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I'd appreciate some advice on whether to get another dog and if so, what sort. Some of you will know that Bartok, our 11 year old Cavalier King Charles spaniel died ealier this year. We got him when the kids were young because research suggested this breed was a good dog for a city environment and excellent with children. Full marks on both scores - he was even invited to the local toddler group because he loves people and didn't mind the little darlings pulling his ears and poking him.


Before that I had grown up with dashchunds - usually red miniature long haired ones but other varieties as well. We usually had at least 2 of them. Great dogs with a proper bark and love loads of exercise.


Now I am considering getting another dog but not sure what sort this time. Son suggests a rescue dog but I'm concerned about a large dog in our tiny backyard and the rescue place say that even tiny looking puppies with a small mum can grow into large dogs. A bit of me fancies a miniature wire haired dashchund, but they are rarer than hens teeth :lol::lol:


And then in todays paper was an item requesting puppy walkers for Guide Dogs for the blind. I suspect our city location would be ideal for introducing a future Guide Dog to urban life. We wouldn't have a problem with saying goodbye knowing the dog was going to a good working home. Has anyone been a puppywalker?


Obviously we will want to avoid terriers - fantastic characters but some are born livestock chasers and it would be cruel to have one frustrated at trying to get at the chickens all the time.


Any views or advice gratefully received :D

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Avoid Border Collies too, Jane. They're lovely dogs but exceptionally hard work and the herding instinct works on anything - sheep, guinea pigs, children, owners!! Ours was completely bonkers and caused chaos in the house on numerous occasions, filling her bed with snails, eating the stair carpet, eating her bean bag bed (which made rather interesting floating droppings in the doggy loo!), swinging off lampshades when the smoke detector went off and tiddling all over people's feet when they came visiting. We had to give her away to a family who had just had their dog die in the end as we couldn't cope with a baby and a toddler and a neurotic, epileptic, deranged dog. The new family adored her and she died last year aged 14 - loopy to the end :wink: .

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Remember this is only MY opinion. We had a Staffie Cross, from 8weeks old, a rescue pup. And she was fab ... not too big, could catch a flying frisbee, and was excellent with the kids too. She died suddenly last may, in her sleep ... and so far we have not replaced her.


Having said that .. we will avoid - Springer spaniels, too energetic.

- Terriers ... can be nippy, and not good for the chooks.

- Alsations/Labs and larger dogs, as house not big enough.


Which brings us back to a cross breed rescue of sorts, which is small/medium sized and a puppy ... so it can grow into the kids, rather than an older dog, having to live with them. :roll: . Ideally we would like another Rugsie. :(8)

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I have a rescue dog (she was mistreated) - half Jack Russell, half Corgi. Very aggresive with other dogs and people. Has many hang ups etc etc. But on the plus size, she is great with other animals (besides other dogs!) and she is incredibly loving once she gets to know you. But as you say, a terrier, although a good size for your garden would probably not be suitable, especially if it goes for your chooks!


A lady at my dog obedience classes is a puppy walker for the Guide dogs - she seems to enjoy having them for the first year or so, she is very active with them, getting them socialised and trained. Be warned that not all of the dogs are accepted after the year, and she had ended up keeping the dogs that didn't make the grade!


I finally wanted to say how sweet your old dog Bartok was, I 've looked at your website in the past and always thought he seemed the perfect gent.


Good luck with the dog hunt :D

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:wink: Our neighbour has Basset Griffon Vendeens, which are hounds, but are slightly bigger than the Dashund and hairier :wink: . They are really nice ... Ben and Joe are looking forward to seeing the pups, as the female (they have 3) is due in the next few days, with 6+ :shock:8) . They don't chase as much as terriers and are accepting of animals already there, as they grow up. Only disad ... the longer coat. :wink: .
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I found the Guide Dogs for the Blind website and we seem to meet all the criteria for puppy walking so I filled in their online form and got a phone call this morning!


It sounds really interesting so we are going to apply and we'll get a home visit to assess our situation and where we can ask questions. Apparently you get a tag or marker for the coller so you can take the puppy everywhere that Guide Dogs can go. It sounds like it could be a bit similar to taking a toddler everywhere - possibly with the problems you get in the first few weeks of potty training - but there is lots of support and a monthly training session for the puppies where you can meet other walkers.


I think this could be a good option for us in the short term because the commitment, while similar to having a toddler in the house except the puppy can be left for up to 3 hours, is only for a year and then we can see what we feel about dogs long term. Of course if we enjoy puppy walking we can just carry on with a new puppy each year :D Apparently our urban situation will be helpful for exposing the puppy to lots of things, and once the puppy has got used to the noise of my Guides at Guide meetings (large glass of wine required when get home after meetings!), he/she should be able to cope with anything.


I'll keep you updated - oh yes, forgot to mention, apparently the hens won't be a problem - good opportunity for the puppy to get used to other animals apparently

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