what.

Sam said...

I've always had dogs, and have always made sure I had time for the dogs. I had only one brief job with hours like you described and decided it wasn't for me. I wanted the dogs more.

Sam

onedoglife.com said...

I'm ready-not-ready for a dog, which is why I foster. I'm ready for the daily care: commitment to walks, vet visits, training, ect. I'm not ready for the 'I have to take care of this creature for the next 18 years at least'. I'm young and work in a fairly volatile field. I'm also single and in the military. So for now it's fosters only, which I definitely don't mind!

waldobungie said...

I got Rufus as soon as I was able to move off-campus to my own apartment in college. Unfortunately, I was not as mature as I should have been, so I took Rufus to stay with my parents for weeks on end sometimes because I "couldn't handle him" while working AND doing school. I am mortified to think of how irresponsible I was back then. But I guess I could be proud that I found long-term boarding with my parents instead of dumping him at a shelter. And of course, he was always uber pampered (by me and my parents - then and now)!

waldobungie said...

I got Rufus as soon as I was able to move off-campus to my own apartment in college. Unfortunately, I was not as mature as I should have been, so I took Rufus to stay with my parents for weeks on end sometimes because I "couldn't handle him" while working AND doing school. I am mortified to think of how irresponsible I was back then. But I guess I could be proud that I found long-term boarding with my parents instead of dumping him at a shelter. And of course, he was always uber pampered (by me and my parents - then and now)!

adorabully said...

With Buddy it really was more of a "ready or not" situation. I didn't want a dog, didn't need a dog, especially a dreaded pitbull. I was going through a divorce, living in townhouse with my sister and my three cats. Then my ex decided he needed a friend, a tiny puppy friend. A few days later he realized that not only did he not have the time or energy for an 8 week old puppy, he had no knowledge of how to raise one either. So Buddy literally got dropped on my door step. I was working with a rescue to find him a home when I feel in love. It ended up working out perfect. My work schedule and my sisters always worked out that he was never home alone for long. We walked a lot and explored. In the years since my job has changed, my life has changed, but I have always made it work. He's my top priority, as are my other two. Sometimes you just can't be ready for what you're meant to have.

Rebelwerewolf said...

I was ready for a dog when my spouse got on board. Since I work full-time and occasionally go on business trips, Llamaentity cares for Badger and Mushroom while I'm out. Now if the question was "When were you ready for a 2nd dog?", the answer would be "not for at least another year", despite the fact that we already have two. =/

Pitlandia Pooch said...

It was not the plan to walk into a shelter a little over a month ago and adopt Athena-- so, I'm still not sure that I'm ready for a dog, but we are making it work. B and I have always dreamed about the 'someday' when we would have a dog. Well, the someday has turned into now. We are lucky to both have so much time to spend with Athena right now in our lives, so her quirks are really improving quickly. But, there have been times in the past month of owning her that I have thought "why on earth did we get a dog? I can't deal with this." We have managed to stick to it and I'm looking forward to the many years to come that we get to spend with Athena (without some of her annoying behaviors I hope!).

Tannia G. said...

I always had dogs growing up and so when I went off to school I missed the doggie time love and affection. So as soon as I had a stable job, I started thinking about it, and I doubted myself for about 5 years, the usual stuff. Do I have enough time and do I make enough to support us both? Then it happened that my brother moved back into my moms house with a little blue puppy. He also worked 14 hour days, my mom for as much as she loves dogs could not keep up with a 3 month old puppy. So she begged the rest of us to find a good home for the puppy. Every time I went home, I would want her to be mine a little bit more. And she was in dire need of medical attention, she had terrible skin problems and I knew she was in pain because of it. So I asked my brother when he was going to take her to see a vet and he said, "hmm maybe in a couple of weeks." Right then, I decided I wouldn't let her suffer anymore. So I discussed it with my sister and she said if the initial cost of vetting was a lot she'd help me with it. So, I said, "that's it she's coming with me" and we've been in love ever since.

Garnet Scarabin said...

I didn't get my first dog on my own until I was 27, although I'd had dogs all while growing up at my parent's house.

I moved around a LOT during my early to mid-20s (lived in 6 states during that time), but finally decided to settle down enough to "just foster." Famous last words, right? Two and a half years later I have three dogs and now run my own dog rescue. I've gone from apartment living to renting a house and also have a steady full time job instead of living a bohemian, gypsy lifestyle.

Trissi_V said...

I don't know why, but I never felt ready for a dog until I actually just adopted her. I have owned cats for years, since 2000(Chablis is now 12). Though I am a great cat owner, I thought that there is so much more to owning a dog that I just couldn't handle the responsibility. Now that I have Laci and Apollo in my life (with my 2 girl kitties too) I can't imagine life without them, they are my children.

Corbin said...

I was 25 when I adopted Corbin. I wasn't planning on adopting and wanted to foster for about a year... but fate gave us Corbin and he never left :-) It's changed my life a lot and I spend a lot less time out at the bars and more time snuggling with my pooch(es), but that's A-Ok with me!
-Corbin's momma, Jenn

Kitty+Coco said...

I was ready the minute I graduated college (and therefore moved out of a dorm room)!! My husband and I got married two weeks after graduation, and our Boston T. arrived one month later. Poor guy, he knew I wouldn't have waited much longer :) I was relatively clueless on how to raise her properly, but I had the resources and plenty of love to give. We have said that we can't imagine ourselves without our pups, if that answers your question. I would have had a dog in college if I lived in an apartment. My friend jokes that my dogs are better taken care of than her kids, so I believe I am meant to have them.

Two Kitties One Pittie said...

I was born ready! :) I missed my dog when I went to college, but couldn't own one in the dorms. Then when I graduated, I worked as a full-time as a nanny in the burbs (so I was gone like 12 hours a day). That's why getting Stella made sense... but she wasn't *enough.* So then when K and I moved in together 4 years later and I saw Freddie in the backyard, we got our second cat. But I still longed for a dog... and at that point, my schedule allowed me to mostly work from home. Even though it was a financially unwise decision to get one, we have made it work. And obviously, it was worth it. :)

Two French Bulldogs said...

mom had pups her whole life. During a break in between pups, she knew it was time for her own. First Lily, then me, Benny
Benny & Lily

My Two Pitties said...

Ready? Most likely not. But I am so glad I just went for it. After living in London for 6 years I reluctantly moved back to CA...and hated it. So I ran back to London. A little this and that brought me back to the US and another year with my parents:/ So as I was able to look for an apartment, I scoured the internet for the perfect rescue pup.

I brought Kaya home the day I moved in. No furniture, no TV, no internet, no job, no family, no friends. Just an airbed, some clothes and a dog. One of the best decisions I ever made. This time I stayed in CA. And I was not miserable. And our family grew, and my life grew and we couldn't be happier!

Lar said...

I had dogs all my life until I was out on my own. Then I was young, married, three kids, full time job... no time for a dog. Then, I was divorced, on my own, three kids, small apartment, less money... no way to have a dog. THEN I was older, remarried, with grown kids, a house of our own and the perfect dogs found me. I have no doubt that this was the smartest waiting game I ever played, because only now are we in the position to give the dogs time, exercise, and a real home where they are part of the family. It was a long wait, but so worth it.

elegy said...

I was itching like crazy for a dog when I was living off-campus in an apartment during college, but my roommate already had a dog, and we had a 1-dog limit.

It really was for the best-- I was not financially ready for a dog.

It wasn't until several years later when I was working full-time and renting half a duplex by myself that I ended up with a tiny ancient poodle who needed a home, and maybe six months after that, I brought home my first pit bull. Hard to believe that was almost nine years ago now. How time flies!

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