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Crossroads... can't decide on puppy or older shiba
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63
    I have a deposit on a shiba that should be born around May 10 but when I went to visit the breeder about 4 months ago to check out her dogs and kennels, she had a male shiba named Oliver that she showed me. He is 6 years old and so adorable! She let me and my boyfriend take him for a walk around her yard and looked so happy and was all excited, but I was not moved into my new apartment yet so I could not get a dog at that time. I figured he would be gone by the time so I put a deposit on a future puppy in July.

    The other day she emailed me informing me that her female shiba is pregnant and due May 10 I was very excited and I went on her website to see is she updated it and I saw that Oliver was still there and know I do not know what to do... if I should continue the puppy path or get Oliver.

    There is pros and cons to both sides I don't want to regret getting Oliver cause my initial plan was for a puppy but Oliver so cute and lovable. It is so hard to choose

    Here are some pictures of him that I got from her website

    photo imag005_zpsdc86a748.jpg

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    [changed category ~mod.]
    Post edited by curlytails at 2013-04-10 19:07:03
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    Honestly, it is up to you and (if he lives with you) your boyfriend. There are several threads on the forum that go over the pros/cons of puppy vs adult rescue (even though this dog is not a rescue and you will know the medical history, etc. if he is from a reputable breeder).

    So I think it all depends on what you want in a dog, why you want a dog, and what you plan to do with the dog... No one can tell you which is best for you but you.
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495

    A thread that touches up on the idea of adult vs puppy (although it includes rescues as well).

    My opinion...since you live in an apartment or is going to live in an apartment according to your posted, I would go with the adult. Simply because you'll know the shiba's habit (whether or not he'll have separation anxiety) and that s/he can hold it long enough to walk out of the apartment complex.

    With a puppy there is a chance s/he will have separation anxiety and will scream/bark nonstop which will risk you getting will also have to take the puppy out every hour or so to potty train them, which will be an inconvenience if you don't live on the ground floor.
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    I agree with @sunyata, we can't answer that for you. You choice stems from why you want a Shiba, what you want to do with the Shiba, and what you want in a dog. There are a lot of advantages to choosing an adult. A puppy is a lot of work, but a puppy can be a lot of fun if you are ready for the time and challenges it will throw at you and the high level of early socialization you will need to do with it.

    Is the dog a retired show dog or being retired from breeding? What is the history of that dog that brings it to being available?
  • We have a brother sister pair (different litters, a repeat breeding) from the same breeder. We got the girl at ten weeks as a puppy, and her brother when he semi-retired from the show ring at 3, a year and a half later.

    Honestly, if you really liked him, I say go for Oliver. Adult dogs still bond well, and it's so much easier than a puppy. Puppy cuteness is great, but puppy diarrhea....not so much. While we love them equally, after the ease of getting an adult, we're not likely to raise a puppy again. It's also nice because there are so many fun activities you can do with an adult immediately (running, hiking, sports) that you can't with a puppy.

    Also, retired show adults often have very good manners, and if the breeder is a responsible one, you have a well mannered, well socialized adult, used to going to lots of new environments, and with a fully developed personality.

    If you're nervous, why don't you see if the breeder will let you take him for a week as a trial. We were allowed to do that to see if he would get along well with his sister in her home environment. If the breeder is a responsible one, then her primary goal would be to get him into a loving and appropriate home.

    Ps - since you say you connected to him immediately, do you really think you would regret bringing a lovable dog home just because he isn't a puppy?
    Post edited by violet_in_seville at 2013-04-10 21:07:24
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    I agree with @violet_in_seville if the adult is what she is presuming and from a reputable breeder.

    I think knowing about the history of the dog though first is important before making assumptions that it has been well socialized, trained, and at low risk of issues.
  • @redcattoo, I'm presuming that @ashley15 has put forth a good faith effort and found a responsible breeder. If the breeder can't answer the questions raised about socialization and training of one of her adults, the issue of puppy vs adult should be moot, as she shouldn't be getting a puppy or dog from the breeder. Only the poster herself can answer that question.
    Post edited by violet_in_seville at 2013-04-10 16:19:21
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    @violet_in_seville, good point that if the breeder isn't a responsible breeder even a puppy discussion should be moot. Even so, a responsible breeder usually takes back a dog at any stage of life, so without knowing more from the OP we don't even know if the dog was in the breeder's possession throughout most of its life. I guess I just feel before we make any assumptions the OP really needs to provide more information on the adult's background.
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63

    Here is the link to Oliver it gives information about him, for you guys wanting to know a little bit more about him. She takes all of her dogs back she does not want them to end up in a shelter or to another person who she does not approve of or know. She told me more about his background then the website says... I was very surprised that he had some problems after the divorce and everything (must have been stressed) because he was VERY friendly to me and my boyfriend he warmed up right away.
    Post edited by ashley15 at 2013-04-10 16:46:31
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    He said he was house trained until his mom and dad separated and he went to live in a small apartment. Since losing his Dad, his comfy house and moving into a strange place, he has been doing some of his potty duties in the apartment. He doesn't know why except that he feels kinda sad and he started taking it out on his human little girl that lived there too. Mom just couldn't continue trying to rehome him.
    Hmm, I'm not convinced that this adult would be easy. You live in an apartment too?
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    @zandrame - From what I have gathered about this pup (and I have more than just the info on the website to go on), he was owned by a married couple with a small child. The parents divorced and the mother, child, and dog moved from their home to an apartment.

    When moving from one place to another, dogs often regress with potty training, which is super easy to fix. The stress of all the changes probably caused some issues between the child and dog. This is not uncommon, and because of the stress, the mother decided it was best to return the dog to the breeder.

    From what I know of this little guy, none of this is his fault and since being back at the breeder's, he has shown minimal behaviour issues. However, he is kenneled a lot and would probably love to have a home to call his own again.

    So if the OP would rather go with an adult and not a puppy, then I think Oliver would be a great fit, especially since there are no small children in the home (and assuming there would not be in the near future).
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    @sunyata, thanks for the clarification!

    I'm still cautious about any posting that mentions, but downplays, behavior issues. How long has this dog been unable to find a home? Does he have problems with all children, or just the one he grew up with? And why is he kenneled if it stresses him further? In this case, it seems like a proper rescue/foster would have benefited him.

    The OP will have to decide if they are up for any challenges he might bring with him. Same goes for a puppy, but they will have more of a blank slate to work with.
  • Briona528Briona528
    Posts: 41
    @ashley15, any chance you can take Oliver for a trial for a few weeks and see how it goes? You could end up falling completely loving him or give him back and get the puppy if it does not work out? If that is not an option, I would say go for the older dog. Puppies are a TON of work! :o)
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63
    I think he has been there for about 2 years, she said she only lets certain people she thinks would be good for him look at him. She isn't pushy to selling him and I think she takes great care if him and treats him like her other dogs and seems happy.

    @briona528 that is a very good idea I will have to email her and ask if she would be up for that. I feel bad because I already did place my deposit for a puppy and if I didn't like Oliver I would feel horrible if I returned him :(

    I do also have roommates in my apartment and I am nervous he may be overwhelmed by being in a new place and then also having to adjust to 4 new faces.

    I know a puppy is a lot of work I have read about 5 books and have done numerous research but it also scares me because even I have been raised around dogs my entire life and use to show but this would be my first dog on my own and a trained dog maybe best right now.

  • I would definitely look heavily into Oliver because puppies are so much work (it will be a long time before we get another, if ever) and because from the tone of your post, you seem quite taken with Oliver. My own instinct would be to go with the dog I'd formed an emotional connection to over one that wasn't born yet because I feel like you're more likely to regret not getting the dog you connected with than one you have not. That said, obviously there are a lot of pros and cons here and you will ultimately know what's best.
  • CaliaCalia
    Posts: 3664
    Something that I don't see mentioned, but did you contact the breeder to see if Oliver is actually still available? Sometimes a breeder will forget to update their website or not mention that another family has interest in a dog, so that way they can find back up homes should that family not check out. Before putting further debate about Olive, contact the breeder and see what his current status is and if others have expressed interest in him.
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63
    @Calia I did not contact the breeder to see if Oliver was still available, the only reason why I do think he still is is because I looked at the breeders website and it was updated (new stuff was there and new pictures were uploaded) and Oliver was still on the website

    I guess before I email her about Oliver I want to be sure that I want him because I do not want to hassle her.

    Do you guys think she would be bothered if I changed my mind about the puppy and decided to go with Oliver... I dont think she would be she is such a nice lady but I hate being a bother to people especially when I know they are busy
  • ShibaLoveShibaLove
    Posts: 554
    She can probably find a new owner for the puppy sooner than she would be able to for Oliver. Contact her and see but since adults are hard to place and she has good rapport with you I am sure she would be happy to hear you are interested in Oliver.
  • Kobe1468Kobe1468
    Posts: 1590
    I agree with ShibaLove. It's very unfortunate but it's reality. You would be giving Oliver a second chance at a happy life, and I think that's to be commended!
    I don't think the breeder would mind at least discussing it. Explain yourself and let her know why you would prefer Oliver over a pup. But you need to be certain it's the right choice for you.
    I might try and find a way to see if he's still available before you do this. Could have a friend call to inquire about him. Just wouldn't want the breeder to start second guessing you!!
    "Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
  • knnwangknnwang
    Posts: 645
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63
    Do you guys still think he would have a good bound with me since this will be his 3rd home in a way... that part scares me a little bit.

    He is 6 he seems like he has a lot of life in him still, but that only gives him about 4 to 6 years left give and take a little bit. He seemed like a very healthy dog though :)
  • @ashley15 - my retired show boy was co-owned so he spent time in both breeders' homes. We are his third home and he bonded very easily. I also wouldn't be surprised if he remembers you. We used to play with our boy whenever we would bring his sister for a visit, and he definitely remembered us. My girl recognized someone who bought a puppy from our breeder a year and a half later. She had met and played with him once when we all went to a conformation show to cheer for our breeder.

    @kobe1468 - it would probably be easier to just ask the breeder directly. It's not something that is offensive. When we were on our puppy waiting list, our breeder decided to retire one of his show dogs. The other couple on the waiting list had met her before and really loved her and were ecstatic to have the chance to get her. It didn't bother my breeder in the least that they preferred to get her rather than a puppy at a relatively late date. He was happy to put her in a home where people loved her.

    @knnwang - I could speculate about the various interpretations of the meaning of what you wrote, but it would probably be easier for everyone reading the thread if you posted more than one character.
  • ashley15ashley15
    Posts: 63
    Thank you guys for all the help I am going to e-mail my breeder today about him . I will tell you guys how it goes.
  • Honestly? I'd way rather get an adult Shiba than a Shiba puppy. Much, much easier. I can't do it because my adult dogs adjust well to puppies but not so well to adults, but adult dogs are just a lot easier. Oliver is not to old to adjust and bond, and as a lot of people have said, retired show dogs can make great pets. And it does sound like he made an impression on you, so if you feel that you might want him, go for it! It would be great for him to have a home!

    I'd contact the breeder as soon as possible and be honest, and say you're also interested in Oliver. As someone else noted, it will be easier for her to find a new home for a puppy than for an adult, so I'm sure she would be willing to switch if that's what you want to do. But you do want to do this soon so she can start finding another home for the puppy if that is what you decide to do. Waiting to talk to her about this will not do anyone any favors.

    And I do think I remember some discussion about this dog elsewhere (on the NK forum maybe?), and I also suspect he will be fine in another home. He deserves a new home, and ashley15 has an interest in him, I think this could be a good match.
  • amtiamti
    Posts: 1066
    Hope it all turns out well Ashley15! Tough choices, but follow your heart!

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