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Old 07-09-2008, 22:55   #1
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dog got a new home

I just wanted to throw this out there for anyone who might be looking for some support towards finding your dog a new home.

I had a Schipperke; arguably the best boat dog you can have. She was born on a boat, and at 5 years old spent more time afloat than on land. She could use astroturf as a bathroom.

And a year after moving onto our second boat, we got her a new home on land. Here are our reasons:
  • My dog has a better life now. Her new owner is a single guy with a yard who takes her to the beach every day. She sleeps in bed with him, and spoils her. His whole family loves her. She plays more with him, and has much more room to run around and enjoy herself.
  • We plan on having kids on the boat, and dogs aren't the cleanest things in the world. The dog and the kids would be occupying the same floor, and that's kind of gross.
  • Her hair clogged filters, and generally made a mess. Anything that eats, poops, pees, and barfs that lives in your home will make it dirtier, eventually.
  • We want to head to Australia and New Zealand.
  • I started seeing her living on the boat as me being selfish and putting more value on my happiness than hers. No matter how you slice it, dogs like to have room and play. Boats are about as bad as it gets. She seemed happy, but I knew she would be much happier.
So there you go. I'm not trying to say that people with pets onboard are in anyway bad. I just want to offer some support for those thinking about hitting the eject button.

It's been a few months now that Calypso is gone, and I still get pictures emailed in from her new owner. She's incredibly happy in the pictures, and I know that as someone that loves her, I made the best decision for my puppy that I could.
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Old 08-09-2008, 03:39   #2
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Hi Rebel Heart,
thanks for your post.
We are very upset tonight. We are giving our 7 year old shepherd away to a new home tomorrow. For most of the reasons you give below. We know that it is the right thing to do but it does not make it any easier.
We have had him since he was a puppy.
The home he is going to is going to be very good and I know he will be loved and well looked after.
It was good to read your post as it is hard going through this tonight.
We have sold our business and plan starting permanent cruising from 1 December.
cheers
Seafox
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Old 08-09-2008, 08:01   #3
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It was a tough decision for me, and I'm sure the same for you. I really felt like I was abandoning her, and I still have the last picture I took with her on my laptop background.

Within a couple of days it became obvious that it was the right decision, and the (in my mind) selfish alternative of keeping her onboard got clearer as well.

If you can, try to ask the new owner to send you some pictures. Our dog trainer person told us that we shouldn't visit her after we give her up, since that can really mess with her head. We also got a good tip that we should let the new owner walk away with Calypso, rather than walk away from her, if that makes sense.

All in all it went really well, but expect those first few days to seem a little quiet. Good luck man.
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Old 09-09-2008, 12:26   #4
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For many, pets become family. Even when we know it is best for the pet such as rebel heart. It's just not easy.

As a child I was back, and forth across the country betwen families. Both houses having pets. Returning to a house after being gone a year, or two. I was always surprised about the emotional response from the pets.

I am just curious what the authority had to say about seeing the pet sometime in the future? By the way great name, Calypso! Did you watch Cousteau as a kid?
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Old 09-09-2008, 14:05   #5
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I am fighting my wife's wishes for a dog, for numerous reasons. This will be a new argument for me. Along with the additional vet bills and responsibility. We have 4 senior cats now, one of them I have to give under skin fluids to 3 times a week. Cats are much easier to take care of and even leave for a couple of days, put out an extra litter box, food and go. I have said I may consider a dog a later time but really on the boat I think it is best not to have one. I know many mornings I have seen the dog dingy dance, owners getting the dog aboard and taking him to some available shoreline for relief. I really don't want to have to carry a dog ashore for a walk and that is if you can fine a place to walk them.
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Old 10-09-2008, 01:31   #6
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Hi Rebel Heart,
well 24 hours have passed and we have done the deed.
We bathed Max for the last time and brushed him for hours so that he looked his best. We drove him 500kms to the new owners.
I showed them how to heal and control him and gave them a booklet I had made with his habits, history, medical etc.
While they were playing with him we just turned, walked to our car and drove away.
They texted (sms?) us last night to say that he was asleep on the floor in their lounge. Max was always an outside dog with us so he would be loving that. We also got a text today to say he had been in the car to work with the new owner and was getting on well.

It certainly is nice to hear this as we have felt like **** all day. We dont have kids and that dog was part of our family. It is hard but I think it is going to get easier as time passes. It is like one of the family has died. We keep gettin hollow feelings in our chests!

Can't wait till Dec 1 when we get away on the boat for our long term cruising.
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Old 10-09-2008, 05:40   #7
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We have a Standard Schnauzer named Nikki. I have concerns about him on board our little 28' cutter but we're not going to be doing a lot of running around, either. Mostly hanging out at the docks kiciking back. I know he wants to go no matter what and would probably pull his own watch if he could. He's a terrific watch-dog and has more brains than a lot of people I know. We plan on leaving him at some high-end kennel recommended by the local vet when we need to travel home for parental care or for day trips away from the boat.

I've always wondered how much a dog really misses the previous owner once they are in a new home. I get the impression that they live in the moment so much that they probably are asking..."My old owner? What old owner. I never had a an old owner. Give me a bone. Now!"
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Old 18-09-2008, 13:52   #8
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Wow...it all seems very sad. I do think dogs live in the moment, but they definitely remember people when they return to their lives also. My dog's favorite thing is being where I am. Outside working, in the car, sleeping, sitting, whatever, wherever. I dont really think "the dog is better off now with more room" is more than a justification. Yet, I feel your loss. No judgement intended.
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Old 19-09-2008, 14:18   #9
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new owners emailed me today. Dog is going to work with them every day and with them all the time. They say he is very happy.
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