Puppy blues / hard time adjusting - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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Puppy blues / hard time adjusting

I got a new puppy almost 2 months ago now. She was 7 months old when I brought her home (currently ~9 months). I'm having quite a difficult time adjusting to dog-motherhood...it's been much harder than I had imagined.

She's my first dog and on paper, I feel like I did all that I could to prepare for her arrival. I adore her and am trying so hard but I feel like almost everyday is a new challenge and something new to overcome. Sometimes it feels like there is no end to puppyhood in sight. To be honest, before I got her, I don't think I truly realized the big behavioral difference between puppies and adult dogs. I feel stressed all the time and so overwhelmed. Even little things will feel disproportionately like a big deal.

The worst part is that she's such a sweet dog and I know she's pretty calm on the puppy spectrum (which makes me feel even more guilty for feeling the way I do!)

At what age did things start to "calm down" with your dogs? Or did things start to finally feel natural and not like a constant struggle? Any stories that give me hope would be much appreciated!
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 08:19 PM
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Congratulations! You are dealing with an adolescent. I am too and I am too overwhelmed at times with an 8 month old male and I have trained and owned dogs for about 30 years. I too regret the entire decision sometimes and always have while raising from a pup but one day......and that day will come when she is around 2 years old sorry( ) if you are consistent and determined, you won't believe that she turned into the dog you had in mind. It is that same moment when my 17 year old son said to me, "You are right."
So stay the course, take a good class that you both enjoy, stick around here, plenty of exercise and fun training. Follow your gut; if you don't like a class, go elsewhere, ask questions here etc.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 08:27 PM
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What are some of the (example of) things that has made you feel overwhelmed?
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McGloomy View Post
What are some of the (example of) things that has made you feel overwhelmed?
Thanks for your responses so far

The sum things up: Before I got a puppy, I knew that it would be a BIG commitment timewise and financially, but I didn't realize I would get as emotionally involved as I am now! I feel like every moment I'm not WITH her, I spend thinking about her. So whether it's training, her diet, or if she's getting enough exercise, her pooping/peeing schedule (I have a note in my phone that records everything everyday...), or just her overall happiness, I feel like she has basically taken over my life and I barely have any time to take care of myself. Maybe that sounds very dramatic haha. But I just love her so much and really want the best for her and as a result, I feel like my own life has totally taken a backseat.

On top of that ongoing feeling that I just described, I'm still learning a lot about what makes her happy/tick, etc. and I feel like often, just as we're overcoming one problem/hump, we run into another challenge. For example, first it was crate training, and then it was pulling while walking, and now it's her chasing squirrels/moving bikes/runners, etc. We're tackling each issues one by one but it almost seems like it's never ending.
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by wolfy dog View Post
Congratulations! You are dealing with an adolescent. I am too and I am too overwhelmed at times with an 8 month old male and I have trained and owned dogs for about 30 years. I too regret the entire decision sometimes and always have while raising from a pup but one day......and that day will come when she is around 2 years old sorry( ) if you are consistent and determined, you won't believe that she turned into the dog you had in mind. It is that same moment when my 17 year old son said to me, "You are right."
So stay the course, take a good class that you both enjoy, stick around here, plenty of exercise and fun training. Follow your gut; if you don't like a class, go elsewhere, ask questions here etc.
Thank you! I appreciate that advice very much. It's definitely comforting to hear that no one, no matter the experience, is immune to the puppy blues
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 11:36 AM
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Well, I think you are doing a great job! You are the opposite of the owners who "put their dog away" in a crate or kennel and then forget about them until they take them out to play with them.

Even though we got an adult dog, our life has changed a lot! I (total night owl who hates mornings) can now be seen every morning around 8am briskly walking the dog. Painful adjustment! And we go out less, and for shorter times, because there is always that feeling that he is waiting for us to come home.


PPS
Dogs is a little like kids. When somebody tells us they are expecting, we say "Wow! Congratulations! So wonderful!" But in the back of our minds there is a bit of, '...welcome to the life of interrupted sleep, poopy diapers, and no personal time...:-)' Nobody ever tells new parents about the reality. It is a pact. We don't want to burst their bubble! So with dogs it's always like, "Your New Best Friend!" but not many people talk about the negative aspects.
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 12:05 PM
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GSds are an addiction and a way of life. At least for me. Never experienced this with any other dog I owned or fostered.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 12:51 PM
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You Sound like a very caring owner. Maybe cut yourself a break, you sound like you’re trying to be perfect which no one is. Your dog sounds happy, allow yourself to be, you sound like you’re doing GREAT. Sure it’s hard but you’ll get there, you’re miles ahead of someone not trying.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 01:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you! I really appreciate that. Totally agree with your PPS!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GSDchoice View Post
Well, I think you are doing a great job! You are the opposite of the owners who "put their dog away" in a crate or kennel and then forget about them until they take them out to play with them.

Even though we got an adult dog, our life has changed a lot! I (total night owl who hates mornings) can now be seen every morning around 8am briskly walking the dog. Painful adjustment! And we go out less, and for shorter times, because there is always that feeling that he is waiting for us to come home.


PPS
Dogs is a little like kids. When somebody tells us they are expecting, we say "Wow! Congratulations! So wonderful!" But in the back of our minds there is a bit of, '...welcome to the life of interrupted sleep, poopy diapers, and no personal time...:-)' Nobody ever tells new parents about the reality. It is a pact. We don't want to burst their bubble! So with dogs it's always like, "Your New Best Friend!" but not many people talk about the negative aspects.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 09:04 PM
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To the OP, I've had 5 dogs before and this is my first GSD (13 months, male) I've had him since he was a tiny 7 1/2 week pup.

Trust me, I understand your worry and you being overwhelmed. GSDs are A LOT of work. But I believe almost everyone here in the forum will agree with me when I say that they are WORTH IT.

It is normal to feel overwhelmed. You havr to juggle her needs with your timetable and probably plan out your week in advance every week. There was a time when I felt like my dog was too much, but I never regret it.

He went through a period of pooping 5-6 times a day for 3 months. He had diarrhea twice. I woke up at 6am, he had bad diarrhea in the crate. I was late for something. But I had to clean everything out, not to mention now he smelt like pee and poo. Had to bathe him, had to groom him. When you're late and stuff and your dog is ill, it's the worst. He once nipped at someone, caused me trouble. He peed at Petsmart, cool. Brought him on a short getaway, he threw up all over the cabin floor, which was carpet. Yes, he had 2 accidents IN my room when he had diarrhea, my room is CARPET, I had to bring him out at 3am, clean out my carpet, clean him out, that took me until 5am.

He doesn't want to eat, had to change the food formula. He lunges at people and dogs, had to get training in order. His sheds all over my car and house, I had to buy one expensive vacuum and another vacuum for my car. He cried all week all night when I brought him home, drew concerns from my neighbour. I asked my other neighbour who has a big mutt when they are ever gonna calm down, she says she thought it was gonna be when he was 2 years old, but didn't happen until he was 4.

I don't care. He 'saved' my life twice already. Once when I was drunk, and once when I pretended to be drowning. He plays hide and seek with me. His smile is always there when I wake up. He's good with kids. He's always right there next to me wherever I am. He's the best dog I ever had.

You sound like a caring owner. Don't worry, you're not the only one who's had puppy blues. But trust us, they're worth it. Don't beat yourself up.
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