at Tue Feb 11 12:07:00 2014 [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by Chelle ]
Amanda- it is good to have you back here. All the kids and dogs are getting older. Scary and strang, but good.
First- I will say you know Brewster very well and go with your gut instincts on this. If you think he can tolerate a young dog vs. an older dog, than you have to go that route.
Second- I do think you can get two males to work out together better than two females. So if your daughter REALLY wants to do conformation, I believe you can get that to work out. You just have to have some help during puberty and "the testing phase."
I don't know many breeders in your area. The Giles are the ones I know the best and would probably recommend the most, but they do not breed often and when they do, their wait list is long. I would go to the National Shiba Club of America's website and choose. I can give you my email address and I can tell you some things about some on the list, but I think you can figure out hte good from the ok on your own. Also, UKC allows altered dogs to compete in conformation in Junior Showmanship, so if your daughter wants to try the sport out. She could even with Brewster and see if she likes it before making that committment. For agility your dog can be altered, so that is no big deal. Granted, I find most breeders placing for agility prospects tend to want them unaltered (unless they are oversized or have some ofther disqualifying fault, but it does not effect structure). It just kind of depends.
Right now I am dealing with two unaltered males in my house (Taiko- 12 years old, Legend- 15 months old) and Katsu (2 year old female that I spayed this summer). Dealing with heat cycles and unaltered boys was not an option in my household. Taiko has never liked puppies and does better with adults, so things have been tough on him, but he always has his safe zones that the puppies are not allowed in and we disciplin the puppies (remove them and crate them) when their manners are not to our expectations. Bullying and throwing weight around is not allowed in our house. Stealing from the other dogs is also not allowed. IF one tries, the other dogs gets everything and the offender gets crated. The DVD "Feeling Outnumbered" has been a lifesaver and impulse control behaviors are highly reinforced.
I will say that puppy behaviors were hard to deal with, but puberty has actually been harder than puppy. Nothing has been impossible, but parts of personality that are not perfect are not enhanced for the better during puberty.
What I had not anticipated was the much higher energy of the younger dogs vs. my senior dog and the rough and tumble play puppies enjoy is not tolerated by a senior dog with arthritis. Often I have to do two walks in a night. So I double back and drop off Taiko and go another lap with the young ones. I even bough a backpack for Legend to wear him out further on walks because he is extra high energy.
The first month after adding a new addition to the family, you will probably wonder why you did it- especially if you get an 8 week old puppy. Yet, it gets better after that. It's not without it's challenges, but you will make it work.
Chelle and the rest of the crew including, but not limited to Kita and Taiko (the shiba inu wrestle maniacs), Adi (reserved and dignified tabby cat), and all 28 reptiles www.freewebs.com/performanceshibas
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