The ordinary moments #8: Deciding whether to take your dog to Australia

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The ordinary moment this week is of T1 and our labradoodle, Ted, curled up on the sofa watching TV together.

T1 and Ted

Ted is just coming up to two years  old and we all adore him. He’s a challenge – he loves to chew cuddly toys and bits of wooden train track (which we have a lot of!), he pulls on the lead when he gets over excited and he’s very nervous of other people, but he’s our dog and we all love him.

We got him the week before I fell pregnant with E, so she has grown up climbing all over him. He doesn’t mind her grabbing handfuls of his curls and constantly tries to lick her as though she’s his puppy. She giggles and opens her mouth to lick him back so I have to step in. She likes to share her food with him – I often catch her taking a lick of a bread stick and then handing it over to him for a lick before moving it back towards her mouth. Having a dog with young kids is incredible hard, and there have been times I’ve wondered if I’m strong enough to keep going with it because he needs so much attention and exercise, but we hate the way the house feels empty without him.

We never expected to be making the move to Australia when we got him. It was the impending likelihood of redundancy that made us look into it again. One of our biggest decisions about going has been what to do with Ted. We looked into taking him and there wouldn’t be much change from £5k for the flight, medical expenses and quarantine. That on it’s own wasn’t a deal breaker (although we really can’t afford that on top of the estimated £20k cost to relocate us as a family, which is coming out of our house equity), but research has shown it will be difficult to find a house to rent with a big dog and we’re going to have to rent for a year so we can decide where we’d like to buy.  Add to that the fact he’s a nervous dog who will be very upset being away from us for days in quarantine. It just won’t work.

We’ve had moments of thinking we have to work out a way to take him but we know that practically we just can’t do it. This week we’ve started to explore new families to take him on. It’s so so difficult. The first family we met loved him but he was too much of a handful for them as they’d never had a dog before, let alone a big puppy like him. The next couple we considered lived in a flat and decided they’d be better with an  older, smaller dog instead. The third family have young kids and another dog and we aren’t sure if he’s going to be too much for them as he needs ongoing training as well as lots of reassurance. Trying out new families is emotionally draining for us and probably isn’t much fun for him either.

Re-homing a dog is heartbreaking, but what makes it worse is being in a state of limbo. I’m scared to play with him and cuddle him because I’m getting more and more attached. It feels like we’re giving one of our children away.  Our priority is making sure we find a new home for him that is just right, so we’re being very particular about it.


My ‘ordinary moment’ is something that I want to treasure because we might not be able to sit and cuddle him on the sofa for much longer. Whenever I look into these big brown eyes I crumble and burst into tears. Moving to Australia might be exciting, but it’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.



Review: HealGel rescue serum - a beauty treatment that also treats cuts, bruises and scars
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  1. says

    We were in the same place as you when we emigrated. We had a very nervous miniature poodle and decided that 6 months in quarantine would be the worst thing ever for him. Our in laws had him for us which was perfect x

    • says

      You’re so lucky – I wish our in laws would take him. They love him but he’s not the sort of dog they want and their older dog and cat aren’t keen on him as he’s such a playful puppy. I keep hoping a family member might take him on but it’s not likely. xx

  2. Aditee shelley says

    I have almost 3 year old twin boys, a 10 yr old cavalier King Charles spaniel and have just rehomed a 3 year old golden retriever. Together they are quite a handful and I spend many a day thinking I must be insane but we won’t have it any other way. Our house and hearts feel empty when even one of my 4 ‘kids’ are not there so I understand your pain. I could not do it. Stay string though and remember you are doing what is best for him. Someone will come along who will love him as much as you do.

    • says

      I really hope so. You don’t want a mad labradoodle to add to your brood do you?! Seriously, we really hope we can find the right home for him. He’s such a gorgeous dog. It’s breaking my heart. x

  3. says

    What a difficult decision to have to make. We don’t have any pets at the moment but I’m not sure how I’d feel about having to make that choice. I hope you can find someone who will take good care of him soon.

    • says

      Thanks, I hope so too. I never imagined it would be this hard when we first started talking about rehoming him. The right home for him is out there waiting somewhere. x

  4. says

    Oh you poor things! It must be a real struggle. Please try not to feel bad though i’m sure you will find him a lovely home and if i were you i would be doing the same x

    • says

      It’s so hard for us all. I really hope we find the perfect home for him so we don’t feel so bad about it as this is just breaking our hearts at the moment. xx

  5. cariemay says

    Oh gosh that’s a hard situation to be in. I really really hope a perfect family will come forward soon so that you can all put your minds at rest.

  6. says

    Oh this is really sad, and I totally didn’t realise you were going to Australia. How exciting yet such a hard decision to be in. I hope that you can find the perfect family for Ted. x

  7. says

    Aww had a tear looking at his little face bless him. What a difficult thing to do but if it’s any consolation I would’ve done the same! Hope you find the right home for him he looks gorgeous x

    • says

      Thanks. We know it’s the right thing for him as he’d hate quarantine and the journey there plus we might be moving around looking for work when we initially arrive. I know I’ll feel more relaxed when he’s found that perfect home. xx

  8. says

    Oh I’m so sorry. I’ve had too – got it’s hard to write this – give my dog up because he’s scared of our son. He goes this weekend and my heart is absolutely broken. I’ve had to wait over two months for Terrier Rescue to have room for him, because he nipped William (our little boy) in fright. My heart is absolutely broken. I’d take Ted, if I could handle the guilt. I know how horrible it is. I wish I could find a way for him to stay with you. xx

    • says

      It’s so so hard isn’t it? Especially if you’ve had to wait for two months knowing that he’d be going. We might have to consider the Labradoodle Trust route if we can’t find a home ourselves. I hope things go OK for you and he finds the most perfect home *hugs* xxx

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