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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thank you for letting me join the forum.
We have always had the privilege to have dogs in our lives and currently have a 12 year old male and a 10 year old female Cavalier King Charles, both sadly now have medical needs and the days of long hikes are far behind them. Oscar adores other gentle dogs, Pip is more aloof, preferring people. We would dearly love to have a Labrador now we are both retired. Problem is I keep reading things online…. and it’s a long time since we had a younger dog. We have found a 4 month old puppy who sounds perfect but I‘ve now read that is not an ideal age as the ‘window’ to absorb new experiences has passed and we could end up with a nervous pup. They are kennel reared so not used to a home environment.
Would we be better to be content with our oldies for now, or could a newbie breath new life into them? They are such lovely easy going dogs we would hate to upset them in their golden years but I wonder if they could be a guiding light for a youngster. Not looking at getting a working type. Grateful for any advice.
 

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Hi, this is a great forum and you will receive lots of support and helpful advice on all kinds of lab related stuff.
We were in your position a few months ago, but we've got 2 older yorkies, one boy one girl. After a lot of thought we got our lab pup girl who we adore - however - it has been very challenging at times and now when she's almost 8 months they still would rather not have her around I think 😉
But don't be put off, as long as you are prepared for the ups and downs, follow your hearts.
Good luck
 

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The age of the pup wouldn't concern me as long as the breeder had put in the effort to ensure they were socialised as well as possible. But I would want both parents to have been health tested, lots of info about this if you do a quick search. A lot of breeders are using the pandemic as an excuse for not health testing, I had my bitch's BVA eye certificate done last October, and her hips and elbows done recently (I'm not planning a litter any time soon), and I know of friends who have had their dogs health tested as well, so there is absolutely no excuse not to have full health tests in place on both parents.

I'll be honest, bringing a pup/youngster into your lives may well 'ruin' the lives of your older dogs, at least initially, and you won't know if it will be something they grow to enjoy or not until you do it. I've currently got five of varying ages, the eldest will be 15 in August, and I have her granddaughter who is two, as well as three others (not all Labradors) in between. I plan to bring in a great Granddaughter to my old girl later this year, I'm sure she'll probably give me a look as if to say 'not another one', but she's coped fine with the rest of them so we'll make sure she's fine with another, I give her lots of extra fusses and treats anyway, she deserves them.

So really there are no clear cut answers to your second question, but as to the first, definitely make sure health tests are in place, and that the breeder has socialised the pup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi, this is a great forum and you will receive lots of support and helpful advice on all kinds of lab related stuff.
We were in your position a few months ago, but we've got 2 older yorkies, one boy one girl. After a lot of thought we got our lab pup girl who we adore - however - it has been very challenging at times and now when she's almost 8 months they still would rather not have her around I think 😉
But don't be put off, as long as you are prepared for the ups and downs, follow your hearts.
Good luck
Thank you, yes I’ve been reading lots of helpful advice on here. Follow your hearts, I like that. Have your little ones ever told puppy off? I know ours wouldn’t and although they wouldn’t be left unsupervised I am a bit worried about a bouncing pup x
 

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4 months. 16 weeks! A blink of the eye!! A bold outgoing puppy will remain a bold outgoing puppy. It might "De-tune" it a little, but not a lot. The problem might be if it is a shy timid pup, because it does not have reserves of "Outgoingness" to call on. (Sorry for inventing words, but I think Outgoingness describes what I'm trying to convey.)

A bigger problem I feel is a young bouncy puppy around the two "oldies." But in all seriousness, a 12 year old CKCS is younger than a 12 year old Labrador. I've twice brought a puppy in with my older dogs. I've found I need to shield my oldies from the baby's excesses initially, but they soon learn how to interact with each other. It's one of the areas where a crate is so useful. Puppies, like children tend to get OTT as they get tired, so popping in his/her crate for a few minutes sleep gives the oldies a respite, and as puppies are so demanding when awake it also gives you time for a little one to one with the oldies. I normally put my pups in the crate for an hour at around 2pm, and again at around 7pm.

So, if you like the pup, and are prepared for the work involved, GO FOR IT! :)
 

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John's reply says it all really, but I will just say , yes our oldies regularly tell Jas off, we try not to come down too hard on any of them but use John's advice telling them all to " pack it up!"
Certainly, despite all the challenges of raising a lab pup we wouldn't be without her 😀
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The age of the pup wouldn't concern me as long as the breeder had put in the effort to ensure they were socialised as well as possible. But I would want both parents to have been health tested, lots of info about this if you do a quick search. A lot of breeders are using the pandemic as an excuse for not health testing, I had my bitch's BVA eye certificate done last October, and her hips and elbows done recently (I'm not planning a litter any time soon), and I know of friends who have had their dogs health tested as well, so there is absolutely no excuse not to have full health tests in place on both parents.

I'll be honest, bringing a pup/youngster into your lives may well 'ruin' the lives of your older dogs, at least initially, and you won't know if it will be something they grow to enjoy or not until you do it. I've currently got five of varying ages, the eldest will be 15 in August, and I have her granddaughter who is two, as well as three others (not all Labradors) in between. I plan to bring in a great Granddaughter to my old girl later this year, I'm sure she'll probably give me a look as if to say 'not another one', but she's coped fine with the rest of them so we'll make sure she's fine with another, I give her lots of extra fusses and treats anyway, she deserves them.

So really there are no clear cut answers to your second question, but as to the first, definitely make sure health tests are in place, and that the breeder has socialised the pup.
Thank you, yes, I’m definitely looking for health tested parents. One of the reasons I will sadly probably never have another Cavalier. There are so many acronym, I’ve got my homework cut out.
How wonderful to have a 15 year old matriarch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
4 months. 16 weeks! A blink of the eye!! A bold outgoing puppy will remain a bold outgoing puppy. It might "De-tune" it a little, but not a lot. The problem might be if it is a shy timid pup, because it does not have reserves of "Outgoingness" to call on. (Sorry for inventing words, but I think Outgoingness describes what I'm trying to convey.)

A bigger problem I feel is a young bouncy puppy around the two "oldies." But in all seriousness, a 12 year old CKCS is younger than a 12 year old Labrador. I've twice brought a puppy in with my older dogs. I've found I need to shield my oldies from the baby's excesses initially, but they soon learn how to interact with each other. It's one of the areas where a crate is so useful. Puppies, like children tend to get OTT as they get tired, so popping in his/her crate for a few minutes sleep gives the oldies a respite, and as puppies are so demanding when awake it also gives you time for a little one to one with the oldies. I normally put my pups in the crate for an hour at around 2pm, and again at around 7pm.

So, if you like the pup, and are prepared for the work involved, GO FOR IT! :)
Thank you John, wise words indeed, I do think Outgoingness should be in the dictionary, I know exactly what you mean. Yes, a blink of the eye, we just seem to be putting pressure on ourselves to get everything right. Maybe we need to be a bit more carpe diem 😊
 
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