Littermate Syndrome (sometimes called Sibling Puppy Syndrome) refers to issues that are more likely to arise when puppies from the same litter (or puppies from different litters under 6 months of age) are raised in the same household together. The word is most often used for the offspring of mammals, but can be used for any animal that gives birth to multiple young. An older gentleman attended one of my group classes with his two Siberian huskies. Because each puppy comes from the encounter of a father’s sperm cell and one of the mother’s eggs, if the female is penetrated by several males and she holds their semen inside her uterus, she may have her eggs sired by different males. It's possible to raise two separate, independent, well-adjusted dogs in the same house. It also makes training easier. The first thing to do is to put training first. More specifically, it seems that the behaviour problems reported to surface in siblings homed together fall into four main categories: 1. That's like (pulls out calculator) 11 times more work. I have had no trouble training them. However, each dog is different, as is each pair of dogs. If you do or already have adopted dogs from the same litter, you must be prepared to put in extra time and training so your dogs live their best lives. Buying Two Puppies. I won't mince words here: You have your work cut out for you. The problem with bringing home two puppies from the same litter is littermate syndrome, or even from different litters at the same time, is the strong possibility that they may at first bond only to each other (later there may be some strong dog on dog aggression often requiring dog behavior modification to help with the issues (especially with littermate syndrome – details to follow). If you're worried that your dogs are struggling with Littermate Syndrome, talk to your vet or reach out to trainers and behaviorists in your area to discuss the proper course of action for your unique situation. Littermate Syndrome and why you should take it seriously! Aggression. It's quite the understandable misunderstanding. Ultimately, at its most extreme, one will die before the other, which can be emotionally catastrophic to the surviving sibling. This "evidence" is frequently contradictory behaviors. Your co-dependent dogs struggle to pay attention to anything else. It's more common with same-sex littermates and usually arises when there's a bullying relationship where one dog is dominant over the other. Dogs continue to bond with each other rather than with anyone else when you bring two puppies home. Updated daily. (But experts recommend you wait at least one year to allow your first dog to grow and settle into its new home and routine.). Most would encourage new owners to adopt a single puppy who suits their lifestyle and to focus on the training and socialization that strengthens the interspecies bond unique to humans and dogs. Not every pair of dog siblings will experience littermate syndrome, but there is no way for a potential pet owner to know that. My husband and I could not get their attention for more than a second or two—it was as if we weren’t even in the same room. In the meantime, we have a couple of guides that can help make the training processes easy. What follows are early signs that you may be dealing with Littermate Syndrome. This is difficult for the dogs as well as the mental health of the owner who has to make arguably a lose-lose decision. Also, start as early as possible — day one if possible. two puppies from different litters. One of the things you should be aware of is that two puppies demand double the attention. They are typically very fearful and have poor social and learning skills. A pack mentality can lead to aggression against other dogs or to people. The only “littermate syndrome” I’ve experienced is the way they play with each other. Learning basic coping mechanisms and picking up on important human–canine communication signals is difficult or impossible for them. But training puppies is challenging for one major reason: They have no attention span! When someone picks a puppy from a litter, it means they are choosing one puppy from multiple puppies of the same mother. You will also find some people, some of whom are dog-related professionals, who do not believe littermate syndrome is real at all. Regarding meal times, experts suggest individual food bowls. The most common … While adopting two Littermates is not often recommended, it can be done IF you know what you are getting … This has … By Nicole Wilde. The dogs could also become aggressive towards each other, especially if they are both female. Adopting any pair of dogs must be done so with as much care, thought, and preparation as possible. In comparison, a group of eggs and the offspring that hatch from them are frequently called a clutch, while young birds … The behavioral problems and challenges that can go along with raising super-bonded siblings now has a name: littermate syndrome. We even took to Reddit to see what life anecdotes were out there. Because this is a behavioral issue, littermate syndrome can vary in degrees of severity. This is when you do all of the things I mentioned in the "How To Avoid Littermate Syndrome" section above. Speaking of rescues, many shelters will not even allow two puppies to be adopted at the same time — even if they’re from different litters. Having two dogs however, will eliminate these 2 problems. It is common enough that many experts advise against adopting two pups from the same litter. Doggie psychology and brain chemistry, much like our own, is complicated. Then they look up at you with their massive puppy dog eyes. Often certain components of puppy rearing are lost or done halfheartedly when there's more than one pup, as so much time is dedicated to "surviving the madness." Everything we create is factually accurate and biased toward science → meet our team of experts. The result is less happy pooches. Unless you're truly up for the challenge of raising two puppies separately, just get one. The nine-year-old siblings were smart and attentive, but whenever I walked the female a mere five feet away to work on leash skills, the male would panic. 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). Littermate Syndrome is the name given to the common behavioral problems that arise when two puppies are raised together beyond the typical 10-12 weeks (about 3 months of age) that professional breeders recommend. Littermate Syndrome Issue 2: Hyperattachment. French bulldog coat color genetics (101) Can you have two puppies from the same litter? Littermate Syndrome is a serious problem dog owners face, and with your busy life it can be hard to find the time to raise two puppies properly while avoiding all of the little moments throughout the day that can snowball into bigger problems down the line. *eye roll* I do know that many dog trainers have witnessed the downside to adopting littermates, which is why many are … Unfortunately, this is not a guaranteed solution to this problem. Aggression should never be taken lightly or overlooked. Following a recent query from a concerned, prospsective, owner, I thought I would take this opportunity to dispel yet another commonly held belief, one which only serves to prevent good people from taking lovely dogs into their families. ‘Syndrome’ is a scary word, so it’s important to understand what the littermate syndrome can mean and what can be done about it. Some breeders feel the same way. This gives them enough time to mature physically, learn to play, and pick up on important behaviors (like self-grooming), but now they must learn to be their own dog and explore new things outside the comfort of their mother and siblings. Perhaps we’d be better off not answering at all instead of providing such sweeping statements. Two puppies from separate litters, however, will bond with you as well as each other. It is possible. The signs of littermate syndrome vary from one case to another with some cases being more or less severe. Outside their bond, other dogs don't speak the same language. "Littermate Syndrome" refers to any undesired behavior expressed by a pet (usually a dog) that was raised with another animal from its own litter. Over the years, I can recall at least 4 pairs of dogs brought in as 8-week-old puppies and raised as 1 inseparable canine entity. Potty training one dog is not easy. "The siblings are too … Well research produced has suggested that the potential for behavioural issues arising is higher during key development periods in siblings due to their deep routed bond. If you have two puppies, Littermate Syndrome isn't some fated, foregone conclusion. Well these breeds are already known for their anxiety. The best vitamins and supplements for senior dogs, 8 experts share their best dog training tips, The fully accessible guide to training an emotional support dog, Here's how to give special dogs a special home, The best cat backpack carriers, according to travelers, The cost of a cat, from adoption to emergencies, objections is that new owners with sibling dogs will jump to the re-homing solution, an accepted phenomenon observed and treated by professionals, What I learned from fostering a puppy during COVID-19, How to crush the first thirty days with your new puppy, What to do if you already adopted littermates, Here are the 13 most important questions to ask when adopting a dog. When this happens, the two … You CAN adopt two littermates and bring home two puppies from the same litter at the ... it can be done IF you know what you are getting into AND are willing to put in the time to prevent the “Littermate Syndrome”. However, some dog owners have raised multiple pairs of siblings without incident. Crating/kennel training is super important to raising a well-adjusted dog (or dogs), and we’ve got you covered on that. Raising Two Puppies From Different Litters. Dogs learn from repeated positive experiences, so give your separated dogs a frozen Kong, their favorite toy, or anything else of high value to distract them from their feelings. Although it doesn’t happen between all siblings, over-bonding is a commonplace phenomenon and is termed “Littermate Syndrome.” It’s the reason shelters, responsible breeders, trainers, and others caution against adopting siblings. Each dog is an individual with their own experiences and quirks which shape how they regard and cope with the world around them. Photo credit: chalabala / Stock.Adobe.com. Why? That over-broad description alone should cause anyone with a training in science to wince. For info specific to housetraining, here’s our handy step-by-step guide. Littermate syndrome is the term used when two sibling pups, or two pups from different litters but of similar age, are raised in the same household and start to develop behavioural issues. Another related sad outcome to this is that when one of the sibling dogs dies, the other cannot cope and lives out the rest of their days in torment. “Littermate syndrome” can often develop because the pups tend to prefer each other’s company over that of any human. Early training is so important in your dog's development, so small mistakes at this juncture can make everything 100 times worse down the road. Don’t let those other online blogs tell you that you cannot. No_Gains said they had no issue outside of rougher play. But I also often see people claiming that littermate syndrome applies to dogs that are not actually littermates, i.e. When teaching your dogs to be OK without each other, the most important thing is to make their alone time fun. Some owners have even had to separate and rehome one of the siblings to protect the submissive one. It is important to realize, however, that littermate … Remember that two dogs can be a pack. Something went wrong while submitting the form. This research has concluded that … Anecdotally, in raising litters of puppies, I have seen a tendency toward aggression between same sex littermates in both my breeds, Border Collies and Rhodesian Ridgebacks. The dogs will be inclined to ignore you and will be resistant to training because of that. They have perceived hierarchies in their brains. He’d cry, shriek, and try frantically to follow. As mentioned in our “Picking a Puppy” article, littermate syndrome is a serious behavioral condition. There’s no scientific research to back this up, however, it’s a common anecdote. You can't work with each dog separately until they're capable of being apart without freaking out. This bond and the personality traits and training challenges associated, is littermate syndrome This is called “littermate syndrome.” Be sure to get them separate crates. Thew two puppies don’t actually have to be from the same litter to develop “littermate” syndrome. While siblings blessed with extraordinary genes and socialization-forward owners may avoid littermate syndrome, the consensus among canine professionals is that it’s not worth the risk. The pups may not show obedience and will exhibit anxiety when they are separated from each other. It may sound ideal when dogs are such close friends, but major issues can arise down the road. However, we are currently dealing with a rarer form of problem wherein people believe your three-year-old dog and your six-month-old dog must be littermates. But there are ways to stop your clingy “velcro dog” from sticking to your side. This can result in behavioural issues. 4 Early Warning Signs of Littermate Syndrome. It can affect both male and female puppies and frequently leads to one of the … Usually, one is more dominant. It's crucial you begin training your puppy from an early age, even as soon as 7-8 weeks of age. This is a informational video about littermate syndrome and ways to avoid it. Nothing good. As you might imagine, this had caused problems in a variety of situations. As the name suggests, littermate syndrome generally exists in two puppies from the same litter, however it can also be present when two puppies of a similar age are raised together. Thew two puppies don’t actually have to be from the same litter to develop “littermate” syndrome. Two is harder, but two whose focus is only on their sibling is way worse. Often one pup suffers with this more than the other. With two dogs, it’s better to train each one separately. If your dogs display some/all of the above behaviors, you're probably dealing with Littermate Syndrome. Unfortunately, they only learned how to play with each other and haven't been exposed to how other dogs play. Two puppies of similar ages can become just as co-dependant as two from the same litter. Littermate Syndrome is more than just double the puppy trouble when it comes to raising sibling puppies. Separation anxiety is easiest to correct by slow, progressive desensitization to being separated from their littermate. Other Redditors reported multiple issues with sibling puppies. “Littermate syndrome in dogs occurs when two puppies from the same litter living together develop such a strong attachment to each other that it interferes with their ability to interact in a normal manner with other people, other dogs, or any situation where they are not together,” says Collier. Some pet owners may find that formal training classes are required. Just try to teach two puppies to sit at the same time. However, each dog will need to be trained separately. The Siblings. Littermate Syndrome and why you should take it seriously! Raising two puppies from different litters is a challenge, but not quite as huge of an undertaking as raising two puppies from the same litter. Littermate syndrome is when two puppies from the same litter are raised in the same home and develop a bond with each other. Separation anxiety and general fearfulness can take a serious toll on your dog's mental health. So breeding would be considered inbreeding. This fearfulness can occur when the … Here’s everything you need to know about littermate syndrome and the risks of adopting sibling puppies. This means you'll need two properly-sized crates. Http://YouTube.com/communicanine Have you ever heard the term, Littermate Syndrome? That leads us to the first step to fix Littermate Syndrome. Littermate Syndrome Issue 2: Hyperattachment Littermate puppies can quickly become hyperattached, unable to cope without the presence of the other. The point of this article is to spread awareness about littermate syndrome AND to help dog owners who already have two dogs from the same litter. At the 3-month mark, breeders recommend puppies be separated from their litters and placed in their new forever homes. The dogs could also become aggressive towards each other, especially if they are both female. There are a lot of anecdotes but I couldn’t find any … Let's talk about Littermate Syndrome. Littermate syndrome. There are six common problems Littermate Syndrome causes. But of COURSE we want to … What Is Littermate Syndrome? These include a fear of strangers, both human and canine; a fear of … There are quite a few fantastic blogs and articles about Littermate Syndrome written by quite a few experts in the field (links at the end) that detail the “why not” reasons, or discuss common misconceptions that some breeders, rescues, or shelters might suggest (“two are better than one so they can keep each other company,” “they are already bonded so should stay together,” etc), and list … Taking on two puppies from the same litter often results in what is known as littermate syndrome. Reply. What is littermate syndrome? One of my other dogs can try to play, too, and that’s okay, but they ignore the other dog. In the cases I’ve witnessed, the puppies have not been raised in the same household, but have seen each other regularly throughout adolescence at dog shows, family events, etc, and upon social maturity (or in one case earlier) these … After a few minutes, they are happy to play with my other dogs and listen to me. Diana, if you read the article, it recommends against this practice as it can cause a different and more severe type of anxiety issue. These common problems, which I'll describe below, stem from improper socialization during a puppy's crucial first 6 months. Although many pups will have issues with training, you can usually spot the common signs of littermate syndrome pretty easily. It’s not a conspiracy theory against puppies, but an accepted phenomenon observed and treated by professionals. The condition develops when two young dogs end up bonding too tightly with each other. Adopting two puppies? 3. 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