How Long Did You Wait Before Adding A Dog To Your Family?

Were you uber sensible or utterly bonkers in getting your best furry friend(s)?  Did you wait methodically or get your dog the instant you got married, had a baby, moved to a house with a garden?  Looking back, would you do it the same way or differently?

Barney by ipaintdogs

I wanted a dog in my early twenties, I was soooo keen to have my own dog.  In my early twenties and thirties I looked on enviously at those free spirits, stronger than I, who had taken the leap and gotten their own dogs   I, however, waiting a  l o n g   l o n g  time before I got my own.  Married with two beautiful children just past the under-5 category, we were (finally) good to go.

We almost got there before, nearly.  I fell in love with a Basset Hound called Duke at our local rescue centre.  We had play dates, the children loved him, I loved him but an ear infection came between us and he went to another home which was more suited to give him all the attention (and money) he needed.  BIG disappointment as I happen to have a thing for Basset Hounds, they are just SO drawable but that's another matter, a dog is not just for drawing!

Another year went by and a move from one side of the country to another.  Just before our first Christmas here in Suffolk, I threw my toys out of my pram and held a full-on weeping tantrum about how it was never going to happen for me (ahem, us!)   I found some puppies semi-locally to us and on the return leg of a weekend away, I insisted my husband and I stop off to visit them.  

We left that 'visit' with a puppy - SUCH a huge gamble and everything we were not supposed to do.  Visits should have been arranged, etc etc but it happened as it happened and we lucked out by taking such a beautifully natured dog home with us.  I would like to add though that we did meet both is parents - albeit for half an hour.

When looking for our family dog, I was a bit floored by all the do's and don'ts I read.  It was such a rollercoaster of feelings.  I remember it being hard and feeling lost at ever finding the fifth member of our family.

Today Barney is with me almost everyday.  He comes to the studio with me, we run together (a very new thing for me - Couch to 5K) and he is my buddy, a devoted best friend.

So, how did you do it?  I'd love to know.