Puppy Mother: Party All the Time

Puppies take a TON of time. You’ve got to commit not just to training them, but also to daily walks, playtime, potty breaks, and of course, some snuggling. It’s really tough if you’re single and doing this on your own because if you’re anything like me, you feel guilty 99.999% of the time you’re doing anything but spending time with the dog, who, unless you’re there, is cooped up in her crate probably napping blissfully desperately missing you. In reality, I’m sure Roo is fine when I’m not there, but I want to be a good puppy mother, and I hate to leave her in her crate too long, so I do feel guilty. Especially now that I’m not working from home all the time, she’s alone much more than I’d like. At first, I had a dog walker come in to take her for potty breaks during the day, but I didn’t feel comfortable having a stranger in my house and Roo seemed to be able to make it through the day without it, so we’ve worked out a new schedule.


Ugh–Mom. You are SO embarrassing!

Our days look like this:

6 AM

My alarm goes off. I hit snooze. Roo cries and howls a bit because she heard the alarm, too.

6:09 AM

Alarm goes off again. Desperately want to hit snooze, but Roo howls so more, so I get up and get dressed/brush my teeth/put in my contacts before I get her up. Otherwise, she would be all up in my biznass and probably would pee all over the floor. I haven’t tested this theory yet.

6:15 AM

Sing Roo her morning song because I am a total cheeseball. Give her morning snuggles and hugs. Potty break (for her–not me).

6:25 AM

Bring her back inside to her crate with some toys. Go for a run or workout.

7:15ish AM

Morning walk around the neighborhood. Bird chasing. Sniffing. Jumping on other dogs and sometimes people (much to my mortification). I try to control myself, but I just can’t help it. 

7:35 AM

She goes back in her crate, and I shower. Otherwise, she will be in the shower with me.

7:45 AM

She comes out of the crate and plays with her toys/barks at me/jumps all over everything while I get ready. This is alternately endearing and annoying.

8:10 AM

Feed her breakfast in her crate. Get her set up with toys for the day. Go to work

8:11 AM

Feel guilty


Let me be right in your face!!!

10:30 AM

Miss Roo

1:30 PM

Miss Roo

3:30 PM

Miss Roo

5 PM

Dart out the door to get home to my sweet little girl.

5:30 PM

Get home and go for a long walk. Assorted sniffing and bird chasing as described earlier. Or sometimes, we go to the dog park, which she loves.


Why can’t I ever get that damn tail?!?

6:10 PM

Pour wine. Play with puppy. Make my dinner while she plays/jumps all over me/gets into everything.

7 PM

Feed Roo in her crate. While she’s eating, I eat. Sometimes she can handle playing and not being obnoxious and begging while I eat. Usually not.

7:30 PM

I try to relax and/or do a little more work. Roo plays and acts irritated that I’m not paying attention to her. I feel guilty and play with her instead. Which is more fun anyway.

8 PM

Evening walk. We don’t always do this, but I know she loves it, so I typically forgo TV/blog reading time to spend time with her.


She legitimately sits on my lap like this all.the.time. Must be touching Mom at all times. True story.

8:30 PM

Cuddles on the couch which typically consists of her climbing all over me and stepping on me in uncomfortable ways.

9:30-10 PM

Roo’s bedtime. I try to put her to bed about the same time each night, but I never put her in the crate before I go to bed. That would just be mean. :(

Now, this isn’t every day. Some days, I come home after work, take her for a walk, then she goes back into the crate while I go out to dinner or something. And I feel terrible. Every.single.time. But she survives and doesn’t even seem too mad at me when I come home and take her for another quick late-night walk before bed.

I guess the moral of the story with regard to time is that she requires a lot of time. She keeps me busy. And when I’m not with her, it’s guilt-city. But when I am with her, it’s the best.


Stop trying to take my picture, Mom. I am not going to hold still. 

More to come!

Do you have a dog? Can you relate to puppy-mother guilt?

21 thoughts on “Puppy Mother: Party All the Time

  1. wow, the dog prolly goes crazy when she’s out of the crate because she’s not used to it.
    i only shut up my dog when i’m actually gone. and thought most people did that too :(
    dogs dont need to be shut up while you are eating or taking a shower, if she misbehaves – teach her. eventually she won’t go nuts bc she’s finally been set free! then you’ll feel less guilty about leaving her crated while you’re gone.

      • ev122365 says:

        Its not criticism, its just a comment. Trust the dog a little and give her some freedom, or even sleep with you. You just might find you love it :)

  2. ok, ignore that above poster. dogs start in a crate and that is how they are trained. We had my dog in a crate for a few years until finally she grew out of the puppy phase, guess what? She is the HAPPIEST DOG EVER, and was even in the crate. Dogs get it. I swear, don’t worry. You are the best mommy dog owner ever, even on our blogger meet up you said you had to leave to get her. Adorable.

    • Thanks, friend! I do the very best I can, and honestly, she is a happy puppy, so I don’t think I do too terribly for her!


    • Yeah, she doesn’t seem unhappy in there at all and often goes in all on her own, especially when she’s sleepy :)


  3. JenG says:

    our dog is crated too and i believe she likes it, so don’t feel bad at all! that person above is totally wrong. i don’t know of any dogs that don’t have that energy…our lab is about 8 and she has that energy too. on occasion i work from home, so she is not crated, and she goes to her crate on her own. she also does this if my family comes to let her out during a long day….they let her out to pee and she is immediately back in her crate. it’s what she does and she likes her crate. I’m sure Roo likes her crate too. it’s like their own little home. so many people don’t even walk or play with their dogs…roo is a lucky lady!

    btw…our dog goes so crazy when anyone walks in a room that she wags her tail like nuts. now it’s all cut up and bleeds…pretty much like a sprinkler all over the place. Anyone have any advice on how to keep a bandage on it or what to do? she is the master at tearing bandages off her tail.

    • Oh my goodness! I’ve never heard of such a thing! Hopefully someone will be able to help! Poor puppy, but you’ve gotta love the enthusiasm! Dogs are just the best :)


  4. terrid614 says:

    omg. i can totallly relate to this post. i feel so guilty leaving the fluff nuggets. my day is a lot like yours, but for a while i was running home at lunch for a little puppy potty break. i do not like the idea of strangers coming in my house either, so a dog walker was out of the question. :( i sometimes feel so guilty that they are home alone if i am out after work, that i often cut things short. i, too will not put them in their ‘houses’ until i am going to bed. i try to keep a routine but sometimes my schedule makes me change things up. today i am home, and they are doing nothing but laying around sleeping all day, which makes me feel better that while i am at work, they are most likely snoozing in their houses! they are indeed a lot of work, but bring me so many smiles…. p.s. i laughed at the snooze part of your post. my little peanut has bionic ears, its like as soon as that alarms goes off, she is howling and does not stop. yikes.

    • Ha! Love you, Terri! Glad we’re in the same boat. And I adore that you call them fluff nuggets. Cutest.thing.ever.

      And yeah. I’m sure she’s perfect. And I, obviously, suck at everything.


  5. Gosh I give you SO much credit! I would love to be able to have a dog but right now it’s just not practical. I’m sure it’s so hard putting her in her crate with that adorable face!

  6. I waited until I thought I was “ready” to get a pup (a mini schnauzer) last fall, but I guess it’s kind of like having a baby, you have NO idea what you’re getting into – the overwhelming commitment AND the overwhelming joy. I actually skipped quite a few workouts when mine was really young because I felt so bad leaving him (I’m doing it on my own too)! I feel so bad during the work week that by Fridays, I always tell him that I’ll be back soon and we’ll hang out ALL weekend – ack, the guilt!

    • You are SO right! I’m glad to know I’m not the only one doing it alone–and that you have the same feelings about it! :) Us single mom’s gotta stick together!


  7. ohh my, i just love this post. roo just makes me smile. she is adorable! we have two labs and i can totally relate to this! fortunately they are mellowing out a little as they get older, but they are still a little bundle of energy and need lots of attention! i always feel bad when we have to put them in their crate too, but if we give them a couple pieces of dog food they think it’s the greatest thing in the world. haha.

  8. Thanks for the perspective on what it’s like Melissa! I want a dog someday, but now is just not the time, I am not ready for that commitment! Not YET anyway, eventually for sure! And plus I am starting with my own cat :)

  9. Angela says:

    So glad to see another Roo post! I think this is the main thing that has deterred me from getting my own dog…I know that I would get that guilt. And I’m not sure how I would handle that. Regardless, you seem like an amazing puppy mother to me, and Roo seems incredibly happy and healthy! :)
    Oh, and that picture of her on your lap? DYING. Too cute!

  10. Renee B says:

    Hi there, Hope all is well Melissa! I haven’t tuned in to your blog for a while. Busy, busy summatime! Roo is sooooo cute and BIGGGG!!! I just love that picture of her sitting on your lap! I too, think you are doing a fine job, given your circumstances…….”furry nuggets” are pretty darn adaptable. :) I think just like fur-less kids, it’s the quality, not really the quantity of time. Give that special Roo a big, sloppy kiss from one of her fans!! Be careful out there in that DC land, but have a ton of fun too~

    • Great to hear from you, Renee! I think we’re doing a pretty fine job. She seems happy enough. :) I’m working from home today, so she’s in all her glory. Not gonna lie, I kind of love it!


  11. Destenie says:

    I can totally relate to puppy mommy guilt… I hate doing anything without my little man. I have a boxer named Ranger and he lays all over me all the time. Best of luck with Roo. :-)

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