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Old 08-29-2014, 01:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Our new GSD pups!

Sorry in advance for lengthy post. We brought our little boys home 9 days ago and have been enjoying settling into our new life with these sweet little land sharks. Meet Trapper and Hawkeye (male litter mates). To all of you who tried so hard to discourage us from getting litter mates……….I get it!!! Holy Toledo is this a monumental challenge! My husband and I have devoted 24/7 to these puppies since the moment we brought them home. We haven't had a normal night's sleep and don't anticipate one for a while yet. But the puppies seem to be doing well so far. They are crate trained and they know a few basic commands (Hawkeye is more mature than Trapper for some reason and has made slight better progress). Hawekeye's ears are up, Trappers are not. They have met about 50 people this week. They spend time during the day with my husband in his "man cave/workshop" so are exposed to lots of power tool noises. They have taken a few, short (slow) 4-wheeler rides and have been in the pool a couple of times (in my arms for a couple of minutes).
They are unflappable at this point. Currently are sound asleep in their kennels during a house-shaking thunderstorm….they just don't seem to care.
We realize having litter mates may not work out but we remain optimistic. If they show signs of compromise related to living as litter mates we will consider doing what is best for them, even if it means re-homing one (can't imagine having to make that decision as we are madly in love with both of course). However, will do what's best for them.
I have tons of questions but will start with one…….these boys play/wrestle all the time when together (and they seek each other out to play). Hawkeye is 10 pounds and Trapper is only 8 pounds. Hawkeye invariable is too rough with Trapper (bites an ear) or bites a leg, etc. Is this normal and when/how should we separate them? Will post pictures soon.
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Old 08-29-2014, 01:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I do not have littermates but my girls are 6 weeks apart in age... Athena is now almost 7 mos. and Eden is almost 5.5 mos... It will be tiring at times but it does get easier I promise.
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Athena d.o.b. 02/01/2014
Eden d.o.b. 03/15/2014
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Old 08-29-2014, 03:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you My2Shepherds for the words of encouragement. How did you manage when they were younger? How do you manage potty training during thunder/lightening/rain storms?
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Old 08-29-2014, 03:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake and Elwood View Post
Thank you My2Shepherds for the words of encouragement. How did you manage when they were younger? How do you manage potty training during thunder/lightening/rain storms?
I was advised (from this forum) to train them seperately since there is too much distraction together while they are so young. This really does work out better than trying to do anything serious with them together. I "allowed" their WWE time but only after training/exercise periods when they were a little less energetic and interupted them as soon as it got too rough. I was told to watch their ears during playtime together as they can damage them easily with puppy bites. In all honestly it was tiring since everything was double duty but if you buckle down and do it now you will be glad for it later when they are too big to handle if they get out of control.

As far as potty training we went out no matter what (unless it was too risky with lightening) if you act like it is nothing they will pick up on that and not care either. One thing though you may want to crate one to take the other out unless you have another set of hands helping you walk them. This will help to teach them that potty time is potty time not play.
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Eden d.o.b. 03/15/2014
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Old 08-30-2014, 01:59 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I am quickly learning that in order to spend quality time (training, pee/poo, etc) they must be separated. Overall, they seem to be doing well when we do separate them. However, they are extremely attached to each other and, when only one is crated, he cries (a little) until he sees his littermate. 1) Why did you choose to get two so close in age, and 2) If you could do anything different, what would it be?

Thanks for your support here. They are awesome (and silly, and funny, etc.) but exhausting.
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Old 08-30-2014, 02:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
However, they are extremely attached to each other
you need to try to get them past this while they are young
i have seen pairs of dogs so bonded they are emotionally crippled when not with their 'friend' or sibling
very sad as it is like a neurosis
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Old 08-30-2014, 02:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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That's what I was thinking Diesel. Is there anything else I should do in addition to increasing the amount of time they are separated at a time and increasing the number of times each day?
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Old 08-30-2014, 02:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i really dont know as i have only seen the after effects
i mean some people would rather the dogs entertained themselves
if that is not you then yes do everything with them apart
take them places singly etc
just separating them may not be enough
every time they are together the bond will just get stronger

the key is that they dont rely on each other to live and breathe
when it comes to that and they cannot be apart that is when it is going to be a life long crippling problem
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Old 08-30-2014, 02:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Will separate them as much as possible.
I'm trying to post pics but not sure how. Can anyone direct me to some instructions for uploading photos (from computer) to this forum?
Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-30-2014, 03:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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They need to be separate more than thy are together. Together only for very short, supervised, structured times. What you're seeing is the beginnings of what you were warned about (littermate syndrome) and it will be an utter nightmare if you don't seriously nip it in the bud. Crate and rotate, train separately, play separately, feed separately.


As for photos- an external hosting site like photobucket is the way to go! They'll automatically re-size everything you upload, which is awesome Once you upload a picture there, if you click on the "direct" hyperlink, your computer will copy it. Then, in a thread here, click the little picture icon (near where link, break link, quote, etc are), then just paste the link and it'll insert it for you. Can't wait to see pics!

Breathe. Your best chances of success are keeping them apart as much as possible. Good luck and take it one day at a time.
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