German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,730 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
...about the benefits of adding a pup to an already trained adult. I cannot imagine having two youngsters at the same time, even if one was 2 years older. It must be plain chaos. But, I assume, much depends on how your expectations are, training wise.
Deja really came into herself at 4 years old as a single dog, just before Griff came as a 10 week old pup. The following is not to brag but to hopefully help people understand how much easier it is to wait with a new pup until the first one is trained, easy to live with and under (impulse) control. A few illustrations:
I never had to teach him to wait for me when I cross the road to fetch the paper, since Deja knew that routine and he copied it in a few days.
Learning how to walk on leash next to me: I taught him this off leash so later, on leash, he walks next to her. Once in a while I have to back up when he goes too far ahead (Deja looking at me like " Really? That's so old!").
Impulse control at the door and at the food bowls.
Going into the crate freely.
Walking behind me without barking on the way to the front door to open it for someone.
Deja is critter trained and so far I can distract Griff with a toy in the presence if wild life.
I have to admit that it is still overwhelming once in a while due to working with them individually. But I was prepared and knew it was going to happen at times, like with any new pup I ever got.
Yesterday was a leap forward in progress. Griff brings back a toy (super strong search drive) and sits in front of me while Deja is on a down stay. He can wait (3 seconds) to get the toy as long as it is within sight and not further than 6 ft away (peer pressure is huge!)
I hope this helps folks who are enjoying their young dog and, in order to double the fun, are considering getting a new pup. For me personally, this will create chaos, possibly losing the bond and training progress with the first dog while having to raise the new pup at the same time. At that point that "double fun" applies more to the dogs than to you.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
392 Posts





See my signature for my dog's ages.......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,050 Posts
Yesterday I went over to friend's house for a BBQ, and his daughters brought their two new puppies. They live in separate houses, however their mother does "doggy daycare" for them everyday while they work, so really, they do live together and only sleep separately at night.

Well, someone commented, "I never thought about how nice it is to have two puppies at once! They wear each other out, and you don't have to do any work!" I cringed.

Also, the dogs were a boxer and a golden doodle bought at a puppy pet store. One of the daughters commented, "This pet store doesn't sell puppies from puppy mills or backyard breeders. They only get puppies from good breeders." I mentally added the fact that no good breeder would allow their pups to be sold at a pet store to an unknown person. A dog fighter could buy a puppy from a pet store and no one would ever know.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,900 Posts
Yesterday I went over to friend's house for a BBQ, and his daughters brought their two new puppies. They live in separate houses, however their mother does "doggy daycare" for them everyday while they work, so really, they do live together and only sleep separately at night.

Well, someone commented, "I never thought about how nice it is to have two puppies at once! They wear each other out, and you don't have to do any work!" I cringed.

Also, the dogs were a boxer and a golden doodle bought at a puppy pet store. One of the daughters commented, "This pet store doesn't sell puppies from puppy mills or backyard breeders. They only get puppies from good breeders." I mentally added the fact that no good breeder would allow their pups to be sold at a pet store to an unknown person. A dog fighter could buy a puppy from a pet store and no one would ever know.
Those are both high energy breeds. They also go home to their owners so they have time to bond separately with their owners. It’s not the same at all.

I have friends who will only buy from a pet store. I want to ask them if they will go directly to puppy mills next time now that pet stores don’t sell dogs anymore. I haven’t asked yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,050 Posts
Those are both high energy breeds. They also go home to their owners so they have time to bond separately with their owners. It’s not the same at all.

I have friends who will only buy from a pet store. I want to ask them if they will go directly to puppy mills next time now that pet stores don’t sell dogs anymore. I haven’t asked yet.
Trust me, it is the same. I know the full situation and you don't. These dogs are thrown in a backyard pack all day everyday and literally only SLEEP separately. On top of that, neither dog gets play time or training time with humans. The owners just play on their phones and expect the dogs to be happy playing together and living outside for the most part. The adult dogs don't even know sit in that family.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,770 Posts
I got mine too close together, and I totally agree with you. Is it the end of the world? No, but it has special things you have to do to do it right. Next time we set ourselves up better for success lol

My BF is training Ruger and I am training Valor. When they are together they get their free time, but we also have to do periods of crate and rotate. If you get two young ones, plan on putting extra effort to being the most fun and interesting thing in the room. The trainer told me I had to be more fun than Ruger. What??? Ruger wrote the book called fun lol

Good post Wolfy:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,902 Posts
Well, having a one year old and a two year old, I had no issues with training both. They do play, yet i find this breed to be very handler oriented. For example, both my dogs. Focus is to get ball and come back to me:
They could have run off, playing chase, etc. Yet they chose to return to me, because the breed was bred genetically to work with their handler.
In fact, my main issue is, they will push at each other to be closer to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,537 Posts
Well, having a one year old and a two year old, I had no issues with training both. They do play, yet i find this breed to be very handler oriented. For example, both my dogs. Focus is to get ball and come back to me:
https://youtu.be/Nrc61oj3xzM
They could have run off, playing chase, etc. Yet they chose to return to me, because the breed was bred genetically to work with their handler.
In fact, my main issue is, they will push at each other to be closer to me.
This^ I raise them close in age, or I raise two opposite sex puppies at the same time and don't have any problems. It is nice to use each other for distractions and I find my one year olds are very much there with manners and basic obedience to set a good example for puppies. My dogs are and always have been focused on me and looking for my attention.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,900 Posts
I prefer having dogs of different ages so I can spend more time with each dog when it’s young. But if I had the time, I would get two males at the same time. I don’t want multiple females, but that is for other reasons. There are benefits to two at once. They wear each other out. They can learn from each other. Competition can help them learn more quickly. They can be separated, so each gets private time with the owner. I work on focus with my dogs, so they are tuned to me when I need them to be. Experienced owners can easily handle multiple puppies if they want to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,581 Posts
I think the amount of years between dogs is completely reliant on personal preference as well as time/ability to train multiple dogs. I think for the average pet owner, where training may not be as consistent, it is wise to have a larger gap between dogs. For someone extremely dedicated to training, or competing in various sports, maybe they can get away with having dogs a bit closer together in age. I’ve experienced raising a puppy with an older adult, as well as having dogs closer together in age. I personally prefer to have dogs a bit closer in age. I like to be working more than one dog at a time in various sports. I totally get that it would not work or be preferable for many people, but it works for me!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,145 Posts
I think it comes down to the owners expectations and their willingness to work. Some people are fine with having limited obedience (if any at all) with their close in age pups or litter mates. My neighbors are like this. They love their dogs and take good care of them overall, they just have little to no expectations other than to just let them be a dogs.

All three of my adult dogs have a lot training and it is on going. The activities I do require reliable obedience for their safety and mine. It also gives them the freedom to do a variety of things my relagated to the backyard neighborhood dogs don't or shouldn't do. We've accomplished some AKC stuff, mostly rally, but I think my dog is more capable.

With some people one puppy is too much, let alone two. There are those that will create a rosey picture in their head, get two pups and quickly find out there is a lot of work involved. Those types should be persuaded differently if they show up here looking for input before making the leap.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,037 Posts
We got Keefer (10 weeks old) when Dena was about 14-1/2 months old. She was born in September and he was born in August of the following year. That was much closer than we'd planned, I thought a 3 to 5 year age gap would be about right. But Dena was a really easy dog, and by the time we brought him home she was already very well behaved and had taken several basic obedience classes, an agility foundation class geared towards puppies, and was nearly finished with her level 1 agility class. I felt confident that I could take a step back from her training in order to work with him for awhile, and it was fine. If she hadn't already been practically perfect already I wouldn't have considered it. She was his half sister and it was largely because she was such a great dog that we wanted to get him - a dog with half the same genes. I also wanted the opposite gender, and another longcoat, so he fit the criteria.

It wasn't that difficult, but with a different adult dog and/or a different puppy it could have been much more of a challenge.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
392 Posts
How is it going?
It’s going... LOL

I had to deal with some stuff in my hometown over the weekend and I went alone and took Grendel. Saw some nice improvements totally separating them for a couple days.

Long story but I’ll have a couple weeks coming up where I’ll be able to keep him alone during the week. Looking forward to that as I think it should be enough to get him “reset” then maintain with separation.

To be fair though, with his drives, I don’t know that any age of dog would have helped him very much with some of your examples. Others even at Millie’s age with all her training she’s helping like you mentioned.

I’d say from my perspective the biggest problem isn’t that she could help more, it’s that Millie often makes things worse. my older dog is still such a puppy herself that she wants to play, gets distracted etc just like he does. And starts play fights when he’s being good! Or interrupts out of jealousy when I’ve got him focused playing with me.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
392 Posts
I think it comes down to the owners expectations and their willingness to work. Some people are fine with having limited obedience (if any at all) with their close in age pups or litter mates. My neighbors are like this. They love their dogs and take good care of them overall, they just have little to no expectations other than to just let them be a dogs.

All three of my adult dogs have a lot training and it is on going. The activities I do require reliable obedience for their safety and mine. It also gives them the freedom to do a variety of things my relagated to the backyard neighborhood dogs don't or shouldn't do. We've accomplished some AKC stuff, mostly rally, but I think my dog is more capable.

With some people one puppy is too much, let alone two. There are those that will create a rosey picture in their head, get two pups and quickly find out there is a lot of work involved. Those types should be persuaded differently if they show up here looking for input before making the leap.
I don’t get what you’re saying at all.

“Pet owner” levels of obedience is easy with two dogs. Schutzhund levels of obedience with two dogs is 4x the work not 2x
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,145 Posts
I don’t get what you’re saying at all.

“Pet owner” levels of obedience is easy with two dogs. Schutzhund levels of obedience with two dogs is 4x the work not 2x
I’m not sure what you are saying either? What exactly constitutes “pet obedience”??
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
392 Posts
I’m not sure what you are saying either? What exactly constitutes “pet obedience”??
I was referring to the first sentence of your post....

ETA: my point was:

IPO= strict bulletproof obedience with high engagement even under pressure is hard with one dog more than 2x harder with two young dogs.

Pet owner= Listens “most” of the time and probably not at all under pressure would be easy with 4 puppies.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,787 Posts
I would argue that my "pet" OB is harder than my sport work. Getting a group of high-drive dogs to focus on me and ignore prey like a moose or to turn on a dime and come when called when another dog is rushing us, or to heel past huge distractions like a person plummeting down the trail toward us on a mountain bike- well, I'd argue that while it is different, it isn't easier than IPO obedience, particularly with our protection oriented, suspicious leaning dogs.

Also, there's not just a low trial score if you fail, the stakes are high and the training needs to be consistent and the response 100% reliable. It's a challenge and failure is not an option, not if you want to keep your dogs safe.

I will say IPO is more about precision and the total picture, and of course you have protection and tracking thrown in. The time and precision is critical, while with pet stuff I really only teach three commands, but those commands are non-optional and bombproof by necessity.

As an aside, I've known quite a few IPO dogs who look amazing on the field but have terrible real-world manners.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
392 Posts
@Nigel
@Muskeg

It took me awhile but I’m tracking what y’all are saying now. My frame of reference was that I expect my dogs to both live with me as pets and learn their sport work as well. And I accept the consequences of that trade off as part of the package. (Even if I get on here to vent a lot LOL)

If I treated them as one or the other it would be quite different.

ETA: I was confused on the logic of saying it’s harder to train to a lower expectation level for a pet and a higher expectation level of a sport dog.

But like I said above I was mentally expecting a sport dog to do both, which isn’t always the case.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top