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 Two pups - Questions

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ub3r
Newborn
Newborn


Join date : 2017-09-13

PostSubject: Two pups - Questions   Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:53 pm

Greetings,

I have a ~6 year old rescued Border Collie / Terrier mix that has a super relaxed temperament. I've wanted to get her a furry friend for quite a while and have been strongly considering a Husky or two. Long story short, someone abandoned a litter of Huskies in my area recently and the litter went on PetFinder over the weekend. I went to meet them and ended up getting two, a brother (Loki) and a sister (Kali), both between 6 and 8 weeks old. I understand at least some of the potential perils of owning two puppies and I accept the responsibility, however I also completely believe that if I do it properly it can make it a lot easier on myself.

I've had them for almost a week now and it's been quite the learning process. I've been doing a lot of reading on training them and understand there are a lot of potential pitfalls with raising two puppies. For that reason, I wanted to reach out and ensure I'm doing the right thing with them and not making any mistakes that could slow the process of training them.

To my understanding, raising two puppies at the same time is a large multitude more difficult than raising 1 at a time, because they feed off of each other and build a very strong bond that causes them to ignore their human. Huskies could potentially add to that difficulty because they're more emotional and vocal than your average pup. For that reason, it's essential to train them individually and not when they're together, which is twice as time consuming.

My situation: I live alone and own a house with a fenced in yard. I own a business and generally work from home, however for the next few weeks I'm going to be on a client site during the week, with an hour to go home for lunch and care for the puppies. I've been waking up 90 minutes earlier than normal to make sure I clean their crates, give them baths if necessary, let them outside to potty and burn some energy, feed them, etc. I do the same at lunch and after work, however I only bathe them as necessary (if they make a mess).

Crate Training: I'm in the process of crate training both puppies. I have both crates in my bedroom upstairs, at the foot of my bed. I use the puppy training mats (pee pads), and I have metal crates which have the plastic trays underneath. I've found that if I pull the tray out, then wrap the pee pad around it tightly before placing it back into the crate, the pups don't tear the pads apart and thus, I don't have to clean the trays because their messes are contained on the pads. I feed both puppies exclusively in their crates and am trying to do my best to make their crates a happy place for them. The first few nights, I made the mistake of feeding them before bedtime and had the pleasant surprise of getting woken up multiple times to howling babies with messes in their beds. Now, I feed them their last meal a few hours before bed and am doing my best to ensure that they eliminate before I crate them at night. Last night was the first evening that I've actually slept, however they both pooped in the crate overnight, regardless that I let them outside to eliminate right after dinner at 8:30PM, then played with them outside for 2 hours, then brought them inside for 30min before taking them out again for a potty break before bed.

Question: Should I keep their crates in my bedroom?
Question: Every day, my plan is to move their crates apart by a foot or so, eventually placing their crates on both sides of the bed, or possibly in separate rooms if the bedroom is a bad place for them.

Potty Training: Presently, I'm taking each pup outside by itself and letting it down in the grass to go potty. When I see them start to eliminate, I immediately verbally praise them, saying "Good potty!", while simultaneously placing a treat in front of their mouth, often times while they're still eliminating. I feed them a couple treats and keep praising them until they're done, then I take them back inside and grab the other pup and repeat the process.

Question: Should I be leashing the pups, standing in the same location and waiting until either they defecate (go #2) or it's been 10-15 minutes before returning them inside? Presently, I've been plopping them down in the grass and saying "Potty time!" and there's a pretty strong chance that they just immediately eliminate right then and there. After that, I let them run around in the grass for a few and see if they want to go #2, and if they don't within a few minutes, I've been returning them inside.

Feeding: I'm feeding them a puppy blend from Redford Naturals and giving them 1/2 a cup 3x a day (1.5 cups/day). As I've said, I only feed them in their crate, and I'm trying to do my best to take them out individually between 10-30 minutes after eating unless if they look like they really have to go immediately.


Puppy Schedule: I'm open to constructive criticism. If you think I'm doing something wrong, please tell me Very Happy.
6:30 - 7:00AM - Wake up and take puppies outside individually, clean crates and bathe if necessary.
7:00 - 7:30AM - Feed pups in crates then take them out individually to eliminate. Bring them back into crates for 5-10 minutes (in between).
7:30 - 8:30AM - Take pups out to play and burn some energy for an hour before I leave.
1:15 - 1:25PM - Take pups out individually to eliminate.
1:25 - 1:45PM - Feed pups lunch then take them out to burn some energy before I go finish the day.
6:30PM - Take pups out individually, then feed them dinner in their crates.
7:00PM - Take pups out individually again.
8:00PM+ - Play with pups together, tire them the hell out, etc.
Between 10 and 11PM - Put puppies to bed for the night, then go to bed myself.

Question: Is it OK for me to primarily focus on potty and crate training for now and obedience training after?

The first few days have been insane thus far and I'm imagining that it gets easier, however my hands are pretty full with them, to the point where I haven't been able to separate them to individually train them. Once the pups become more comfortable at home, I'm imagining that it's going to free up more time to train them.

A friend of mine also suggested leaving a rawhide chew in their crates while I'm away so they can have something to gnaw on.

Mature Dog + Puppy Relationship: My older dog seems to be slowly warming up to the pups, however the puppies continually instigate with her and cause her to snap at them. She acts like a grumpy old lady at times. I've been incorporating all 3 dogs in games of fetch and tug of war and such, as well as gathering them around and feeding them treats while saying each of their names.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time and have a great day!
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ub3r
Newborn
Newborn


Join date : 2017-09-13

PostSubject: Re: Two pups - Questions   Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:01 pm

Loki (Blue eyes):

Kali (Brown/Blue eyes):

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TwisterII
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Female Join date : 2013-06-14
Location : Missouri

PostSubject: Re: Two pups - Questions   Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:45 pm

You sound like you have a pretty good handle on things. Right now at the age they are at you can only throw so much at them and the important things like potty training and crate training would be my main focus but it never hurts to give things like 'sit' a try every now and then to start getting them used to the word and just see how well they start picking up on it. As they age, finish their shots, and need more exercise it will be a great time to really start pushing the obedience training to wear them out mentally as much as physically. It usually takes a couple months sometimes for dogs to really settle in but pups are very resilient and sponges at this age so I would get them going on as much as I could as soon as they seem ready. Every dog is different. You want to make sure they both are confident and can respond and think independently of the other. As they get older it will be easier to adjust your routine and what you are doing to match how they are developing from it. If you see one is becoming more shy then that one would probably benefit from some time at doggy daycare to help it out of its shell or if one is lapsing with its potty training and the other isn't then that one may need to put on a leash to enforce when to potty whereas the other might not. You're off to a good start. Just remember to cater your methods to the individual dog as they become their own individual dogs and you should be fine.

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Husky911
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Male Join date : 2017-03-30
Location : Toronto, Ontario, Canada

PostSubject: Re: Two pups - Questions   Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:31 am

Hi Ub3r!

WOW!! Two husky pups!!! I'm both impressed and in awe at the sametime that you're able to manage it all. CUTE pictures btw.

RE: Crate Location
Its up to you whether or not you eventually want your huskies to sleep with you. I don't know about other members, but I always had my crate downstairs. Now that Echo is older and no longer uses the crate, he sleeps downstairs, and doesn't really go upstairs at all. I don't know if it's because it's warmer upstairs, but he rarely has ever been on my bed and when he does, he'll chill for a couple of minutes and the moment I start dozing off, he goes back downstairs to sleep on the cold tile in front of the window.

RE: Leashed Potty Training
I live in a condo and don't have access to a backyard. Therefore I always have my dog on a leash. Personally I think it was really useful in redirecting him to focus on pottying and discerning playtime vs. potty time. So in my opinion, a leash is a must when it comes to potty training.

RE: Training
You'd be surprised how smart huskies are. I had no difficulty teaching him tricks, potty training and crate training all simultaneously. I actually found it useful to know the basic commands like sit and down for crate training. Echo would whine a lot when I left him in the crate and by telling him to down while in the crate he would settle down even if it was just for a couple of seconds where I could then praise him. (He typically doesn't whine or bark in the down position, because his head is on the floor)

RE: Relationships
Husky puppies are little brats. Echo is now 10 months old and he still is in every dog's face and pawing dogs and trying to instigate a reaction from any dog he meets. A snarl from your Border Collie is just fine. Hopefully it will teach your pups some proper manners. God knows Echo needs to be told more than once every day!

RE: Leaving things in the crate
To each their own, but I would feel safer if Echo's crate was empty. Not only is it easier to clean if you puppy has an accident in the crate, but puppies have a habit of swallowing and breaking and chewing through things with their razor sharp teeth. If you're away and not able to supervise any type of play or eating within the crate there is a risk for injury. Rawhide has a track record of causing medical problems (i.e. bloat, constipation/diarrhea, obstructions, etc...), and maybe not the best thing to be leaving with a puppy unsupervised.

You seem very organized and very responsible thus far and the fact that you're here asking questions tells me that you're going to be fine raising two husky pups. =D. Best of luck with everything, and keep us posted!

Cheers!

P.S. According to your schedule I'm so impressed that you're able to get 7.5hrs of sleep, and not have to wake up in the middle of the night to let your dog out to potty, especially with pups at 6-8weeks old! I remember not getting any sleep for the first three weeks of bringing Echo home, and would wake up at least two or three times a night! >.<
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ub3r
Newborn
Newborn


Join date : 2017-09-13

PostSubject: Re: Two pups - Questions   Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:56 pm

Thanks for the responses!

To clarify, I definitely haven't been getting 7.5 hours of sleep each night Wink. Last night I attempted to go to bed at 8pm, slept until 6:30AM, however they woke me up to go outside literally 5 times during the night. Zero accidents though last night!

Loki, the male pup, has been having little issue with crate training and generally doesn't urinate in the crate while I'm at work.
Kali, the female pup, seems to have a bit less control of her bladder and it's basically a recurring problem that she urinates in her crate every day. I feel pretty bad about it Neutral, however I think she's getting better.

As for leaving things in their crates, I've stopped that per your recommendation Husky911. I appreciate that heads up!

Also, I stopped using the Zukes Naturals treats that I used for my first dog, as these two pups seemed to completely disregard them. I was having a lot of difficulty training them using treats they didn't like. A friend of mine recommended boiling chicken breast and using small pieces of that as treats. It's completely changed the game for me Very Happy, however, it seems that the pups are still having a tough time paying attention to me when they're together. They basically ignore me and find each other most interesting.

The only "issue" that I see with them thus far is that when I play with one individually, the other starts whining/screaming nonstop in their crate, to the point that it seems to distract the one I'm trying to train. I think this will also get easier with time, as they become more comfortable in their crates, however it's presently a pain. I have the crates in the basement now and I've been sleeping next to them on the couch every night, however they scream so loudly I can hear it when I'm outside trying to train one Neutral.

Aside from that, all seems to be going well. There's even been a few occasions when my border collie has started playing with them and chasing them around in a friendly way, as opposed to the pups chasing her around and annoying the hell out of her. Very Happy
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