yesterday we rehomed my puppy for many reasons. i can’t believe i’m one of those people that gets a dog for less than a year and then has to give it up. i really, truly loved him a lot, but he was more then i could handle in a lot of ways. as with many things, his greatest strength was ultimately the thing that kept me from being able to provide the life he needs. dingo is an extremely loving dog, to the point of having some separation anxiety over it. anyone that has encountered this knows how much time, patience, and stability it takes to help the dog cope. here is pretty much the breakdown that i will need to remind myself of each time i think of him. i can’t convince people this is the best decision… i’ve tried. but at least i know why i chose this was best for him.
things he needs – and why i can’t do more.
1. stability – while i thought it may be a good thing for a dog to have some instability to keep him flexible and always guessing, it can be too much for them. for dingo my days were never consistent enough for him to get used to anything. my weekends are filled with obligations that i tried to carefully balance with time spent with him. i’ll be honest, some of them outweighed him. how is that fair to a dog? and although he is probably about as mellow as he could have been, and of course always happy to see me, this made me feel exceptionally more guilty and irresponsible than i could ever imagine.
2. patience – this is a hard one to quantify. some aspects of my life contain infinite amounts of patience, leaps and bounds further than most. being a single owner (or what i now think of as practice for a child, single parent) doesn’t allow for much leeway with yourself. there isn’t someone there to be able to relieve you when you get overwhelmed; it’s just you. my roommates have been extremely helpful in the past, but for dingo it’s just not enough. at home, on a car ride, at the park, at the beach etc. he needs constant supervision. i’ve gone through much growing in the last 8 months and have tried to handle it all the best i could… but there is a point that you say, it’s just too much. the splinters of patience i have are not enough to maintain proper supervision and care for my pup, and towards the end resulted in many anxiety attacks for myself.
3. time – i think mostly his anxiety stemmed from me not being stable and with the schedule i have even available most times to help him through it. my roommates of course were willing to help to a point, but i can’t ask them to give up part of their lives just so i can keep my dog. so, i looked into doggie-daycare. not only is this expensive in a way i can’t even afford being a student, the hours were not even long enough for the option to be feasible.
so bearing all this in mind and with many “can we really not figure this out” talks, we met with a nice family of 4 yesterday. they have a dog, couple cats, and an active lifestyle. PERFECT for what he needs. we left him with them, and i swear he could almost care less about us leaving. i’m guessing he just thinks it’s a vacation, but even if the realization does hit that he won’t see us again, i’m sure he’s quite happy now and it won’t affect him as badly as staying with me for the next 3-4 school years i have ahead of me.
i miss him so much. i wish i could have been in that stable family position so i could have kept him indefinitely. even though it’s one of the hardest decisions i had to make virtually by myself, i know it’s for the best. i definitely spent far more time thinking about whether or not to keep him then i did on getting him in the first place! 🙂