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Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:03 AM

Am I crazy for considering a new dog?

Most of you know Max crossed the Bridge last week & my 2 pack members at home seem mostly ok.
The shelter I foster for has several seniors listed, one of which is a black Chowbrador girl the same age as my Porty P Bear - they're acutally probably related since they're from the same small town/rural area & they look almost identical.

She's older, black, huge, and her time is running out. I am tempted to go get her, not only to save her life, but so Porty P has a new pal - and one his own size he can rough around with.

BUT.
Part of me is very tired, and doesn't want to 'go there' again:
Doesn't want to "break in" a new dog to the house/routine.
Doesn't want the expense (big dog maintenance ain't cheap!)
Doesn't want to get attached knowing that she and Porty P are already seniors.
And, I am at a dead-end in my job, no connections in Indy, no bills other than the mortgage, and this would be the perfect time for me to put out feelers for relocation to a nicer climate later this year - doing so with 2 enormous dogs would limit my options on apartments.

I just ache when I think of all those babies in shelters that I could help, that I have the time, space and know-how to save, and then I think of the alleviation of stress in my life already, just since Max left us (caring for him throughout his DM & the impending decision to send him to the Bridge, then making that decision and following through weighed on me more than I realized) and I am really torn.

Thoughts? (Please be gentle. Thanks.)

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Arrow 13 replies Author Time Post
Reply Am I crazy for considering a new dog? (Original post)
Myrina Feb 2013 OP
mopinko Feb 2013 #1
Voice for Peace Feb 2013 #2
Stinky The Clown Feb 2013 #3
Auntie Bush Feb 2013 #4
cate94 Feb 2013 #5
TorchTheWitch Feb 2013 #6
Myrina Feb 2013 #8
TorchTheWitch Feb 2013 #11
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #7
Myrina Feb 2013 #9
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #10
Myrina Feb 2013 #12
Auntie Bush Feb 2013 #13

Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:08 AM

1. i think we all do this

i was one over the city "limit" (which is beatable in court as long as all are neutered), till barbie's passing. i have a daughter that wants a ptsd service dog. she had me thinking about raising a pup for her. but other daughter is bouncing home again with a grandpuppy, so my doggie hands are full right now.
but i think we all want to fill that hole.

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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:13 AM

2. Ask your heart.

I'm not very practical about animals so can't give good advice.

But I find my heart is a wise advisor. Often advises patience.
Sometimes you need to sit with the question for a bit.

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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 12:18 PM

3. I read these sorts of things and my chest feels a little heavier . . . . .

. . . . . there are no right or wrong answers.

What strikes me is a statement you made that sooooo many others also make: "I just ache when I think of all those babies in shelters that I could help. . . ."

Homeless pet animals are an epidemic. We have three that might well be dead if humans hadn't stepped in and if they hadn't ultimately found their ways to us. We would take in a thousand more if we could. But we can't. And we can't give money to Sarah McLaughlin and all the others like her, much as we might want to.

We do what we can and we feel good about that.

Only you can answer for yourself when you've done all that you can. Or all that you should. Or all that you want to.

You do what I think is the very hardest pet-care job there is and that's to foster. I get attached to soap suds before they go down the drain. There is NO WAY I could foster a pet. I just can't do it. But you can. In doing so, you have done more than 99.999% of the population. You're already paid so far forward on the pet score that its incredible.

You also make some points that suggest it might be best to wait. If you're thinking of relocating. maybe waiting is the best thing for all involved.

Or not.

I hope this helps you.

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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 02:38 PM

4. I think it all boils down to how likely

you are to move. We planned on moving to FL for many, many years but never made it.
Some problem kept popping up. Now I'm staying put.

So, unless you are really going to make the decision to move.... plan your life on what you want to do. I learned it's difficult to plan life in advance...what will be will be.

Weigh the pros and cons. Will you feel better adopting this new dog in spite of his problems or will you be happier without all that trouble he may cause. I don't know you, but you being a compassionate dog lover...I have a feeling you would gain more satisfaction and pleasure in adopting than leaving him in the shelter..that will be heartbreaking whenever you think of him. Your other dogs will be happier too. But you have to make up your own mind...only you know your finances and situation.

As far as losing him to the bridge...You can always remember all the extra happy days you gave him and be thankful for that. In the years following you'll be happier.

Again...only you can make that decision and which ever one it is will be the right one! Good luck!

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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 02:39 PM

5. You are not crazy at all!

You are very kind hearted to consider a rescue so soon after your loss.

Whatever you decide will be right. It ultimately depends on whether or not you are ready for the burden - and the joy - of a new family member. It's a tough call when the wounds of loss are so fresh.

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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 03:38 PM

6. You aren't crazy at all

I think it's totally natural. However, since Max passed last week I think you realize that your urge to "replace" him is because of that loss. You also state the dog you're interested in looks just like Max, and I think that's telling. I would suggest giving yourself a little time first to grieve Max's passing before making any firm decisions. But it's entirely up to you. If you think that adopting this other dog will make you feel better, by all means do it, but make sure that in doing it you realize that it is not Max nor a clone of Max and will be his or her own unique self. Also realize that another senior dog means you aren't going to have a lot of time with them and will have to face their passing as well. It's hard enough to get through losing a pet, but losing more of them in relatively quick succession has to be a whole lot worse. A senior dog is also more likely to have health issues and thus vet bills and perhaps special needs in the not too distant future.

It's a lot to think about, but I think you would be well-served in giving yourself some time to think about it all before making a firm decision. Decisions made in haste and because of a need to heal a wound aren't always the best ones, but only you can know if getting this other dog would be right for you. That's another thing about decisions - we can never really be sure however much we consider everything if they'll turn out to be the right ones.


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Response to TorchTheWitch (Reply #6)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:28 PM

8. The potential new dog looks like Porty

... she's a black chowbrador. Max was Boxer/Cathoula mix.

But I get your point(s).

Thanks for your thoughts

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Response to Myrina (Reply #8)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 03:18 AM

11. Woops! My mistake!

I should have realized that you were talking about Porty and not Max especially since I was just recently looking at his adorable photo which doesn't at all match the description of a black chowbrador. Oh dear, I screwed that up.

In any case, I understand your feelings so well. Personally, I can't live without a dog to care for, and before Boo's passing I was already starting to look for the next one knowing he'd be going soon because of his cancer (which I felt unreasonably guilty about). As it turned out, Yoshi dropped into my lap only a month after losing Boo when I had expected to have to wait for at least a few months. I worried about whether or not it was too soon, but I had no other doggie to love and in just hours Yoshi totally stole my heart, and I knew for certain then that it was the right decision for me. The point being that we always have doubts about such important decisions, but we can only really know our own minds and hearts best, and even then we still can't really know if we made the right decision until after the fact.

Though you have doubts, only you can know best what the right decision is likely to be. Maybe it's one of those decisions where there doesn't seem to be a decision that you know is right, and in that case, I find it's best to go with one's gut feeling whatever that is.

I hope you can decide what to do without too much agonizing over it.



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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:20 PM

7. Think this through.

Do that ever-suggested list of positives and negatives, and see if that can help you see what is best.

I see that you have a lot of negatives, and the positives are 1) a friend for Porty P and 2) saving an older dog who is at the shelter. Sadly, there are always dogs at the shelter, so I would not put too much on that reason.

Another thing to think about is, are you ready to go through losing another dog sooner rather than later? I know how bad it was on you losing Max.

Think about it rationally, then go with what you believe is right for you.....we can't tell you what is right FOR YOU.

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Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #7)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:44 PM

9. That is also weighing on me ...

We helped Bubba Ray cross the bridge in August 2011. Now Max. And #1 dog Hank is 13, has a heart murmur & probably won't make it thru this year. Losing 3 in essentially 3 years is alot for anyone to take, and a long healing stretch may be in order.

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Response to Myrina (Reply #9)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:55 PM

10. It takes a toll.

You will know if it is right, but my personal opinion would be to step back for a while. You don't want to push yourself too far. There are always opportunities ahead. Heal your heart a little.


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Response to Myrina (Original post)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 09:09 AM

12. Thanks everyone ...

I appreciate all of the heartfelt input.

I've talked it over with my college-age daughter and she too is on both sides of the fence.
In addition to Porty P Bear, I still have #1 Dog Hank, who is 13 and has a heart murmur.

She thinks that time wouldn't be a bad thing, but at the same time thinks that Hank will still be around for quite awhile as long as I don't let him act like a wild man (he's an Australian Cattle Dog - those of you who've had them as pups/youngsters know what I mean).

I do think Porty P would like a new pal but then I get into Logistics:
1. Walking 2 chowbradors - I'm strong, but if two 90 lb dogs on leash decide to go after a critter,
I'm just along for the ride.
2. On top of that, my car is a Scion. (I know this sounds really petty) Even with the back seat
down, I couldn't fit Hank, Max AND Porty in for a trip somewhere - someone would have to stay
home. So, two 90 lb dogs in a small car ... well ....
3. They're both older and spay/neuter, but is Porty going to think it's Happy Humpy time if I bring
the girly Chow home? I've always only had male dogs.

So, I'll continue to think.

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Response to Myrina (Reply #12)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 08:30 PM

13. Sounds like you've pretty well made up your mind.

It was hard to do... but sounds like you've made the best decision for you and your brood. Good Luck in all you do.

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