Ok... don't get all excited yet... we still aren't sure what we are going to do yet but we are starting to think about when we can bring him home.
I need to put my thoughts out there and see if you guys have any suggestions or things to point out.
Eric and I both want so badly to bring Ender home. I really don't want our "wishing" to interfere with our reasonable decision making but it's bound to happen somewhat so feel free to keep my expectations in line.
Ender will be 12 weeks old this weekend... 3 months, and while I know he's still going to have potty accidents (unless we are vigilant) he has over the past two weeks received great training in this area from Mom and Apollo (her lab). The potty training thing really isn't worrying me so much as our ability to give him the exercise and interaction he needs and whether we can handle the misbehaving puppyness.
I really need to think of this as I would being a single parent because while I would love to think Eric will want to spend as much effort as I do on Ender, I don't think he's ready to make that sacrifice quite yet. He loves Ender and I think little by little, he'd be able to take on more responsibility, but for right now, I have to plan on being 100% responsible.
Our condo is settled... everything is unpacked (that needs to be unpacked) and we have the essentials to run the house. School IS on the downhill now and while there remains quite a few things to do... the light is shining at the end of that tunnel.
But the truth is... I'm anxious to get Ender started on his life with us. I'm anxious to get training going and him used to being crated in the day but loved all night.
Can we really handle it? I'll never know until we try. Lately I've been getting up early and enjoying it for the first time in... well 2 years. The sun shining through the bedroom window and living in an open floor plan with light streaming in through the living area windows has made me so much more happy and wanting to get out there and enjoy it.
But what about those puppy things that can drive us crazy? I know I can handle it, but I know that if it stresses Eric out too much I will feel horrible. I think he is in love with 4 yr old Apollo and wishing he had the adult lab that was allways willing to just sit next to him on the couch. Dogs bark... puppys get into things you don't want them to get into... is he ready for this and am I ready to help him if he's not? Am I ready and able to show him the joys of having a puppy?
This weekend we are going to Madison to visit. For the entire day on Saturday, my family is taking Apollo and leaving to go to some family function (step family to me). We will have the whole day to interact with Ender and hopefully Eric and I can come to some mutual realization. In a way, I hope Ender is at his worst so we can know if we can handle it but I don't want to scare Eric off. *sigh*
I guess we'll see what happens.
Well, despite your "don't get all excited" warning...i did (hee hee).
IMO your plan sounds like an excellent one. I wouldn't want him to get extremely used to being at grandma's because once you bring him to your condo he's going to have a whole new environment and new rules.
Maybe you could do something like bringing him to spend the weekend at your house to see how it works out.
~Abby, Molly, and Penny (the honorary lab)
Thank you Stacey for battling the "service error" enough to read and reply to my post. I really appreciate it since I'm having so much trouble myself. All this has been on my mind once I got over the trauma of NOT bringing him home (for a while I didn't even want to THINK about Ender)... and now I'm starting to get all hopeful again. I don't need my world to come crashing down though... not at this point... and I'm so scared it will if we move to fast. At the same time, I know we need to take the plunge sooner or later.
I think I make things harder than they really are. I think I have a hard time enjoying the positives and seeing the negatives as merely temporary.
Oh Lindsay, I think it will soon be time!!!! *I mean, there will always be some reason... but its nothing you can't handle!!
I would say I do spend more time with CoCo than my DH, but he's good for the midnight pees...hehe!
Has Eric said he wasn't ready yet? *Is there a specific aspect he feels you guys aren't prepared for?
I think the schedule you made for Ender before was a great one, and completely realistic. *GO FOR IT!!! *
I would suggest bringing him home on a Friday if possible, so you have the weekend to settle him in, and can put up with some lost sleep. *I'm sure he'll adapt very quickly though!!!
Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home! *Bring Ender Home!
~Jo & CoCo
Regarding Eric... I think he thought lab from Mrs. Cripps = Apollo's temperment and style. Regardless of the countless warnings I gave him about puppies and lab's individual personalities.. he wasn't prepared for the onslaught of Ender puppyness. When we visit and Ender is quiet and all worn out from playing with Apollo, Eric is like "now if only he was like this all the time. He's such a good dog!" And he's fine when he wants to play with Ender and they play together. But the minute Ender barks because he wants attention and Eric isn't willing or he gets put in the crate and whines a little bit... Eric thinks "he's going to bark every waking moment when we aren't home" and "I have work to do, I can't be with him all the time!"
So while I know that the barking and the chewing everything in site is a temporary thing... and one that needs training and consistency... he sees it as an insurmountable obstacle.
Anyways... I'm hoping that Saturday will show Eric that Ender is well "manageable" in addition to being fun and a joy in our lives. Perhaps we can bring him home the next weekend... after spending another week preparing to get up in the morning and taking walks 3 times a day... etc. And this will give Ender another week of working on the pottying thing and sleeping through the night. (10-6 last night... wooo hooo!!!)
My husband is really not what I would call a "pet person".* He didn't really want a dog, but caved under the pressure* ;D* Interestingly, he wanted a puppy and I wanted an adult -- and somehow the non-pet peson got his wish* :P* Basically, I do it all.* BUT* I knew I would.* I went into it knowing that my DH wasn't going to be responsible, and my kids certainly weren't, no matter what they promised.*
Now, I will say that Sami has turned out to be a better puppy than I ever imagined.* She's laid back and well-behaved.* Alot of it has to do with her breeding, I'm sure ... the rest is consistency, training and exercise.* I think that you and Eric need to see Ender's puppyhood as an investment in "the final product".* It's up to you to shape, guide and train him so that you get "an Apollo" in the end.*
Oh, and my DH has come around ALOT.* He now comes thru the door at night and says "How's my girl?" and ...* he's not talking to our daughter! ;D
Chin up ... it will work!
Originally Posted by Ender's Mom
I'm brave *nod* that service error message didn't scare me!!!
I think you're absolutely right! You need to take the plunge sooner or later and I vote sooner rather then later :-*
~Abby, Molly, and Penny (the honorary lab)
As you said, puppies bark, chew, have potty accidents and ruin your sleep for a while...only you know if your ready and I really think it's something you should have dealt with a while ago. Leaving the breeders home is hard enough on a puppy, I don't think it's really fair that you've put him in a "holdover" home. He's getting used to that and then you're going to turn his world upside down again. Your either ready or your not...but figure it out for this poor pup's sake.
I'm sorry if I seem harsh, I just think what you're doing is a bit selfish.
Lindsay, I have to agree with JacksAndLabs. You need to decide soon. Ender, like any Lab puppy, will stay rumbunctious until after he is two years old. So, waiting a week or two will not change his behavior significantly.
I think you need to be honest with yourself and Eric about your plans with Ender. I think you can do it, you can bring him home this weekend and keep him forever. My SU did not want a dog. The day I went to Michigan to pick Scotty up, he was asking me if by any chance I would change my mind. I knew that Scotty was entirely my responsibility.
My SU loves Scotty to pieces now and forgives him any mischief. He's not great as far as taking care of Scotty, but will take him out and feed him if I'm running late at school. So, my point is, that being "a single mom" for your dog is doable. And you love Ender so much, you'll be great at it.
I am very well aware of the fact that I screwed up... don't think I haven't been beating myself up over this for the past few weeks. Nope... I didn't do things any where near to perfect and I know it. What can I do now except try to make the right decision now? Thanks for the "push" though please understand that getting conflicting advice/support/realitychecks from all sides (books, forum, mother) has been driving me a little nuts. Every problem I blame on myself and any success is because of someone/something else.
Thank you Maggiesparents for sharing your story.