Is there such a thing as post puppy blues?
While researching for some more interesting Holidays4Dogs articles I came across several forums packed with people who were feeling overwhelmed with their new puppies. The majority of people, I guess, were women who were feeling almost the same as they did after having children, as they were several weeks into bringing up a new puppy. In some ways, puppies can be more challenging than children, but is there really such a thing as post puppy depression? Holidays4Dogs finds out.
Interestingly, I have always felt rather strange when taking on a new dog or puppy, but I always put it down to me just being a bit overly sensitive. Now it appears that I wasn’t alone and lots of people who buy or adopt dogs and puppies go through a short stage of feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of caring for a new animal.
There can be feelings of worry over the welfare of the dog, especially if it is a puppy; anxiety regarding training, particularly house training and an over all feeling that new responsibilities, such as caring for an animal brings. For me, it was often a change in general dynamics as more often that not, when I took on a new dog, I already had one or two existing dogs. This in itself can potentially bring challenges while settling a new dog into an existing pack.
Feeling overwhelmed in this way is completely natural and anyone having feelings of anxiety over a new dog or puppy should remember that they are not alone! Many people feel a sense of loss of freedom, particularly if they have begun caring for a small puppy. These feelings can be heightened if the owner has human children to care for as well and even worse, if they are juggling jobs and other domestic chores into the bargain. Bringing a puppy into this mix can sometimes make people feel so weighed down that they quickly decide to re-home their puppy. This is why it is so important for people to be prepared and do lots of research before making a decision that really should be regarded as a permanent one.
For anyone having feelings of puppy blues, it is comforting to know that they will pass. After sleepless nights and constantly clearing up poop and piddles from the carpet (and feeling your lovely house is being turned into a dog kennel!); getting nowhere with training and generally feeling as if this four legged whirlwind will never settle to being a calm family pet – don’t despair – he or she will! Very quickly your puppy will settle and you will begin to appreciate their unconditional love and loyal companionship.
If you are feeling somewhat anxious about a new dog or puppy in the house, you can get lots of help by attending puppy classes, where you are bound to meet lots of other owners feeling the same way. Learning how to handle, train and engage with your dog will set you well on the road to a fantastic partnership with him and after a few short weeks, you will wonder why on earth you ever felt so worried.
If, like me, you fall totally head over heels with having a dog about the place, you may well be thinking about having another one in a year or two – and most likely you will go through the whole thing all over again! For me, the extra work, lack of freedom and the frustrations of training are all worth it by a country mile; that and knowing that it’s a small sacrifice to make for many years of companionship with a four legged friend.