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Old 06-22-2008, 11:12 AM
 
3 posts, read 26,427 times
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We have two chocolate labs that are outside together in a large fenced yard from 7am until 6:30-7pm and they come in for the night. Would it be cruel if we changed them to be always outside. We, of course, would spend time with them outside everyday playing, but I wanted to see what everyone thinks. They are getting into everything at night while we sleep, the garbage, the diaper pail, food, jumping up on tables. I am going nuts. They originally were completely outside dogs when they were younger - 1st year (they are 3 now). They have a large shed with a insulated floor in it for winter, areas of shade, sun and lots of toys outside. I feel bad for even asking this question, but I am having a hard time keeping up with the mess. Plus I do daycare, so every morning for the last 7 months I have to wake up an hour or more earlier than I already do to clean, sweep daily, mop, vacuum and I feel overwhelmed. I don't want to get rid of them since I do love them. We would allow them inside on the weekends, but Monday-Friday I really would rather have them outside.

Last edited by 2labs; 06-22-2008 at 11:13 AM.. Reason: Whoops
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:42 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,950,543 times
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Quote:
They are getting into everything at night while we sleep, the garbage, the diaper pail, food, jumping up on tables.
When are they exercised? When you are outside in your yard?
Younger Labs can be very oral and get into stuff, but a tired dog is a good dog, and Labs need plenty of exercise. At 3 years old, they still need more than just a five minute game of Fetch. They need to go on a real walk, stretch their legs, get out into the world, smell some new smells. They each would probably like to chase the tennis ball at least ten times each.

As for keeping them outside all the time, this is difficult for me to wrap my mind around, dogs are pack animals and like to be with their people.
But I know some people do it--I see a lot of it now that I live in the south.

At least your dogs have each other.
I'm sure they have fun getting into stuff together, that's probably the highlight of their lives.
However, if you don't want these dogs to be in the house with you all day, and now all night, wouldn't your dogs be happier with someone who wants their company for more than a few minutes every day?
It sounds like you have a lot of responsibility with the daycare; I just don't see why you want the dogs around if you can't spend much time with them.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Va Beach
3,508 posts, read 12,170,950 times
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Virginia has a law that during summer hours, they're only supposed to be outside for 3 hours at a time. Check with your local laws so that you will not be charged with anything concerning your pets. You could also keep them in the garage/kitchen/laundry area if you have one.
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Old 06-22-2008, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Marion, IN
8,191 posts, read 28,143,932 times
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I agree that all dogs, particularly young labs, need A LOT of exercise. Just because they are in the yard does not mean they are getting exercise. Do these dogs go for 2 30 minute walks every day? They should.

Generally I am disinclined to encourage people to rehome their dogs, but it sounds to me like your dogs are bored & lonesome and would benefit from living with a family that has the time/inclination to give them what they need rather than being relegated to being yard dogs for the rest of their lives so as not to inconvenience their owner.
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Texas
8,062 posts, read 16,230,111 times
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I hate to see dogs kept outside all of the time. I guess I wonder what the point of that is? If you want and have pets, then why would you remove them from your presence? It sounds like they are craving attention and activity and since you won't give it to them, they're creating their own fun (and maybe seeking some negative attention).

It's not difficult to keep dogs from getting into things overnight. Crate them. Or, as I do, let them sleep in your bedroom. Dogs want to be with their people. If you don't want to spend a lot of time with them, then find them a good home with people who do. Hate to sound harsh but it doesn't sound like the dogs fit into your life very well. There's nothing wrong with admitting that and doing what's best for everyone!
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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I know you love these dogs and are trying to find a way to keep them, but perhaps it is time to consider their needs. As much as you want to, you don't really have time for them. I'm sure that after a full day of day-care, you are exhausted! You could sit outside and throw a tennis ball for them to chase for 30 min, or until they get tired, but ou probably have to start dinner.

If you do decide to give them up, try googling the lab rescue for your area. Rescue groups NEVER kill an animal they take (unless it gets sick beyond hope). There are also no-kill shelters, google them for yoiur area. But local "pounds" usually kill an animal that isn't adopted after a certain period of time.

I would suggest you don't try on your own to find a new home, unless you have a friend that want them. It is time-consuming and I would always worry about their fate. People take "free" dogs and sell them to companies that do testing on them - very cruel for a house pet. The rescues and no-ki8ll shelters do an investigation, call references, etc., before they release an animal. And it's expensive, which rules out the testing companies. Good luck!
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:21 PM
 
Location: Southeast Idaho
4,663 posts, read 15,800,456 times
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IMO there is no such thing as an outside dog.

They are quite young and like any young need to expend their energy in a healthy manner; walks, fetch, training (major thing!), dock jumping is always a wear 'em fun sport in summer.

Why not crate your dogs during the night? It's not meant to be used as a form of punishment, only for their den.

Sounds like you don't want to give them up. However by keeping them it's only fair to incorporate them into the family pack.
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:21 PM
Status: "Selling homes...." (set 28 days ago)
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
3,412 posts, read 9,223,476 times
Reputation: 1993
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2labs View Post
We have two chocolate labs that are outside together in a large fenced yard from 7am until 6:30-7pm and they come in for the night. Would it be cruel if we changed them to be always outside. We, of course, would spend time with them outside everyday playing, but I wanted to see what everyone thinks. They are getting into everything at night while we sleep, the garbage, the diaper pail, food, jumping up on tables. I am going nuts. They originally were completely outside dogs when they were younger - 1st year (they are 3 now). They have a large shed with a insulated floor in it for winter, areas of shade, sun and lots of toys outside. I feel bad for even asking this question, but I am having a hard time keeping up with the mess. Plus I do daycare, so every morning for the last 7 months I have to wake up an hour or more earlier than I already do to clean, sweep daily, mop, vacuum and I feel overwhelmed. I don't want to get rid of them since I do love them. We would allow them inside on the weekends, but Monday-Friday I really would rather have them outside.
It is not cruel to keep dog outside, given you provide food, water and shelter, outside temperatures must be considered at all times. With that said, it is OK to do that as long as..... you still give them your attention, you walk them, you train them and you play with them.
You however, can not abandon your dogs, you can't have them be without supervision. Dog that left outside are and will become "trouble dogs", meaning, they will bark, they will dig, they will be unruly once brought to the house. Another thing, they are subjected to possible cruelty/harassment from the outside (anyone can give them poison, children throwing stuff at the dogs, possible theft, etc)
You said they were outside dogs. What did you expect when you brought them in the house? Of course they will be getting into everything. They're not used to be inside, they don't know how to behave inside properly. You also said you don't want to get rid of them, which i completely understand, you do love your dogs. But loving you dogs involves so much more then you can possibly give them at this moment. You have children you have to take care of, and be responsible for.

All in all, i don't see you having a time to dedicate to your dogs, and i don't see you spending time with them and i don't see you training them either. That would have been done while they were young, unfortunately, you got dogs because you wanted them, wanting dogs isn't enough, they become your responsibility for the rest of their lives.

Is there a possibility to find them a new home? You will be miserable and your dogs wont be happy and may become a liability otherwise. If you love them, do what would be best for them, don't be selfish.

You can here for advice and it's a great thing, however, don't be surprised if advice is not what you want to hear.
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:28 PM
 
3 posts, read 26,427 times
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Default Thanks for everyone's comments

After hearing everyone, you made me realize how selfish I was being. After being very overwhelmed these past few months, you found me writing at my breaking point. I just sat down with my husband and discussed some options that could make my life easier while still having the dogs in the house. He is completely against them being outside, but he doesn't clean either. So, as of tomorrow I am interviewing for a cleaning lady to clean the upstairs of our house once a week. That way I don't have to do all the dusting, I just have to sweep every morning! Our dogs do get walked, 1 time a day in the evenings when my huband and I take our walk for 30-45 minutes. My husband also plays catch with them almost every night, they have a pool to swim in and an acre to run that is fenced, so don't think they are not treated well. They are hunting dogs and go to our cabin too. They get a lot of attention and excerise. That being said, I do appreciate everyone's comments. My husband expecially thanks everyone since he is saying..."See I told you" to me. Our labs will remain indoors for the evening with us. I hope everyone has a wonderful rest of their weekend!
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Old 06-22-2008, 12:34 PM
Status: "Selling homes...." (set 28 days ago)
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
3,412 posts, read 9,223,476 times
Reputation: 1993
Well then, i wish you all the best, and also, i would suggest to start training your dogs. There are a lot of books on "how to" , there are TV programs with trainers on Animal Planet, there are so many things you and your husband can do to improve dogs behavior. About 15 min. a day, all it takes. Get baby gates and separate the area where dogs are not allowed. I have a studio at home and my dogs are NOT allowed to go there, period!!! I have baby gates up and it's keeping them away.

So, i'm glad you trying to find a solution, i wish both of you and your husband and both dogs best of luck. I hope you will tell us later how well they're behaving!
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