Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

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Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby gjw » Sun May 12, 2019 6:08 pm

Hi all, looks like we're going to get a new pup here soon. As a bit of background, our present GSP, Raina, was older when we got her and my old girl, Duchess was a rescue dog. So, this will be the first time we're getting a young pup (it's a GSP BTW). The litter, was whelped on Apr 18 this year. Here's the questions:

1) What age should we be picking out the pup?


2) What age should we bring the pup home?

3) What are some good pointers on picking a good pup, what to look for so to speak?

Thanks so much!!!


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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby jlw034 » Sun May 12, 2019 6:26 pm

Tell the breeder what traits your looking for. He knows the dogs the best, and will at least make an educated guess.

Yours would just be a plain ole guess.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby RowdyGSP » Sun May 12, 2019 6:48 pm

Agree about communicating well with the breeder about what you want and are looking for in a pup. As for taking them home at a certain time I think 8 weeks is pretty standard. I've gotten a pup at 8 weeks and another one at 9.5 weeks. Didn't seem to make a difference. I know some breeders let them go at 7 weeks. Somewhere within that timeframe would probably be good.

PS: Small world it is, I used to live not far at all from you in Flasher.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Drahthaar1108 » Sun May 12, 2019 7:05 pm

Far as picking a pup , good luck, but I like a pup that carries itself well proud with a high tail, more out going than the other pups, take a bird with you or bird wing, see who interested, I do a lot of blood trailing so I take a piece of thawed out deer skin and a bottle of blood.
I like to get a pup as early as possible 6 weeks on. Forrest
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby gjw » Sun May 12, 2019 7:26 pm

RowdyGSP, it sure is a small world!! My kids all went/go to Flasher High School when they were done with grade school here in St Anthony. Mandan is closer as you know, but it's a freak show compared to Flasher. Much rather have them go to a farm town school than a city school.

Anyway, thanks for the advise and good to hear from someone from down home here.

Best,

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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby AverageGuy » Sun May 12, 2019 7:31 pm

8-9 weeks is when I get my pups. Looking at a litter once is largely a crap shoot but observing the litter multiple times is likely to reveal some consistent differences between pups. The Breeder has observed the pups daily so their input is the best information in most cases.

I like the bold ones which go exploring on their own using their nose to investigate new things. I like to observe the litter turned out into a large natural setting and silently watch what they do. Multiple times. The bold ones who are compelled to explore and use their nose as they go will reveal themselves. But the most independent bold dog in a litter is not best fit for everyone and in a well bred litter it is likely all the puppies can be shaped into a very nice adult dog.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Bruce Schwartz » Sun May 12, 2019 7:59 pm

I brought one home three days ago at 7 weeks of age. Seven weeks old seems really young, but that's what the breeder recommended and he also recommended which pup to take. Every day at this age seems to make a big difference in what this pup can do. I suppose waiting too long can result in the pup bonding more with liter mates - which could be a problem. Not sure what difference getting them too young makes as long as you give them lots of comfort.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby flitecontrol » Sun May 12, 2019 8:11 pm

I think Joan Bailey put this in one of her books, but I'm too lazy to discover which one. I think the recommendation actually came from Ed Bailey, who is an animal behaviorist. Ten weeks minimum, and 12 weeks is better. Very few breeders will hold their pups that long because the little devils are making their lives miserable by that age and they are ready for them to GO. The longer your breeder will keep the pups, up to age 12 weeks, the better for the pup.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby AverageGuy » Sun May 12, 2019 8:32 pm

I took a B&T Coonhound pup out of a litter that had been kept together until they were 3 months old. My pup had developed a personality of dominating the other pups in the litter that grew worse the older the dog got and was not healthy.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Sooty42 » Sun May 12, 2019 10:10 pm

The pup we picked out (cause I had to somewhat include the wife and kids) was fairly laid back when playing with his litter mates. He wasn’t a push over but he also was not overly aggressive. He had no issues when I placed him on his back and was not scared of loud noises(not to loud obviously at this age), like rattling keys over his head. When we let the pups loose in the breeders back yard most of the pups just played and ate rabbit poop. He and one other pup were very interested in the chickens in the chicken coop, after that I knew he was the one (this was at about 6 weeks of age, but we actually brought him home at 8 weeks).

He is almost 2 now and so far his temperament and bird drive has not changed since I assessed him as a pup.

If I remember correctly the book, “The art of raising a puppy,” has some good insight into choosing a pup. Also as mentioned on another post Joan Bailey’s book “How to help a gun dog train themselves,” had some good info.
Last edited by Sooty42 on Mon May 13, 2019 4:19 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Bruce Schwartz » Sun May 12, 2019 10:13 pm

I can't quote the source but it's said that a puppy that's been allowed to stay with its liter mates for three months will never bond with humans. That's what they do with sheep guardian dogs - they don't let the dog have any human contact during the formidable time, and raise the pup only with sheep.

Also I've read that it's a problem if you raise two dogs at the same time because they'll bond with each other rather than you; further, if you have other dogs in the house the puppy should be separated for sleeping (and at other times). We've got three other dogs in the house .... oh well
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby flitecontrol » Sun May 12, 2019 11:36 pm

Bruce Schwartz wrote:I can't quote the source but it's said that a puppy that's been allowed to stay with its liter mates for three months will never bond with humans. That's what they do with sheep guardian dogs - they don't let the dog have any human contact during the formidable time, and raise the pup only with sheep.

Also I've read that it's a problem if you raise two dogs at the same time because they'll bond with each other rather than you; further, if you have other dogs in the house the puppy should be separated for sleeping (and at other times). We've got three other dogs in the house .... oh well


Any puppy that hasn't been socialized to humans isn't going to be a good hunting companion. That's definitely not what Joan or Ed was suggesting. IIRC, their point was that there were certain things the pup learned by keeping the litter together for that period.

Regardless of how many dogs are in the house, they will all want to be near the pack's alpha, which should be their human boss. Ever see one of Cesar Milan's (The Dog Whisperer) shows when he walked through the pack at his facility? Virtually every dog was trying to get near him, and they followed him around like he was God.
I've had several really good dogs, but none were perfect. Neither am I, so keep that in mind!
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Dmog » Mon May 13, 2019 12:54 pm

Ideal age to bring home a pup depends on the breed. There are general guidelines that are safe to follow but I know from experience that my PP pup was brought home at 7 weeks and she was more coordinated at that age and matured faster than my WPG pup that I brought home at 10 weeks old but I swear the Griff knows what we are saying.
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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby Willie T » Mon May 13, 2019 3:07 pm

I have brought home pups from 7-12 weeks. It could just be the individual dogs but I like the way the two I brought home at 7 weeks turned out the best. I think those two dogs bonded tighter to me than any others I've raised. I'm also fairly confident that at 12 weeks their exposure to birds and the world was more than it would have been had they remained with their liter. Both turned out to be exceedingly bold dogs.
In the past I have always chose a bird dog much the same as AG described, with the addition of laying out a trail with a fresh bird when possible. I heavily weighted my selection toward the puppies that instinctively want to quarter the wind when they hit scent. Every pup I chose in this manner turned out pretty nice. Wired hot is what I like and try to identify.
My last pup, a PP from Cedarwood gundogs, was 100% selected by the breeder after a lengthy discussion. Damned if I don't think he is a better fit than any I have chosen. Not sure if it's just the line or the individual dog but cedarwood sent me home with a beast....

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Re: Help With A Couple Puppy Questions

Postby orhunter » Mon May 13, 2019 4:09 pm

GJW: Totally confused yet????

What the Bailey's were talking about is the pup adapting to dog socialization but not at the elimination of human socialization. Human socialization begins with the breeder at about the time their eyes open and they can associate the human form with certain activities, like being held, voice, massaged/fondled, all sorts of stuff.

I've got my last three Griffs at 8, 9 and 11 weeks. The bond was tightest with the 11 week pup, the worst was the 9. 9 would have been different had the pup been the only dog in the house. The 8 was a male and they don't give a hoot about much of anything, nice dogs to have around without complications.

If a person can't be with the litter to watch them grow from about 5 weeks on, the breeder is more than likely the best at picking what's right based on what the person says what they want. What you get can depend on the breeder's real experience at dog breeding and overall dog knowledge. They don't all come from the same mold. It also depends on what dog type the breeder produces. They may send you the pup that best fits your needs based on the pups he/she has but it may not be what you want because their focus is on another dog type. It's all relative.

Given a choice, I'd prefer 9 or 10 weeks, no more. I want to get right into training/exposure the day after the pup comes to me. There is so much ground to cover in the first 4 months, a person can't get started too early.

Ellie's breeder began sending me videos when the pups were very young. I'd pretty much made my pick by 4 weeks.
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