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  • Dog Issues

    I'll try to explain this the best I can. My boyfriend and I have been together for over a year now, and we just recently moved in together. The issue that has come up since we have moved in together is that our dog spends about 20 hours a day in her crate. She is a high energy working dog, and is over a year old. I work long hours, leaving the house when it's dark and coming home when it's dark. My boyfriend normally works anywhere from 8-12 hours a day. So, when he comes home from work, he takes her to the park for a run, then comes home. She is only out for about 4 hours before he puts her back for the night. Before we moved in, he was living with his mother and sister. I would normally go spend the weekends with them, so I never really knew how their weeks went, but I assumed that either his mom or sister would have the dog our during the day since they didn't work. But they didn't. They would leave her in there all day. I met my boyfriend shortly after the adopted the dog, so I've been part of her life pretty much since the beginning, and I've formed a bond with her. I only want whats best. She is a large breed working dog and needs more exercise that what she gets and just deserves more in general. I hate that she's stuck alone all day. She a companion, not a possession. I voiced my concerns to my boyfriend. I suggested that perhaps we should talk to the breeder and see if there would a family better suited to meet her needs. He is absolutely adamant that he doesn't want to get rid of her, that she is like a child to him. And I understand that, but I don't know what else to do. She's never learned how to be out of her crate. And we both work all day that I wouldn't trust her to be left out without ruining our house. We can't really put her outside in a fence because she barks and cries constantly when she's out, and our neighbors wouldn't have it. Again, with our work schedules, I just don't think this is the best time for us to have a dog, and if I had known his family wasn't helping him like I thought, I definitely would have said something sooner. We've argued about this enough that I have been staying elsewhere in the meantime, hoping that maybe some space will help us figure something out.

    We talk a little through the week, and I go and see him on the weekends. But I've recently been noticing that he treats the dog better than me sometimes. Recently, one of my students passed away, and I was upset about it. When I told him, he said he was sorry and just looked at me. Fast forward about 30 minutes to when he was on the phone. I was playing with the dog, but she kept trying to bite my hands so I stopped and said no. She started barking at me when I stopped, so my boyfriend ended his phone conversation, and came over and was loving up on her like crazy. Where was that affection earlier when I needed support and comfort?

    I'm really at a crossroads here. I love them dearly and have envisioned a life for us together. But there's just so tension now. I worry that if he thinks it's OK to keep a dog that way, how will he want to raise kids? And if he's already putting me second to his dog, is it even worth it?

  • #2
    It's horribly unfair to keep a dog crated up for 20 hours a day, especially a high-energy dog. Why not find a daycare for the dog? Lots of people do that. That way the dog can be with people and other dogs all day and not cooped up.

    If you can't agree on how to raise a dog, how do you expect to be able to agree on parenting? You need to work out your issues or move out.
    "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

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    • #3
      I suggested a doggy daycare. But the more we talked about it, the more unrealistic it became. We couldn't afford to put her in one everyday. And she isn't very good around other dogs. My boyfriend says it's because every other dog she's interacted with has tried to attack her. But she's a large dog. I don't think this is true. I feel that it's because she is cooped up all day, and doesn't get any interaction with other animals period.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Lily10 View Post
        I suggested a doggy daycare. But the more we talked about it, the more unrealistic it became. We couldn't afford to put her in one everyday. And she isn't very good around other dogs. My boyfriend says it's because every other dog she's interacted with has tried to attack her. But she's a large dog. I don't think this is true. I feel that it's because she is cooped up all day, and doesn't get any interaction with other animals period.
        As a dog owner myself, I find this really disturbing to hear. I'm glad you're there to try and advocate for the dog's best intrest.
        Obviously your boyfriend has no idea how to raise a dog properly. If he had her since she was a puppy, the only explanation for her barking at other dogs and not gettling along with them, is that he didn't socialise her from an early age. He took the easy way out, got a dog, but doesn't take any of the responsabilities. If she had been proberly trained, she'd be able to stay out of the crate without destroying the house too.

        If you say you can't afford a daycare for her, then you're right, you have no business owning a dog at this point in your life.
        Sadly it's not up to you, since it's his dog and not yours. I would see this as a huge red flag and indeed a predictor of future behaviour towards you and any children you may have.
        Maybe you should reconsider this relationship alltogether. It's sad that you can't make a difference for his dog, but at least you'll know he won't be a lazy and irresponsible father to your children some day.
        You can't control the waves, but you can learn to surf

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        • #5
          That's the hardest thing. This past year has been wonderful. He is very sweet and caring. I never would've though it would have came to this. I'm struggling so much on whether I should stay and try to change things, or just let it go. He even suggested that I should only work a few days at my day job, I think so that I would be home with our dog all day. I can't give up my job. That's my career, and I need it to pay my bills and my student loans.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Lily10 View Post
            That's the hardest thing. This past year has been wonderful. He is very sweet and caring. I never would've though it would have came to this. I'm struggling so much on whether I should stay and try to change things, or just let it go. He even suggested that I should only work a few days at my day job, I think so that I would be home with our dog all day. I can't give up my job. That's my career, and I need it to pay my bills and my student loans.
            Your bf of a mere one year who has not committed to you (only agreed to live with you) has suggested you work part time???!
            Sorry but that's not sweet and caring, that's controlling behaviour! Only!!!

            The dog is abused and neglected. If an outsider reported it , you would also be held responsible. Doesn't matter who "owns" the dog.
            You are facilitating and allowing it.

            My advice would be to "anonymously" report the situation to the council. Let them know you reported it but ask them to keep your anonymity from your bf.

            And then dump him! He clearly has no empathy. And is showing early signs of controlling behaviour.
            Get out!

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            • #7
              She's not neglected or abused. Perhaps I portrayed it the wrong way. She has a warm home, with plenty of food and water. She gets played with and is loved. She is not beaten, or anything like that. The only issue is that she is left alone for that long period of time. And I know that other people keep their dogs the same way. Its just my belief and the way I was raised that I do not think that a dog should be kept as a possession only to be used when its convenient for the owner. And that is how I feel the situation is.

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              • #8
                Sorry, dear, but keeping a dog in a cage for 20 hours a day is abuse.
                "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

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                • #9
                  How would you pose I try to explain this to him? As I said, he is adamant about keeping her because he sees her as his child. What could I possibly say to make him see and realize that this isn't what's best for the dog?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Lily10 View Post
                    She's not neglected or abused. Perhaps I portrayed it the wrong way. She has a warm home, with plenty of food and water. She gets played with and is loved. She is not beaten, or anything like that. The only issue is that she is left alone for that long period of time. And I know that other people keep their dogs the same way. Its just my belief and the way I was raised that I do not think that a dog should be kept as a possession only to be used when its convenient for the owner. And that is how I feel the situation is.
                    20 hours in a cage IS abuse and neglect.
                    She is simply kept alive with the food and water.
                    You know other people keep their dogs that way and don't report it???

                    Your bf has no empathy. Selfish.

                    Up to you whether you stay with that and facilitate his abuse of animals , or report it and leave him.

                    Your call!


                    If you decide to stay with him, Give me your address and I will happily have the dog removed and re homed.

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                    • #11
                      Ridiculous. There are families and individuals who would be able to offer a better home for this dog. Yes, that IS abuse.

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                      • #12
                        One thing my boyfriend has said is that if we would give her up, every other person works during the day too, and would keep her in her crate all that time too.

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                        • #13
                          Why don't you stop believing all the bullshit your boyfriend says and think for yourself?

                          If you can't afford daycare, call the Humane Society or Animal Control and have the dog removed from the house.
                          "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

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                          • #14
                            I don't always work during the day.... I used to bring my dogs into work too especially when they were older.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Lily10 View Post
                              How would you pose I try to explain this to him? As I said, he is adamant about keeping her because he sees her as his child. What could I possibly say to make him see and realize that this isn't what's best for the dog?
                              Hire a walker for goodness sakes. Put an ad in the local paper and have her/him take the dog out twice a day when you both know you're not going to be able to take fido out for 20 hours.

                              My girlfriend does this. She takes five neighbour dogs out every day and she's getting her exercise too (not to mention enough to call it her career. I believe she charges $20.00 bucks for two walks a day and she makes sure they are fed their dinner (if needed) and watered. All the pups love her and are happy to see her.
                              "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

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