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by Abigail Van Buren

Off-Topic Discussions Cause Patient to Question Therapist

DEAR ABBY: My husband wants a puppy. He is almost 75 and plays golf four days a week. I'm 70 and work four days a week. I also do lots of volunteer work, which I enjoy.

I not only do not want the responsibility of a pet, but I also feel that a pet is a family member. It will need more attention than my husband has time to give, not to mention the time, effort and consistency needed to train a puppy. Our neighbor has a dog that my sweet hubby can play with every day if he wants to. Please help me. -- RETIRED PET LOVER IN LOUISIANA

DEAR PET LOVER: If your sweet hubby feels the need to pet and cuddle a puppy, tell him he can do so at the local shelter. Then suggest that if he wants to adopt a dog, it should be an older one from a shelter or rescue group. If he does, you stand a better chance of winding up with a pet that is already trained and housebroken, and the responsibility for educating it won't fall on your shoulders.

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