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post #1 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 01:55 PM Thread Starter
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Would love to hear your thoughts

Hello everyone! I’m so happy to have found this lovely community. I live in northern Colorado with my husband and our two children. We’ve been talking about adding a dog to our family for some time and I recently became VERY excited when I discovered the Havanese breed after heavily researching many others. We’ve always had rescue dogs however our last one showed aggression towards our daughter when she was very small so we quickly found him a different loving home. This time we really want to get it right and find the perfect addition to complete our family.

Ok so here’s what I’d like to hear your onion on... our children are very small just 4 and 9 months. I’m interested in adding a dog into the mix in the next 6-12 months for a number of reasons. We are all currently at home for the foreseeable future, I think my daughter’s life would be greatly enriched during these times of social distancing, and basically I want us all to have something to love and bond over. To be honest I also really want and need a companion as balancing motherhood with all my other responsibilities sometimes feels quite heavy. I realize the massive amount of work and responsibility puppies bring. Since we are already in the trenches with little ones I guess part of me thinks it’s a good time to throw puppyhood in the mix. I’m sure I’m a little crazy to think that but I really do yearn for the companionship and like I mentioned already I’d love for our daughter to have the experience of raising a puppy, I think it would be a great distraction during these difficult times. Our son is 9 months old right now. I’ve been talking with a breeder who expects to have puppies available in about 6 months so the kids would be 4.5 and 15 months when puppy comes home.

Please share your thoughts and experience as this is something I haven’t done before with kiddos and I want to be sure we are making the right decision. For the record I do feel that both me and my husband are up for the challenge. I think a puppy/dog could provide great support to us both in the long run.
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post #2 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 04:06 PM
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If you already have a breeder who will have puppies available, and will work with you, you've already passed a big hurdle, as it can be difficult to find puppies right now!

It sounds like you are well aware of the huge commitment of raising a puppy, and ESPECIALLY the huge commitment of a puppy with tow very young children. The BIGGEST problem I see is that NEITHER of your children is of an age that they can really be safely left unsupervised with the puppy for even a MOMENT of probably the first YEAR. After that, perhaps, your daughter and the puppy can start being trusted together somewhat, depending on the nature and "trainability" of both. Your son will require 100% EYES-ON SUPERVISION with the puppy for several years to come. Dogs and toddlers are a dangerous mix. Even really sweet, really well behaved kids AND dogs. And it is ALWAYS the dog who ends up paying with its life if things go badly wrong. (and they easily can when kids faces are at dog level)

So that would be my only caveat. It can be a wonderful experience. My granddaughter (with her parents! LOL! and their two dogs) just moved out of our house, where I have had the joy, honor and privilege of being involved in watching her grow up thus far under my roof, and in a pack'o'dogs, from my three Havanese to their mixed breed mid-size to their enormous coonhound. It has been wonderful and a challenge at the same time. As long as you go not it with eyes wide open and COMPLETELY COMMITTED to the roller coaster ride you are getting on, you will have a great time! (most of the time! )

...We joke that she has been "raised by wolves". Here she is running to the door with the rest of them to see who's there!
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post #3 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 05:02 PM
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This is a very difficult and challenging situation. For example, I can't imagine trying to potty train two children and a puppy all at the same time. The other thing is that each of the three deserves to be the primary focus of attention at this young stage of their lives. I just think back to the situation with young children we had on the Forum about a month ago. Obviously, the children are a higher priority than a puppy, which is not fair to the puppy. Realize that many, if not most, Havanese puppies can be extremely high energy and rambunctious, a temperament that your children may interpret as being "aggressive" when all they are doing is being typical Havanese youngsters. Also, Havanese are termed "velcro dogs." They identify someone who is their primary caregiver (food, attention, exercise) and will be glued to their side, whether you want them there are not. It is in their genes.

I would never choose to take on this challenge myself. But there are a lot of people out there who have more fortitude, enthusiasm, and commitment than I have. It is going to be tough but if you are up to it and understand how much work this is going to be, anything is possible.

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post #4 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 05:08 PM
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Here she is running to the door with the rest of them to see who's there!
I don't see Kodi in the photo. Is he the one taking the picture? I have heard of Havanese being trained to do some pretty amazing things, but Karen this would take it to a whole new level!

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post #5 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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I appreciate the input from both of you. Lots of good points. Our daughter is potty trained and our son won't ready to learn those skills for some time so it would really be just the puppy we would need to teach early on. Our house isn't huge so we will all be spending the majority of our time in the same area where we can supervise our daughter with the puppy. I do believe that before long (as she approaches 5 yo) she will be capable of being with the puppy unsupervised for short amounts of time. She's kind and gentle and has been helping with her baby brother for the past 9 months. It's a very big decision and I'm not taking it lightly. I agree that at such young ages both the puppy and children deserve to be the center of attention. Both my husband and I are home working/ taking classes part-time. My hope would be that my daughter and the puppy would bond deeply and no one would feel neglected but rather my daughter would relish in the puppy's playfulness and the puppy would feel love and adoration from all of us. We aren't socializing at all right now. We go for a lot of walks and do lots of outdoor activities in the canyon near the river. My vision is that the puppy will just meld right into the fun Yes I know how naive that sounds!
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post #6 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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adorable!! <3
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post #7 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 07:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Ricardo View Post
I don't see Kodi in the photo. Is he the one taking the picture? I have heard of Havanese being trained to do some pretty amazing things, but Karen this would take it to a whole new level!

Ricky's Popi
Well, you DO know how talented Kodi is! LOL!

Actually, Kodi doesn't ALWAYS feel the need to check EVERY time someone comes to the door. There are some benefits to being the "old man"! I think he was still in his bed in my office.

The MOST hysterical thing here I didn't catch, because I couldn't get the phone on video fast enough... Astrida started GROWLING as she followed the dogs toward the door! LOL!


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post #8 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 08:14 PM
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The MOST hysterical thing here I didn't catch, because I couldn't get the phone on video fast enough... Astrida started GROWLING as she followed the dogs toward the door! LOL!
She sleeps with wolves!

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post #9 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Mama Mills View Post
I appreciate the input from both of you. Lots of good points. Our daughter is potty trained and our son won't ready to learn those skills for some time so it would really be just the puppy we would need to teach early on. Our house isn't huge so we will all be spending the majority of our time in the same area where we can supervise our daughter with the puppy. I do believe that before long (as she approaches 5 yo) she will be capable of being with the puppy unsupervised for short amounts of time. She's kind and gentle and has been helping with her baby brother for the past 9 months. It's a very big decision and I'm not taking it lightly. I agree that at such young ages both the puppy and children deserve to be the center of attention. Both my husband and I are home working/ taking classes part-time. My hope would be that my daughter and the puppy would bond deeply and no one would feel neglected but rather my daughter would relish in the puppy's playfulness and the puppy would feel love and adoration from all of us. We aren't socializing at all right now. We go for a lot of walks and do lots of outdoor activities in the canyon near the river. My vision is that the puppy will just meld right into the fun Yes I know how naive that sounds!
A couple of things to keep in mind. Until the puppy is 100% potty trained, which probably means until it is AT LEAST 6 months old or more, (probably older, because I am predicting that you will have less time to devote to potty training than someone with less irons in the fire) it will need ADULT, EYES ON supervision, EVERY SECOND it is out of its ex-pen or confined area to prevent accidents. That CANNOT be expected of a small child. At all. It just won't work. I can't tell you how many people have tried it with 15 year olds and it hasn't worked. Even once it is potty trained, it will STILL be like a toddler... into everything, chewing up toys it shouldn't, chewing the woodwork, swallowing things that could hurt it... CONSTANT trouble. Because IT is a baby too.

As an aside on the potty training issue, I would STRONGLY advise you to look into indoor potty training. it is very common with small breeds in general, and particular with Havanese. ESPECIALLY with your situation with two small children, I think you will find that a puppy that understands how to go and use an indoor potty if someone isn't available to take them out is going to be a life saver. You can't blame a puppy for making a mess when he says he needs to go but you are up to your ears in a "kid problem". But every time a puppy has an "accident", whether it was his "fault" or not, it takes longer for him to learn NOT to have accidents. So if you can give him a way to avoid having an accident on his own...

As an analogy, you would never start potty training your child, and then lock the bathroom door so they couldn't get into it. Yet that is essentially what we do to dogs all the time. We really have no choice with large breed dogs, because we just CAN'T have them using an indoor potty. But by choosing a little breed, we can!

And don't worry that the puppy won't eventually learn to go outside. They ALL learn to do that quite naturally.

Second, a puppy should not be expected to go on "walks" of any length before about one year of age, or until its joints have closed. (it will ALSO first need to be TAUGHT to walk on a leash... they don't automatically know that either ) Now, in your situation, you might be easily able to get around this with a double stroller. Put your son in one section and the puppy in the other section. Let the puppy out to romp part of the time, and then put him back in for a rest. But EVEN IF HE SEEMS to be having a great time, over-doing exercise at that age can lead to premature arthritis as he ages. So don't over-do the fun now and overlook that you are raising a family member that may still be part of your family when your daughter is in college!


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post #10 of 71 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Ricardo View Post
She sleeps with wolves!

Ricky's Popi
Oh we have photos like that too, but I'm not allowed to show her face on the internet! LOL!


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plus Starborn's Picture Perfect & CH Nauti Herd Compact Flash RN, CGC, NTD, SN-C, RL1)






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