My parents, especially my dad, have wanted to get me a puppy to help with my depression and anxiety. We haven't gotten one before now because we really can't afford it.
Last December, a friend asked me if I wanted a puppy. She had one that she wanted to give me, after reading this blog and my Facebook posts about my depression. She said that her dog had helped her with her depression. However, things didn't work out. In some ways I was relieved. I didn't feel like I could take care of a puppy when I can hardly take care of myself some times.
I had pretty much ruled out getting a puppy or dog until that same friend called me a few weeks ago. She said she had a puppy if I wanted it. The only thing was that she needed me to take him that night because their family was going out of town. Without even really thinking about it, I told her I wanted him and to bring him over. As soon as I saw him, I was in love! He and I bonded immediately and he has been following me around, and annoying me, ever since.
Since that day, I have wondered many times, what was I thinking! I have found myself crying, almost uncontrollably, several times, thinking I am in way over my head. I don't know much about raising puppies. I found a book at Deseret Industries, aka D.I., a Mormon (LDS) thrift store, called "Puppies for Dummies." I have talked to friends and relatives and have done some research online. I feel even more overwhelmed trying to sort it all out.
I have tried several things to try and potty train him, get him to sleep through the night in his own bed, and to get him to quit scratching and biting. He refuses to go potty outside. Instead he waits 'til we come back in and then goes in the office or behind the couch, or somewhere else he shouldn't. I try to take him when he wakes up, after meals, and after play. He won't go where I want him to. He has gotten a little better as I have spread more training pads throughout the house, so I am trying to have patience.
I got him a carrier to sleep in at night because I was told that was a good way to help potty train them not to go at night. He hates his carrier! He whines every time I put him inside. When I let him out in the middle of the night to take him potty, he refuses to go back in. I can't handle the whining and so I usually let him out and either lay on the floor with him next to his bed or put him in my bed, something I swore I wouldn't do. I was told that by putting him in the carrier to sleep, it helps with potty training because a dog won't go where it sleeps. So why was I up the other night at 2am cleaning the poop and pee out of said carrier?
As for the biting/scratching, at first when I would tell him no, he would back off. Now he just seems to be getting more aggressive. There are sometimes when he wants nothing to do with his toys and just wants to bite my fingers, arms, chin, nose, ears, toes, etc. When I tell him no, he bites harder. It is very frustrating!
I really don't know what I was thinking. I thought the point of getting a dog was to help ease my stress not make it worse. Don't get me wrong though, I love him too much to get rid of him. I wouldn't trade him for anything. I love my Buddy!