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Dog Transfer

Very soon we will be adopting my mom’s dog Newton, who, while not young, is a country dog who has lived his entire life as sidekick to Boone. His transition to city living will probably be difficult, but nothing will be so difficult we think as the initial adoption. So I ask you, Internet, to put yourself in a dog’s place and decide which of the following options seems least traumatic:

  1. Abandonment by mom in the city.1
  2. Transfer of parenthood halfway between country and city.1
  3. Dognapping from the country by two acquaintances.

1 Includes a brief return visit to the country in August.



You might be making it sound extra-traumatic by referring to our sleepy little college town as the “city.”

Maybe. I’m using it metaphorically. I mean, we do have leash laws, for example, while people in Newton Co., AR would laugh at such draconian ordinances.

i have little recent experience with dogs, but if it were a child, i would go with option #1. and you might try to get your mom to get it used to a leash. when i had to let a near-stranger (to her) watch viv, the stranger simply continued pushing the stroller (i’d been doing it) after i had gone to my conference session. it took viv 45 minutes to notice it wasn’t me back there. maybe you can attempt a similar trick with the leash in i.c.?

one or three…

how much a stranger to you is newton?… it might be much less traumatic than you think.

indeed, should you pamper newton between drop off and august visit, newton might not want to stay with mom. dogs are opportunists and they know pampering when they are pampered.

does newton ride in cars easily? if not, then option one is best.

Indeed to #4: while cats are typically considered the self-interested pet, dogs are actually not much different. Like most (all?) non-human animals, they live in a sort of “eternal now.” If that eternal now is a good one, the dog will probably be happy.

3: Mom says that he’s already good on a leash, but we’ll see about that soon.

4: I don’t think we visit AR enough for us to be familiar to him, though we’ve seen him a couple of times a year lately. He’s a friendly dog.

5: He will lose the chance of snakebite when he moves here, but the cold might be an unfair trade…

There will be a lot of adjusting among the members of this house, particularly the feline ones.

Thanks for the opinions, all. I can’t help but feel guilty about this plan in general, since I don’t think it’s necessarily in his best interest overall. But if G’s mom is set on sending him away somewhere, hopefully we’ll be a decent option for him. I do plan to spoil him silly.

Circumstances dictate option 3. On the plus side, everything’s a (tepid) go on the landlord side!