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I was just wondering how you all juggle a full time job and keeping your dogs happy and having a good relationship with them? Perhaps you guys have human children and other things you also do.

Just wondering to see if there is some ideas you guys have that i can do, to help improve my daily routine with Zelda!

For me, I walk Zelda in the morning before work for stimulation and exercise, kennel her and go to work (on my 8 hour-9 hour shifts i have someone let her out and even be with her for a hour or more on a good day), when i come home from work we go out for a small car ride out to a field where she can run and play fetch on a 50 foot leash and do some bonding time and obedience. Than i let her play with her sister dog inside the house and do more obedience and bonding. Before bed we also take a long walk and than wake up and repeat.

And on days i don't work we do even more together. And i try to take her to places to socialize since she has socializing problems that we are working on.
 

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That sounds fine! Probably more than what the majority of dog-owners would do. I'm on my own and work full time also, and do about as much as what you mention. Get involved in classes and fun activities with your dog too for a great bonding experience.
 

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There are good days and bad days. I leave at 6 AM and get home around 4:30 PM and my sister lets them out in the middle of the day. I get home and eat dinner and feed them, and then most evenings are spent with the dogs playing and training. If I go out, most of the time my dogs come with me. If not, they get a good run then they get crated for the few hours that I'm gone. Saturdays are my work day, we all sleep in then they follow me around the house and "help" :)

I love spending time with my dogs, I have a good social life when I feel like it, or spend time at home with them. They don't mind if I'm out for a bit, but mostly I prefer spending my evenings with them.

It's really all a balancing act, they get what they need and I get what I need. It's a very good relationship in that regard with both parties being happy.
 

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I don't have kids. I do have a fairly demanding job (I'm an attorney with the Philly DA's office; mostly I do federal litigation relating to murder cases) and this summer is particularly brutal time-wise because I'm also under contract to write two novels due this fall. Each of those books is supposed to be 100K words (approx. 400 pages) and I just started one of them two weeks ago and I'm not that fast a writer, so, well, some days my life is a giant sack of stress and woe and I'm up until 4 or 4:30 in the morning scribbling on nerd books.

I still make time for the dogs. My current crew doesn't need too much in the way of physical exercise; they're okay with going to the off-leash dog park a couple of times a week and walking on leash for about 60 to 90 minutes daily. Pongu's doing a lot of jump exercises in Rally because we're hitting Level 3 drills pretty hard lately, and that tires him out too, particularly since most of our practices are now in high-distraction environments for proofing purposes.

I probably spend about 45 minutes a day reviewing "flashcards" (Rally signs) with Pongu and another 15 minutes to an hour per day doing goofy trick work with both dogs, depending on how much free time I have on any given day. Pongu also has a weekly competition obedience class at our training club.

Additionally, right now I have a foster dog (Lab/dachshund/spaniel/??? mix), and playing with the foster tires out Dog Mob (and vice versa). Social interactions with friendly but not-entirely-familiar dogs seem to take a lot of energy for them.

All of that, put together, is enough to keep my bunch occupied. I don't think I'd be able to handle a high-intensity Border Collie or Malinois in my current setup, though. And I definitely plan on blocking out a less busy time of my life whenever I decide to get a working pup. :)
 

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Hi, I am new to the GSD forum first of all. But am in need of advice. I am 25 and just moved to great falls Montana. Before this I lived near Seattle for the previous entirety of my life. I have had three GSD's with my family, Murdock, babe, and Lincoln. I've had a Germans Shepard brother in my family since I can remember and I miss him to death. I moved away from all my family and friends who are still back in Seattle. So, I work 8 hours a day mon-fri. I work for the FAA as an electronics technition. I want to know the feasability of me getting a furry family member and friend. To keep me company. Besides work I am home. Unless I am out unicycling or playing some frisbee golf. (which I would love to have a campanion to show me where my disc is when I lose it. : P) I would take a few weeks off after adopting to spend with the dog 100%. And spend every waking moment I could with it. I miss my doggy back home and could use a GSD in my family to spoil. Could I make this work with a full time job?
 

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I work full-time - Mon-Fri: 8-5. I go home at noon for a half hour or so to let my pup out. I've had her since she was 8 weeks old and this is how it has been the entire time. I do get up at 5am to allow for plenty of play time/walks before I leave for work at 7:30ish. When I get home at 5pm most of my evening is dedicated to making sure she gets enough exercise, mental and physical. I RARELY go out after work, because I feel I need to spend the time with my pup who's been crated all day. If I do need to go out, I try to incorporate her into it, or make sure I get her GOOD & TIRED before. Right now we are doing 2 training classes a week and its working great.
 

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Could I make this work with a full time job?
As long as you're willing to dedicate the time and effort, yes.

You can work fulltime and then some, and still have happy, fulfilled, well-trained dogs -- as long as you're willing to make them a priority in the time that you do have to spend.
 

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That is good to hear. And considering i left all my family and friends states away my dog would be my one and only priority. The next question would be a good age to rescue? I could only assume i wouldnt be able to handle a puppy with work.
 

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MJosal:
I would go to your local humane societies.
I work at one in my State, and with us asking potential adopters many questions, we can for the most part, figure out what type of dog meets your needs and if you meet the dog's needs.
Just be very honest, it is so important to be honest. I cannot stress this enough. Tell them exactly what you want in a dog, how much work you can put in training, your work schedule, home much time you would be spending away, what you will do with the dog when your away, your living situation, what type of personality you want, energry level, ask about temperment testing, if its house-trained, if its good with kids and cats, ask its history if they know it (if it was a surrender they would know, if its a stray they wouldnt ofc). (If an adoption counselor your working with is not answering the questions well, dont be afraid to ask for another adoption counselor that knows more about the dog your asking about- if the person really cares about the animals they should understand because they are there to find these animals their forever homes)

Remember when adopting an animal it is commitment. Some of these animals that come in to shelters have been rehomed over and over and it just is not fair for them and very stressful and confusing.
And most importantly spend time with the dog. If you find one that you think really connects with you, put a hold on the dog (most places do this) and think about it again overnight. Take a friend to come visit the dog with you. Revisit the dog take it for a walk, work with it. Ask the adoption counselors even more questions. Take a list with you of questions about the dog and other questions that you may have for in general.
And know that it usually is very rough for the first few weeks when your new dog comes home. Its very stressful on the dog and on you. Just be patient, make a good routine and follow it, exercise the dog, give it things to do, if its really stressed out buy some composure it works on most dogs, you can also purchase a thundershirt (never tried it and it didnt work on any stress cases at the humane society i work at).
There are dogs that fit everyones needs and many dogs out there that need somebody. :)

Good luck! Hope you find someone that will enhance your life and you for them!
 

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Some ideas: Try joining evening training classes 1-2 times a week. You can still go out and take your dog in the evenings-we go to places that are dog friendly. get together and walk with friends you meet at a dog park. Family and I will will do walking on the trails. Also I am looking into doggie day care for a couple of days a week once my daughter goes back to school and once he is neutered ( a requirement).
 

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Thank you both of you for the replies. Since i am new here i will have to find the shelter. shouldn't be too hard. And i will start hanging around and talking with people there. This will take me a while as i am BRAND new and am looking for a house to move in for myself AND my future pet to enjoy. In a apartment temporarily, moved on short notice. I didn't know who to talk to before or if anyone would even talk to me about it. Any GSD rescue site i went to i couldn't find anyone to ask a question unless i paid the adoption fee.. just to ask a question! so i am glad i found these forums.

As for commitment, this is why i am starting a search for my dog a little early. I know i will not find the dog of my dreams tomorrow i need to be patient to find the dog that suites me. But, I am ready to give my full commitment.

I will look into training classes around town too for when i do find the perfect dog, Hopefully they have some. Great falls is a little smaller of a town then i am used too.

Thanks again.
 

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As most have said, its a huge balancing act. I do not have children but I do have obligations. I work anywhere from 10 - 12 hours a day, luckily right now I am working from home but I will soon be moving back to my home town and going to be working back in the office (I can bring my dog to the office though so that helps). But right now I wake up and before I do anything (short of the morning bathroom routine) I take Penny for her hour long walk (Im waking up at 6am to walk her to be back at the house at 7), we come home I do a 5 minuet training regimen, feed her her breakfast, I do my other morning stuff eating, coffee ect. then I get to work, I can normally step away for an hour at lunch which I take that time to take Penny for a half hour walk or playtime in the backyard, and a 3 - 5 minuet training session. When Im finished for the day (unless Im on call and get tied up with something) we go for another hour long walk followed by 5 minuets of training. Sometimes we go over to one of my friends places to let our dogs run and play in the afternoon this normally happens about 3 times a week. Im normally off on weekends unless it my weekend to work (one weekend a month) and we do a lot of fun stuff like going out to the beach or hiking or day trips walking around the city or whatever, and right now we have training class on Sundays (was every Tuesday). Now all of the regular stuff as stated then of course doing house work, I play soccer once a week I play softball once a week, I volunteer at the community center once a week and I will be joining SAR July 4th. I also baby sit for my sister and help my neighbors from time to time. So fairly busy but I manage everything well I find.

So we have a very laid out routine, it takes a lot of dedication to do the walking the socializing, the training ect and nail everything, again its all just a huge balancing act and how well you can manage doing all of that.
 

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My wife and I both have full time jobs. She leaves earlier than I do in the morning so I wind up with the responsability of the dog. He gets up goes outside and then gets fed. I mess with him alittle and let him roll in the grass and stuff. Then it's in the kennel and off to work for 8 hrs. My wife lets him out when she gets home and we play in the backyard for awhile, do alittle training then it's dinner time and then we go for a walk around 7 or 8 then it's to bed at 9. By the time the play and walk gets in he's worn out. He's ready for the sack at 9. Then we do it all over again.
 

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Right now I'm gone about 12 hours a day. I spend about an hour and a half in the morning doing all the stuff for them..outside(walk), feeding, etc. At night we walk again and do obedience. Right now only one of them is in classes. Once I get my house, time away from home will be cut down a lot, since I will only live about 3 minutes from work and they will have a yard to run in. I will also be able to come home at lunch and let them out and exercise some. I plan on setting up an agility course in my yard, so we will be doing lots of that.
 

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just like i had babysitter's and caretakers for the human kids
i had dogsitter's for the dog. my dog is 6 yrs old and my neighbor
still helps us with the dog often.
 
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