I’ve spent so much time researching dog breeds that would not only be ideal for the service dog role but for me as well. We need to be compatible. I really wanted a Boston Terrier but they’re too small. I then moved to the idea of an Australian Shepherd but for me I imagine they’re a little too smart. Smarts doesn’t always translate as easy to train so I’ve decided…*drum roll*…A Pit Bull Terrier. Call it what you will-American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, American Bully, or Staffordshire Bull Terrier. They’re all kind of lumped together anyway. I’m most likely getting a pit mix since I’ve decided I’m going to be adopting from a shelter.
It has been 9 months since the idea of a service dog first entered my mind. This has given me a lot of time to debate and get loads of information. I’ve done so much research on how people choose a service dog prospect, puppy or adult. I’ve read about different training techniques and I’ve heard all sorts of opinions on everything from breed, service dog harnesses, leashes, training methods, what counts as a disability, to what kind of food should be fed.
I’ve worked on seeing how the costs would be distributed and how cheap I could go. I still have a bit of calculating to do to shave off some of the unnecessary costs but currently I’m at $632. That’s for adopting an adult dog from the shelter at $115. However I’ve noticed the majority of shelters I’ve been looking into charge around $230 for their adult adoptions, this is a good deal still though because it includes their spay/neuter, micro-chipping and vaccines up to date (yes I have my opinions on vaccines and they aren’t all good in my opinion but I don’t get a say, maybe it’s for the best).
I’ve re calculated all the costs and narrowed my items to the bare necessity. So now I’m down to $562.54. That is if I count on the dog being $230. I’ve included initial prices of things like poop bags, lint rollers, tooth brush, basic and cheapest toys that aren’t harmful to health (trust me when I say I’ve spent the past 9 months researching everything to death) licence, vet visit, service dog vest, leash, all that stuff. The only thing I haven’t included is a regular collar or harness because I want to look at those in person and dog shoes. That might seem a bit strange but I definitely want to get some shoes because where I live it get’s snowy and they put a lot of salt down in parking lots and side walks. I might even have to get a basic set of shoes that aren’t meant for the cold but just protection from gravel and such because there are some trails at this park and they get a bit dodgy. Those can get pretty expensive just for a single pair of two shoes can be up to $50 not even the full set of 4, and that’d decent enough to stay on the foot and provide protection as well as handle wear and tear. Other pairs under that seem to be poor quality.
I wish I could go through ruffwear for nice jackets/harnesses/boots/leashes and so on. They are so overly priced though. It’s a shame. But that’s okay, I’m just working on the essentials right now.
Unfortunately there is a lot to consider. There is no shortage of dogs but my mom and I have two small dogs and three cats. So a dog that’s good with those would be really ideal. A problem I’m encountering though is that everyone wants to do meet and greets before they agree you are a suitable person to have the dog go home with you, which I understand but It isn’t necessary. This is my to be service dog and we will be like glue. These animals will be separated the best we can until we can get them to tolerate sharing space. I would say “Sure a meet and greet would be lovely!” except it wouldn’t. One is terrified of dogs, the other is old and irritated by dogs. Not to mention, they want us to bring our dogs to the place to meet the dog in the shelter. The old one gets too excited and stimulated by new surroundings she would probably charge the dog. And the other one is just absolutely terrified of everything its near impossible to make this work. I know I could conduct a better introduction that wouldn’t cause such chaos but how on earth will I even get to that point.
I wondered if I should be honest and tell them what I plan to do but I know how some people can be. Should I lie then? “No I don’t have any other pets…I spend a lot of time at my friends house though and she has a small dog and a cat.” Maybe we’ll just bring my mom’s dog Dolly. She’s the little old one that thinks she’s a big dog. Can be on decent with dogs, some she’s aggressive if the get too close to her. Seems like she’s an unpleasant dog but for the most part she’s very low key and sweet. When we go on walks she gets so excited and whines occasionally in the car. She lights up and has a bouncy walk when we get out there to the park. So adorable. She the most well behaved, we might say that we have just her. Maybe a cat at home too and they won’t request an in home visit.
I’m glad that so many shelters have the resources to actually do that to make sure they get good homes. Sadly it’s not always enough and so many dogs still end up tied out back of an abandon home with a chain around their neck and starving.
I’m just hoping that we can get enough money together soon. My mom still hasn’t been able to find a job and we’ve been living off of a credit card, my $800 a month that’s suppose to take care of me goes towards our bills. Even then we go over a bit sometimes. Oh and our usual $300 a month in food stamps. At least there is some help but boy oh boy are we getting to the point of almost homeless. I’m terrified and so is my mom. It just makes her sicker which will make working even harder if she does manage to find a job.
Anyhow, I am filled with hope and positivity about the whole thing especially since my mom is going to try and reach out to her brother to see if he can help us save the money to help me out. He can think of it as my graduation present. He struggles a little bit with money but he is working constantly with his girlfriend, he has his own auto business in Florida. Hopefully he will be able to. I’d want to ask my “grandparents” but we owe them money as it is and we don’t like them much considering the emotional abuse and occasionally physical done to my mother when she was a kid by them i most mean the grandfather, he was the adopter of my mom because he had married my moms biological mother but she died when she was 13 but the drunkenness and all that went quiet a bit before that. They have done many selfish, rude, uncaring, misunderstanding things but we don’t want contact with them anymore-anyway that’s off track.
We are mostly on our own but we are trying. We are on our own. I have this feeling that he won’t be able to help but I won’t hold it against them, if they can’t help they can’t it’s not their fault, we will just do things on our own as we always have. I know I’m blessed as it is even though at times it may not feel like it.
Until next time-