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Old 09-07-2013, 07:10 PM   #11
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You pretty much described a dog and then said no dogs, lol. I think a ferret is a good alternative, they can be bitey but I guess so can anything.

Ime, even the friendliest cats do not tolerate the kind of play toddlers want to give and a cat bite can be a lot worse than a dog bite. My cat is a social butterfly but the thing is that its always on HIS terms. He wants cuddles when he does and just forget it if you want love during his afternoon nap (from 10am to 4pm btw lol).

There is a lot of variety in the different breeds of dogs, are you suuuurre none of them will do?
I'm thinking this too...

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Old 09-07-2013, 07:18 PM   #12
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

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A friend of mine growing up had a ferret and all I remember is that thing stinking to high heaven! Are they normally that stinky? Is there anything you can do to make them less stinky?

Another pet we've considered is a bearded dragon. I know not really cuddly, but I've read that they have cute personalities and are good pets for little kids. Any advice on those?
Ferets are a little musty, themselves, but their pee is super stinky. If you cage them all day and don't change thier bedding they can be intolerable. The only way I've seen them not stink, my friends had some of that plastic carpet protector padding (flat plastic on top, little pokey things to stick in the carpet on bottom) and they put that in every corner of the house. (Ferrets always go in corners to excrete). The ferrets went on that plastic, super easy to clean and the stink was very minimal. Best ferret idea ever.

My Ferret's name was slinky, by the way

My son's friend has a bearded dragon and it's great! He takes it to the park and it clings to his shoulder while he skateboards. He can pass it around and it's friendly enough with the kids. They need to be fed properly though, not just lettuce so make sure you learn proper care. And expect it to get big. You buy them fairly small but they live for a long time when properly cared for. When fully grown they get big enough to need a 30-50 gallon tank.
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Old 09-07-2013, 07:27 PM   #13
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

Most dogs that live with kids are super protective of the kiddos. My roomates dogs growl when the kids are tickled or chased (they're too lazy to do anything but growl, lol). They're german sheperd mixes. They're grumpy old men dogs. My baby chases them around and one gets up and waddles to the other room when she comes near, the other tolerates her hair pulling for quite a while before joining the other dog far away.
The cat on the otherhand, he taunts her and when she finally catches him and grabs his fur, he bites or scratches. B@st@rd cat. I'm a cat over dog person btw, but I'm growing more fond of dogs recently.

I wouldn't get a super tiny dog or a super huge one but right in the middle.
Red Heelers are very smart, playful and energetic. My parents had one when my boys were small and they always got along. The red heelers are small enough you can pick them up if needed and big enough that a kid couldn't pick them up and squeeze them too hard.
Mixed breeds/mutts are usually great. The best qualities of thier parents usually stick around while the health problems some purebreeds face fade out. Rescues usually know which dogs are kid friendly and which aren't. I would check there first and see if anything tickles your heartstrings
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Old 09-07-2013, 07:40 PM   #14
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

I vote an older male fat cat. we've had kittens with all ages for the kids and no issues. kitties are not good with toddlers, they scratch and such but our older cats you could practically lay on them and they would care less or get up and move if they didnt like something.
we had to get rid of ours cause my youngest is very allergic otherwise we'd still have em and a dog.
otherwise a guinea pig is fun. they are small and you can pet them, they squeal and makes your kid giggle.
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Old 09-07-2013, 10:34 PM   #15
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

Thanks ladies! You all have offered a lot of great advice and a lot to think about! You all are awesome!!
I've been researching adopting an older (as in 2-3 years) dog a lot today. There's a German Shepherd rescue nearby and we might go take a look. (I've always thought GSD were beautiful!) I believe there's also a lab rescue that I wouldn't mind checking out. DH is not keen on small dogs, but may go for a medium size one. I love the idea of the kids having that "protector" as their buddy and I think I would really enjoy the company/security since DH is gone a lot. I just need to get over the dog breath, slobber and cleaning poop out of the yard thing... lol I also think I would need to know a lot about the dog before adopting to prevent any unexpected accidents.

ETA: Just wanted to throw in there, that I know, my reasons for not wanting a dog are really stupid!! I just want to be sure that's what we really want. I don't want there to be any reservations at all. If we get a pet it would become a family member and live with us for the rest of it's life. I just wouldn't want there to be any resentment or negative feelings towards the dog... (even if they are dumb)

2nd ETA: That made it sound like I was calling dogs dumb! I meant my reasons/negative feelings are dumb!!!! Geez, I can't put thoughts together tonight....

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Old 09-08-2013, 05:50 AM   #16
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

We haven't had good luck with dogs. We've had to rehome 2 for biting/nipping the toddlers. One was a smaller dog so that is more expected, but one was a "kid-friendly" beagle. My kids weren't rough with them. I grew up with dogs and we never had that issue. I feel like I am a pretty experienced dog person but I have sworn off dogs and toddlers in the same house. Even nice big dogs need lots of training to not knock kids over or jump up. And there is house training and making sure they don't chew the kids toys....I know people who love them but for me its just not enough benefit for all the work I put into it.

I vote bunny. They don't really bite, they are very soft and cute, and they make no noise. You can liter box train them so they can be inside or set up a little play yard outside. Lops are the most friendly IME. You can lay a Lop on its back on your lap and it will totally just lay there like a baby. Its funny! The only thing you have to watch is nails. They can scratch if they try to jump out of your arms, so I wouldn't have your kids hold the bunny in arms until the are older. Find a good rabbitry and let them know you are looking for the best temperament rather than a show bunny. That's what we did and we got a real sweetheart.
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Old 09-08-2013, 06:25 AM   #17
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

I'm late to the game but I wouldn't rule out a cat. I've found my kids are WAY less interested in actually playing with our pets then you'd think. And the cats are great because they don't demand a ton of attention. Even our kitten is happy to play like a nut by himself for a while then pass out in the middle of the kids toys and sleep for hours. We got him at eight weeks and he's very tolerant of and completely unphased by the kids. They aren't rough with him at all but he's great at just walking off and finding him a spot where they can reach him when he's done with them.
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Old 09-08-2013, 04:59 PM   #18
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

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Originally Posted by mrs_blazen View Post
Thanks ladies! You all have offered a lot of great advice and a lot to think about! You all are awesome!!
I've been researching adopting an older (as in 2-3 years) dog a lot today. There's a German Shepherd rescue nearby and we might go take a look. (I've always thought GSD were beautiful!) I believe there's also a lab rescue that I wouldn't mind checking out. DH is not keen on small dogs, but may go for a medium size one. I love the idea of the kids having that "protector" as their buddy and I think I would really enjoy the company/security since DH is gone a lot. I just need to get over the dog breath, slobber and cleaning poop out of the yard thing... lol I also think I would need to know a lot about the dog before adopting to prevent any unexpected accidents.

ETA: Just wanted to throw in there, that I know, my reasons for not wanting a dog are really stupid!! I just want to be sure that's what we really want. I don't want there to be any reservations at all. If we get a pet it would become a family member and live with us for the rest of it's life. I just wouldn't want there to be any resentment or negative feelings towards the dog... (even if they are dumb)

2nd ETA: That made it sound like I was calling dogs dumb! I meant my reasons/negative feelings are dumb!!!! Geez, I can't put thoughts together tonight....
Your reasons for not wanting a dog are completely valid. I won't live with cats because I can't tolerate a litter box or cats sitting on furniture. It sounds stupid/crazy when I type it out but I am borderline OCD (it is actually an aspect of the mania portion of my bipolar) and I just can't handle it. Dogs don't bother me, I view them as less messy and though I grew up with cats and always adored them something about them triggers me. If there are things about dogs that bother you that needs to be considered. You shouldn't have to live with a pet that is going to irritate you because it is a major cause of rehoming. It is something to seriously think about when you think about adding any pet to your life though. All animals need cared for and cleaned up after. If you don't want a dog pooping in your yard will cat poop in a litter box bother you? Small animals have cages that need cleaned and typically smell (even with the cage cleaned weekly there is a distinct odor in my boys' bedroom from the rat cage). I'm not trying to be snarky at all, please don't read it that way, just wondering if you have thought of it since you mentioned growing up in a pet free home. Though I completely understand if it is just dogs that bug you, some people are that way.
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Old 09-08-2013, 06:06 PM   #19
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I'm actually gonna say ferrets are not good with small children. I've had 4 and loved them. I want another one day but not with small children. You need to clean their cage daily to keep stink down, they can not be kept outside as they are temperature sensitive, they can get nippy - the males are more lovey than females, they can easily be hurt by little ones, they WILL tear into your couch and other furniture if you don't properly seal it up which is dangerous for them, the steal things (they really do, trust me) and they need time outside the cage daily. They are fabulous pets for older kids. They have some good sides. It's almost like trying to describe why you should have children, lol.

How about a hamster, rat, or guinea pig?
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Old 09-08-2013, 06:10 PM   #20
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Re: Help me decide on a pet!

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I'm actually gonna say ferrets are not good with small children. I've had 4 and loved them. I want another one day but not with small children. You need to clean their cage daily to keep stink down, they can not be kept outside as they are temperature sensitive, they can get nippy - the males are more lovey than females, they can easily be hurt by little ones, they WILL tear into your couch and other furniture if you don't properly seal it up which is dangerous for them, the steal things (they really do, trust me) and they need time outside the cage daily. They are fabulous pets for older kids. They have some good sides. It's almost like trying to describe why you should have children, lol.

How about a hamster, rat, or guinea pig?
I totally forgot about the theft thing. My friend's ferret used to hide things under the couch and her bed. Anything that went missing we just assumed he had. Rats are thieves as well. I had a male rat that used to take my earrings and necklaces. The girls will take almost anything small enough for them to carry.
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