What’s Littermate Syndrome? The truth is, few dogs fight 100% of the time. I have read about littermate syndrome and was wondering if there is any way I can prevent this. So it may be better to wait until the first pup is 8-12 months old before bringing a second into your home. They are always side by side and play with each other for hours at a time. Raising two puppies at once takes much, much more work. After previously asking a question here, I have established they have littermate syndrome. However, I have written an article called Dogs Fighting in the Home and this does cover the problems you are having and though you cannot see the trigger I can. I have successfully raised two sets of littermates and have not witnessed or experienced littermate syndrome. Littermate Syndrome (also knows as Sibling Aggression or Littermate Aggression) is a non-scientific anecdotal term that refers to a whole host of behavioral issues that tend to present when canine siblings (Littermates) are raised in the same household beyond the normal 8 to 10 weeks of age, when puppies are usually placed in homes. The female is dominating the male. Private Session. Signs of littermate syndrome include fearfulness of unfamiliar people, dogs and other novel stimuli (neophobia); intense anxiety when separated, even briefly; and difficulty learning basic obedience skills. The Siblings. This fearfulness can occur when the puppies are together or separated from each other. Littermate syndrome can lead to behavioral issues in sibling dogs — Separation anxiety and aggression are common examples of how it can impact dog behavior. There's a good chance they will constantly be fighting for dominance. Play fighting is an essential part of early canine development. I firmly believe I need to rehome at least one of them as their quality of life is not what it should be. Raising a puppy takes a lot of time and energy, regardless of how you go about it. ... new owners to simply take on a single puppy and to focus on the training and create that strong bond unique to humans and dogs. I have got four Pomeranian pups, my sister is keeping two and I plan on keeping the other two. Littermate Syndrome (2 or more dogs) All cases considered – the only Program of its kind! Two puppies being raised together were fighting. Having one unsociaized dog may also create behavioral issues such as fear of dogs and fear of other people. Sometimes littermate syndrome can take the form of non-stop fighting between the dogs. I don’t suggest adopting 2 dogs from different litters because they might not be compatible with one another. They play rough, however no fighting and they have developed into two (most of the time) well behaved 8 month old puppies. An owner should know that preventing littermate syndrome doesn’t just double their workload, but rather triples it. Without going into great detail, some of those reasons include: littermates bonding heavily to each other, sibling rivalry as they mature, dogs not bonding as well to the humans, neither dog being trained to a high reliability, dogs having difficulty being separated from each other. Early Indicators of Littermate Syndrome. The two had been together all of their lives and had never been separated, even temporarily. Does It Exist? They get anxious when they're separated and haven't ever really been apart. Mild cases are barely noticeable, while severe cases can lead to constant fighting, separation anxiety from each other, and even in some cases, aggression towards humans. Experts disagree — Some pet professionals argue against using the term because of its lack of research-based evidence. 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). Littermate Syndrome is a phenomenon that occurs when you get two young dogs at the same time. Many experts including trainers, ... difficulty learning basic obedience skills with the most dangerous and intense behaviour being fighting incessantly. This article really does not cover the problems you are experiencing as these dogs have been brought up in separate households, therefore, littermate syndrome does not apply. I also know many people have and are raising littermates that are happy, healthy, well-socialized dogs. Having two dogs however, will eliminate these 2 problems. Because this is a behavioral issue, littermate syndrome can vary in degrees of severity. They’ll have to train with each dog individually, and then together. But most dogs will get along the majority of the time, until they don’t. The dogs would fight and have a power struggle. Littermate syndrome can be serious if you’re not experienced with raising dogs and don’t work with a dog trainer. Mock brawls are an instinctual urge in puppies. “Littermate Syndrome” can be mild or severe. To prevent littermate syndrome, the puppies must crated, walked, fed, and trained separately – this equates to double the time spent on each activity. The Dunbars explain what you should expect when you get more than one puppy at once. Dealing with littermate syndrome can be incredibly time-consuming and difficult – it may even be traumatic for the puppies. Possible littermate syndrome? Bullying and aggression between siblings seems to happen more often than between unrelated dogs, and it can get nasty. ,What happens when you get more than one puppy at the same time? together will exhibit signs: Littermate syndrome is a risk, not a foregone conclusion. In an instant I've gone from a dog fighting to hold in the barks so he doesn't get told off, to a completely calm dog because he understands why he shouldn't, because he has jobs and noises outside the door, that's not his job. One thing that we should note is that you will want to be careful when your pups start fighting. Littermate syndrome: The pups are fighting . In some cases the two dogs fight incessantly. The fight all day long and then have periods when they are loving to each ... Littermate Syndrome - Duration: 20:30. However, you may need to intervene if the playing gets too rough or aggressive. A recent post in a Facebook group prompted me to write this. As hard as it may be both the dogs and you will be better off in the long run. Another Potential Problem Among Littermates: Fighting. Signs of Littermate Syndrome. Most importantly, never grab a dog by its collar or head when it is fighting with another dog When separating the dogs that are fighting, attempt to remove the aggressor first Grab the aggressor by its hind legs or tail and pull the dog away from the other one until it is far enough away from the other dog that the situation will be diffused. Littermate Syndrome; Re-home or try to make it work. 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. I have 2 puppies. This piqued my interest and was met with some skepticism as it was something that I had never come across in my years of study and practice in the field of veterinary behaviour. To keep dogs from fighting it is important to work with them one on one. By this time, signs of Littermate Syndrome began to present. Then two years went by, still no adopter, not for either dog. Things can be even worse when the dogs are siblings. “Littermate syndrome” can often develop because the pups tend to prefer each other’s company over that of any human. Based on very little information, a surprising number of people jumped in and proclaimed this to be Littermate Syndrome and prescribed rehoming one of the dogs … Unfortunately, dog-dog aggression is often worst with dogs that are the same gender and the same age. This can also happen with puppies of the same age and size that come from different litters (especially two females). It’s called ‘littermate syndrome’. Many of the cases I see involve dogs that cannot be separated even for the time it takes to take one for a walk. GET THE BARK IN YOUR INBOX! They don’t have to be actual littermates, but just dogs who grow up together at the same time, in the same house. The main concern I have is that they seem to have littermate syndrome. It helps them learn to control the strength of their bite and how to socialize with other dogs. 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. One of the most common signs of littermate syndrome is fearfulness around people or dogs. help. Common Signs Signs include fearfulness of unfamiliar people, dogs and other novel stimuli (neophobia); intense anxiety when separated even briefly; and difficulty learning basic obedience skills. 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). He’d cry, shriek, and try frantically to follow. Stan and Lenny are only a couple weeks apart in age, but they did not even meet each other for several months. I would be devastated if I wasn't able to keep the two of them. If anyone knows any way to prevent this, tips would be very helpful. M & F siblings, Lab X. Many people get two puppies so that they can play together when the opposite needs to happen. And you need to be extra vigilant about training sibling pups to establish their independence. She appears more anxious than he. I have recently been alerted to the term “Littermate Syndrome” which seems to have become common parlance and a kind of pseudo-diagnosis in some dog behaviour circles. The choice is yours. In some cases, the two dogs will fight incessantly. Thanks At 4 months old, they started fighting. Puppies need 8-10 weeks with their mother and littermates to learn vital information. Having two dogs that fight with each other is incredibly stressful for a home. 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