DEAR PAW’S CORNER: Help! I’m in over my head. I wanted a dog just like a cute, white, fluffy one that I saw on YouTube, so I bought one online called a “Samoyed” and picked it up at the airport. “Mikey” is cute, white and fluffy, but he’s also hyperactive and loud! He barks all the time. He wants to run outside my apartment. He won’t hold still for pictures. He chews everything, he smells terrible and he poops everywhere. I did not pay for this! How can I get my money back? — Bilked in Buffalo
DEAR BILKED: You didn’t get cheated; you got a dog. That’s exactly how dogs behave! They are energetic, communicative, living beings. They love to chew things. Their breath smells kind of funny, and their fur can smell funky after a run outside. They need exercise, training, food and love.
Samoyeds like Mikey are especially energetic, because they were originally bred for hunting and as guard dogs. You’ll need to keep him on a leash outside, because he will chase smaller mammals, especially cats and rabbits. He’ll get bigger, too; Samoyeds are medium-large to large dogs.
Don’t try to return Mikey or get your money back (if that’s even possible since you bought him online). The trauma you’ll cause him may be unrecoverable. Instead, if you have friends with well-behaved dogs, talk to them and get advice. Pick up a book on caring for Samoyeds. And schedule some sessions with a dog trainer.
You chose Mikey to be your family member. He depends on you. He’ll do his best to make you happy, but you need to care for him and show him how to be a good dog.
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