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Dog Newbie
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! :)

Let me introduce myself :

I'm a 14 year old teenager from Greece. My name is Miltos. I will become 15 in 8 months!

I've always wanted to get a dog.

In the previous years, getting a dog meant getting a puppy that would be cute and that I would cuddle all the time and that I'd always take care of and bla bla - in short I wanted a small cute puppy -that wouldn't remain a puppy for its whole lifetime- (Maltese/Yorkie etc) with promises that I'd take care of it. Such promises weren't very true of course, to be honest.

Now however, after being more mature, changing my lifestyle (I lost a lot of weight and turned very athletic from an overweight couch slouch), reading articles about dogs and watching many of Cesar Millan's videos I think I've changed.

Basically, I've started loving Golden Retrievers. I think that they are the kind of dog that would suit my lifestyle. Everyday, for the past 8 months, I've been walking/biking for 10-15km. So, instead of biking alone or walking with a human friend I could walk with my canine friend (or a human friend too simultaneously). So walking the dog wouldn't be a problem, as my father walks around that distance every other day as well. I also jog for half the distance many times. I've read that goldies love running at least once in a week.

Brushing or bathing wouldn't be a problem as I wouldn't have a problem bathing the dog every other day. The only problem would be dead hair. Would brushing the dog once a day reduce significantly the chance of having hair all over the house?

I am ready to cancel a (not very serious) appointment in case I am unable to have someone watch over the dog (my parents/my neighbor/my aunt that lives 1km away).

99% of beaches in Greece allow dogs, so that means I could take the dog with me during short trips to a beach nearby and have fun with it. I remember I've read that goldens are good swimmers and that they love the sea (or water in general).

Money wouldn't be a problem too. I have an income of around 150-200$ every month from YouTube.

We live in an appartment of a pretty decent size (150 square meters) and as far as I know goldies don't bark unnecessarily. So I don't think that the neighbors would get frustrated due to the noise.

Training would be a challenge. I've read that they don't get trained very difficultly so I could spend an hour every day training him. Basically my parents' biggest concern is potty training. I need to research a lot on that, and I want to train the dog to either use the bathroom in a certain place or use it outdoors.

However, I need to have a serious talk with my parents about this. The only way I will purchase a dog is if I persuade them to help me out with the dog as long as they can and as long as it really is necessary. I'm not only talking about money (in case I won't be able to afford a certain vaccination myself) but having them keep the dog whenever I can't as well. You see my mum is unemployed so having her keep the dog when I'm at school wouldn't be an issue as long as she agrees.

I am thinking of purchasing the dog on early June. In Greece we don't have school for a period of three months (Mid June-Mid September). That way I would be able to be with the dog for three whole months in order for it to get trained the basics. The rest of the months I won't be able to dedicate as much time from myself. I would be able to walk/jog with the dog once or twice a day,bathe/groom it every other day and spend an hour at most training the dog basic stuff. Parental help would be there as well - that's a condition that determines whether I will get a dog or not!


So, from everything you've read, and with some suggestions, changes and much reading, do you think I would be able to be an owner of a Golden Retriever? Remember that I'm a newbie and that I have never owned a dog in the past.


Thanks for taking the time to read this :) !
 

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Dog Newbie
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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)

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Premium Member
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Welcome to the forums. It seems that you have given serious thought to this question and are still willing to learn. I'd say that you would make a very conscientious golden owner, with the caveat that your parents really need to be on board.
I would reccomend that you download two free training books that are available:
Before you get your puppy,
and After you get your puppy by Dr. Ian Dunbar.
these are available for download in PDF format for free and have lot's of useful and necessary information.
You should be aware that many of Cesar Milans techniques for behavior correction are considered improper by many knowledgeable trainers, FWIW.
 

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Riley
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You sound like you've thought this through thoroughly. You should also know that most dogs aren't fully potty trained until 6-9 months old (some even longer). Most people also don't suggest running with a large breed dog, like a golden, until after at least a year old - it us very hard on their joints. :)
 

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Beware of Nestle Purina
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If you are looking for a running partner now. I would see about finding a rescue or contact breeders specifically asking about young adult. It is not recommended for golden to be forced to run ie. running partners until after the age of 2.
 

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I got my first golden, Spiffy, when I was 15 and he was my heart. - He was my best buddy and I was the one who did 100% of the work with him. My parents of course were the ones footing the financial responsibility for him but I trained him and raised him, so it definitely can be done. That being said, I was homeschooled so I wasn't really ever away from him as a puppy.

I agree with what others are saying about maybe looking into an adult rescue golden. - You'd have a dog you could start your exercising with from the get go and it wont be quite as difficult as working with a young puppy and going to school at the same time. :) Having your own dog as a teen is really something special, I think, and a wonderful confidence builder for a time when a lot of kids could really use it.
 

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Noreaster
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You are certainly thinking this through and good for you! One question I would ask yourself is what will happen in a few years when you are older and maybe want to leave home to go to school, take a job somewhere else, or get married. Having a dog can very definitely limit your choices on some of those things, so it's important to know if your parents would be willing to home him full-time in that case. It's also important for you to think about what it would be like to leave him/her behind.
 
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