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should i get a dog? - Page 5

post #61 of 90
Thread Starter 
^i love dogs but this is fairly hysterical.
post #62 of 90
I got my first dog a year ago halloween and I will not be without one again. we now have 2 Boston terriers, both from rescue. I would HIGHLY recommend them as a breed. they are great with kids, they have lots of energy, but not too much, and they can entertain themselves as well as you. smart as hell too (though according to someone here as a dog owner I am not qualified to judge intelligence.)

thing 1


and thing 2
post #63 of 90
Thread Starter 
^boston terriers are great. look like little people kind of.
post #64 of 90
Well, I was a real dog person for a number of years. As some forumites may know, I had four Japanese Tosas, very "extreme" dogs. They were wonderful dogs. I loved them dearly and I grieved for them bitterly. None of them lived very long: Zuma died after bloat surgery, aged 3 years and 20 days; Jessie was put down for a full-torsion bloat, aged 5 years, 4 months; Dempsey was put down for heart problems and stomach cancer, aged 6 years, 7 months; Tessa was put down as she was dying of lymphoma, aged 5 years, 2 months.

At first I was inclined to attribute this to the fact that giant-breed dogs like Tosas are notoriously short-lived (although, curiously enough, the largest dog on record, an English Mastiff named Zorba who topped out at 345 pounds, lived to be 13 or 14). However, I have been hearing of so many dogs of all sizes and ages dying young, mostly of cancer. I was seriously thinking of a Staff Bull, as recommended by lefty above. Although some of the little guys do live to be 16, I have heard enough cases of Staff Bulls dying at young ages from one thing and another that I am somewhat put off by the idea of one. Aside from early death and its attendant heartbreak, so many more dogs just seem to have chronic problems--allergies, skin conditions, ear infections, etc. We often hear about dying and deformities among frogs being a warning that something is amiss on our planet. I sometimes wonder if it isn't more true among dogs than frogs!

In addition to all these health problems, the costs of veterinary treatment have just gone through the roof in recent years. This has become a real concern. It is much more of a deterrent to me than the cost of dog food. Back when I had my first Tosa (1995-8), a typical vet visit would run $60 or $70. In later years, anytime I got out of the vet's office for less than $200, I felt lucky. I really get a very dark and creepy feeling anytime I even see a vet's office these days. My dog Dempsey cost me about $5,500 in the last 16 months of his life, most of that going for treatment of an infected paw.

Having a dog is a chronic responsibility: It's very refreshing for my wife and me to be able to go out and about in an evening without having to hurry to feed and let the dog go out. It's nice on a cold, rainy evening not to have to walk the dog. Being rousted at three in the morning to take the dog out, especially in foul weather, is a royal nuisance. I sure don't miss that although it was only a problem with my dog Dempsey, who in other ways was the best of the four.

Some of the things people have cited like shedding, accidents on the carpet and yard clean-up, I don't regard as that big a deal compared to the love, companionship and joy afforded by a dog.

Still if I'm out taking a walk on a warm, moonlit evening, I really, really miss the companionship of a dog, especially something like a Tosa. There was a power, a majesty, a glory about those dogs that I basked in. They were almost demigod-like to me.

My stepson has been after me to get another dog. Probably he mostly wants it as a chick-magnet. I am very much of two minds about this. A good friend of mine recently bred two of his Tosas. If he has a good litter and offers me a puppy, I will probably accept it, despite considerable misgivings.
post #65 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel View Post
Some of the things people have cited like shedding, accidents on the carpet and yard clean-up, I don't regard as that big a deal compared to the love, companionship and joy afforded by a dog.

I think this is the important point. If you are a dog person, somebody who loves the companionship that is really only available from dogs, then the decision is pretty easy. If you are not, it is really not worth putting yourself, or the dog, through a miserable fifteen years.
post #66 of 90
I think that people who don't want children benefit greatly from having a dog. Note: I'm not endorsing "Dog People." Those are the types who refer to their dog as "My daughter" and take him/her to dog painting classes.
post #67 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Connemara View Post
Note: I'm not endorsing "Dog People." Those are the types who refer to their dog as "My daughter" and take him/her to dog painting classes.

Such people are not "dog people." They are nutty dog lovers. Somebody like lefty is a real "dog man." I like to think, to a lesser extent, that has been true of me as well.
post #68 of 90
Thread Starter 
this was extremely helpful and thorough. thanks much. perhaps there's more too it than I think.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel View Post
Well, I was a real dog person for a number of years. As some forumites may know, I had four Japanese Tosas, very "extreme" dogs. They were wonderful dogs. I loved them dearly and I grieved for them bitterly. None of them lived very long: Zuma died after bloat surgery, aged 3 years and 20 days; Jessie was put down for a full-torsion bloat, aged 5 years, 4 months; Dempsey was put down for heart problems and stomach cancer, aged 6 years, 7 months; Tessa was put down as she was dying of lymphoma, aged 5 years, 2 months.

At first I was inclined to attribute this to the fact that giant-breed dogs like Tosas are notoriously short-lived (although, curiously enough, the largest dog on record, an English Mastiff named Zorba who topped out at 345 pounds, lived to be 13 or 14). However, I have been hearing of so many dogs of all sizes and ages dying young, mostly of cancer. I was seriously thinking of a Staff Bull, as recommended by lefty above. Although some of the little guys do live to be 16, I have heard enough cases of Staff Bulls dying at young ages from one thing and another that I am somewhat put off by the idea of one. Aside from early death and its attendant heartbreak, so many more dogs just seem to have chronic problems--allergies, skin conditions, ear infections, etc. We often hear about dying and deformities among frogs being a warning that something is amiss on our planet. I sometimes wonder if it isn't more true among dogs than frogs!

In addition to all these health problems, the costs of veterinary treatment have just gone through the roof in recent years. This has become a real concern. It is much more of a deterrent to me than the cost of dog food. Back when I had my first Tosa (1995-8), a typical vet visit would run $60 or $70. In later years, anytime I got out of the vet's office for less than $200, I felt lucky. I really get a very dark and creepy feeling anytime I even see a vet's office these days. My dog Dempsey cost me about $5,500 in the last 16 months of his life, most of that going for treatment of an infected paw.

Having a dog is a chronic responsibility: It's very refreshing for my wife and me to be able to go out and about in an evening without having to hurry to feed and let the dog go out. It's nice on a cold, rainy evening not to have to walk the dog. Being rousted at three in the morning to take the dog out, especially in foul weather, is a royal nuisance. I sure don't miss that although it was only a problem with my dog Dempsey, who in other ways was the best of the four.

Some of the things people have cited like shedding, accidents on the carpet and yard clean-up, I don't regard as that big a deal compared to the love, companionship and joy afforded by a dog.

Still if I'm out taking a walk on a warm, moonlit evening, I really, really miss the companionship of a dog, especially something like a Tosa. There was a power, a majesty, a glory about those dogs that I basked in. They were almost demigod-like to me.

My stepson has been after me to get another dog. Probably he mostly wants it as a chick-magnet. I am very much of two minds about this. A good friend of mine recently bred two of his Tosas. If he has a good litter and offers me a puppy, I will probably accept it, despite considerable misgivings.
post #69 of 90
No. Dogs are emotionally shallow animals. A cat, on the other hand, doesn't sell you out the way dogs do.
post #70 of 90
I have a 23 pound, 2 years old Welsh Terrier that is a joy to be around. He rarely barks and doesn't shed. After having a German Shepherd for 16 years, I really appreciate my Terrier's size and lack of shedding. He's a great companion, and travels with me on trips by car. Hotels have become increasingly dog friendly, so he's enjoyed nice accommodations in places ranging from The Penninsula to Holiday Inn.
post #71 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel View Post
Somebody like lefty is a real "dog man." I like to think, to a lesser extent, that has been true of me as well.

"Dog fan" is probably a more accurate descriptor of me.

Jan's points about heath are bang on. There are a lot of poorly bred animals out there and even the best of lines can go terribly wrong. And when your kid looks at you with teary eyes because you're debating whether or not to drop 3K on Fluffy's torn ACL, you're more or less screwed.

But there will come a moment, kunk, when you glance out your kitchen window and see your son and his dog sitting quietly side-by-side, their heads cocked at the same angle staring off into space. That moment will be worth all the heartache.

There are hundreds of thousands dogs out there and most are great and healthy companions. There's a dog for you and your son.

lefty
post #72 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by lefty View Post
But there will come a moment, kunk, when you glance out your kitchen window and see your son and his dog sitting quietly side-by-side, their heads cocked at the same angle staring off into space. That moment will be worth all the heartache.


Oddly enough, my girlfriend has made that same remark about me....and I'm in my 30s.

but in all seriousness, I got my first one last halloween when she was 10 weeks old. she has peed in the house exactly 3 times since then. she does not chew things up. she comes when called (when she wants to) and she is the best pal I could ever ask for.

Her brother came to us in July and he was a year and a half already so he has been slightly more work. he had some bad habits that were most likely encouraged by his former owners but he has been mostly trained out of them now. he will still jump up for food form time to time but other than that he's VERY good.

All of the other Boston owners I know say basically the same things as well, they are remarkably well behaved dogs.

And yes, they certainly do look like weird little people for some reason. especially when you talk to them and they look at you like they know what you're saying.....
post #73 of 90
Thread Starter 
though it sounds ghey, i've had all these visions of Liam discovering his pup on his bithday and playing with him. trying to convince the mrs. that he won't be 8 forever.


Quote:
Originally Posted by lefty View Post
"Dog fan" is probably a more accurate descriptor of me.

Jan's points about heath are bang on. There are a lot of poorly bred animals out there and even the best of lines can go terribly wrong. And when your kid looks at you with teary eyes because you're debating whether or not to drop 3K on Fluffy's torn ACL, you're more or less screwed.

But there will come a moment, kunk, when you glance out your kitchen window and see your son and his dog sitting quietly side-by-side, their heads cocked at the same angle staring off into space. That moment will be worth all the heartache.

There are hundreds of thousands dogs out there and most are great and healthy companions. There's a dog for you and your son.

lefty
post #74 of 90


post #75 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by teddieriley View Post
No. Dogs are emotionally shallow animals. A cat, on the other hand, doesn't sell you out the way dogs do.
I love dogs; I wish my circumstances would allow me to get another one.
OTOH, while I like my cat quite a bit, I am certain that should I die in my apartment, he will eat my flesh before my corpse begins to stink.
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