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Thinking of getting back to having 3 dogs again- My 3.5 year old male died in January and never got along or accepted my now 8 month old pup. My female has finally come around that she plays with him. The 3 dogs were big time work bc we had to keep the pup separated from the other two dogs including different walks. The vet/behaviorist we consulted with said at the time my older male was exhibiting fear aggression towards the pup- he is very dominant. It took a sell job on my wife to get the 3 and the experience was very very bad.
I would now look for a dog not much older than the pup and he must be dog friendly and maybe not a dominant personality. Had a discussion with a breeder who has such a dog.
SHOULD I QUIT WHILE I AM AHEAD- these dogs are pets/companions and are my hobby[I am retired and $ is not an issue] and give me great enjoyment and heartache. I do know that adding a third does not give one 50% more enjoyment - there is the law of diminshing returns.
My wife thinks I am CRAZY!!!!
 

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Well if you have the time and the money I don't think your crazy but I am a little loony so maybe my opinion should not count:D
 

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It's different for everyone's situation. Some people can handle 10 dogs, some can't even handle one.

If your wife thinks you're crazy, does that mean she's not okay with adding another GSD?

Given that you have a 'dominant' pup already in the house, I would say to wait. At least until he's a bit older (maybe two), before adding another GSD. That's just my take on it though. I know a lot of dogs tend to sort their dominance by age, and if the newcomer pup is younger than your dominant dog, then there should (hopefully) be fewer issues.
 

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If the pup is dominant and you have a female already, adding another male to the mix sounds like it wouldn't be a very good idea. Not sure I'd add another female, either unless yours is passive enough to accept another. I love having 3 dogs, though! Two females and a male in my pack, they are fine together, as long as the submissive female stays that way.
 

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I think given the recent history with your dogs, the 2 you currently have just starting to get along, and having had no luck getting 3 to get along, it would be a wise choice for your family and existing dogs to leave it as it is. So yes, quit while you're ahead.
 

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I agree with the consensus - quit while you're ahead. How do you know your next experiment with 3 dogs would work out any better than the previous one did? Why not just enjoy the dogs you already have? Especially with one of them so young - don't you have a lot of training to do with him still?

You'll have plenty of time to consider adding to the pack when he's older and taking time away from him to train a new dog won't be an issue.
 

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I'll be the dissenting voice. Your male that died was the main cause of stress within your pack. The pup is dominant, yes, so if you found a submissive pup he would take well to that one and your female may well accept a submissive male pup easier than she did your 8 month old. But I personally prefer having several dogs in my home so for me 3 is easy!
 

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armauro, I'm not a jealous type of guy but for the first time in a while it hit. I went with Elly Mays vet to a guys house where people train dogs. Besides having a fenced off area to work with the dogs, he had a fence arround his house and 7 GSDs. Just thinking about that brings a smile to my face.

I say the more the merrier !
 

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I have 3 females and 1 male, I wish I would have stopped at the 3; knowing now that I should have fine tuned my pack before adding another rescue dog to the group.
We are in the same boat, retired and money not an issue. But my husband gets stressed with the "dog drama" some days, I do too.
If I were you, I would quit while you are ahead. You should work with the 2 you have and master their training.
 

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Speeking as someone who has a half dozen dogs, you will get to spend larger quantitys of quality time with fewer dogs. There are a lot of times I wished I had more time to spend with my dogs, the german shepherd needs more training, the lab needs more fetching, an the pyrs need more to do as well.
 

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I personally would wait, work with the two you've got, especially the younger one, get him where you want him, obedience/social wise, and then if you still want, add another.

I like 'even' numbers tho right now I have 3. I'm not planning on bringing another one in, until one of them passes. Why? a number of reasons but mostly,,my youngest is 2.5 years old...I have had to put down 2 dogs TWICE within 6 months of each other that were close in age..I do NOT want to go thru that again.

Plus, my male aussie is a butthead, even tho he's excepted puppies, he's well a butthead:)

When you have mutiples I think it's easier on pack structure when one passes vs bringing another one in..make sense?:)
 

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I would now look for a dog not much older than the pup and he must be dog friendly and maybe not a dominant personality. Had a discussion with a breeder who has such a dog.
IMO this is a very bad idea and will greatly increase your risk of having issues with the two young dogs once they mature. GSDs as a breed are prone to same sex aggression - aggression towards other dogs of the same sex, especially that share their home. Same sex aggression is generally not a problem until the dogs are mature. This means you could get a puppy and he and your current puppy could be best buddies until they are 2 or 3 years old, then start fighting. Having same sex dogs who are close in age increases the chances you'll have this issue. So getting another male puppy right now is probably a bad idea. It may work out but it may not and if it doesn't, you could find yourself having to keep your dogs separated all the time.

The other issue to consider is that, the more dogs you have the less training you can do individually with them especially if they are all very close in age. Is your 8 month old really as trained and socialized as you want him to be before starting all over training another dog? If not, you probably aren't ready to add another dog.
 

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It was not my intention to have 3 dogs again, Lakota just kind of happened. I have 2 females and a male. The youngest is Lakota, 1 yr old female. At the rate she's going she will never be trusted to be free to roam the house. But the more I have learned about training over the last few years, I really want to have 1 dog. Maybe if I didn't work I'd feel different. But right now I have to juggle my time & energy to give each dog individual time. It's more difficult to take 3 dogs somewhere like to the beach or park.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the info and experience- the last thing I want is two dogs fighting again now or in the future. My pup is well trained now and will start working on his BH come June when he is one year old. The 9 month old I was considering is equally trained and per the breeder will defer to a dominant dog- at least for now.
I guess I am addicted to these dogs but should quit while I am ahead.
 

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As you couldn't get the first group to live peacably together, I wouild leave things as they are.
I also think you should quit while your ahead.... but I'll add 'for now'.

What I do is only get one new pup at a time, raise it for about 5 yrs to get it 'practically perfect' with all the training and socialization that involves. So I really KNOW this dog and how it is with any other male/female/puppy/kitten/camel/elephant before I ever think of adding another to the home.

Then I do and raise this new pup to be practically perfect for the next 5 yrs or so knowing I have the TIME and MONEY to really focus on any issues that may come up as well as PREVENTING issues from arising.

This means that when my older dog is around 10, and my 'younger' dog is 5, I will probably be looking at adding my next pup to the mix which will give me the 3 dogs you are considering.

Though, frankly, I really like having 2 dogs. Easier to fit in the car, have in a hotel/motel, go for a walk, take to family events...........
 

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Especially with one of them so young - don't you have a lot of training to do with him still?

You'll have plenty of time to consider adding to the pack when he's older and taking time away from him to train a new dog won't be an issue.
Cassidy'sMom is right. First take time into training. One dog is alot of work (socializing, training, feeding, exercising, playing, and ect), and I would personally concentrate one at a time. It is the most responsible thing to do. I would also wait til your wife agrees to having a 3rd dog too.
 

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I think given the recent history with your dogs, the 2 you currently have just starting to get along, and having had no luck getting 3 to get along, it would be a wise choice for your family and existing dogs to leave it as it is. So yes, quit while you're ahead.
Not to mention that your wife isn't on board. In rescue, we will not adopt to families where one member is opposed-- or even lukewarm-- on the idea. Everybody needs to be in favor. It's not fair to the pup if your wife isn't happy having him there.
 

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Emoore, you took the words out of my mouth. If your partner's not that into it, that's bad. I know in my house, we both have to agree on big stuff like this. I really want another puppy, but DH has put his foot down. I'm willing to wait until he's ready because I know I can't raise a new puppy by myself.
 

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I have two males and a female. Don't think it's too much. Used to have two females and one male and then two females and two males.

Actually since I have the boarding dog for another two months it's three males and one female now. I have to say it's easier to handle a bunch of males instead of handling a bunch of females.
 
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