I just want to add, that you also need to consider all those “scary” sites do have good reasons, and most reputable breeders would never sell littermates, or two puppies to the same household for the fact that the dogs can end up with terrible separation anxiety, problems socializing and most people can’t handle the demand of taking care of two puppies. I’ve had multiple dogs and I agree, depression can occur amongst non litter mates. Actually, I think litter mates are much easier! You can get recommendations at your local pet store, doggy day care, or veterinarian’s office. Both bonded well to me and my husband. Sometimes, one will be in the bed and one on the floor- we even split them up sometimes and my husband and son will take one to the basement- they never have an issue sleeping separately if they are with one of us. The easiest way to prevent littermate syndrome is to only take one puppy at a time. It’ll work their brains and bodies while helping you set boundaries and establish leadership. We live in the same city, so the pups will definitely have play dates again in the future. Should we start separating them right away or should we wait until they’re older? Early on there may have been some behavior issues like not listening, and they would feed off each other’s behaviors but I really have not had any issues with fighting and other behaviors mentioned on this conversation. You “dared” to try, and did it – not just talk – you walked the walk! I raise chows, and you cannot ever get a perfectly sweet chow. Rodrigo and Sydney slept in the same kennel until they were four months old and were too big to be in it together (it was super big). That wAs one of the hardest things I think I’ve ever had to do. I have never crated any dog, I don’t like the idea of cages. I am curious though how breeders handle keeping two or more littermates at a time to select a puppy for their own since a lot of breeders will do this to "grow a puppy out" before placing them. Zoey is shy and submissive. I think the only tough stop that I have is if I’m not feeling 100% (like when I had the flu) the dogs can easily get out of control if I’m down too long. It’s nice to get a fresh perspective like yours on littermate syndrome. But don’t let anyone come between Flash and his mama (me) or he’ll tear you apart. Do you think that it would be a good idea for us to get littermates? They had all of their shots, but hadn’t received their rabies yet, but the trainer took them anyway. If you need more positive reinforcement that litter mates are the way to go, please take the time to read not just my blog, http://spanishmastiff.blogspot.com/2015/09/siblings-revisited.html which reprints one of my published articles on successfully running siblings from http://www.sheepmagazine.com, but also review the LGD Library on my website, http://www.lgdnevada.com. I read a story of the owners watching the mate lay on the grave all day of its mate, did they not engage with the pet and get her active and try to stop that behavior? I was blessed and challenged raising 3 littermates together. They treated my husband, my 3 year old grandson, and me as part of their pack. It’s like I’m a walking dog park. Maybe we just have a way with dogs that helped us succeed with our pack. We are about to completely seperate their crates. by Kimberly | Jun 12, 2014 | Littermates | 167 comments. It’s part of how dogs communicate and as Rodrigo gets older, Scout will be able to move into the leader role if it’s open. The best advice I have for anyone who has littermates is to work with a qualified dog trainer/behaviorist. Hi Christal – the best way to correct the behavior is to work with a professional dog trainer. It only took 2 people being excited about the idea to convince me to go for it. It’s nice to get a fresh perspective like yours on littermate syndrome. I know it’s several months after, but I just read this article when looking over different ones concerning littermates, I think it is fantastic that you did so well with your own and going over, you had the money, time and care to work with a pair of littermates. I still have the older of the two, he is 14, and all three males get along great. Sydney just can’t be bothered with other dogs. Or even if you have a friend who wants to walk, your friend can walk one dog while you walk the other. We hope to change the sleeping arrangements very soon. For more information on whether or not you can successfully raise two puppies at once, check out my other puppy videos! I’m worried, does this mean she’s going to grow up aggressive? I read putting them in their crates as ” punishment” wasn’t good because you want their crate to be a good place, but separating them is all I know to do. I’m going to take your advise and take one out for a walk whilst my partner is at home with the other. He’s home now and all is good again, but we are not sure how short lived this will be and we are now contemplating the future and what we should expect. We’re 2 peas in a pod. Some ignore the budget for food and health care of our pets before adopting, then they fall into issues. grateful for a positive take on raising siblings, there is a lot of negative out there. At what time can we stop worrying about aggression issues? Don't train, feed, or even walk them together until they're both reliably trained. Today, all of our dogs are adults and they sometimes sleep in the same room, sometimes in different rooms. It’s also the day we brought Blue home 3 years ago. I’ve never had litter mates but I have 2 dogs that are very expensive and had dominance issues in the past even though there is 2 years separating them. They were very close but I never thought their bond was stronger than mine. The one recommendation I have for anyone with littermates is to hire a dog trainer. But no matter how cute they are the safer route will always be to just take one. We’re already attending a together-training class, and I have separate training classes scheduled for them next week. I did plenty of analysis before hand and also have recently been investing in the task — different crates, different moves, separate perform occasion, different workout sessions — but the articles include me personally pretty weird. I’ve heard of this happening in other states and although I haven’t heard of it happening locally, it still scared me. As far as solo activities, one thing that I do year around is to take one dog with me when I run errands. They are so loving and adorable, and it would kill me to have to get rid of one of them. They love like no other. They don’t look related. I am excited to bring them home and look forward to seeing them grow and their personalities develop. I think we won’t have an issues with having two at the same time, but it’s reassuring to hear that it has been done and can be done and be done successfully. When my friend brings over his male chihuahua-mix, my three huge dogs submit to the chihuahua! My fiancee and I have reserved two french bulldogs from the same litter (Brothers) one is shy and one is hyper. I love learning about the long life of dogs, because I want all of ours to be with us forever. Personal training time should be seen as incredibly important in dealing with littermate syndrome because it encourages your puppies to look to you for direction, not to their sibling. But we did it! Zoey and Sydney are more timid than Scout and Rodrigo. Aug 29, 2020 - Need help with Littermate Syndrome? PS – I still do training for fun. 3) Give them some independent time from each other – even if it’s playing with one in one corner of the room while someone else plays with the other in the opposite corner – having that space will make a difference. Well these breeds are already known for their anxiety. They'll have to train with each dog individually, and then together. They love to play keep away from each other & tug of war, too. Not to mention the two male cats, and the male husband. When does the littermate syndrome start?. How To Prevent Littermate Syndrome (Do These Things BEFORE Your Puppies Turn 6 Months Old!) I have had SO many people tell me that the breeder should not have sold them both to us etc etc. When out as a pair they are happy to meet other dogs and will willingly run round with other dogs and cone back when called. Thanks for the comment. How to raise two puppies successfully -- from different litters OR the same litter. But whatever the case, I think we'll adopt littermates again and again. We will be having them sleep separately. My experience is with different breeds, so keep that in mind. They are 10 weeks old now, and I want to start them off on sleeping with us soon before it’s too late. But you’re right, our dogs form a circle around me when they think I’m being threatened. I wIll do anything to help her when the time comes. Ok, yeah, they are expensive, but having just ONE pet is expensive LOL! Thanks Kim for the follow-up. The younger female was diagnosed with renal failure and we treated her for seven months. Maybe something high value was left out or we created a frustrating situation for them. Two of our English Shepherds are brothers and one is a half brother. I have two female pups – 12 weeks old. I felt that they were in a new place and they had each other for security. They didn’t bring the new dog home right away, because the other dog might feel protective of his or her space. One male and one female. Definitely stay in touch; it’s always helpful to share notes. What do you suggest for this situation? I can't be in a room alone unless I close the door and 3 of our dogs know how to open doors. There hasn’t been an issue where they are more bonded to each other. Recently got litter mates and had some issues at 8 weeks. I feel very happy and blessed that our dogs are so happy and healthy. We spend time alone with our dogs or as a family. Each time the leashed dog doesn’t show anxiety or stress, give him a treat. Here are a few of the assumptions she (and others) made about our experience with our dogs…. So we created a sleeping space in a playpen area like this one: http://amzn.to/2nWfslu; it had toys and their beds and they began sleeping on separate beds. They are the most obedient, well trained loving dogs. Working on that, Bones, toys treat and food I do separate them. My partner and i can’t support however ponder in case I’m performing these people any disservice by means of raising these people jointly – that they sound pretty closely bonded jointly and haven’t warmed up in order to other puppies still. A week ago I adopted 12-week old siblings – one boy, one girl. Is it too late to rid them of littermate syndrome? The pups sleep on the same bed overnight but during the day sleep separately with us on the sofa. I am a devotee of Turid Rugaas and Tom Dorrance. SOME NEED LOTS OF TRAINING; SOME PICK IT UP QUICKER…SO THEY CAN GET THEIR PLAYTIME REWARD. The new puppies adapted quickly to our family. My boys doctors did not comment much on his condition and a new dog being introduced, but something tells me that I should wait on that to see how he progresses and I would like to have a chat with his doctor again a maybe professional behaviorist first about that. Anyone who takes the time to be respectful of these dogs, and understand them better, will find that promoting pack life – which is the natural way for dogs to live – is really the best way. But even though they loved each other, they were very bonded to the family and had no issues with eventually living apart: one sister was my mother’s the other was my brothers and he took his with him to college as soon as he were able. This helped Rodrigo and Sydney tremendously so we were sure to enroll Scout and Zoey as soon as they were old enough. I have two rescues adopted six months apart. There has been controversy over “dogs off leash” but the USFS has NO leash law in affect out on the trail (at least, not in the undeveloped areas). At 14 weeks we are in love with both of our lab/husky mixes, they are wonderful, but we are having some issues despite our best intentions and actions. We’ll see how it goes. . Many of the cases I see involve dogs that cannot be separated even for the time it takes to take one for a walk. I did have 2 labs from the same breeder that were one year apart, and I experienced similar littermate issues even though they were not related to one another. They seem to be fine so far, and we are trying to do things with them separately , so they get used to being apart. Rodrigo and Sydney slept together in the same crate until they were too big and then they slept in their own “room.” They slowly grew up and didn’t need to sleep together anymore and I can’t remember the last time they sought each other out. The adult dogs don't fight with the puppies; there are warnings and corrections, but no fights. I hired a private training for our first two. But that is in a perfect world. They’ve not had an accident at night since and sleep through the night every night! The first summer that we had Rodrigo and Sydney (Memorial Day through September), we spent over $2,500 in adoption fees, food, supplies, dog training, and vet care (vaccinations, spay and neuter surgeries). Which made us feel we made the right decision. And, to be honest, I would have done it without their approval. And louder. Most people back off when they see that you have a genuine love for your dogs and want to see them happy and healthy. Hey… we ride on the National Forest land… you should have some Nat Forest in your area! Well not an option but the daycare does have 2 areas and they rotate the pups. They were a joy, playing together and loving us and each other until they were spayed. This was more important for our first set of littermates. Since they always sought each other out when taking a nap, we let them sleep in the same crate together until they were both big enough to sleep on beds at night (about 4 months). Oh and thanks for the picture. I’m not against adopting a dog in need of a good loving home. They are both progressing in their training (my husband and I train them separately). I love hearing success stories with dogs. Outside of Littermate Syndrome, training two dogs is at least twice the work. will take many of the great idea’s to help my pups have the best life they can. We recently bought two golden retriever puppies and just today someone suggested that we rehome one of them because of litter mate syndrome. As I stated earlier, when I checked into separation anxiety , we started to question our choice. The title of this post is a bit strong, but I do want to caution people from adopting two dogs from the same litter because “it’s easier” to raise two at once (ask someone with twins if it’s easier than having one child) or “we don’t want our dog to be lonely.” (Because you might be if the dogs are so enchanted with each other that they ignore you). I think it would be so hard on both of them because they love each other so deeply. I suggest before picking a breed, you need to make sure that they are friendly with other dogs and with humans. She had a stroke that night and they couldn’t save her. They nap now in different rooms. My fiancé returned home, she greeted him at the gate, and then resumed her squirrel chasing. I saw the post about Temple Grandin’s book and now I am panicked. The trainer encouraged me to get rid of one dog because it would be so much easier. I was considering picking up littermates before I picked up my first dog, Linus from the animal shelter. We are still getting our bedrooms ready for them. Sometimes genetics play a role but the most important thing you can do is to make a commitment to your puppies and raise them to be well-socialized balanced adult dogs. We never had to make that call. This bond and the personality traits and training challenges associated, is littermate syndrome I figured that it could be successful as long as their people were willing to do the work. My friend has a Great Dane and she let her have 1 heat before spaying. I’ve had to work hard not to allow them to control me with puppy eyes (Scout and Rodrigo have that down). On days they are home afternoon hike to the woods is together. Thanks a lot for sharing your stories! We can’t have them out together and spend time with them, because all they do is ruff-house and play with each other. Cooper was returned to the rescue agency as “damaged goods” (he broke, and subsequently lost, a front leg). We have just adpopted Littermates 12 week old, Copper (male) and Lilly (Female) and I did just like others I read the horror stories after the fact, which made me really worry. Sorry for your loss as well. I’m behind too – 150 blog posts behind. thanks for this discussion. I have a blog post with books that helped me a lot: https://keepthetailwagging.com/top-10-books-for-dog-lovers-in-2015/. Thanks again Kimberly. Articles may not be reproduced in whole or in part without written consent of Kimberly Gauthier [that’s me!]. Anyway, thank you again for this site. What did you do to put a stop to it? They were expensive (there was no pet insurance back then) and they did fight occasionally (which was expensive.) Rigo has done a great job keeping him in line and he did challenge Sydney a couple times but she easily reminded him of his place without fighting. We got 2 sister Golden Doodles going on 5 years now. Although we have separate crates for our dogs (or at least we did when they were puppies) we didn’t force them to sleep apart. And I understand that most people probably don’t look up or research anything till after they have made the purchase but I think people still need a clear understanding of the reason for those “scary” sites, If I had littermates, I don’t think I could give one up, but it is can be expensive and extremely time-consuming to make two dogs understand they are two dogs. Teresa, I am so sorry. they are now three months old and i feel we are getting somewhere with them, at least in housetraining. They’re a good mix and I have a few friends who have dogs that are a good addition to our pack. LOL. I’d walk one puppy while my boyfriend played with the other in the house. haha. We now have litter mate brothers to bring our dog total to 4. I fear the day the first one passes. So I definitely think litter mates are easier, though I don’t think I would do that by myself. I’m so thankful that I followed that advice too. I think getting littermates can be a wonderful experience for the right family. That’s not to say it doesn’t exist, but think that our willingness to work with a trainer with all of our dogs eliminated any issues. “Littermate Syndrome” can be mild or severe. 9 weeks old. I was dreading having to tackle the issues but after reading so many positive experiences, I feel secure that as long as we do our part, they’ll be the best pack that they can be. I appreciate all the positive feedback here because there is no way I could pick one over the other. I am not a dog trainer. I recently adopted 4 dogs. We are going to slowly transition their crates further apart until their dog can stay in their room, and mine in my room. Mates, i think we paid less than $ 200 for three 2-hour sessions with our pups how to prevent littermate syndrome are and... They slept – that ’ s experience with two golden retrievers – Pepe and Lola females have been. 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