Sunday, February 28, 2010

need to give back a dog, without making the kids fear we'll give them back!

not sure we can swing this, but we oh so much want to. we don't want to take our new (to us) dog on our "trip" since we'll be in an rv. seems like a simple problem, he sheds, is a huge pain, listens to no one, and would be very inconvenient, all the time.
BUT (dangit) how can we say family is forever and make the kids understand? he's a dog, and i see the difference, but he's the one "person" em says she's let into her heart. all three kids love him. dad and i, not so much. he's a nice dog, just untrained, stubborn, and inconvenient (hm, sounds like the kids...).
BUT as we value his help in them attaching and all that, would it be horrible to leave him? we'd have a good place for him, and it could even be temporary, just til we get back (which will probably be years).
i'm just not sure they could take it, in the middle of all the attaching they're doing. but i'm not sure we can put up with him on the road. we'd never be free to be gone for too long, and he's not even good on a leash. ugh! what to do??????

thanks for the comments, and i'd love more! i know what we can do, have plenty of ideas, i just need to know if it'll be detrimental to the kids????


Shanti said...

yikes, that is a tough one. could you feel it out with the kids? see what they would think? could you offer some sort of incentive for them if you leave the dog behind?

jwg said...

Make it sound like you are doing the dog a favor. "He would hate being cooped up all day. It's a small space. And he wouldn't understand why the world keeps changing. It would be hard to find places froe him to run and play....You get the idea. Talk about how the place he is going will be so much more fun for him and he would be having a vacation that is all for him. Reassure them that he will be coming back(sorry) and if you are taking a laptop with a camera and whoever has him has one arrange for occasional "visits".

marythemom said...

We had to do this once! We picked out a dog at the pound about a month after the kids got here. He repeatedly attacked one of our other dogs right in front of our new daughter (partly her fault the first time because she was feeding them by hand). We had to return him to the pound. Of course she had instantly "bonded" to the new dog and was devastated. We explained to her that it was our job to keep our family members safe, we weren't the right family for the dog, and he would be much happier with a family that could meet his needs (without another alpha dog in our case, with room for him to run and play for you?)

At the same time her brother (who we were also in the process of adopting) was intimidating and attacking family members. We had to put him in residential treatment. It was not fun knowing that she was making the connections and afraid we were getting rid of him (and her).

The good news is that I don't think it set back her attachment much if at all. In fact it gave us a talking point that helped bring some issues out in the open. Of course the biggest thing that helped was that we kept her and her brother.

Mary in TX