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Old 11-14-2012, 12:12 AM
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Default Singleton Litters?

So my best friend is looking at a litter of some sort of hunting dog to start hunting with in a few years. I'm not sure what exactly they are, as they're purpose bred dogs that he heard about through a friend, and aren't really any specific breed. He asked and was told they've got some apbt and catahoula in them, as well as an assortment of other breeds because some of them have coats and some of them don't apparently. They use them mostly on coyotes and hogs, as well as moving some livestock around and general protection.

They live in the southern zone of the state and so I'm willing to bet they use them on deer as well. I don't know for sure, he does, but I haven't really asked.

He's met the parents, and he's in love with them and really wants one of these dogs.

Anyway, he was concerned because this breeding has resulted in what looks like a single puppy. He told me they had her xrayed at 58 days and only one skull is showing, but it looks like there might be two.

The breeder said if it's a singleton pup they don't want to keep it, and he's first in line for pick after them, so he's having to decide if he wants a singleton pup or not. I think the concern comes from the fact that if it is a single pup they don't want to keep it, because otherwise they are, I think?

I ramble a bit, but I've no experience with puppies from singleton litters at all. Knox and Ozzy were both from rather large litters, and while I have no clue with Enzo, I know she wasn't a singleton. Indy wasn't either, and in fact, I can't think of any dog I know that was a singleton, so I've got nothing to go on.

The bitch hasn't whelped yet, so he still doesn't know if there's one or two, and my research has turned up an amazing amount of contradicting information, everything from the singleton has less than 50% survival rate, to the singleton can do just fine. Ect.

I'm not a breeder, and my breeder/mentor hasn't ever had a singleton in a litter before either, so I turn to the internets, lol.

Should he consider this pup? Should he not even expect it to survive? Do singletons really tend to develop serious aggression problems due to having no litter mates as a baby?

And to satisfy my own personal curiosity, I thought that dogs generally need to have at least a couple puppies in a litter to whelp naturally? These are medium sized dogs, not huge but obviously not small either, so I don't think that the issue of "stuck puppy" like you see in small dogs would happen, but I don't know. I'm considering going with him this week just to meet these dogs/people because I think this is all quite fascinating. My friend is not quite as appreciative of the learning experience as I am lol, but I don't have a horse in this race, so to speak.

Anyway, thoughts?
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:15 AM
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I've always read that singletons can end up being super pushy and rude.

I think Patricia McConnell wrote something about it?

My boss' most recent litter was a singleton and I know he is having issues with the dog being a complete brat beyond what is normal for his litters/dogs he has raised.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:17 AM
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According to this on Susan Garrett's website:
http://susangarrettdogagility.com/20...ngleton-puppy/

It was in "For the love of a dog" that the singleton puppy story is in. Which would make sense since I own that book....somewhere, lol.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:18 AM
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That's a lot of what I've read as well. And she does have something about her singleton litter in For The Love Of A Dog, I went and reread that part when he told me that.

He's not a brilliant dog trainer, he really just wants a hunting partner, and he's made friends with these folks, so I'm assuming his buddy and these people are going to help him train this dog, because I've not one clue on how to train a hunting dog, but I'm trying to figure out if he's about to get in over his head if this pup is a single, and does survive.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:26 AM
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There's an am staff breeder I know that had a singleton litter. She's been trying to breed away from DA which is somewhat entrenched in the line, and was thinking she'd have a really hard time with that puppy.

Nope. She turned out to be extremely laid back and dog friendly with really great dog and people manners. It's one of my favorites I've ever met, and she said that the dog's temperament and confo are the closest she's ever seen to her ideal dog.

If it is a singleton and there's not another puppy lurking in there, you can always find a grow out companion/foster puppy for it to help with the early socialization.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:28 AM
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I've heard that a lot of breeders try to place a singleton with another litter for that early socialization...
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:30 AM
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Idk what length they're willing to go to get the puppy early socialization. Enzo and Indy will be there to help if/when the pup comes home with him, assuming he gets it/it lives. They're both extremely good with other dogs, Enzo especially, but I'm slightly worried it will have bite inhibition issues and rage issues if early intervention isn't done correctly.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:42 AM
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Mom should be able to help with that some. Is there any way you can find someone with puppies he could foster one out?

The other issue with being a singleton is getting to pick the temperament etc. that you want. I think the reason my friend's am staff turned out so nice is that she started out as a pretty submissive laid back puppy that would have been on the bottom of the pecking order anyway. A puppy that is naturally more... motivated/aggressive (not sure if that's the right word, she has tons of drive so it's not that) is probably more likely to turn into a brat without siblings to check them. And if there's only one puppy, you aren't getting to see the normal spectrum of temperaments.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:47 AM
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That's very true too. I have no idea how to find a litter of puppies either. My mentor doesn't have a litter planned for this year or even until I think the end of next year, so she can't help, otherwise I'd actually suggest he take the pup and try to put it on one of her dogs, vs being alone.

I'd like to help him out as much as possible though, because he's very excited, lol, but also concerned, and I'm concerned as well, because I don't want him to get in over his head with a dog that may turn out to be too pushy/too much for him. I don't think this dog will ever really go to like, the dog park, but he's really hoping for a "truck dog" lol.

His pup may end up here a lot, as he's a firefighter so I did offer to puppy sit while he's at work, so it may get plenty of socialization with my crew, and that's at least four dogs to help raise it past 8 weeks old.

I did think of orphan puppies, but like I said, I'm not sure how he would even go about getting something like that rolling. And the female is due any day now.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:55 AM
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You might check with local rescues and see if they have any orphan puppies or ones whose moms dried up and are being bottle fed.

It'll probably depend more on the puppy's temperament how it turns out in the end, though any socializing you can do will definitely help. By the time it's old enough to go home with someone they should have an idea of what it's like though, and he could pass or take it at that point.
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