OT: Late Night Chat


I'm turning to my favorite community for some late night chat. Basically just need someone to talk to- I'm having a night. Went to my parents for the first time since the lockdown started lifting to see them, and to see the new dog they adopted. I brought my dog so they could meet. Unfortunately, the meeting didn't go well, and several hours and a trip to the animal hospital later, me and my dog are back at our own house, except he's got some drugs in him, the cone of shame around his head, and some stitches on the side of his face/mouth.

My family is a cluster right now, as just about all of us blame ourselves for this happening. My parents aren't sure if they will wind up keeping the dog (they had just recently gotten him, I know, too early, and can still return him with no penalty). What would have been a nice reunion weekend has turned into a disaster.

So...how is everyone else's night going?

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Sorry to hear that man. I'm glad your dog made it out with minimal injuries it seems.

Yeah its just one cut on his mouth that needed stitches. He'll be fine in a couple of weeks, just kind of threw everyone.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

I'm sitting at my computer with my dopey, freaked out dog at my feet because we had a thunderstorm. I love my dog but I never realized how dumb Shi Tzus are. I joke about it but this dog is seriously nothing more than a glorified stuff animal. Also just drinking some Captain and Cokes while this spaz shakes at my feet.

On a good note, my contractor is finally getting the demo and rebuild of my deck started Monday. I started the conversation with the contractor in mid February, and we are just getting it started Monday. We had to get something 4 parties agreed on; us, the contractor, county builder inspector, and the HOA. That part took MONTHS.

Yeah my dog isn't a thunderstorm fan either.

That's great about your deck though. Are you just rebuilding your old deck or do you have a new design?

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

Same basic layout but different design. My deck is a two story one. The top and bottom decks are both going to be 14.5' by 18'. My current deck as deck stairs that connect the 1st and 2nd floors. However, the HOA changed the architectural convanant 5 years ago to forbid deck stairs that are built outside of the deck because "they obstruct the view of your neighbors". I live in a group of townhouses. Our "view" is of the townhouses behind us. What view are we obstructing? Luckily my contractor got a waiver for some metal spiral stairs that will be built under the 2nd story. Oh and the back of my house has a triangular bump out so the county says the deck has to be a free standing deck which seriously increased the cost.

EDIT: And I am getting an underdeck drainage system put under the 2nd level to keep the 1st level completely dry. I am going to put an outdoor sectional out there and see if I can find a portable TV stand so I can make this new deck into an outdoor living area. I already have the grill and smoker out there. All of that will make for a nice outdoor living room in the fall.

Oof, that's rough. Your deck wasn't grandfathered in when they changed the rules on stairs? Or did you need to replace it for other reasons and couldn't keep the exemption?

HOAs can be rough. I feel they can have their place if done right but you hear more horror stories than success stories, that's for sure.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

No grandfathering. Once I replace the surface material, my HOA required the deck be brought up to currently requirements. The county building inspector required the same because the way the builder constructed this old one in '98 was just stupid. Instead of making the posts 6"x6" posts they nailed 3 2"x6"s together and the top and bottom frames are connected to the same posts. Oh, and the top deck was made almost entirely out of 2"x4"s. The contractor I hired were baffled at how this thing was constructed. Nothing about this thing meets code. I don't know how they got it past inspectors then but it was the last 90's building boom so who knows.

Sounds like a painful process. But your future plans for it sound sweet. Hopefully now that its all approved it goes through smoothly.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

I will never live in a place with an HOA again. Things got so bad that I had to go around and politic with everyone and got myself elected to the board so I could try to put a stop to a lot of nonsense. An awful 3 years. I couldn't go outside my house without someone bothering me about inconsequential things. I came home one evening and found an 11 page, typed, single space manifesto taped to my door with a litany of complaints going back 20 years.

We dealt with an HOA in Ashburn as renters for five years so when we bought our house no HOA was at the top of the list. Best move we ever made. Added bonus an HOA community is on the other side of the fence so they get to look at my trailer.

Now my parents had a really obnoxious one in Maryland. They sent them a letter about a holly tree encasing the mailbox that sprang out of bird droppings 20 years ago and said that was simply too unsightly (my parents kept it pruned and shaped). My Dad called DEQ and the lady there deemed it a native street tree and said it was illegal to cut it down. My parents then smugly sold their house.

Fuck HOAs... So much.

Country building inspector and HOA...


I am not sure what to do with my hands now

what kind of and size of dogs are they?

Both mutts. My dog is about 40 lbs, my parents new dog is a bit bigger.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

well, if you want to try to keep them you can muzzle lead them. get two of these:

then take them for runs and walks together. Whoever was the aggressor try to keep behind the other dog. Make sure they don't pull or get in front of you so they know you're pack leader. Eventually have the family go for walks together with both dogs on lead and then change to normal lead. Make sure the dogs stay behind the humans as you all walk.

keep doing that and there is potential that they will calm down and be able to be chill with each other. Would take little time but I use this to help a lot of dogs come together in situations like this. If you guys do want to keep the dog can give it a try.

To add to this, have them meet at a neutral place. Your parents dog might be protecting his/hers territory.

yep. great note

As a dog professional, I concur with this post.

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Hang in there man we are all struggling in one way or another. My wife and I were considered "essential"...but she's works at social services so her life has been hell and I'm in commercial Tire sales And haven't had a day off and took a "voluntary" pay cut on top of the fact I'm 100 percent commission. Just thankful we are working and at least able
To feed the kids...I hope things clear up and we come out of this soon stronger and better than ever, and however trivial it sounds Go Hokies and god bless the usa👊🏻👊🏻...good luck hokie brother


Yeah. And I understand there's so much worse going on out there. My dog will be fine, even if he walks around in a cone of shame for a couple of weeks.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

Brutal stuff, sorry about the pup conflict. Back in the day I had a few trips to the vet after the cat met... something outside and returned with injuries. Never fun but with a little care they'll bounce back.

How my night going? I slow cooked some chicken and a bunch of pseudo-Mexican ingredients with the intention of using the last few corn tortillas I had to make some soft tacos. Turns out I'm pretty much out of cheese and the corn tortillas, which fall apart regularly anyway, are a little more brittle than normal so I had to eat it straight off the plate.

that's when you make some cuban black beans and rice my friend. tortillas not needed

I just looked up that recipe and it's not too dissimilar to what I actually made. I do have some leftover brown rice, a lime, and some olive oil so maybe that's what I'll go with for the leftovers.

nice! Cuban black beans on rice I could eat nearly everyday if I had to. It's so dead simple and delicious.

Introduce it to China, a new business venture for you :)

oh man, food service scares me as a business. So much out of my control.

fortunately the Latin food game here is not too bad. Mexican, Brazilian, Peruvian, Caribbean, Cuban all covered. Shanghai even got their first Chili's earlier this year upping the TexMex offerings.

It's all good man, I think most people are hurting right now in some kind of way. This is my town right now:

Here's a tweet that really got me thinking tonight:

I swear, when we get through this, we're all going to hug it out over some bourbon and football.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Yeah things are crazy right now in the world. 2020 was been a wild ride down the toilet.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

I'm really close to getting our first dog. No idea what I'll get or anything like that, but I want one.

Amateur superstar and idiot extraordinaire.

As a long time dog owner, going back to childhood, I can attest to the benefits, and soberly discuss the downsides of dog ownership. I'm here to tell you that dogs are wonderful companions, but a really big commitment, both emotionally and financially. If you have no experience, it's worth doing some research before getting one. They can live up to 20 years, though most don't, but any dog you choose is going to be around a while if you're lucky, so choose carefully. Vet bills are a given, and have risen precipitously over the decades, and travel becomes a problem even though more and more options are available for dog friendly rentals, motels, etc. Don't give in to a desire for an "in" breed, and check out the characteristics of the various breeds, the benefits of mutts vs purebreds, and the physical needs of the type of dog you are interested in. Educate yourself on how to be a responsible and successful dog owner, and plan to invest the time it will take to train your dog for its sake as well as for you and the rest of us. I just buried my third dog in the last 8 years, and while she lived a long life, it never gets easier. Thing is, all the heartbreak at the end, and often the various troubles through their lives, is worth it for the love you will receive. We are happy to have a young one to offset the pain, and cannot envision living without a dog. While we've rescued many dogs, and have had as many as five at a time as we helped strays, we had always had at least two and often three dogs at a time. Living in the country made that easier. That and good fencing. Now, in our approaching dotage, we're down to one and hope to stay that way, but for Mrs. Fish and I, life without one would be an empty life, indeed.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I got my first dog right after my wife (GF at the time) moved in with me. It was one of the most stressful times because I knew nothing about caring for a dog. A month in my wife walked with me and the dog and asked what i was doing, "looking to see if she pooped", my wife nervously laughed realizing I didnt know that dogs look different when they pooped and peed.

She was a beagle pitbull mix we adopted from Lost Dogs rescue. We met her in a pet smart where I got on the floor to play with some dogs. Kaley crawled up into my lap and feel asleep. She knew I was the one before i did.

Having no kids, I had to change my life around for that dog. And I loved every minute of it. She was incredibly smart, had a vocabulary of ~125 words. And was incredibly manipulative to get herself more food, or after the puppy came, how to get the puppy to move out of the seat she wanted.

Three weeks ago we had to put her down a month before she turned 10. She had internal bleeding to a tumor in her liver. She had multiple tumors on her liver and some in her lungs. That morning was like every other morning, she ate breakfast, went out and sat there expecting her cookie as I left for work. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do. She had multiple medical issues that weighed in heavily to our decision.

I miss her every day. My mornings are spent alone as Ruby spends them in bed with my wife. For over 8 years I always had a buddy with me every morning.

Kaley touched so many lives. So many people have cried over her death as she was truly loved by so many people. I miss her so much. Having her as part of my life made it so much better.

I truly wish I could say I didn't know how you feel, but I'd be lying through my teeth. While we've had a lot of dogs in our 47 years of marriage, and have loved them all, there are some that just stand out for one or the other of us. We also had no children, so our dogs got that love, but as most dog owners will tell you, the only thing wrong with dogs is that they just don't live long enough. We've dealt with tumors, bone cancer, brain malfunctions and untimely heart attack in our time, as well as one that was hit by a car before we learned that owning a dog means restraining your dog safely at all times. You adopt the impending heartbreak when you adopt a dog, but like I said, in the end, it's all worth it.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Paraphrasing Benjamin Franklin - Beer (and Dogs!) are proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

What is your goal with the dog? Describe your average day/lifestyle. What is your current living arraignment? What are you looking for, activity-level-wise?

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Medium-large dog, not like great dane large (thought I wanted one until one of my friends got one and holy moly it's something. Huge, expensive...super nice, just damn lol). Something me and my wife could run with. Labradoodle-esque would be perfect, but looked them up and also, super expensive. We'll go the spca route 99% sure. So...we'll end up with a mutt, which is totally fine by me. All we had growing up was mutts are they were great.

Amateur superstar and idiot extraordinaire.

I absolutely love Border Collies. Had one named Bo growing up and he was my personal Air Bud. Loved to play basketball, soccer, you name it. If you've got the room for them to get out the energy they are incredible animals.

One of my friends has one, very friendly, smart dog. Does incredibly well with their two year old son.

Amateur superstar and idiot extraordinaire.

Oh you know that dog is working the long con. Once that kid can open a door it will herd the kid to the pantry and then cookies galore!

Most dogs aren't capable of that long a con, but I wouldn't put it past a border collie. They damned smart.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Going with a reputable breeder is a safer alternative to shelter adoptions, but I don't not support shelter adoptions.

With a reputable breeder, yes, you're paying more, but you're getting a better "low floor" kind of dog. You're going to know the genetic health traits, and early testing will help catch potential health concerns down the road. Additionally, a reputable breeder will be a good resource if you have any breed specific questions.

You wouldn't get this out of a shelter pet. Going that route, I know it pulls at the heartstrings, but a dog with a sad history probably (not always) has some issues. I adopted a whippet through a rescue agency that had had a history of neglect and was a puppy mill dog. We had to put him down at 3 because of crippling anxiety, neurosis, blood disorders, seizures, and strokes. The only thing we were told was he was skittish around people and was particularly afraid of kids. The money spent on vet bills, prescription anti-psychotics, and blood medications far exceeded the cost of going to a breeder. Don't get me wrong, going the breeder route doesn't guarantee a more cost effective long-term solution, but it does decrease the risk.

That being said, we have a mix that was a rescue as well who has been perfect for going on ten years, minus some issues with a tricky leg.

My final word: Stay the F away from a pet store. In my experience, they're all puppy mills.

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

absolutely agree.

I typically rehome dogs from returning expats many of who had their first pet and the rescues almost all have some issue. nearly all have high anxiety and separation issues. Alternatively those that bought a breed as first time pets run into issues with misunderstanding energy level for different breeds and get borders or huskies because they're smart, playful and look cool. Then find out they are in way over their head and end up not wanting to take the pet with them when they leave. The amount of huskies I have rehomed over the years.... really a shame.

So do some research on breeds and get one that fits how active you are now, not how active you wish you are if you had a dog and went on walks and runs. Breed standards are generally good starting points but run some temperament tests when you meet the puppies (if you get a chance to) and pick the one that falls in the middle and not overly assertive or submissive. Don't choose by looks alone.

One of my dads friends was going to get a puppy, he asked another professor from their vet school who specialized in dogs on what was a good dog to get, the next day there was a list of dog breeds (pure) with all their medical issues. At the bottom it said go to the humane society and get a mutt, it will be the best dog you can get.

I have had two mutts from Lost Dogs, a beagle, pit, working dog mix and a chihuahua, pit, cocker spaniel, lab, jack russel mix. They have been great dogs. Though they are complete opposites of each other in every way. The beagle was extremely smart, the other is a fun loving happy dog, that will dive face first into the couch to try and catch that annoying red dot. (the beagle saw the dot for the first time and then looked right at my wife's hand and then gave the other dog a look of shame that it was so stupid to fall for it)

The beagle did have some abandonment issues we had to work through. However, she made from Lynchburg to spotsylvania and was in a kill shelter when Lost Dogs picked her up, so she had seen some stuff. We went and played with both our dogs at the adoption events before bringing them home to make sure they did well with us.

Sorry to hear about the dog situation dude. A few months ago our 2 dogs got into it (out of nowhere and after having no issues for over a year) that ended in a 11pm trip to the animal hospital.

The older one had a gash on her neck, but she was acting totally normal within a day or two. The vets told us dogs tend to forget those bad nights very quickly

Virginia Tech School of Architecture Class of 2014
Fan of Hokies, Ravens, NY Giants, Orioles

Yeah I think my dog will forget it much faster then my family will, unfortunately. The hardest part for him is that he's gotta wear a cone to keep him from pulling at the stitches, and he is definitely struggling with that.

There's always a lighthouse. There's always a man. There's always a city.

Tough break.

I had a dog that I loved dearly, but due to improper early socialization, couldn't really be around other dogs when leashed (not allowed to approach other dogs). Unleashed, she was fine.

Hard to fix improper socialization, but I think it can be somewhat addressed with a lot of time and effort. Not an easy job.

Sadly, my otherwise wonderful wife is allergic to dogs. Shows how much I love her that I still asked her to marry me.

Just enjoy the time with the wonderful furry one. They are such great members of the family. I'm sure it will get better.

Recovering scientist working in business consulting

My daughter is allergic, and we learned that we could get doodles! And she is fine with our puppers.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

We had Christmas at my family's house in 2012. My uncle brought his dog, my aunt and uncle brought their dog, and we have two dogs. We had a fight break out the second my uncle's dog got there between one of ours and his. Then my aunt and uncle show up and we quickly find out their dog won't be able to co-exist either. That holiday, we could never have more than one dog (unless it was my family's two) in the same place at once. We constantly rotated them between the basement, main floor, and garage. Well, on Christmas morning, there was a miscommunication. My aunt and uncle's dog ended up in the backyard at the same time as my other uncle's dog. They start fighting, and my dad literally had to use a hose to separate them. We then ended up at the ER because one of my uncles had to get stitches from the whole thing. We didn't end up opening our Christmas presents till that afternoon.

It's not fun. I know where you are coming from. I hope it's able to work out. Like someone said above, maybe have them meet on neutral territory to get them used to each other.

Marshall University graduate.
Virginia Tech fanatic.
Formerly known as JWillHokieAlum.

Was at a party several years ago, with a bunch of pit bulls running around. They got along pretty well, but a couple of them finally got into it. One of the fellows there separated them and in so doing, got a small bite on the hand or arm, cannot recall. Anyway, long short of it is that he died from the bite. He'd been a rugby player and had lost his spleen to an injury I think I remember as being caused by playing rugby, but either way, no spleen means no protection against some things. In this case, something in the dog's saliva. It happened really fast once he got sick and to the hospital the week after, but they couldn't save him. For the record, none of the pits was aggressive, but there was a pig cooked and they got scrapping over a morsel.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

My dog, he's 13.5 now, he was properly socialized as a puppy. Very friendly up until about 2 yr-old. We were living in a condo and our neighbor came out the door at the same time as us and her Pitt mix attacked my dog. He was never the same on the leash. Always leash aggression. Off the leash in the yard he is cool. That incident ruined him on the leash and we could never figure out how to bring him back. Needless to say, I hate people who don't put their dog on a leash in public spaces. Stop telling me your dog is friendly. Mine isnt!

Where's the beef?