Pros and Cons of Raising Two Littermate Puppies
Upon visiting a breeder, prospective puppy owners, at times, may find it challenging to pick a puppy among the litter. At times, they may be debating on two puppies and may think, "What if I adopt both?"
This choice, however, needs to be thoroughly evaluated as it is not as easy as it may seem. Indeed, responsible breeders are mostly aware of the difficulties of raising two puppies at a time, and they may categorically refuse to give two away. However, some breeders that enjoy the profit of selling two at once may not fully inform you of the commitment you're about to make.
Disadvantages of Raising Littermates
For a good reason reputable breeders will refuse giving away two litter mates to anyone considering it: they are too much work for the average household.
- The biggest disadvantage is that it takes double the trouble. House training one puppy is unnerving enough that two may really make it quite impossible. You may find yourself, cleaning up the mess of one pup while the other is soiling at another location. Because small pups may pee and poop every 20 minutes when awake and actively playing, you will soon get the idea.
- Puppies may also need very close supervision. They need to be watched as they can easily get into trouble. You may find yourself removing one pup that is chewing the couch while the other is right about to take care of your shoe.
- The idea of raising two sibling puppies is almost impossible if owners are at work half of the day. They require constant supervision and guidance.
- One of the main issues that owners of sibling puppies must deal with is the disadvantage of the puppies bonding too much. This often creates two dogs that feel better being among each other than with their owner. This creates problems that may interfere with the training and bonding process with the owner. Two pups raised together may not be able to flourish into complete dogs but as two half dogs that sleep, play and eat together for all day.
- Litter mate puppies tend to get in conflict often. If you give attention to one puppy or feed him a treat, the other may arrive and push the other puppy away.
- Because the puppies are so excited to play together and do a lot of things together, they may be oblivious to the owner's requests for attention.
- It is recommended to keep the puppies separated for most of the day, scheduling only a couple of set play-times. This way, the puppies will bond more with the owner and concentrate their energy in interacting with, playing with and being trained with the owner. If left to cater to each other on their own, the puppies will choose the easy way, which is to focus on carrying on their own lives.
- Keeping the puppies separated may be quite challenging because it often translates into dividing the chores in two. Owners will find themselves, walking one puppy and then the other, feeding one and then the other, training one and then the other, doubling the time for just about everything. This can be time-consuming and both mentally and physically draining.
Advantages of Raising Two Puppies Together
- One of them is that litter mate puppies may be fun to watch. Two puppies may provide hours of entertainment. Owners often find themselves shutting off their television just to watch them romp around.
- The puppies benefit from playing together as well, as they get to get rid of excess energy.
- Puppies also get to polish their ''soft mouths'' skills. In other words, they correct each other when one bites too hard by squealing in pain, allowing themselves to learn how to bite softer. Although, you will still need to work on bite inhibition as your skin is much more delicate than your dogs'.
- You can take advantage of the natural competition among dogs for recall training. Once one dog takes off running towards you, the other should automatically run in your direction too eager for the reward.
- Some finicky dogs can be enticed to eat if the litter mate eats nearby. However, care needs to be taken as this may encourage resource guarding.
Carefully Consider the Pros and Cons
Most owners do not have the time and patience to successfully raise litter mates. This is why often those who give it a try often end up re-homing one puppy.
However, those that are determined enough, have lots of patience, experience, and time to raise each pup individually may be able to raise two well-behaved puppies that will ultimately be able to grow to their full potential—or at least very close to it.
Where You Successful in Raising Two Littermate Dogs?
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2009 Adrienne Farricelli