Getting a puppy: 6 months on


It’s been 6 months now since we got our puppy Frank the Schnoodle (cross between a Schnauzer and poodle) and I thought I’d give an update on how things have been in that time. Because you see while I liked dogs, I kind of tolerated them and found the mess too much for me to deal with. Hair, dribble, poo, wee it all seemed too hard and not something I wanted to do. It was definitely in the “one day” basket. Daisy, our eldest, on the other hand was ADAMENT. She adores dogs and asked, oh you know, every day if we could get a dog. When would we get a dog? What kind of a dog would it be? And would it be soon? A LOT.

And then I got knocked up and some weird preggo hormones of loving and caring and nurturing kicked in and I found myself thinking more and more about a puppy. Convinced that this would be the best time to do it…I had plenty of time at home because I was pregnant and LOVING, we knew we would be telling the girls that a new baby was coming up 9 months is a REALLY long time when you are little so it would be a good distraction until that time, and if we got it then it would be toilet trained and well(!) behaved by the time the baby came along. Huh.

So one day I found myself in the local pet shop staring at this little black ball of fluff and those hormones had me putting down a deposit quicker than you can say “she has LOST HER SENSES”. I didn’t speak to anyone, took full responsibility for everything to do with it and made the drive home thinking of ways to convince Rob that this was indeed the best thing we could do as a family at this point in time. Hormones hey? There was no research into breeds (other than I KNEW that I had to get a dog that did not shed hair. None. NO HAIR AT ALL EVER) and a Schnoodle is that…smallish in size and cute! And then one day there he was! It was meant to be right?


So a week later we picked him up and much to the surprise (you can see the girls reaction in this post) he was part of the family. SHIT. About the same time my morning sickness kicked in and about the same time I had to start cleaning up approx 5-6 wees and various poos on the carpet every day. I think we spent the first month having me gag and vomit every time I cleaned it up. It wasn’t pretty, but those hormones told me it would FINE so on I went, vomiting and cleaning up.


So how has it been? REALLY?

I have had this conversation with plenty of people on Instagram particularly when I post a picture of Frank asking what it’s REALLY like. They sound like I was…a little unsure of the whole thing. But I can hand on my heart tell you that it’s been the BEST thing we have done as a family (past moving down here). He is a joy. An absolute joy to have in the family. The unconditional love is something you can’t put a price on. The waiting at the door for us to arrive home, the snuggles on the couch at night, it’s adorable. He really is just lovely.


What about the training? The puppy phase?

Oh I won’t lie to you, I have lost my shit at that puppy PLENTY of times. Those loving, nurturing hormones are also really angry hormones at time and I think I have even wet my pants on the odd occasion I have screamed so loudly at THAT BLOODY DOG! He eats book covers, lots of them. Shoes? Not so much. Glasses? My $600 reading glasses? Yes, those too! And toilet paper/tissue boxes…dude, you have to move on from that. We have been slack and not taken him to Puppy School. I know, we should have but I have also been pregnant and pretty cranky most of the time and those nurturing hormonal promises have been long forgotten as reality kicked in.  Toliet training has been the longest and most frustrating….you have to be SO consistent, but we have managed to get him to do a wee, on command, on a lead by sounding like a fruit loop over and over again “do your wees Frank! Do your wees!” in a high pitched voice. He eventually did his wees! But sure as shit, pun intended, he will still do them inside if he is not bovvered, or the door gets closed, or it’s raining, or the wind is blowing easterly or something. SO MUCH WEE.


He has escaped and dog proofing the entire property has been tricky and time consuming. But now he has full reign of the garden and spends most of his time trotting between me inside the house, into the garden, a visit to the chooks, onto the step in the sunshine outside of Rob’s office and then asleep at his or my feet as we work away during the day. We have had him fully vaccinated and desexed and are slowly getting him used to being around other dogs, without pissing himself from excitement (glee wees) and getting him to come inside when we whistle (he is addicted to liver treats and will run full pelt and sit at your feet smiling for one of them). We’re getting there in our own way. It’s not the way it probably should have been done, or the best way, but it’s what we’ve done and it’s working for us most of the time.

PicMonkey Collage

The timing while not the best with all that vomiting, has been OK. We now have a puppy that (mostly) does what we ask him to (mostly) goes to the toilet outside and (mostly) doesn’t destroy everything when left home alone. He ABSOLUTELY adores every member of our family, tolerates Harper and her rough ways, tries his best around my screaming, and just loves Daisy and Rob so much. He is loyal and funny, fun to be around and as I said, the best thing we have done. Much like kids there are annoying bits…but you don’t remember those in the long run. You’re left with a beautiful family member who has totally stolen this non dog person’s heart.

This morning I got a snap of Frank and Daise on the couch together having a snuggle.


I mean honestly, have you ever seen a dog so adored? Head on her chest for the love of Pete! She said she would do so much if she got a dog. She made so many promises and you know what? She kept them all and actually delivered on them ALL. She took him out each morning for a wee, picked up countless poos, walks him, feeds him, plays with him and loves him. Just like she said she would. And that? Well that’s been the best bit of all.

I can’t imagine our family without him.


Are you thinking about getting a puppy?
Got any questions to ask or stories to share?
I’d love to see a photo of your pet if you can attach it on Facebook!


  1. We have a bischoodle, he was a rescue dog. He is the light of my life, and when I had cancer he gave me exactly what I needed – gentle and constant love. I wrote about him here – but a warning, I actually can’t read this post because it makes me cry (happy cry, but still crying) –

  2. “It’s not the way it probably should have been done, or the best way, but it’s what we’ve done and it’s working for us most of the time.” Your comment is basically how it went with our, now almost three-year-old, puppy. He’s a cocker spaniel; we’ve had him since he was about 12 weeks I think. He’s lovely.

  3. We have our beautiful 11 year old Golden Retriever Bonnie May and our daughters cutest Pug Khloe Bear who just turned 1. They are the best of friends & I truly love them with all my heart minus the hair!! Frank is also the cutest. Gx

  4. Beth, your Frank is adorable! I have a 3 year old German Shepherd….She was surrendered by her family and I ‘rescued’ her as I knew I didn’t have the time to train a puppy (I’m a singleton, no kids). Coco Pop (yep, that’s really her name) didn’t have any training other than not peeing or pooing inside (which she did manage to do once because the pet nanny accidentally left the door shut) . So much for my plan of not having to train dog! Walking Coco is the same as ‘arms’ day in the gym; she’s chewed a rather expensive pair of sandals and a Calvin Klein Bra (couldn’t touched the kmart ones), and believes it’s her sole mission in life to lunge/chase any bird she sees. But in the 15 months since she came home with me she has made my world the most amazing place. I’m officially a crazy dog lady.
    PS. Invest in those indoor doggy grass things for rainy days. They’re gross but will save your sanity when Frank doesn’t want to go outside due to the weather.

  5. This is a great account of what it is really like to have a puppy and should be mandatory reading for anyone thinking about getting a dog! However, I would also like to put in a word for rescued dogs. I’ve had dogs all my life and so when our children were born we also got a puppy. He was wonderful ( although I can totally relate to feeling like my life revolved around picking up shit for a while there!) but sadly we lost him to cancer when he was only nine years old. I didn’t think we could have another puppy as I’m back at work so we got a six year old rescue. Some low life had chained her up for most of her life, she’d never been inside, was not house trained, had arthritis and understood no English. But she has been the best dog ever – she got house training straight away and once she relaxed and realised she wasn’t going to be beaten she just became so GRATEFUL and keen to please. She’s never chewed anything, she’s gentle with little people and she’s so in love with life it can’t help but rub off on the rest of us. People often say they don’t want a rescue in case they inherit problems but she’s been amazing. Every dog comes with it’s own personality and ‘issues’ and dogs are usually abandoned through no fault of their own so unless you want the whole puppy experience a second hand adult dog is worth thinking about.

  6. No pets here yet but we’d love a dog. Maybe some time this year.. (instead of a 3rd child)… well a fur baby instead of a human baby! I love the idea of a schnoodle. A Labradoodle was another one we thought of but I think the smaller schnoodle would suit us better. What do you think? Jx

  7. I love that you got Frank! I’m glad he has changed your lives for the better, the unconditional love is simply the best. thing. ever. My partner and I work full time, so toilet training was the hardest thing for us to figure out how to do for our cavoodle Oscar (Cavalier King Charles x Toy Poodle) as we did not want him peeing everywhere. Especially when we weren’t at home during the day! So during the day when we weren’t home we kept him confined to a small area of the house, with a puppy pee pad in the corner (we started off carrying him to the pee pad while he was peeing and saying go potty, and then rubbing a bit of his pee on the new pee pad to put his smell there), and when we were home we took him outside every couple of hours to ‘go potty’. Now he’s 2 years old, and prefers to go outside to ‘go potty’, but we still keep the puppy pee pad inside in a small out of the way corner (he now gets the whole house because he doesn’t chew things anymore) that he uses when we aren’t home and he really needs to go. He sometimes (rarely) poops inside the house next to the back door if we are sleeping and he can’t hold onto it anymore. We never got the puppy grass as it’s super expensive, and the pee pads can be bought for barely anything from discount places like the Reject Shop/Sam’s Warehouse etc. I think we normally get about 100 pads for $30, whereas they are double/triple the price at pet stores.

    Oscar chewed my books too (SO BAD!) it’s a poodle thing. Just means he’s bored! Try getting a Kong (from the pet store) and putting a little bit of peanut butter, or Kong treats inside and give it to him when you leave and he’ll be occupied for hooouuuursss! 🙂

  8. MAAAATE – you’re killing me!!!! I’ve just had yet another convo with Joe how its SO unfair that EVERYONE else has a pet and why can’t he have a dog!
    Jonnie is about to get home and we’re going to show him pic’s of some puppy’s I’ve been looking at online and break the news that he’ll be getting a puppy for his 10th birthday this year!
    Can I do this – really??!!
    Thanks for sharing that you YELL at the puppy…….I know I’ll be YELLING at Joes puppy too A LOT! As I’m not very patient and I don’t like mess or wee or poo – but our litlle guy needs a dog – right??

  9. Ahhhh, this post made me smile so many happy smiles! Growing up with pets, with dogs, is the best thing ever I reckon. They have such a way of carving out a place in your heart and your family; they so quickly make it worth every single 3am wee call and gag-inducing poo pick up. They can be such good furry friends, especially during tough times. I have the fondest of fond memories of all my hounds. Frank looks like an absolute sweetie x

  10. Lisa Mckenzie says

    He’s gorgeous Beth we have. Four year old chug who still likes to steal toilet rolls and anything paper and wants a treat to give it back,dog doors are wonderful xx

  11. We have a Lagotto, Chewie, she basically looks like a fancy poodle. I adore her. Stu already had her when we met so I missed the puppy phase and we talk about getting another one but being pregnant means a puppy is on the back burner for a little while.
    She also doesn’t shed which I love. I don’t think I could cope with dog hair everywhere!
    I was raised as a dogs are outside animals person so Chewie lives outside but we let her sit on the couch in the family room while we have breakfast for some love and cuddles. I think it’s her favourite part of the day!!

  12. Oh Beth! I love this post so hard! I have wanted a dog for like, forever, and now I’ve read this post, I want one even more! I am so poody (like broody but for a pooch!) I love how you guys love Frank and he loves you right back. I got quite emo reading this post which is quite embarrassing because I was at the hairdressers. Frank is such a cute canine, I really think he should have his own IG feed, because there’s no such thing as too much Frank spam. Just sayin’!

  13. we got a gorgeous Cockapoo (spaniel poodle cross) in November & he was adorable 99% of the time, trained really fast, but suddenly started to bite, out of the blue with no provocation whatsoever. We made excuses for the first few, I had brought him to puppy training & I took & followed the advice of the trainer until he did it again on Saturday, bit my daughter on the arm whilst she was just looking at him! We had to make the really really heartbreaking decision to get rid of him. I can honestly say it broke our hearts. We are devastated. We will get another one but we are terrified that the same thing will happen though I know it’s rare. He bit my eldest on the nose & he would get viscous, growling & bite & then act as if nothing happened! Jekyll & Hyde is the only way I can describe it. We too need a non shed dog because of allergies, where do I go from here??

  14. Love this post – we have a nearly 4yr old Bichon called Charlie and he’s the love of our lives. (Our 12yo often says “why do we have to have such a cute dog!”!!) I had many other dog owners said to me that dogs tend to grow up when they’re about 3, and that’s exactly what happened with Charlie. He no longer runs away, I can let him off the lead on the beach AND he’ll come back, and he no longer destroys things. We still get the odd accident in the house, but it’s often when we’re away and he’s showing our house/pet-sitter what he really thinks about the situation! Enjoy Frank – I know we couldn’t live without our Charlie.

  15. Here are some cute pictures along with ten reasons why kids should have a dog.

    We had two unfortunate experiences with rescue dogs, but that was years ago, before the rescue orgs began to take so much care in matching the dog to the family. Now we are on our second golden-from-a-puppy. The first one was 13, and this one’s 7, and I don’t CARE about the hair! You have to vacuum almost every day anyway. They have the best temperament, and I love the size dog that you can throw both arms around and hug. Plus falling on him and not hurting him. ;-}

    But I like small dogs too if they aren’t barkers. And Frank is adorable. I’m glad you gave in.

  16. Just SNORT LAUGHED in IKEA reading this!!!!!
    I’m so glad Frank has proven to be a fab addition to your family!!

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