Living with a dog in an apartment

Living with a dog in an apartment

Caroline Rockey and Cooper at home. Photo Caroline Rockey.

Pet parent Caroline Rockey knows about living with a dog in an apartment.

It took a lot of research and convincing before Caroline was ready to bring home an adorable Labradoodle puppy called Cooper.

Caroline and her partner, Darren, are expecting their first baby in a few months time. Caroline shares their experience of raising a puppy in an apartment and how they’re preparing Cooper for the baby’s arrival at the end of May.

Pets4Life: What made you decide to get dog while living in apartment?

Caroline: My partner Darren had been asking me for years if we can get a dog. I kept saying no as I thought it was cruel to have a dog in an apartment. I love dogs and had them all through my childhood, however I lived in house with a garden where the dog had plenty of space. I now live in an area which is pretty much all apartment blocks and every second person seems to have a dog. After a lot of research and talking to owners and breeders I was finally convinced to get a dog.

Living with a dog in an apartment

Cooper loves watching the world go by. Photo: Caroline Rockey

Pets4Life: Why did you decide on a Labradoodle (Labrador Retriever Poodle cross)?

Caroline: Living in an apartment and with a baby on the way I wanted a dog that didn’t shed and was good with children. I also wanted a smart and sociable dog. I’ve always loved the Labradoodle, so after a lot of research, the Labradoodle was our dog breed of choice.

Pets4Life: What changes to your lifestyle did you make for Cooper?

Caroline: There have been some big lifestyle changes since we brought home Cooper 4 months ago. I am lucky that I work for an organisation that promotes flexible working. For the  first 2 weeks I worked from home. I now work at home one day a week. I get up an hour earlier to take the dog to the park and am at the park every evening. No more going out straight from work!

Pets4Life: What’s Cooper’s daily routine?

Caroline: Every day is different for Cooper! The mornings are always the same, we can be found in Rushcutters Bay Park (Sydney). Once a week he goes to his grandparents place. I’m at home one day a week and one or two days a week he goes to our neighbour. On the days he’s at home by himself all day he has a dog walker come at lunch time. Sometimes he goes to Happy Paws Fitness, especially on the hot days as they have air conditioning!

Pets4Life: You have a baby due at the end of May 2017, how are preparing Cooper for this big change in his life?

Caroline: I’ve spoken to a lot of people in the park who have dogs and babies. Everyone says once the baby is born, before it comes home, we need to bring home one of its wraps so Cooper can get used to the baby smell. We’ve downloaded an app which has a baby crying, we give him treats when we play the app so he can gradually get used to the new noise and learn that it is nothing to fear. We have friends with kids so since day 1 we’ve had him around children in preparation.