Completely gratuitous new puppy post

So this post has nothing to do with being an expat partner or really to do with being an expat – apart from it is the final chapter in the story that started way back when we promised our daughter’s we would get them a dog when they were uspset we were moving to South Africa. And that getting a dog seems to be a very common thing to do here in Pretoria – maybe something to do with the ease of having constant access to the outside, good weather and a bit of peace of mind that it may bark when someone tries to break into your home (but don’t get too excited about this, when you see my pictures you will realise that my little one is hardly going to be much of a threat to anything bigger than a beetle).

Oh and also that my next post on expat depression going out later this week does mention getting a dog as one self-help methodΒ  to make yourself feel better.

Anyway apart from that this is really just a post to introduce you to Cooper, our nine-week old miniature schnauzer puppy who joined the Expat Partner’s Survival Guide household last week.


An absolute charmer, Cooper has already wheedled his way into our hearts with his cuteness, bounciness and teddybear fur. He also has impecable manners and apart from one accident has done all his business outside and sleeps all night without a murmer. I know this breed is recommended for its family-friendliness and we certainly have not been disappointed – he is brilliant with the children and apart from the usual puppy propensity to chew and nip, plus a bit of a gas problem as he gets used to new food, I can’t fault him.


Of course with new puppy comes new responsibility and as a first-time dog owner I am still getting used to having another little-one to think about. He is about one million times easier than either of my babies ever were but I still need to make sure he is fed, watered, taken outside, played with, trained, kept healthy, groomed every six weeks or so…and travel now becomes slightly more complicated as we have to ensure he is always booked in to kennels well in advance of any trip we make (until the time he will be old enough to take on some of the holidays with us). Plus in a couple of years time we will have to go through the rigmarole of getting him back home to England (thank goodness quarantine between South Africa and the UK is now a thing of the past).


In the end though, I have a feeling it will all be worth it!

Do you have an expat dog? Please tell me about him or her in the comments section – including whether you moved them from another country and if so how the move went.

My Expat Family

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25 thoughts on “Completely gratuitous new puppy post

    • I do believe that getting a dog can really help children with this transition – although we wouldn’t have wanted to do it much earlier than we did. This is mainly because of all the holidays and travelling and exploring we wanted to do within the first six months – not such an issue when you repatriate!


  1. We adopted a rescue dog – a township special. In addition to barking at strangers and workmen she lets us know if there are any big bugs or frogs about and I would hope she would alert me to any more snakes (I encountered one in the garage pre-dog).

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  2. He is so cute! My next door neighbor had two Schnauzer’s–Einstein and Mozart. It was a riot when I would let me two dogs out–all the barking and chatter that went on through the fence. And then they would get bored with each other and just walk away. Dogs are wonderful and Cooper sounds like he is just perfect. So happy for you and your girls.

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  3. Awwww – Cooper is gorgeous and many thanks for adding him to #AnimalTales! We brought our cat and dog with us from the UK to France and now have another dog and 3 more cats … and pigs/chickens/ducks …. πŸ˜‰ The latter are really a farm animals but I am not sure what we’d do with the extra cats if we had to go back to the UK.

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  4. Awww hello Cooper! He’s gorgeous Clara! It’s totally a relevant post, this little guy is a new addition to your expat family πŸ™‚ your new baby! Funny that you’re finding him easier than your kids, I find my Koopa to be more hard work haha!
    Can he be taken for walks there or does he stay in the compound?
    Thanks for sharing this gorgeous little guy with #myexpatfamily I’ve been excited to “meet” him

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    • Do you call your Koopa Koopa the Pooper Scooper too? Or find yourself singing Super Koopa life is going to find you…..etc??!! I think he is easier than the kids because they are 8 and 10 – although he is also a lot easier than they were as babies. No way would they sleep from 10pm – 5/5,30am!!!


      • haha yes the sleep thing is definitely better with a dog!!! haha yes he gets all sorts of names! Cooper was actually our second choice for a boys name (instead of Freddie) its a good job we didn’t go with that as the nicknames are too easy haha!!!

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  5. So jealous! We moved to BCN with 2 labs who were already on the older side. Unfortunately, they both passed on before our stint there was up. We would love to get one in the NL but our landlord has said no. We’re continuing to work on them!!

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