I'm planning on getting a Shih-tzu puppy soon. I live alone and work full time, although I can pretty easily get home midday so they pup shouldn't be along longer than five hours in the morning and another couple hours in the afternoon. I can't really afford two dogs, but I was wondering if getting a kitten at the same time would be a good idea. I've had cats before and love them. I just wonder if getting them young at the same time would maybe give them both someone to play with?
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I'm planning on getting a Shih-tzu puppy soon. I live alone and work full time, although I can pretty easily ... I just wonder if getting them young at the same time would maybe give them both someone to play with?

1. Have you ever lived with a kitten? They are work. I'm not abig fan of living with puppies, in general, but I think living with kittens is far worse. Hell, there are days that living with a full-grown cat makes me pull my hair out.
And, I definitely would not want to manage a kitten and a puppy at the same time. Friends of mine recently tried to, and the puppy now that she's old enough to no longer be cute and adoptable has been "gotten rid of." Now, that's not a solution *I* would have chosen, but they bit off more than they could chew and something had to give.
2. Do you actually want a cat?

If it were me, I'd get an older puppy or even an adult dog from a shelter or rescue. Responsible breeders sometimes have older puppies or dogs, as well. An older dog will have better bladder/bowel control, as well as hopefully less of a destructive urge (a crate is your friend). With an older puppy or young adult, and with the schedule you've described, you should be able to manage. Just make sure that the time you can spend with your dog is good quality time, and that the dog gets sufficient mental and physical stimulation.
Working full time and owning a dog is certainly possible I've been doing it for years. Just don't expect to go out every night or to be gone all weekend, unless you can take the dog with you. It's a balancing act, for sure, but if you work at it, it can be done.

Shelly (Warning: see label for details)
http://www.cat-sidh.net (the Mother Ship)
http://esther.cat-sidh.net (Letters to Esther)
I'm planning on getting a Shih-tzu puppy soon. I live alone and work full time, although I can pretty easily ... I just wonder if getting them young at the same time would maybe give them both someone to play with?[/nq]I would tend to think that a puppy alone would be enough to handle (i.e. training, housebreaking, etc...) without compounding the situation with two animals. Especially two animals of different species and the fact that you will have limited time during the day to work with them. I have a Shih-Tzu myself and have found them to be wonderful little companions, quite bright, and very easy to work with. Above all else, they crave their humans love and attention.

Dividing your attention between puppy and kitten during critical bonding and training periods may be asking for problems. Please keep in mind that I am not a professional or a trainer but I do have some experience with Shih-Tzu's. In my opinion, I have found them to be quite content to nap during the day and even entertain themselves if given appropriate toys, providing you give them lot's of love and attention when you are home, they get sufficient exercise, and of course, proper training.

There are a lot of good trainers in this group that can help you with training issues and techniques if you have questions. However, as I said, I would suggest sticking with one animal at a time until it is properly trained and older. - - Les Hilliard
Sracey,I don't see anything wrong with gettng a puppy and a kitten at the same time, as Shelly said don't think it is not a lot of work. But what concerns me even more than the work is that you mentioned doing so the puppy would have companionship in lieu of another dog. Lemme tell ya I got a 14 yr old cat and 2 dogs close to her age. They are not companions to each other, they barely tolerate each other and I got the cat and the oldest dog at about the same time..Of course it may not go that way with your puppy and kitten.

They may end up best buds... My suggestion is to spend all your spare time exercising and playing with your puppy. You be his new best friend...walk him, exercise him...etc. You can always get a kiiten down the line if you so choose..Good Luck with whatever you decide and Congrats on your new pup! Judy
Be Free,
Judy
I'm planning on getting a Shih-tzu puppy soon. I live alone and work full time, although I can pretty easily ... I just wonder if getting them young at the same time would maybe give them both someone to play with?

If you can't really afford two dogs, what makes you think you can afford a dog and a cat? The purchase price of the animal itself is small potatoes compared to the cost of lifelong care for the animal. Cats need to see a vet for shots and flea preventative, maybe heartworm meds, etc, and you've got to buy food, kitty litter, etc.

Kathleen
The purchase price of the animal itself is small potatoes compared to the cost of lifelong care for the animal. Cats need to see a vet for shots and flea preventative, maybe heartworm meds, etc, and you've got to buy food, kitty litter, etc.

Should I mention that 2 of my cats have cost me more than any of my dogs? And you didn't count in S/N ;-D. We don't use flea preventative on any of the beasts, and since the cats stay inside, no HW meds either (I know it's a possibility, but very low).

Cats can be pretty high maintenance per pound, and high cost as well. They're not as cooperative a dogs for one thing!

Janet Boss
www.bestfriendsdogobedience.com
Should I mention that 2 of my cats have cost me more than any of my dogs?

What she said. My last cat was free, but I spent a ludicrous amount of money on his vet bills far more than I've spent on any dog.
And you didn't count in S/N ;-D. We don't use flea preventative on any of the beasts, and since the cats stay inside, no HW meds either (I know it's a possibility, but very low).

Ditto here.
Cats can be pretty high maintenance per pound, and high cost as well. They're not as cooperative a dogs for one thing!

And they tend to live longer.

Shelly
http://www.cat-sidh.net (the Mother Ship)
http://esther.cat-sidh.net (Letters to Esther)
Did you ever stop to think, and forget to start again? A.A. Milne
Cats can be pretty high maintenance per pound, and high cost as well. They're not as cooperative a dogs for one thing!

Also, while they don't eat as much the food is a lot more expensive.

Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis - (Email Removed)

Bad policies lead to bad results.
Cats can be pretty high maintenance per pound, and high cost as well. They're not as cooperative a dogs for one thing!

They're a lot quieter though. Sometimes, on bad dog days (I know, there are no bad dogs, only bad dog behaviors), I close myself up with the cat and say "don't make me go out there again" and she will let me curl up with her and she will purr in a very civilized fashion. These are the days on which I wonder how in heaven's name I went from having only cats for 18 years to having 3 dogs and only 1 cat. Who am I??

Catherine
& Zoe the cockerchow
& Queenie the black gold retriever
& Max the Pomeranian
& Rosalie the calico
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