If you are thinking of getting a puppy, this article is for you. Author, Helen Edwards talks about her three books featuring Archie. These books give an amazing insight into the realities of a pup.
Getting a puppy is a lovely idea. But do you really know what you would be taking on? This blog is written by Helen Edwards who has written books about her personal experience with her gorgeous dog, Archie.
Being a pet parent (or even a pet pawrent) is a big responsibility. The actual reality can be a shock. It's one thing thinking about walking and training, but it is a lot more than that! Don't forget the possibility of sleepless nights, socialisation, training and the responsibility of not leaving the dog for long. Helen's article and books do reflect these sentiments.
There is so much pleasure from having a furry family member! I recently described that having a dog can be similar to having a toddler twenty four hours a day. Obviously, results may vary! This is the worst case scenario in my opinion. I've looked after a few dogs, all have been lovely and not like this!
All dogs and puppies personalities vary greatly depending on nature and nurture. Dogs can learn favourable behavioural traits! I believe even old dogs can be taught new tricks; it takes time and patience from the owner using positive reward for the dog.
Even though my children would like a dog, I know I am rubbish at getting up early in the morning and I would hate to miss a Sunday morning lie in. Funnily enough, our previous cat Ginger, would bite my husband to feed her at 5am. She trained him well! Ginger didn't bite me to feed her, as she knew I wouldn't get up. On the odd occasions Ben was away, she would wait until 7.30am and mew at me. (Don't worry I would get up and feed her then.)
Anyway, if you are thinking of getting a dog, I would highly recommend to read Helen's books first. The links to purchase the books are at the bottom of this article. (Available on Kindle, paperback and audio books.)
Thank you to Helen for writing this blog.
Are you thinking about getting a puppy?
All About Archie
I’ve had my dog, Archie, since he was eight weeks old; he’s four now. During the time I’ve had him, there have been many ups and downs – thankfully, more ups. Now I can’t imagine life without Archie.
It is very hard work, though, bringing up a puppy. No matter how prepared you think you are, if you’ve never had a puppy or a dog before, you’re going to have the shock of your life. I know I did.
I didn’t rush into things. I researched dog breeds. I read up on life with a dog, and what I’d need for my puppy during the early days. But nothing I read prepared me for how overwhelmed I’d feel.
Puppies bring with them a lot of love. There are all the cuddles, the joy of seeing them romping through the grass like little lambs, and the fact they follow you everywhere. There are lots of pluses, obviously, to getting a puppy.
The Not So Good
There are a whole host of things you won’t have considered though, often simple things. You won’t be able to leave any of your stuff out if you want it to remain intact; lie-ins are cancelled; TV programmes interrupted; not being able to eat in peace … All because there’s a little puppy demanding your attention.
And then there’s all the messy stuff: picking up poos; clearing up diarrhoea and vomit; cleaning your puppy’s bottom when he’s got poo stuck on it; cleaning your puppy when he’s been digging; the constant battle over muddy paws on the carpet; the fact your home looks like a bomb’s hit it when your puppy’s let loose.
Maybe it won’t be such a shock to everyone, getting a puppy for the first time. I’m sure many people will be far more laid back than I was but judging by the number of puppies (and dogs) which are given up each year, other people have found bringing up a puppy hard work. Puppies demand a lot of attention, more than some people realise.
My husband and I haven’t got kids, but one of my husband’s work colleagues told him they’d found bringing up a puppy harder than bringing up a baby! It just goes to show that a tiny puppy can have a massive impact on your life.
New Puppy Blues
I worried whether we were doing things the right way. Getting a puppy made me more anxious. In all the excitement, I didn’t anticipate this. It would have helped if I had – I don’t think I would have been so hard on myself. I felt like I was a terrible person for not being able to enjoy Archie during those early days. All I could do was take it a day at a time and as time passed, I found I was coping.
A few things helped: cuddles with Archie; taking him to various places to help socialise him; hiring a dog trainer for some 1:1 training; doing some internet research and finding I wasn’t alone. Not everyone finds the early days with their puppy a rosy experience.
All About Archie
When Archie was two, I decided to write a book detailing my experiences with him as a puppy, my mission being to support and to inform. I thought that if I could help even one person – a new puppy parent who was overwhelmed by their puppy – job done. It turns out I’ve helped more than one person. The messages I’ve received from people who are struggling with their puppy have been heartfelt. The chapter in the book on the new puppy blues really resonates with them. I’ve also helped people preparing to get a puppy too.
The Post Puppy Years
Archie’s four now, and life with him is a lot calmer, although he still has his moments! He’s a happy, healthy, and loving dog who is proving to be a wonderful companion. I like to think that through the books he’s leaving a legacy.
Thank you, Livi, for letting us share our story. Love from Helen and Archie
Archie on Social Media
If you’d like updates on Archie, please do take a look at our Facebook page.
Alternatively, you can find Archie on Instagram.
Want to Read the Books?
After the success of the first book, I decided to write a second book detailing life with Archie as a young adult dog. In it, I included interviews with other puppy parents. I later merged the two books and added some new material, including a couple of stories about life with a rescue puppy/dog. If you’d like to take a closer look at any of the books, please click on the links below.
All the books are available from Amazon in e-book and paperback format. All About Archie and More About Archie are also available in audiobook format from Amazon, Audible and iTunes. The photo below shows the lovely book covers.
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