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Old 01-15-2013, 11:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How many dogs is too many dogs?

I have 4 children, human children that is. When I lived in the suburbs and was asked the question, most people gasped! "Wow, FOUR KIDS?!" "Don't you find that alot of work?". Well, its not like they all landed on my doorstep at one time unexpected!!! You would think I had an additional head growing off my shoulders, by the way they reacted! I have always had dogs as well. Usually more than two at one time. Some were fostered, which made the family even larger. Well, the reaction to THAT was like I had a 3rd head growing.

When I moved to dairy country with my family 14 years ago, I felt right at home. Most families out here have many children and the number "4" was not nearly as alien sounding. I live in a nice home, with nice furniture, and a few acres. I keep my home very clean and organized (some would say overly particular!). I am self employed in the health care field, have a strong client base, and drive a nice vehicle. Typical all Canadian woman. But I still have one of those extra heads growing off my shoulders! Why? Because I have dogs. What most people think is too many dogs. I often get the "Are they all in your house?" "My God, there must be so much hair!" "Doesn't your house smell?" "WHY would you want SOOOO many???" Then it eventually becomes mocking "Get any new dogs in the last week? Hahaha!" I'm even aware that I am gossiped about.

My question goes back to the title of this subject. A question I'm not even looking for an answer to. My dogs are well fed and loved. They are a part of my daily life. Some come to work with me, while others get the advantage of the bush walk every day. I keep their lives active and have very few, VERY few behavioural issues. Yes, there is the occasional K9 argument that is worked out quickly, but all are very content. I have a vet, but rarely have the need to visit. People who have MET my dogs often want to take them home. People who have met my dogs often consult me on behavioural issues with their own dogs (I am not an expert but through years of having lived with dogs and through trial and error, I learned a few things). After 2 minutes of being in my home, the excitement of the arrival of a visitor has subsided.

My children are mentally healthy and productive members of society. Three now on their own and two of them have their own dog. The last person who asked me why I have so many dogs was silenced by my answer.... "I'm Catholic"




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Old 01-15-2013, 11:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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In my opinion, if all the dogs are getting everything they need (including training, affection, exercise), then you don't have too many lol. This also means that you aren't putting yourself in a financially disastrous situation.

My uncle used to get looks like he was insane for having 11 dogs. He owns a 20 acre farm, and is VERY well-off financially. No children. The dogs work the farm and are his companions. All of them get everything they need/want. So for him, not too many dogs. My limit personally? Three. LOL!
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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It's too many if you cannot care properly for them. For some people, that is 1. Some people can manage a dozen with less hiccups than a lot of people have with just 1.
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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ONE dog is too many for some people. Sounds like they have a good life-so as long as they are all getting the care they need and the love they need...........
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I used to get the same looks and my mom said I would eventually grow out of it(wanting so many and trying to save them all). She used to be just like me and everyone knows I got my love for animals from my mom. My house sounds just like yours(except I have one child, but my nieces and nephew are frequent visitors and stay for days at a time) My home does not feel like a home without the kids and dogs in it. I will always have dogs, multiple dogs. I have three now, but I can see myself with 5-6 with no problems.
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jocoyn View Post
ONE dog is too many for some people. Sounds like they have a good life-so as long as they are all getting the care they need and the love they need...........
Exactly! I choose to invest my time, love and finances into my dogs. That is my choice. May not be what another person would choose. But I do not stand in judgment of someone who spends numerous hours in their basement building their train collection and spending what others would consider to be a small fortune on a new caboose!


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Old 01-15-2013, 11:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I get the same reaction from my family... I have four dogs though no kids.

Mine get the best vet care and food, I have a big basket full of toys and they go everywhere we can take them, my life revolves around them. So who are they to judge?!

Well... ok I also have three cats, two bunnies, a parrot and fish.
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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.....Well... ok I also have three cats, two bunnies, a parrot and fish.
I forgot to mention my 3 cats


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Old 01-16-2013, 12:04 AM   #9 (permalink)
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2 is ok to keep each other company, but 3 and up is too much assuming you like your house clean
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:16 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I have a very dear friend that has too many dogs. You can chose to invest your own time, love and money into dogs but it may become a detriment to your own family. For example, when children are eating Kraft dinner while dogs have an elaborate diet that includes desert--it's a problem.
As Selzer said, I don't think that the number of dogs is really the issue. It's the amount of emotional energy and dependence that we foist upon our dogs.
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