I want a dog

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Both Ryan and I grew up with family pets.  My dad is a lover of all animals and we always either had a dog, cat, rabbit, goat, bird or some combination.  I am not overly affectionate with other people’s pets, but I have always loved my own.

Ryan and I have often talked about getting a dog.  Its only natural. Get married. Buy a house. Have a few kids. Get a dog.

But I have two problems. 1. I’m not a big fan of dog hair {or wet dog smell or dog poop}. 2. We are not the type who will take a dog for a long walk everyday. Not that we’re lazy :we just have a pretty busy life {you know, four kids, a couple of businesses and all}.

So here’s our solution: English Bulldog. They may drool, but they don’t shed much. And boy, oh boy, are they lazy. Perfect.

image

via

We have wanted to wait to get a dog until we were out of the baby stage : which we are approaching.

Yesterday I saw a man walking the beefiest looking English Bulldog. A few hours later I saw the above image {on My Sweet Savannah} and it clicked: I want a dog.

So : I’d love to hear your thoughts on dog vs. no dog. And if you know anything about living with a drooly english bulldog, please feel free to share the ups an downs.

**UPDATE**

Okay, maybe I don’t want a dog. At least not an English Bulldog. I’ve loved reading the comments and one thing I can say … I have three boys who are not necessarily smelly now, but in a few years, I’m sure they will be. I don’t think adding a smelly dog to the mix is best for my sanity. Maybe I should take Holly‘s advice and notice the leopard carpet in the photo instead of the dog!

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192 Responses to I want a dog

  1. Jane March 17, 2011 at 3:35 pm #

    I believe you live in Puget Sound and we got our wonderful lab-mix from the Purdy Woman’s Prison in Gig Harbor. The women train the dogs for the handicapped, etc. and lots of different breeds are available for adoption (the ones who “flunk” the program.) They’re usually one years old and well-trained- they just need love! My four kids LOVED having a dog and we weren’t always regular about taking her for walks…

  2. Gretchen H. March 17, 2011 at 6:15 pm #

    Long story short- the pros of having a dog outweigh the cons! Go get one!

  3. nissa March 17, 2011 at 7:20 pm #

    We have an English Bulldog. We don’t have any issues with her smelling (as long as she gets bathed regularly, of course!) but she does shed. We also have a yorkie, we keep his hair cut short, and he never sheds. Go figure.

  4. DaisyD March 17, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    My recommendation is a Schnoodle. We have had our dog since 2005. She is little, less than 15 lbs. My boys have Ashtma and have no issues. Schnoodles are considered Hypoallergenic dogs. She is such a love bug and completly loves the kids. never issues with being aggresive. Schnoodles dont have a lot of energy, just burts here and there. They do something called the “schnoodle 500.” Just runs in circles for about 5 circles and shes done. She is a indoor dog and best part, LOVES to be Spoiled! There hair does not shedI either! Wonderful Family dogs. I highly suggest looking into them. You will not regret it. ; )

  5. Lorie Moynihan-Broedel March 17, 2011 at 8:11 pm #

    I’ve had an English Bulldog and they are very, very loving. The only downsize is their lifespan is about 5 to 8 yrs. Not enough time =( I now have a French Bulldog which is a smaller version of the English, with batlike ears that stick up straight. Frenchies are also very loving, comical dogs. They don’t need a lot of exercise and are perfect for apartments and townhouses because they rarely bark. Martha Stewart has 2; Franchesca and Sharkey and Ellen DeGeneres has 1 named Pig. They are cutie pututies and their lifespan is 9 to 12 yrs. Once you meet one, you’ll be hooked. =)

  6. Brooke Curtis March 17, 2011 at 8:39 pm #

    I have a Morkie (1/2 Yorkie, 1/2 Maltese) and am in LOVE. He’s LOVES kids, and is non-shedding. He is 11 pounds full grown and I could not ask for a better pet. I can also truly say I’ve never dealt with “dog smell” or slobber. I have a family friend who owns both English and American bulldogs and I can tell you there is more slobber and hair then I care to smell and see. I love that they are big dogs who are lovable and lazy, but I wouldn’t be able to deal with the smells, and shall I say “bodily functions” that they both seem to emit on a pretty regular basis.

  7. laurenbtrain March 17, 2011 at 11:03 pm #

    we have a lab! he sheds a lot but worth every piece of hair i have to sweep up! …bed head makes a fabulously smelling dog shampoo – so yummy smelling i often wonder if i can use it for myself ;) and we use a laser light in our back yard with him. he chases that thing until he is completely tuckered out…he gets exercise and i dont have to move more than my arm :)

  8. Katie M March 18, 2011 at 7:00 am #

    I have two dogs and can’t imagine my life without them. I didn’t want a shedder either, so I looked for breeds that had minimal shedding. I have a Boston terrier and a Scottie. Neither shed much (the Boston only when he’s nervous) and the only fur maintenance is on the Scottie. I bring him in for a cut every couple months.

    Dogs do take a lot of time in training, especially if you get them as a puppy. But for me, the time put in was completely worth it. Of course they have a distinct “dog” smell which can be easily taken care of with regular baths. That was one of my boyfriend’s biggest concerns when I moved in with him. However, they have won him over and he doesn’t freak out about having dogs in the house anymore.

  9. Misty March 18, 2011 at 7:53 am #

    I really hate to be a negative voice here, but my parents have an English Bulldog. While she is very sweet, loving, and low energy. She stinks pretty badly (they get her groomed regularly), she drools everywhere (nasty gloppy pools of it every time she drinks or gets overworked), and as a breed without extensive training, they are very stubborn. She also sheds pretty badly. It’s that small fine hair, but it’ll get everywhere.

    Please don’t hear me wrong. I LOVE love love animals (dogs especially), and she will always be part of the family. Many times I don’t let her come near me when I am over there, because she’ll shed, drool, or get my clothes stinky before we go out.

    While bulldogs personalities are right up some people’s alley. I can’t recommend them… especially to a bustling house of six.

  10. Honey Ham March 18, 2011 at 9:24 am #

    I only read a handful of comments and I see your update but I needed to add my 2 cents! Not all bulldogs are couch potatoes. I have a ball of energy who is always up for some play time or a walk. She LOVES kids and all people, really. Bulldogs are a breed that is very close to my heart. I am involved with our local bulldog rescue group and have seen and heard the horror stories first hand. People neglect and dump their bully’s because the dog didn’t live up to their preconceived expectations (too lazy, not lazy enough, needs care and maintenance, etc.) all too often. Its heartbreaking. Whatever breed you choose I hope (I know) you will really research what breed will fit best for your family and how much care you are realistically able and willing to give. Bulldogs are not a zero maintenance breed, but if given the proper care, diet, exercise, etc. you can expect a long and healthy life for you snoring, burping, gassy bully! I know PLENTY of 10 + year old bulldogs out there.

    P.S. Honey Ham (my baby) is not much of a drooler, unless there is food around! And whatever you do, don’t shop, ADOPT! : )

  11. Dottie March 18, 2011 at 10:10 am #

    If you want a dog that is great with kids and doesn’t shed AT ALL, get any breed that is mixed with a Poodle. My friend has a Labradoodle and a littlier dog that’s poodle and schnauzer or something like that and they are great! Super friendly and so fun and they don’t make her sneeze since she’s allergic! :)

  12. Haley March 18, 2011 at 11:05 am #

    DO NOT get an English Bulldog! My husband and I always wanted one and a couple of years back we saved and saved to get one. Ours is dirty, stinky and VERY agressive! He busted a door down in our house and killed our other dog. I grew up with all kinds of dogs and we are animal lovers… But this dog is awful! :(

  13. Missy March 18, 2011 at 1:25 pm #

    Bulldogs are the best. Mine is named Maggie and we adopted her from the shelter. She is amazing around children and puppies, drools when she drinks and plays (which can be expected of any dog), sheds, snores something crazy, and requires regular grooming.

    All of the negatives of this breed (stubbornness, drooling, snoring farting) are out weighed by how lovable and wonderful their personalities are. I look forward to when I get home to find Maggie waiting at the door with her little butt wiggling so much she cant control the rest of her body and just starts wiggling all over. Possibly the cutest thing in the world..

  14. Shelley @ Green Eggs and Hamlet March 18, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

    I say GO FOR IT! (Of course this is coming from a girl who writes a blog solely dedicated to her dog so I’m probably biased.)

    My best friend has an English Bulldog (Butters) and he’s the sweetest thing but LAZY. He won’t even walk around the block. He also makes a BIG mess when drinking from the water bowl.

    I have a Boston Terrier and I have to say (again, I’m biased), I think he might be the perfect dog. They are energetic enough to do whatever you want to do (I take mine walking, swimming, and hiking) but don’t require a huge amount of exercise or maintenance. Plus, they’re a small size (but packed with a big personality) so easy to take places and don’t overrun the house. They don’t really shed, they’re great snugglers, they love kids, and they’re easy to train. And they have the great face wrinkles like Bulldogs! Here’s some info on the breed that’s quite accurate: http://www.doggies.com/Boston_Terrier

    I rescued mine when he was 10 months old from MidAmerica Boston Terrier Rescue but there are a couple of rescues in WA as well if you’re interested: Boston Terrier Rescue of Western Washington (http://www.btrww.org/frames.html) and Grays Harbor Pug, Boston Terrier, Boxer Rescue (http://users.reachone.com/bostonlady/rescue1-2.html). You can always check Petfinder too (for any dog breed): http://www.petfinder.com/index.html

    In summary, DO IT! DO IT!

  15. carly March 19, 2011 at 5:25 pm #

    ABSOLUTELY get a dog! There are so many that need a good home, and in days, maybe minutes, will make your home a better one. Their love is undeniable and unassuming… they will make you smile every day! We have a vizsla… doesnt shed much, but does require some exercise. She is actually quite content staying on the couch all day, but I know its good for her (and me) to get out for a run/walk.

    I hope that you decide on what is best for your home, but if you choose to get a pet please remember to ADOPT, our dog is a farely rare breed and when we put it on a “wish list” with the SPCA we were contacted in a week or two.

  16. Christie March 19, 2011 at 7:56 pm #

    Get a French Bulldog instead. I’m totally biased as I have one, but everyone I meet wants to steal him :) They are smaller than the English Bulldogs & easier to maintain (only about 20 pounds). They don’t smell or drool. They almost never bark & love kids. They do however needs lots of love, as they are attention hogs. Best decision ever to get a “Frenchie” as they are called :) Best of luck in your doggie search!

  17. Jenn March 20, 2011 at 9:33 pm #

    A friend has an adorable Yorkie-poo. He doesn’t shed, has a fabulous personality, is great with her three kids, and is small enough that when he needs a bath she sticks him in the bathroom sink. Now that I feel like a traitor; we have a border collie who is the smartest dog ever but sheds enough to knit a blanket daily. We also have a cock-a dachs (cocker spaniel/dachshund mix) who is adorable but a acts more like a nervous cat. I vote Yorkie-poo…

  18. Kate March 21, 2011 at 2:58 pm #

    I had a dog growing up but am not particularly fond of all (or most) dogs. I think an English Bull Dog looks great in staged pictures but I do believe they are quite smelly ;-(. When we’re ready to get a dog (when we have a couple more kids and they are older), i think we’ll be getting a poodle. That’s what I had growing up and it was great. Very smart dogs that will train well, absolutely no shedding, and they don’t need to be walked. We had our dog for 16 years and had great memories with her! Good luck in finding a good fit for your family!

  19. Dorie March 21, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

    I’m just going to add my vote for a French Bulldog!!! They’re the smallest of the bully breeds and are known for they’re loveable personalities, especially with children. I have had my little frenchie for almost 5 years now, and would have 10 of them if I could. They’re sweet, lazy, short haired, and relatively low maintence:) although I purchased mine from a breeder, I am a big supporter of the people over at frenchbulldogrescue.org Check out a frenchie- you won’t be disappointed:)

  20. sherry March 21, 2011 at 5:31 pm #

    the best advice i could give is get a doggie if you love them. we have two. the one that is better suited for a family is buster baxter (yes named by our children after cartoon character) our bassett hound. he is the best family dog. ever. lazy to a point of silly. he is loyal and sweet and not very smart…and i say that with total love, he is just happy to simply be. he sleeps, he eats, he takes a walk maybe once a week in our culdesac which is 8 houses round, and he is tired and starts walking back to our house. he adores the sunshine. if there is a spot of sunshine in the house, he will stay and nap for hours, he loves it so much. he adores my children and all their friends. he can sleep the whole day and not be bothered by anyone. and is happy taking naps at any of our feet…or in a nice soft bed in the other room. we recommend bassett hounds to everyone we meet who wants a dog and who has children. the. best. ever. ours is 8yrs old and wonderful. our second dog is a staffy and he is a 2.5 yr old puppy and he is buff and sweet and lots more work. he is my husbands return from war gift to himself and i have cried many a tears with his playful puppy antics…i do love him too. but i must say the bassetts are wonderful for families. we have so many wonderful memories of loving this dog. good luck. :) i hope you get one. i am the same, i dont care much for other peoples dogs, but i love with my own dearly.

  21. Ashley March 22, 2011 at 8:23 pm #

    I can relate to the “idea” of wanting a dog, but not the messes or smells associated with having one. Growing up in the country we always had dogs, but they were never allowed inside. I always swore I would have an inside dog when I had a family. Enter the pug. My husband had/has an obsession with slightly obese dogs that snore so he has this sick love affair with pugs. I DO NOT share his fondness of pugs however. Whatever you do…never, EVER get a pug. The shedding just about drove me NUTS and this particular dog (we rescued her from the shelter when he was 8yrs old) pooped in the house ALL the time. We gave the pug away in time to take in a labrador mix from my FIL for a few months. This dog had the MOST HORRENDOUS farts I have EVER smelled in my life, and if you knew my husband that’s saying alot! ;) Then my husband sneaked another pug back into our lives. Same story as before.
    I love the idea of my children growing up with a beloved pet dog, but I have sworn to my husband that IF we ever get another dog it will be a poodle mix because I cannot tolerate shedding or strong animal smells. I actually had a friend who owned a standard poodle and she said the only time her dog smelled “off” was when she was sick and that wasn’t often.
    Good luck!

  22. Auntie! March 22, 2011 at 9:23 pm #

    Smelly, stinky breath, stinky food, stinky dish, hair on the couch, floor, cloths, on crawling babies, poopy, dirty, expensive, fleas, snorting, drooling and to top it off I am allergic to them. Just a few thoughts. : )

  23. Auntie! March 22, 2011 at 9:29 pm #

    They are probably all thinking ” Oh my goodness what is that smell”…

  24. Joanna May March 25, 2011 at 1:30 pm #

    I’m sad to hear you’ve been discouraged from getting a dog! We have two lab mixes (a lab/pit and a lab/golden) and they have added so much to our lives! I grew up with untrained outside dogs, and my husband never had a dog and always wanted one. We got our first puppy at 8 weeks. We crate trained, and did a class once a week with him. Now we have two, and they are WONDERFUL. We have a fenced yard, that’s key, and we take family outings every week to the park or the lake. They don’t smell at all, are very well-behaved. I think the key to getting a dog is to know what you’re getting into, research the breeds and find something that fits. Take time for proper training. Once a week isn’t a lot, but it will make a huge difference with your pup. Also, understand it’s life phases. It’s not going to be a puppy forever. Understanding that can help get through the “chewing phase.” Our dogs are wonderful, we’ve been on vacation a week and we’re missing them and sad we didn’t bring them with us :)

  25. Katie Canipe April 1, 2011 at 4:29 pm #

    English Bulldogs are great!! I’m biased though, our family has a one year old named Boomer. He is wonderful. I will say, with any purebred dog they can have health issues, we haven’t had any with our boy! He does shed, but he isn’t allowed on any furniture so it is contained to the floor and I vacummed alot anyways! :) As far as chewing goes, dogs only chew on “unapproved” things when they are left alone or when you aren’t paying attention. We never left him unsuprivised when he was a puppy, so he NEVER chewed on anything other than his toys! Crate train no matter what type of dog you get! He does snore, but hey so does my hubby, and I still keep him! ;) Boomer is great with the kids, we sell insurance and he goes to our office everyday and LOVES every customer! He does have some gas, but lets get real people, it’s not a constant leak. Dogs get gas just like people. :) As far as the wrinkles go, we don’t clean his everyday, (every week) and he doesn’t stink, He gets a bath every month of three weeks.
    He does like to sleep….ALOT! Lays flat on his belly, all we would have to do is stick a apple in his mouth and we’d be ready to serve a pig on a platter!
    Good luck, no matter what type of dog you get, animals are great at loving people no matter what!

  26. Kay April 2, 2011 at 6:49 am #

    I know you are already over the dog thing but I feel like I can add to the convo. We have had our bully George for about 3yrs. We bought him from a very reputable breeder who had been showing him until he was about 10months old. He is an AKC judge so he knows his bully well. He actually follows up with us and actually dogsits for vacations for free. George was completely house broken and trained when we got him, I called him a cheater dog because he made us look good he was and is still so well behaved. English Bulldogs are high maintenance dogs. Their laid back attitude and personalities are perfect for a lot of people with busy lifestyles as long as they aren’t planning on keeping their bully groomed. Proper nutrition (expensive natural dog food and daily yougurt) help with some of the issues of smell but some things like their mouth breathing make gas inevitable. Their faces do collect everything and get smelly if not wiped down on a daily basis and occasionally medicated. They need their bottoms wiped for every poo and their faces wiped for every drink or you will have a nasty mess. Bulldog hair is short and course, it sticks to what it falls on. He sheds, a L O T. If one of those hairs gets caught in your foot it’s like fiberglass splinters, hurts. George loves to play and lasts longer than 3minutes as someone else suggested, however the problem is they are bullheaded. He likes soccer with the kids and that almost always messes up his shoulder, eventually that will probably result in a surgery. Snoring is another issue, may not sound like a huge issue but I’ll let you know that at times although George sleeps downstairs and we sleep upstairs he wakes us up because of the noise associated with his snore. Now don’t get me wrong, I love my George and wouldn’t trade the work for a smell/noise/hair free home now, but if I had it to do over again I’d try really hard not to fall in love with a bully until later in life when I’m empty nesting. Have you thought about a Labrodoodle? They don’t shed and are hypoallergenic, I believe. Dogs are great but all dogs are a bit of maintenance, worth it but consider the investment before uprooting a canine companion and turning their world upside down. My breeder always says, “If you set them up to fail, they will.”

  27. Betty April 2, 2011 at 10:12 am #

    If you ever decide to get a dog, please adopt.

  28. cara April 4, 2011 at 9:42 am #

    I just ran across your blog and L.O.V.E. it!!
    I also wanted to add we have a wonderful English Bulldog. He is super sweet and has been a very easy dog!
    He doesn’t smell like others are mentioning. Maybe we are just lucky but he really doesn’t have any issues with smell, other than a little gas from time to time… he only drools if I am cooking and he’s in the kitchen but does snoore…don’t be discouraged if you want one, they are worth the trouble!

  29. Jo April 15, 2011 at 7:20 pm #

    Two words – BICHON FRISE. They are the best dog ever. They don’t shed hair, are absolutely fantastic with kids, are great companions, lots of fun and don’t have that doggy smell.

  30. Ashley June 15, 2011 at 8:42 am #

    I second Kay. We fell into the English Bulldogs are so cute mindset, and we got our “Lilly” 2 years ago. While I love her so much, I would not do it again if I could go back. She has chewed molding, cabinets, & much more. We just replaced our carpet to help with the smell. She is very high maintenance, sheds, smells. I have to wipe her bottom, visit vet often, wipe folds, get up early each day to let her out. She is so smart but SO stubborn. Im daily picking up piles of poop out of the yard so the kids can play. Lots of money invested directly & indirectly in this dog. on and on…

    Just don’t get a dog and enjoy your happy minimal stress home.

  31. Meg June 15, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    I recommend and have a toy poodle. Snuggles is only 8 pounds and doesn’t shed. Plus, Poodles are the second smartest breed of dogs. Love them!

  32. Danielle June 15, 2011 at 11:28 am #

    I hate to say it, but I think you’re making the right decision to hold off.

    Having a pet is wonderful, but ultimately I don’t think there is a perfect pet. One person might have one wonderful dog but the sibling to that very same dog might be VERY different…and there is that risk that you never know what you will really “get.”

    I have two large dogs, and two young children (2.5 and 4 weeks) and it is a LOT to deal with. My dogs are getting older (7-8 years) but are still a handful…and expensive! I was at the vet this week with one dog (uti) and $120 later she’s not peeing every 8 seconds-including inside of my house. I’ve also had to put my dogs on special diets {cha-ching} and before having kids worked with a trainer to make sure they were behaved {ha!) and mentally stimulated. Going out of town, I wish, because it’s also costly to kennel, and I hate to inflict them on friends…

    I’d say adopt, but my adopted dog is a complete nightmare. I’d say avoid having a puppy, {a cute nightmare?!} but then you’re left with adoption.

    If anything, dog ownership has taught me that my next dog cannot jump higher than my knees-I’ve learned I’m not good at always making sure every speck of food is put away so a large dog is not for me. In my opinion the smaller the better. Big dog=lots of food=big poop…you can see where I’m going with this.

    Maybe a pet rock–and your children can all have their own!

  33. Kristin June 15, 2011 at 12:20 pm #

    Sounds like Danielle may resent her dogs and it might be best to re-home them. Dogs are a lot of work but the reward is worth it. By all means if you’re not 100% sure, it’s a good idea to wait. It’s great you put a lot of thought into it. If you decide at some point in the future, please adopt from a shelter or rescue group. While some have bad experiences with adopted pets, buying from a breeder does not guarantee success either. Many are over bred with health issues and come from puppy mills where the parents live in cruel, squalid conditions their entire lives. Not all shelter dogs are in shelters due to behavioral issues. Dogs are relinquished for many reasons – allergies, families relocating to pet-unfriendly housing, pet parent passes away, got loose and couldn’t find their family. 3-4 Million dogs and are euthanized every year for lack of homes. Give an adopted dog a chance.

  34. Joan G July 25, 2011 at 2:02 pm #

    if you have to question yourself about getting any dog due to smell, shedding, etc. – you definelty should not get one. They are alot of work, but the most rewarding work I have ever done. I just lost a 170 lb. bull mastiff, who drooled like crazy. We always gave our guests towels when they came over. He was a big stinky guy, but they sell shampoo and spray deodorizer for that at pet stores. We got him cuz someone abused him and tied him to a fence outside. He escaped, but it cost him a hole in his neck that needed 2 surgeries to correct. Anyway, now we have a sharpei/pit mix and a white boxer (who is deaf), and I thank God every day that I have them. NEVER EVER buy a dog. Opt to adopt.

  35. Eileen November 28, 2011 at 11:33 am #

    Hi Emily!

    I didn’t read everyone’s response to this but I will tell you that I do have an English Bulldog (Blitz) and he is the easiest dog I’ve ever had and I love him to pieces! He is super affectionate, loves kids, and sleeps about 18 hours a day. He only gets crazy when we first come home from work or initiate playtime, other than that, he’s happy to just lay around and move around the living room floor finding cool spots. He loves walks but is fine with our try-for-every-other-day-usually-twice-a-week walks, and he’s perfectly content with a 15 minute stroll around the block (which knocks him out for hours). If you are considering getting a dog, I would highly recommend getting a bull dog, but be sure to get your pup from a breeder with a sparkling reputation as bull dogs can be prone to a lot of genetic disorders caused by inbreeding.

    That being said, he is still a lot of work! He sheds wayyy more than I was expecting and although it’s not like tumbleweeds rolling down the hall, it’s still a lot to keep up with regularly (I now keep a lint roller at my desk at work, in my car, and in the drawer by our front door). He needs a bath every other week to avoid that “wet dog smell” and we have to wipe his wrinkles and his face EVERY SINGLE DAY to avoid infections. Scooping poop is not something I am fond of and, well, its not pleasant, and he probably fills a grocery bag a day… and I don’t have little ones running around our yard yet so for you its even more important to get it off the grass!

    Best of luck!

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