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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 03:28 PM Thread Starter
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Question Raising Siblings Together

My wife and I plan to purchase two Doberman puppies this fall. We are retired and have plenty of time and energy to commit to our new family members.

Our question is: Is it a problem to raise two Doberman siblings in the same household? One breeder we spoke with told us the siblings would have a stronger bond toward each other than they would with us. Another breeder said that it wouldn't be a problem because the Doberman lives to please it's owner.

Please help us make the correct decision for both us and our future dogs.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 03:52 PM
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Absolutely it will be a problem. I wouldn't listen to either of those breeders, they probably just see a chance to line their pockets with even more money. A reputable breeder will not place two litter mates in the same home, you can count on that! What is your dog/doberman experience and where are you located?
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 04:18 PM
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I'm hoping the one who said the dobes would have a stronger bond with each other than with you was refusing to sell you two for that reason?? No responsible breeder would sell you two puppies that are about the same age. They don't even have to be siblings; raising two puppies at the same time is just plain not a good idea.

Check this out:

"Absolutely excellent article on littermate syndrome"

https://www.dobermantalk.com/puppy-c...-syndrome.html

While you're at it, if you are planning on having two dogs at the same time sometime in the future, do not get two males. One female, one male is the best combination. Two females can sometimes be a problem, and two males is almost certain to be.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 04:53 PM
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It is a well recorded issue. When it goes wrong it can be be bad for the dogs and a owner who tries to stop it.

I would suggest get one pup and wait 18 months and bring a second on board.

It would be wise to stay clear of any person willing to sell you sibling pups.
Do your research on the health issues with this breed and find a breeder who is breeding for health and longevity.

Good Luck!
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 09:22 PM
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Hi Ray! And welcome from the Pacific NW.

What the others have said^^^. Don't even consider raising siblings, or any two pus of similar age. You are simply asking for a basket of trouble.

In addition, if you are ultimately wanting a two dog household, the above recommendation to wait at least 18 months between pups is a very sound one. Me? Having had many two dog homes, with the dogs raised from pups... I prefer about a 2 1/2 year separation.

And since it will come up: Regardless of age difference, if one of the dogs is a Doberman, you would be better of with the second dog being of an opposite sex.

As has been brought up many times here, Same Sex Aggression in Dobermans is real and fairly prevalent. Sometimes everything is fine for the duration. And then sometimes everything if fine and suddenly it is NOT. When a two Dobe same sex household goes South, your life turns upside down. I have been there.

You can research it here by searching the forum section For "Same Sex Aggression".

Best to you and your wife.

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 08:30 AM
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I've spoken with so many puppy buyers who think it's better to get two, are told otherwise, and are then shocked when the puppies show behavior issues.

I used to moonlight as a puppy trainer on the weekends. We had a pair of littermates - two boys - who came to classes. THEY WERE NOT RAISED TOGETHER but by the time they were about 16 weeks old they wanted to kill each other more often than not. The owners were friends and had them interacting frequently, but that only seemed to make their fury even stronger. Breed is irrelevant, as this can happen with any breed.

Don't do it. Do Not Do It.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 08:38 AM
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Ray - Let me put it this way , Would you want to live with your brother or sister for life ? I remember them old days at home with my 2 sisters all to well ! NO WAY to get litter mates
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 09:31 AM
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I don't believe any reputable breeder would ever let siblings go to the same home together. Sure, they may not be the same sex but you run the risk of littermate syndrome. Please do your research on that and reconsider getting two at the same time.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 09:47 AM
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There are posters here who have had two dogs of the same sex and realized too late that the advice given by other posters should have been heeded. The play fighting can easily explode into a battle to the death or it simply explodes without the 'foreplay' and you find yourself trying to separate two 90# dogs hellbent on killing each other. No one wins a dogfight. So you either wind up rehoming one of your dogs or you live with a crate and rotate situation. And remember every member of the household MUST adhere to the rules of crate and rotate and never never forget to latch the crate door and allow only one dog at a time loose in the house or yard.

Not an easy way to live but your choices are few in this situation.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 10:25 AM
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Hi, Ray E Davis. I have a couple of questions.

1) Do you have any previous dog experience?

2) Have you ever raised a Dobe pup before?


In my experience, people who entertain the idea of getting two Dobe pups at once usually haven't raised a Dobe pup before. They are a super demanding breed that's typically not recommended to be raised in pairs or multiples.

There are some breeds in which raising littermates can be done fairly successfully with a good amount of effort, however, those tend to be much easier breeds to raise compared to the Doberman.

One Doberman pup is a lot of work. The average Dobe pup tends to be pretty busy and require a lot of attention and management for the first couple of years (with an occasional exception here and there). But I feel pretty confident saying - especially if you've never raised a Doberman from puppyhood - you and your wife will have plenty to do just keeping up with one average Doberman pup.

In addition to that, there are some very good reasons why not to raise littermates together. If you're not exceptionally well prepared and knowledgeable, they do tend to bond to one another more than the humans involved. Dogs communicate more easily with other dogs than with people and other dogs/puppies are nearly always more entertaining to a puppy than you are. So, what you end up with, is two puppies who live together and who would rather play with each other than focus on you. And they end up seeing you as the obstruction to their fun and games, not someone they necessarily want to please.

And, I can't emphasize this enough - especially if you've never raised a Doberman - no matter how much you read and talk to people and listen to stories or watch videos, you just don't quite know what you're taking on yet. And you really won't understand until you've got the pup home and you're in the thick of it.

My recommendation would be to make sure this is the breed you want. And then get one Dobe puppy and experience and learn from that puppy.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenkouki View Post
Absolutely it will be a problem. I wouldn't listen to either of those breeders, they probably just see a chance to line their pockets with even more money. A reputable breeder will not place two litter mates in the same home, you can count on that! What is your dog/doberman experience and where are you located?
The breeder who told you there is a problem with trying to raise siblings together (or even trying to raise two puppies of similar ages not even just siblings) is correct.

It takes nearly isolating the pair from each other to keep them from bonding to each other than to the people in their little lives.

Don't do it. If you want to have two Dobermans. Get one and raise it, train it and when that puppy is grown tu 2 or 3 years get your second Doberman of the opposite sex and start again. That does work! And the older trained dog will often provide an unexpected aide in training the puppy. IL haven't had to teach a puppy to sit in years--they copy the older dogs when they figure out that "sit" means a treat, more attention and more fun.

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 10:34 AM
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Welcome to our forum just wanted you to know we appreciate you coming to us with your questions.
As all the others have said in one form or another "Do not do it" and those comments have come from some very experienced owners.
Dobermans are an awesome breed for sure but dogs that are this powerful it's crucial for you as the humans to make smart decisions from the very beginning.
So do your homework and visit us anytime with questions because in my opinion this is the most informative forum regarding this breed (lots of experienced owners/breeders).
But I still wanted to welcome you to our forum and look forward to hearing from you again.

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 10:49 AM
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One Doberman pup is a lot of work. The average Dobe pup tends to be pretty busy and require a lot of attention and management for the first couple of years (with an occasional exception here and there). But I feel pretty confident saying - especially if you've never raised a Doberman from puppyhood - you and your wife will have plenty to do just keeping up with one average Doberman pup.

Outstanding 82 !

I think it was Meadowcat that posted up one time that having 2 Dobers is NOT double the work - it's more like x's 10 sometimes - Oh how I agree a 1,000 % as we have been and in short order going to be a 2 Dober family again soon - Her words nailed it !
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 11:03 AM
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Good morning and welcome to the forum!

Raising two puppies together is not something I would willingly take on. You've gotten a lot of "don't do it" and I think that's good advice. Some of the posters here have elaborated on the topic. The linked article is a good one to read.

I'll share that I do know someone that has raised littermates - my incredibly experienced dog trainer, who is also a breeder, of working line Australian shepherds. I can say without hesitation that she would not recommend it to most people. Keep in mind that her dogs are her life, and her career. Her dogs are not for the average owner, much like a Doberman. What you need to consider if you think about doing this is...can you essentially keep the puppies apart nearly all of the time? Can you train them separately nearly all of the time? Play apart most of the time? They will need to truly lead almost separate lives. No training classes together. Separate "outings" for socialization and experiences. Separate vet visits. Separate time in the house with you and your wife. Crate space and crate time apart. To truly allow them to be mentally stable, they need to develop their own, independent personalities. It's really challenging for even very experienced owners. The only people I know that have done this successfully are people that are full time dog trainers or breeders that really have the experience to do it.

The other thing that would discourage me from doing it is simply the heartbreak at the end of life - losing two beloved dogs within a short time of each other (a possible, even likely scenario), would be too much for me.

I wish you luck in your decision. I would personally avoid a breeder willing to sell littermates to an inexperienced Doberman owner, as that would be a red flag to me.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 12:16 PM
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Via MC:
"The other thing that would discourage me from doing it is simply the heartbreak at the end of life - losing two beloved dogs within a short time of each other (a possible, even likely scenario), would be too much for me."

Truer words have never been spoken. Dobermans tend to become such an integral part of one's family that their passing can be an extremely emotional time. Quite difficult. Losing two in a short period of time? Not for me. A few years back, when Butcher died, we still had the Sheriff. Sheriff is now in his twilight years. When he moves on, we will have McCoy. At that time I will start looking for a nice red girl!

So Ray... Please come back on and share your thoughts about what we have posted. I for one, would like to know what you think.

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR
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