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RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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In Response to RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats. by megandana

Wow; what a small world! I think a lot of Vicki and I've been going to her for advice since I started my pet sitting business, six years ago.  I am sure she will steer you in the right direction, but my intuition tells me that once you decide the basics, (big or little breed, long hair or short hair, old or young) once you go to a shelter the right dog will become crystal clear.  Please keep us posted and say hi to Vicki for me.

Denise

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RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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In Response to RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats. by deniselohr

Hi, Denise.  GUESS WHAT:  Vicki is already my petsitter!  I don't know why I didn't think of asking her--she just sat for me a few weeks ago when I went to Oaxaca.  I do watch a lot of the shows, and I love Cesar Milan, though it seems he has an instinctive and unspoken connection with dogs.  My connection with cats is similar, though as far as actually getting them to DO anything....thanks for the reply.

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RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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In Response to I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats. by megandana  

There are many dogs waiting to be adopted at shelters. In my experience, a few trips to the shelter and your perfect match will "pick you".  Walk past all the crates and see which dog you feel a connection with.  Once you pick one, there are fantastic trainers in Seattle.  I highly recommend Vicki Hold of Animals Reign.  Check out her website http://animalsreign.com/.  I am sure if she doesn't train herself she can point you to the right trainer.  You can tell her I referred you. Best of luck - dogs make great companions.  I have a cat too but dogs are much less aloof and much more - cuddly!  It does require a commitment to get outside and walk though, as every dog needs to be walked twice a day.  Even a big yard is not a substitute for a walk.  Check out a few episodes of The Dog Whisperer to see what problems people have who do not walk their dogs and who do not act like "pack leaders".  Let us know what happens!

Denise Lohr, Owner

PetSitPgh, LLC

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RE: I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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In Response to I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats. by megandana

I say go for it megandana.  Try to match your personality to the type of dog you want.  Any dog can be a good watchdog, even a tiny chihuahua, their deterient is more about the noise and alarm they rase than their actual size so decide what you really want.  Do you want a dog that will force you to get out and exercise? Get a larger, active type dog. Do you want something that will happily sit and cuddle with you all day, go for a small more sedate dog. If you have other animals look for one that has been raised with cats, etc. You can train one to leave them alone but it takes a lot of work so you are better off with your first dog being one who has already proved to be reliable around other pets. If you keep the same rules you would apply to your kids in mind, don't let them get away with being a brat, a sharp AAKKKK !! when they start toward the garbage can or start to jump up on someone is all it usually takes, most dogs will train you quite well and happily. Start with one past puppyhood that has been given up due to family circumstances rather than a stray or abused dog. It is tempting to think you can give it so much affection that it needs but they can have a lot of issues that are difficult for a new owner to deal with. Whereas many that have been part of a family are already housetrained and know some basic commands.  Talk to the people at the shelter that work with them on a daily basis, they usually know a lot about their personalities or look in the paper for dogs that are being given up due to a move or ilness or death in the family.  There are some really sweet dogs out there that just need someone to love.  They are like potato chips once you try then it is hard to stop at 1.  My dogs listen to me without interupting, have never once suggested I dye my gray hair or asked me my age and think I am the best thing since sliced bread even when I am in a foul mood, which is more than I can say for most people I know.

I think classes for the novice are a great idea but if you choose carefully based on how the dog acts and your basic wants and needs rather than a particular breed or how it looks, you will soon be well trained without any classes.

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I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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I work for the cat section of a well known Seattle animal rescue group (PAWS) and I do both cat transfer back and forth from the actual shelter to the small Seattle storefront  where I volunteer and we adopt out cats and kittens (we'll soon move to better quarters).  I've had cats all my life, literally, my mother raised purebred Manx when I was a child.  I bond effortlessly with almost all cats, even the most difficult ones.

But now, as a 60 yo widow living alone, I would like a dog for companionship.   However, I have very little idea how to handle a dog, even though I've done a lot of researchon various breeds through reading and watching TV. I know that you have to be the "pack leader," and I'm not a dominant type.  My cats and I have always coexisted nicely, sometimes exquisitely.

My question is this.  I know there are many dog training classes for people who already HAVE dogs, but what I really need is a class for ME, with perhaps a somewhat experienced dog.  Then the trainer would be training ME how to interact with the dog.  I'm going to suggest this to PAWS here in Seattle.

I'd like to know what you experienced dog people think of this.  Believe me, a lot of people would take advantage of it.  Please let me know what you think.  ( A clarification, when I say "breed," I don't necessarily want a purebred dog.  It's just that I grew up with purebred, champion Manx cats. I do know that "mutts" often have better personalities than purpose bred purebred dogs.

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I've never owned a dog, but would like to. I'm 60 and was raised by cats.

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I work for the cat section of a well known Seattle animal rescue group (PAWS) and I do both cat transfer back and forth from the actual shelter to the small Seattle storefront  where I volunteer and we adopt out cats and kittens (we'll soon move to better quarters).  I've had cats all my life, literally, my mother raised purebred Manx when I was a child.  I bond effortlessly with almost all cats, even the most difficult ones.

But now, as a 60 yo widow living alone, I would like a dog for companionship.   However, I have very little idea how to handle a dog, even though I've done a lot of researchon various breeds through reading and watching TV. I know that you have to be the "pack leader," and I'm not a dominant type.  My cats and I have always coexisted nicely, sometimes exquisitely.

My question is this.  I know there are many dog training classes for people who already HAVE dogs, but what I really need is a class for ME, with perhaps a somewhat experienced dog.  Then the trainer would be training ME how to interact with the dog.  I'm going to suggest this to PAWS here in Seattle.

I'd like to know what you experienced dog people think of this.  Believe me, a lot of people would take advantage of it.  Please let me know what you think.  ( A clarification, when I say "breed," I don't necessarily want a purebred dog.  It's just that I grew up with purebred, champion Manx cats. I do know that "mutts" often have better personalities than purpose bred purebred dogs.

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