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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-05-2009, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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New pup coming. Question.

I'm about to add another pup to my house in the fall - a working line malinois (for schutzhund) - and I have been thinking about how to make this work with my one year old GSD. I know for training I will have to do each separately and that's no problem. But what should I do when they're inside the house? Do I need the keep the two separate? Should I let them play together? If so, do I need to limit the amount of time they spend together? (Obviously when I am not home, they will be crated separately). Should I walk them together or separately?

Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-05-2009, 05:15 PM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

You will need to spend time with the pup separately, otherwise the may just bond to your older dog.
When I have a pup I usually have it out separately from the other dogs for at least 2-3 hours a day. If I notice they start to pay more attention to the other dog than to me, the time separated will increase, but I haven't had to do that yet.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-05-2009, 06:45 PM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

I've never limited the amount of time Nikon spends with my other dogs for the reason of feeling our bond is threatened. I have limited time because they are either becoming too much for him, or he is pestering them too much and they need a break before they over-correct him (usually the latter). To me, dog-human relationships are totally different than dog-dog relationships so I've never felt threatened by the bond my dogs share. It actually brings me a lot of joy everyday to see them run and play. Nikon works when it's time to work. I know how to get him focused on me and wanting to work with me. That is a bond that needs to be developed regardless of whether there are other dogs. Even when I just had one GSD and she was my only dog we had to bond and learn to communicate before we got anywhere with training and trialing. Nikon's been out free with my other dogs for hours now but where is he right now? sitting right here next to me, staring at me because he dropped a toy in my lap and I haven't thrown it yet, while my other dogs are sleeping across the room ignoring us.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-05-2009, 10:20 PM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

I got Falkor to raise as a Schutzhund puppy, and I did limit his time with my older dog. Only very short meetings and interactions for the first few weeks. Then when I was satisfied that my crazy older unsocialized, dog-reactive girl was acting appropriately with him, I allowed about one hour of interaction per day. Some days, more, especially if we went on a hike, or to the river for a few hours. The one hour of interaction was unstructured, supervised play time. I did not include our leash walks as part of that hour. In the house I did use baby gates to keep them separated, and to not subject my older girl to constant puppy pestering. I also crated Falkor so I could spend one-on-one time with Keeta on a daily basis.

It payed off well, Falkor was much more interested in me than other dogs. He may run over and sniff noses with a strange dog, but come back when I called him. In Obedience classes, he just watched other dogs but only had eyes for me. His focus was amazing. I can call him off anything. He prefers to play with me and interact with me over playing or interacting with Keeta or other dogs. That is what I wanted, and must admit that I am surprised that it was that easy to develop that in him.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-08-2009, 01:50 AM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

i have noticed a difference when dogs are limited on their interactions with other dogs. if you leave the dogs together all day to play with each other, yeah they may still be friendly with you, but they will bond closer to each other. And look to dogs more for play and this can be a problem. You want your dog to look to you for fun and play, not your other dog. This matters more when you plan to do sport...but either way, when raising two pups at once its best imo to seperate, but have occasional supervised play sessions. Just to make sure the dog has more fun with you, than he does with other dogs.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-08-2009, 09:53 AM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

I should have added, that my pup may have ended up being just as focused on me even if I had allowed more interaction with other dogs - no way to really know. But there is a HUGE difference between my rescued girl - whose early life is unknown to me. Having her ignore other dogs is almost impossible, even after a ton of obedience training to Schutzhund standards, while the pup is politely interested in other dogs, but wants nothing more than be with me.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-08-2009, 02:32 PM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

Here is what I would do...

1. Obviously train separately.
2. Walk together, it's a great way to further establish the pack and having everyone move in the same direction under your control is good as long as there's no wildness - which also means you may go through periods that you don't even walk the mal. You can teach leash manners and loose lead walking AFTER you have your foundation work taught.
3. Obviously no unsupervised time together - at all. You don't want the pup dominated at all. If it's an equal give and take when they start to play (or better yet the pup beats the crap out of the GSD if he is not a SchH dog as well and he does not get snippity back), then they can play together UNDER YOUR SUPERVISION.
4. I rotate them outside to potty. Outside time together only happens when "together" includes ME.
5. I personally do all training in drive on a field away from my home so I can have clear cut rules for different situations. The house is where we REST together. No rough housing at all, no drive work, no training toys of high value in the house. The yard is where we play and maybe do a little training with food, and as long as they play well they can play for a bit together. The field is where the real fun happens, and all the training/imprinting in drive is done. Same routine every time, same beginning phrase (do you wanna play?), same ending word (all done) and same FOCUS every time out. Ideally I use different fields for this work so the pup gets used to different places while working and therefore different distractions. This allows for the same "picture" to the pup every time you want that focus and attention and has them coming out of the truck looking to bite something or someone every time .

Through all of this I would be working on protection foundation with a good TD so that he/she can tell you if the pup is becoming too sensitive to you or is losing focus during play sessions that are leading up to formal obedience. That way you can tweak your approach along the way which is much easier than "unscrewing up" your pup.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-09-2009, 11:21 PM
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Re: New pup coming. Question.

LOL if you are getting a working Mali you will be glad you have another dog to play with them and give you a moments rest for a Mali goes and goes and goes and goes.... I have 4 GSDs and one Maligator. All of my dogs though raised together would rather be with me than each other and can work even with the others present. I raised a litter of 4 girls GSDs and they will turn 12 in Dec and they were never dependent on each other though I made it a point to do some individual training with each of them along with group training (heck we made up a whole class all on our own LOL)Of course when I add a new puppy they are crated when I'm not home while the elders are loose in the house. The Mali who is a little over a year old is now loose with them in the house too when we go out . As much as she goes nonstop she always slept through the nite so I only crated her at night the first few wks with us. Where are you getting your Mali pup from?
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