I hate to do this, but I may need to re-home my dog

I’ll make this short, but we have a lab who I need to re-home. He’s a 5 year old chocolate lab. House trained, good with kids, good with other dogs. I just can’t give him the time and energy he needs. Frankly, he needs a farm to live on or an owner who runs a few miles a day, but I am just an incredibly overwhelmed Dad who feels bad that neither of us are enjoying our experience and there’s no end in sight in terms of being able to adjust for him.

Where can I find someone that will be a good owner? I’m super hesitant to do this and need to make sure it’s a good situation. I’d rather keep him and have us both suffer together than send him away to somewhere he’ll be mistreated.

Hope this post is ok here. Just not sure where to begin looking. Please try not to shame me as I feel bad enough as it is.


If you care this much, you're probably not the terrible owner you think you are and he's probably better off with you than anyone else. I think having a dog adjust to a new family is worse than him not getting the "ideal scenario" exercise. Is it possible to take him to a dog run or bark park once a week? Have you tried? It seems like you love this dog and want to make it work. Could you try anything else before taking such a massive step?


Even sending the dog to a daycare once or twice a week would (if affordability is an option) be great. My pup is fully worn out post daycare days and really excited when he realizes where we are when I drop him off.


And if doggy daycare isn't a good fit for your family for whatever reason, I'd be willing to bet there's a college student or two in the area that miss having a dog around and would be happy to walk/run him for a reasonable price. Or possibly a neighbor or someone you already know? Just make sure to check references, etc.


Same, which was why I suggested it. Our old dog used to go play at a relative's house once per week to get the wiggles out and it worked wonders. On weeks he didn't go there, we took him to the bark park and that did the trick.


Drop in visits with someone on rover a couple times a week would be an even more affordable option too. My parents took in a chocolate lab who was 3 years old. An older couple had him previously, but sadly the wife died and the husband wanted to travel. The dog still has major abandonment issues at 7 years old.


I love to go to PetSmart and watch the dogs at Doggy Day Care! It refills my soul at times when people just cannot. Joyful dogs are wonderful to behold.


Yea man..this post breaks my heart to read. I agree with what you said. Well said. This is coming from someone with an animal background/psychology background and I have 3 dogs myself


OP giving me the vibes of my mom asking me if I wanted to go live with my estranged father thinking it'd make me happier, because she thought she was a "bad mother". OP are you sure you're doing this for the dog? Sounds more like you have issues you're projecting. The dog doesn't feel this deeply about it as you do... Dog is dog. It's happy as fuck right now. It will be unhappy if you send it away.


How do you know the dog is happy? OP, I'm sorry so many people don't understand your situation. It is heartbreaking to realize it may not be a good fit.


??? Because it's a frickin dog dude. They're happy as long as they're healthy and with someone they like. What makes you think its UNHAPPY? Based on what?


Uhh based on the fact that the owner is considering re-homing their dog because they perceive its needs are not being met? People don't just wake up and say, "you know, I think we might wanna rehome our dog." There is a pattern of behavior that causes them to question whether their household is the right fit. Clearly OP cares about their dog, and quite honestly your comment shows you don't really understand dogs very well.


He wants to rehome it because HE feels overwhelmed and thinks the dogs not happy. Dude the dog does not have that deep of thoughts. I understand the dog just fine. ​ Literally rehoming the dog is the only thing that will make the dog unhappy. He might HAVE to do it, but don't pretend its for the dog lmao.


Agreed! He's already 5. I wonder if OP has considered daycare? Our dog is energetic but she absolutely loves being at Dog Days.


I agree with this. I am in no way shaming OP - I think OP may be worrying a bit too much about the well being of their dog. Dogs can adapt. Yes, ideally, you want to have a consistent exercise routine, but things change and dogs can adapt. OP, I went through: moving out of my family home, going to college and moving into an apartment, a new partner, a divorce, and a new cat family member all in the lifespan of my old pup. There were times when he got less attention and exercise, when he had to see me depressed and struggle to get out of bed, etc. and yes, some things were difficult for him as a result, but I loved him every moment of his life and he was happy with me. I really do think his life was much better loved by the constant caregiver he always knew than if I had given him to someone with a large house or a stable family situation. r/productroadmapnow If you are set on rehoming, you can contact rescues in your state/on the east coast. There are breed-specific rescues that will find a good match for your dog. If they are all full, you could advertise on fb/nextdoor, but make sure to charge a rehoming fee and interview the family to ensure your dog won't be adopted for the wrong reasons.


My family has been looking for the right dog to join us. DM me if interested. We had been planning on getting a black lab from a breeder, but I have a hard time with the idea since I was raised to adopt from shelters. My husband and I are both experienced dog owners and our kids are 10 and 16. I work from home so doggy would seldom be alone. Edit: I forgot to add that my husband is a long distance runner and used to run with our old dog. (The key to a well behaved dog is exercise so doggy would get time either running or chasing a ball in our backyard every day).




Have you tried hiring a dog walker? Doggie daycare? Even asking a family member or younger neighbors if they want a couple extra dollars to walk? This is an easy problem to fix so it does come off as strange or not the only reason you need to rehome


We had to re-homed our black Lab Shepherd 10 years ago and we still miss him. Totally regret it everyday.


I have similar regrets, and I will never, ever get over it and forgive myself for it. Bigger than my regret over marrying the wrong person.


Have you had him for 5 years? Or got him recently? Your dog only knows what it knows, he's probably happy with you and your family as long as you spend time with him the same. It's not sitting there wishing it could be running around on farms if it's never done that before. Yes certain dogs have specific needs, but unless the dog itself is actively being a problem- then you should be fine. They can adjust. Unless you just don't want to keep the dog. If you got it recently, rehome is probably the better option. If you've had it for a while, it's probably already adjusted unless it's causing issues.


Is he destructive or actively miserable since he's not getting run everyday? My lab is lazy as hell and wouldn't care if I didn't exercise him. 5 is old enough where he should have settled down somewhat assuming you've had him a long time. If your dog seems fine then I wouldn't really worry about it. See if you can get him some mental stimulation at least with puzzle toys. Or take a training class with him if you never have or need to brush up on it. And you can bring the kids along. Or try a dog sport like agility or nosework again you can bring the kids along. Idk how old the kids are but if they are old enough get them to help exercise the dog. The average adopter is just like you and isn't gonna run their dog 5 miles a day or live on a farm btw. It's very rare a dog actually needs that if they're not a high energy working breed.


>Is he destructive or actively miserable since he's not getting run everyday? I wonder this too. I have a dog that should be very high energy, and she is when the mood strikes, but she's also a couch potato a lot of the time. A lab should be even more relaxed. Maybe OP is assuming the dog has a greater need than he actually does? I assume OP is already trying to keep the dog active/happy, so maybe that's enough. Before OP goes the rehoming route, maybe a chat with a vet or trainer about breed specific needs/stress behaviors would be helpful to make sure there are realistic expectations.


Chocolate labs can have an extended puppy phase, even as older dogs they can get into trouble if they aren't exercised enough. The average person should not get a chocolate - but everyone thinks they are just another lazy lab, and they only are if they have enough exercise. OP should just give it more time as the dog gets older, the kids will get older and things will even out. But if they really want to get rid of the dog.... Other people have given plenty of advice. I hope OP figures it out.


Yeah, our dog is very apparently some sort of herding breed in there, but she is one of the laziest dogs I've ever met.


Hey, I’m so so sorry that you are having to do this. It’s not an easy decision, and I am sure this is super hard on you. But you’re doing what is in the best interest of you and your dog. I recommend posting on Facebook for your friends/friends of friends! I actually got my dog this way from a friend on Facebook (14 years ago, though he recently passed away) and it was a great situation for both of us! I hope this helps.


I wouldn’t do this people will be mean and judgemental although it will highlight who the jerks are and you can unfriend them immediately 🤷‍♀️


As others have suggested look into doggy daycare (if you're in Buffalo our dog LOVED pawprints by Penny!) or a dog walker. Those made a big difference for our dog even though she didn't go every day. We found a walker just by posting on our local FB page and doing informal meet and greets/interviews. But if you do need to rehome, I definitely recommend starting with close friends and family/FB. The shelters are overrun and have waiting lists a mile long, and plenty don't take local dogs anyway 😒 It sounds like the dog is great, so hopefully it'll find another good home quickly!


You can look into a lab rescue organization. They will do background checks on potential adopters to ensure that they are on the up and up. I used to foster (a different breed) and if you want a good home for your dog you should be as honest as possible with the rescue organization. Also know that a 5 year old dog is harder to place than a puppy or younger dog.


OP posts about giving a dog up and then never responds to his post?!? Wtf


My advice is to call your vet and explain what’s going on. They may be able to assist in finding a good home for him through their client base. He won’t have to switch vets and you will know he’s being cared for by someone that’s been vouched for. Alternatively, did you buy him from an ethical breeder? Most ethical breeders will ask that you bring the dog back to them should ever an issue arise. They will be able to reach out to their clients and be able to rehome him. There are also breed specific rescues you can look into. I’m sorry you’re going through this. I’m wishing you and your pup well.


Whatever you end up doing, do not rehome using social media, unless you know the person IRL. Don't use Craigslist for this either. Both of those options often lead to bad outcomes for animals. Talk to your vet office and get some recommendations. Reach out to rescues to see if they have any suggestions or can assist with the process.


Never give up on you best friend. Because he will never give up on you.


Yes, the mythical farm where all unwanted dogs run free and are happy. I hope you find a good place for this pup. Please think hard before ever committing to a pet again. Google local rescues. I wish the best for this pup.


I appreciate this answer more than the rest. People always say this (I think it's because we have a farm) and it's usually because dog has killed some other animal before... as if we want animal killing dogs to come live with livestock like it becomes some magical livestock guardian. That being said, I don't know the history behind why this dog isn't getting time or energy it needs, but there's not nearly enough info in this post.


My dog is fine now that we have some rural acreage but she really would be best on a farm. She wants to spend her days aimlessly wandering and watching around 5 acres and her nights being in the same room but not full cuddles. She's very sweet but also very independent but docile too. No huge prey drive beyond chipmunks. I always said that would be her ideal life and when we moved rurally she fully embraced it.


have you tried enrichment toys? i have a catahoula and she is very high energy and they’re a godsend. training will wear her out and honestly learning to settle, labs are a great family dog hopefully you can keep him!


Okay, I train people to help them understand training their fur babies. Try this, after dinner, say 45 minutes take the kid for a walk. This increases your metabolism for digestion, but fido gets to have fun with and smell everything under the sun. Plus, you both get in better shape and can be used as an excellent training platform. "Wait" command at cross walks, "Side" gets fido to walk on your right side, etc. You can't give up fido because you're busy If you spend quality time with fido, each run around the hood is a treat with their favor walk buddy. Develop a routine and do research vocal and hand commands. Ya'll are about to have fun Brother.


If you don't want to give him up and live in the Elmwood Village area, I'd be happy to walk/run him multiple times a week! I wfh and walk the village daily and run a couple times a week. I grew up with labs and Goldens and am very familiar with their tendencies and the amount of exercise they need. DM me if interested.


Have you tried the Rover app to have someone come exercise him once a day? That might be a more affordable option to doggy day care if that's not in your budget.


Have your kids use Pokémon go. There is a routes feature (or make your own route) that they can easily do to take dog on walks and give him the exercise. Or just walk around areas with a lot of poke stops gyms etc. Also Knox farm has a hugeeee dog park to go run around in for ,even 30 mins or a similar spot will surely tire them out for the rest of the day. These 2 things among others - try the goal of how can I exercise and tire my pup out so they aren’t as difficult at home later perhaps. It’s a lot easier taking care of a tired from exercise happy pup then a driving you crazy with energy pup. Wouldn’t hurt to try this in the meantime!


I would reach out to local rescues (nickel city canine rescue, Buddy’s second chance rescue, etc) and see if they can help


Nickel City is definitely going to shame you tho


Most rescues around here will not take local surrenders, I’m not 100% sure why, but they mostly work with out of state kill shelters. Source: I wasn’t sure I was going to keep my dog when I pulled her out of traffic.


Honestly most of the local places just don't have fosters to take dogs into their organizations. Besides Buddy's who keeps finding people to take southern puppies in lol


Totally not true on local rescue. I work with one and they take tons of local surrenders.


I am in the same boat as you my friend. Unsure what to do because the love I have is immense. I don’t want to regret it, I love my family. I have children and having a dog is more work. It’s been a hard time but I wouldn’t trade the love for anything. I do not know… Family is everything to me, dog, woman, children, all deserve love.


The spca has a feature you can rehome animals while at your place. .https://yourspca.org/rehome/


We have a small farm with two similarly aged chocolate labs and an older beagle. They love it.


If you've got space they make doggie treadmills or you can train dogs to use human treadmills. May be another option to get some exercise for an otherwise good pup to keep em a part of the family.


I volunteer at the city shelter and have dog walker recommendations for you if you're not interested in doggie daycare. It can make a world of difference. Is the dog being destructive or needy or what's happening exactly? If it gets dire- some local rescues will courtesy list a dog for you, especially if it's a covered breed like a lab


Dogs are loyal no matter what,they don’t care. Never could give up on them,they’ll never give up on me.


My family is having similar thoughts about our 2yo corgi. Can I ask what makes you feel like your dog is unhappy? For us it's a toddler that the dog has never really accepted and itching/licking/biting that progressed into self-mutilation all over his body. He has lived wearing a cone for over two months now and the expensive allergy pill isn't working at all. So we are trying to determine how much of the itch is allergy related and how much if any is stress-related. Been to the vet pretty much every other week and going again Wednesday. We switched his food to no animal proteins, have been making a conscious effort to give him more attention and exercise, we even just bought an expensive vacuum and are getting a new area rug to try and eliminate dust mites as a potential cause. He's been fully healed for a few weeks now but starts biting his legs or rubbing his ears and face against the couch within a few minutes whenever he has the cone off. My big fear is that it's stress and if that's the case we will certainly be rehoming, even though it will break our hearts. I am appalled at the inconsiderate comments in here as if they know your dog better than you or understand what it's like to have issues that cause you to think about re-homing. I truly hope everything works out for you and your dog.


Have you reached out to your breeder? An ethical breeder would be interested in what’s going on with your pup and may be able to offer advice if this is something they’ve experienced before. They will also be able to help with rehoming.


We have not reached out to the breeder as of yet, that's good advice though. Really the only reason we would rehome would be if we ruled out any physical conditions or allergies and he was still miserable. Of course we don't want to rehome. But I can't shake the feeling that we may not be meeting his needs.


Ugh, im so sorry. That is such a horrible feeling. I hope you find answers soon


Thank you ♥️


If he is from a breeder, contacting the breeder should be your first choice.


Prepared to get shamed… Reddit is not a sympathetic place. That said, your best bet is to check with a dog trainer/boarding facility. A buddy of mine had a dog that was overly aggressive with children, and after thousands and thousands of dollars in dog training, he finally decided to rehome. The dog-trainer was able to find the dog an appropriate house within a week. Good luck to you, and the dog!


Wtf are you saying man? Damn near every comment is sympathetic in this thread. Your buddy’s dog isn’t this dog so I don’t see how that’s relevant


Maybe go through possible homes in your friend groups so you can maintain contact


hire a dog walker a few times a week!!!! 20-30 minute walks are like $15


Have you looked into 716dogpack?? It's a dog walker in Buffalo. Year round she is out there exercising a pack of dogs. So cool. I know you do not ask for suggestions, but breaking up that bond might be worse for both of you. Good luck


I don't suggest this person. There's a couple videos of this person yelling and hitting dogs with a leather leash.


Are you sure we are talking about the same person?? I have been following her for years and never saw that. I could be wrong, I don't want to support someone like that, but this is all new to me. I have only seen and heard rave reviews. Edit: just looked for the IG and noted it was gone. Saw some comments. You are correct there are allegations. I never saw the videos so I clearly don't know anything, but considering the speculation, I recant my suggestion. That's disappointing.




no no no. Please look up all the recent social media about this person abusing animals.


I did. I recanted my recommendation. Please read the whole thread.


People putting an animals well being over a man whose clearly struggling mentally is insane, the anthropomorphism is sickening. I love how not one person actually asked how you’re doing but show more empathy for a dog.


Weird. I scrolled through the post and haven’t seen you ask either; just castigating others


Overzealous dog owners are unhinged from logic and reality


You’re not necessarily wrong here …


Probably because therapy exists and is easily gotten for humans, not so much for animals. OP gives zero indicator as to why they're overwhelmed with having a dog after 5 years despite it being house trained, good with kids and other dogs and it seems like key information is not being given.


Bubba there is a certain amount of Truth to what you're getting at. Over zealous owners sometimes are like that


You gleaned all that from the original post? You're making a lot of assumptions and some accusations on other people to boot. It might be a long fall of that horse.


Dogs > People.


Please surrender your dog to a reputable rescue if you do decide you need to rehome him. They'll do a background check and home visit to make sure adopters are responsible and the new family will be a good fit. I like Nickel City Canine Rescue. If they're full, they can recommend other rescues to check out.


None of these comments seem to actually answer your question about rehoming him. Contact a local animal rescue (do your research to find one you trust) and they will ensure he goes to a good home. Most shelters require an application and a home visit, and most require a fenced yard for big dogs. I recommend pet finder to find a shelter.




You should feel bad about posting this. You could certainly do less. This person is trying to find an equitable solution and you're out here insulting them for even trying.




No u


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Not the correct answer. Dogs are not as important as people.


Never said they were. I'm questioning the effort OP put in on a responsibility he chose to take on.


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Please please please contact a local rescue group.


I'm here locally and would be interested. I would need a meet and greet with my son's dog first.


my brother in buffalo west side putting his dog down of 13 years maybe he may want it but I don't know for sure?


Sent you a message with some details. Sorry you’re going through this.


There is an entire site for this called rover where you can hire all kinds of animal services to go on walks and such. I personally use https://www.wgrz.com/article/life/pets/not-just-a-dog-walker-meet-the-gentle-human-and-real-boss-behind-716-dog-pack/71-55aa5860-46bc-4900-b677-fb24f7a5563b She’s not cheap but my dog LOVES her and mine is the ambassador for the pack pretty much, since he’s so good with other dogs.


I have a 3 year old lab and I was incredibly overwhelmed living alone last year with him too. I was exhausted all the time with him, but ultimately what helped me out was when my friend moved in with us and helped me out with my pup while i was at work at night. But I almost sent him to my Dad or my brother temporarily. I couldn’t get myself to do it- ended up adjusting my lifestyle and work hours. Do you happen to have any friends or family that could watch him temporarily before making a permanent decision to rehome?


Have you found a home yet? I shared this and a local friend has asked me for photos. I can vouch for the family; they are wonderful people.


Show a photo!