Littermate Syndrome?
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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Littermate Syndrome?

    Anyone on here ever raised two puppies at the same time? We've done it twice while I was at my parents and had no Ill effects. My wife and I are shopping for puppies and we would like two dogs. His and hers style. They would obviously be in the same house with us but would be trained separate and taken on "road trips" separately as my wife and I are not going to the same place at the same time all the time. The puppies in question are a yellow and a chocolate lab. Possibly both male, which would be neutered.
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    We went for one of our dogs specifically, and this other one would keep jumping out of the box to join us.......after 4-5 times of this happening, it was clear he wanted to come home with us.

    That was 13 years ago and we never had any issues with it.

    I mean hey, doesnt everyone need a friend?

    PS, they were roughly 8 weeks old when we got them. And, they are black labs.

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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toughsox View Post
    We went for one of our dogs specifically, and this other one would keep jumping out of the box to join us.......after 4-5 times of this happening, it was clear he wanted to come home with us.

    That was 13 years ago and we never had any issues with it.

    I mean hey, doesnt everyone need a friend?

    PS, they were roughly 8 weeks old when we got them. And, they are black labs. [IMG class=inlineimg]https://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/images/smilies/1/good2.gif[/IMG]
    I agree! Everyone needs a friend haha.
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    We had two abandoned 8 week old Cur puppies wander into our hunting camp. They were obviously brothers. We cleaned them up and kept them. They never got past their sibling rivalry. The vet said to let them fight it out and one would win, ending it. Unfortunately, it always ended in a draw, and the last time all three of us wound up with some pretty good holes in us. We have kept them separated ever since (10 years). One of them, Auggy (August) has no problems being with two other Cur rescues that we took in. Kodi (Kodiak) can’t be mixed with them. We put them together on leash not long ago as a test. Still not happening. I won’t say that it won’t work for you, but be aware that this is a possibility.
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    People are often some of the cause of the stress between pets. While there are situations where some dogs simply don't like one another, often, the way the dogs are treated and handled by the humans adds to the problem.

    I am not sure I would "train them separate" as that is one example of how stress and confusion can be added with human involvement. For example, if you say "NO" and your wife says "Stop it", clearly, they won't understand you basically are giving them the same instructions. Dogs are routine machines, they like consistency, familiarity and to know what to expect. It's best they get the same instructions and same training. It doesn't have to be done always at the same time, just be consistent with what you say and do. Don't send conflicting signals or information as it causes stress in some animals and it can lead to behavior problems.

    Also, dogs don't think like people and when they do something wrong, if you don't catch them in the act, trying to "discipline" them later for something done even just a couple of minutes before, they won't make the correlation to why they are in trouble. Dog's live in the moment. There are some really good books about "the dogs mind" and "How Dogs Think", etc., to help people understand why dogs do what they do. Applying human characteristics usually is a train wreck in the long haul. Dogs are not vindictive, they don't scheme to get even with one another or you.

    Its also very important to understand the "role of the Pack" and how you and they fit in to your pack. Often, when dogs become aggressive, it's because they are asserting control because they don't see the human as in charge. Also, when dogs don't feel there is leadership, some will assert aggressive behavior. For many dogs, they find the lack of leadership by the human as stressful as they really don't want to be in charge.

    My experience is male dogs will typically fight over sex and food. Female dogs are much more in tune to who the human gives more attention, who the human feeds first, who they let in or out first. Frankly, we have had more issues with female dogs picking at each other than with male dogs. You also have to be careful with certain types of dogs, such as "herding dogs". Cattle Dogs are often "heel nippers" and they move other animals by biting their ankles, just as they do with sheep and cattle. This tends to be very irritating for animals which don't want to be moved or pushed around. Issues like this can lead to issues which can escalate. Some helpful instincts for moving livestock can be really annoying to other animals.

    Take the time to learn about dog behavior and how dogs understand and perceive things and you can avoid a lot of trouble. One dog will likely be more dominant than another, but it's also not uncommon to have two dogs that simply get along and really don't worry about k9 relationship issues. Just make sure you don't inadvertently create problems the way you do things or fail to do things............

    I do feel dogs are generally happy when they have other dogs to hang around with. K9's are pack animals and usually learn to get along with other dogs. Bringing two home at the same time is likely to be easier than having one home alone and adding another at a later date. No doubt they will keep you busy...............

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    RadarDon's Avatar
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    I have found that dogs are people too and as such are individuals. Personalities can vary widely from the same litter. I once had three girls from the same litter, together since birth, and they were three very different girls in likes and attitudes. And just like human children, I feel correction needs to be tailored to the individual. For some (human or canine) a cross word can be devastating, others may need a firmer approach. Defending you comes naturally, you're family. Just guide them on when and how.

    I agree that they need consistency and leadership from their two-legged alphas. Correction needs to be immediate because they do live in the moment. But don't forget the praise and rewards for good behavior. Strong, consistent leadership makes them feel safe and secure.

    I think they benefit from having a special job they can do for you. It could be getting you the slippers, warning off the squirrels, announcing intruders, warming your lap, watching the kids (to a point), or whatever works best. At least one job. It can make them feel needed as well as wanted.

    It can be lonely, and sometimes terrifying, when you are alone, especially if you are a pack animal. Having someone you know near is reassuring.

    All our dogs have been rescues and we currently have 5. The youngest is 10 who we got about a month ago and has fitted in well. He still has the odd moment of doubt but not many now. We always have a group meeting before the final adoption. Instant hatred can be a deal breaker. So far so good. The really abused ones can take a long time to heal inside. Some just seem to be born with a bad attitude.

    Different breeds have different tendencies, and Heinz 57 types can range them all. Some of the most aggressive (and in one case obnoxious) ones I have seen are the smaller ones.

    Puppies are great to start with, they don't come with the baggage of a previous life. If it isn't instant hate, they should do well together. They should be fine spending time with their person without the other, provided they don't feel treated unequally when together. That could set up some rivalry and jealousy.

    I can't speak about cats as I am highly allergic to them. All cats from hairless to the big ones. They know it and want to cuddle me, zeroing in on me even in a crowd of cat people.

    I've rambled enough.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TruckFarmer55 View Post
    They would obviously be in the same house with us but would be trained separate and taken on "road trips" separately
    I would think their training basics might be better together so they both know the same things from the same people, and have the special training done separately. Or maybe I am just misunderstanding.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RadarDon View Post
    I would think their training basics might be better together so they both know the same things from the same people, and have the special training done separately. Or maybe I am just misunderstanding.
    I agree that the training, at least that for general behavior, should be done together. I am sure Radar Don has also noticed that many dogs learn the basics of what's right and wrong from other dogs. One of the toughest training challenges I have ever taken on was with the most intelligent dog we have ever had. She initially was a nervous dog, a fear biter and she was so violent, she was not allowed to go into any Vet office or even around other people without wearing a muzzle.

    Her anger and frustration came from the lack of attention, direction and training. I paired her with a 10 year old female German Shepherd named Dudley (Mrs. Bear picks the names and doesn't always take the gender into consideration since they are all "fixed").......Dudley would not put up with the poor behavior of this young dog who was also a German Shepherd and 11 months old. I used to joke that "General Dudley" was whipping that kid into shape, but it's also true, much of Chloe's improvement in behavior came from examples from other dogs of proper behavior, which Chloe never had since leaving her litter.

    Chloe never bothered other dogs and frankly, I don't think that she thought she was a dog. She never really blended into the pack, she just peacefully existed with them (5 others). She didn't start trouble with other dogs and they left her alone. Most dogs aren't looking for trouble and just want to get along with others. But there are some, just like people, who are anti social and there are some who just seem to start trouble because they can.

    Radar Don is also right that dogs need something to do. They like a "job", whether it's designing the next Amazon or preventing chipmunks from carrying away the house.........they are much happier with something to accomplish.

    Regardless of what a dog does, physical punishment is simply not appropriate. Trust is a very big thing with dogs and if they don't feel like they can trust their humans, it can be a very rocky road. Frankly, many dogs have very legitimate reasons to not trust people (and have strong reasons to dislike and distrust humans) based upon how humans have neglected them, mistreated them, etc. But most dogs want to give people a chance, sometimes it can just take them some time to trust people again.

    Puppies are a clean slate, which prevents you having to deal with previously bad behavior or the emotional baggage some older dogs often have. However, its very important to give the puppies clear and consistent directions or they will make decisions on their own about what's right or wrong.

    It always amazes me when I see someone get upset because their dog has chewed on their "good shoes" and then I find out that the person gave the dog "an old shoe" to chew on and encouraged it...... Seriously? You expect the dog to know the difference between your shoes you no longer wear or want and your new shoes? Most husbands can't even make that determination about their wives shoes, so don't expect the dog to understand the difference. If ANY shoe is off limits to the pup, then ALL shoes are off limits......Keep it clear and simple, you know, like most women do for their men, so we can follow along and it keeps us out of trouble...............
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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    That all makes sense in training together so they know the same commands. Other question, does anyone have issues with males marking in the house? The two males we had never did, they were neutered asap.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TruckFarmer55 View Post
    That all makes sense in training together so they know the same commands. Other question, does anyone have issues with males marking in the house? The two males we had never did, they were neutered asap.
    No. Dewey was 3 when he was fixed. Buddy was 5 months. Buddy still pees like a girl though.
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