|Barked: Tue Aug 7, '12 7:41pm PST |
|I agree entirely with Mika and Kai.
That said... When I got Charlie, he wasn't AT ALL what I was expecting. I was told he was house trained. Was he? Nope. I was told he was crate trained. Crated to the point of neglected and always being in it 24/7 and therefore, growing to hate his crate... Trained? Nope. He only knew his name and MAYBE sit at the time I got him. I also went through all vet records I was given. He had FOUR known homes prior to me getting him at eight months old. He was anxiety-ridden, he was untrained, peed all over my house, and got into trouble just to get attention. The only thing he had going for him was he was great with other animals and people of all ages.
But I still decided that this sweet little dog was worth the effort. I put everything I had into him. I took him to doggy daycare(I worked there) with me and had him playing all day from 7am to 6:30pm, we'd go home and have dinner, then I'd take him for a two hour walk between dinner and bed. Then he'd get a bedtime pee and back down for the night and all over again. I worked diligently to house train him(I monitored his food and water intake and learned how long it would take before he would have to pee. I took him out MINIMUM once an hour til I got him house broke and now he can go twelve+ hours if he absolutely needs to). I worked REALLY hard to break him of bad habits and train him.
In fact.... He now knows around forty commands. Up until two months ago, he had severe car anxiety too. He would cry, shake, shed, pant, drool and pace in the backseat the entire drive. I took him EVERYWHERE in the car with me as often as possible every day, even if it was just to a store down the block and back. When that didn't work... I decided to try something new. I put HIS blanket in the backseat, rolled the windows in the backseat halfway down and now? He's happy to go on car rides and will even curl up and sleep in them!
There IS hope. But you also have to change your expectations. Firstly, they were too high. You adopted a shelter dog. Without a known history, and without looking into having any drive, whatsoever. He may not be what you were looking for, but you adopted him anyway. If you do decide to re-home him, try to find a rescue instead of a shelter as they'll find a more appropriate home for him.
What have you tried in terms of food and treats for motivation? Charlie won't do anything for chicken or dog treats, but as soon as you pull out the cheese or the peanut butter cookies, he's all over it.
This dog likely needs more than a couple 30 minute walks a day. What about trying a doggy daycare? He likes other dogs, and they'd watch him all day - find one that doesn't kennel. Good ones will even provide walks! It'd help to tire him out a bit better and provide him with the bit of extra that you can't give him.
Be honest with yourself about his needs. He needs someone who can help him with his urination problem. He needs someone who can help him with his nervous anxiety, who has experience with fearful dogs. He needs someone that can commit more than a few 30 minute walks a day to help take off the edge.
I'm going to be honest, and I hope you don't take this rudely, but... If you can't provide him with more exercise.... How would you have done agility, fetch and therapy with him? Those take time AND money to boot. Your expectations basically contradict themselves. You want a dog who can do agility, fetch and therapy... But you don't have the time to provide more than a few 30 minute walks a day... Any dog who has drive or is up for the challenge of agility or fetch will NEED far more exercise than that... And this isn't me trying to be rude at all. I'm just trying to point out that perhaps you need to figure out what you CAN provide before you get a dog with what you WANT to provide, y'know?
It doesn't sound like he's a good fit for your home. You're either willing to work with him(it will take more than six months - Charlie took me three years and my foster took me a few months! Each dog varies), or you're not and if not, be honest, find a good rescue, or even foster him and screen homes properly yourself. I'm sure you can contact rescues and find out good tips for proper screening of homes.
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