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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-12-2012, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
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Some of you will have read my two recent postings about us thinking of adding another dog to our family, as a playmate for our youngster Loki. Sadly, we missed out on a twelve month old GR girl being rehomed a couple of days ago, so I started looking at German Shepherds, as my husband has always wanted another one, since tragically losing his eight month old GS boy many years ago. As I have no experience with this breed, I haven't felt the same keenness as him, but I did look into a five year old girl in an animal shelter nearby. Unfortunately, she has never been exposed to living with cats, & we have three who we dearly love. My husband does not want another puppy, as Loki is now almost five months old, & is very settled & mostly calm.

I am feeling quite excited at the moment, as I have just discovered that a breed we were originally going to get, has a girl & a boy available from the litter we were going to choose our baby out of in July. Long story, so will simplify it. In July & first week of August were holidaying in America for five weeks, visiting with my sons & their families for most of that time. We made the decision to add another dog to our family & both decided upon a Gordon Setter, which I have wanted since I was a child ....our next door neighbour had two Irish & one Gordon which I totally idolised. So we started looking on the Internet, but Gordons are not common in NZ & there are only two breeders in the whole country. To our delight, we discovered that one of those registered breeders lived within a thirty minute drive from us, so we contacted her & were over the moon to find that she had a litter of lovely ten week old babies, with just one little boy left. We decided to take him & had fun choosing a name for him when we were stuck at Chicago airport for nine hours, waiting for our delayed flight to SF on our way back to NZ.

Sadly, as our plane touched down in NZ, my husband got a text from one of his brothers, telling him that another brother had died just hours before. This was the second brother he had lost in the past year, & both were under 65. He was understandably very upset. We were meant to be picking up our new Goran Setter baby boy just four days later, but I realised that my poor husband was emotionally not up to the challenges of a young puppy, with the funeral of his brother still to face. So I emailed the breeder, told her what had happened, & said that we could not have the baby at this time. Thankfully, she was very understanding. By the time my husband was feeling able to take on the role of being a new dad, I checked the website for our Gordon baby, but he had been sold. We then chose to add a Golden baby to our family, & have never regretted that decision.

Whilst searching for an older playmate for Loki yesterday, I suddenly came across an old listing for the Gordon Setter babies & decided to contact her again, on the off chance that she might have an older dog available. I have just received an email from her to say that she has a lovely girl out of that litter, that she was holding on to show & breed from, but is not going to do that now .....& she has the same little boy that we chose way back in July. He apparently went to a new home at sixteen weeks old, & was returned just four days later as the professional working couple had him crated for nine hours whilst they worked, & then were too tired to exercise him when they got home, & expected him to lay in the lounge with them all evening & then sleep in his crate all night. So the breeder decided to keep him as a companion to his sister, but says she is now going to look for homes for them both we could have either of them! I would ideally like the girl, as a playmate for Loki, so I am hoping to take him over there today or tomorrow, & see how they get on together ...will keep an open mind about the boy. Does anyone on the forum have a Setter with their Golden? As they are both water dogs, I imagine they will get on very well. The Gordon will have a higher energy level, I think.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-12-2012, 06:04 PM
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Wow, I can't imagine getting a second dog with one at five months. You are going to have your hands full!
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-12-2012, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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Loki is no trouble at all. He is a real cruisey young guy. Sleeps seven hours straight through the night, stays up for two hours, then snoozes for another couple of hours. I take him for a walk of about a mile & then he has a romp about the garden for about quarter of an hour, back indoors for lunch, then snoozes in the lounge for about three hours. My husband comes home from work & takes him for another walk of just over a mile long & then he mooches around in the garden with us for a couple of hours (summer in my part of the world), then we all have dinner & settle down for an evening of TV watching, with Loki snoozing at our feet from about 9pm until we wake him up at 11.15pm for his last trip outdoors before bedtime ...then he goes straight off to sleep when he comes back indoors at 11.30 & we don't hear a peep from him until 6.30-6.45am. He used to have zoomies in the evening at around 8.30 before settling down, but now he just tends to mooch about with our other dog. ...six year old papillon. So he is very easy to look after. Today I spent 1.5 hours in the park with him, doing off leash training, recall & just generally having fun with one another. He came home, had his lunch with the rest of the crew (dog plus three cats), then headed into the lounge with the little dog & the two of them have been asleep for almost two hours .....I think the warm days make them drowsy. We haven't made p our minds a hundred percent re taking on another dog, but I think it may well happen & I think it would be good for Loki to have a playmate.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 08:58 AM
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My last dog was an English setter and he was seriously the best dog ever. So gentle and easy going. Really wonderful dogs, and there is nothing like watching a well bred hunting dog work a field.

That said? When Jack passed away, I didn't consider another setter. I honestly think they need to hunt to be totally happy. I don't hunt and I no longer live where there are miles of open fields where I can take a dog and just let him run and hunt on his own.

My golden is very different from my setter. He's way more people focused. He doesn't want to just go run around in a field- he really wants his human to play with him. He's a lot less independent, doesn't need as much exercise or wide open space, but is just as sweet and goofy.

I really love setters. But if you aren't going to hunt them, I think you may struggle to give them a totally fulfilling lifestyle in a way that just isn't true for goldens. Of course, I had a field dog. A bench bred dog might be totally different. And I'm not sure how different a Gordon would be from an English.

Setters really are lovely, though!

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 09:03 AM
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How exciting, do you have any pictures of him? Gordon Setters are beautiful dogs.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 10:27 AM
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Exciting news- though the experience I've had with Gordons has not been a good one. The one I have met is crazy, just not right in the head. And never settles down. I think he is about 2 years old. That being said, I've only met the one as they are not common at all. Setters are like that, I feel. And having 2 puppies the same age... I would never do that again (we have littermate labs).

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Rainheart View Post
Exciting news- though the experience I've had with Gordons has not been a good one. The one I have met is crazy, just not right in the head. And never settles down. I think he is about 2 years old. That being said, I've only met the one as they are not common at all. Setters are like that, I feel. And having 2 puppies the same age... I would never do that again (we have littermate labs).
lol @ not right in the head

That sounds like the border collie I had a few years ago. You could run and run w/ her for days on end, she never never laid down and relaxed. There was no bond there. She just ran laps endlessly around the living room, nipped and tried to herd us, and was just "off"... I'm not saying that is the nature of the entire breed..but I will never have another border collie again. They need MAJOR exercise.

I'm sold on my golden now, I will never turn back.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 04:43 PM Thread Starter
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Mmmm .....I'm not at all sure what to do. Yesterday, I was so excited to discover the Gordon we had originally chosen, & his sister. We would probably go for the girl, rather than the boy, as we have two boys. However, I do have some worries, having spoken on the phone with the breeder. These puppies come from Show Gordon's, not Field Gordon's, & all the pups have gone into pet homes. Gordon's are the most settled of the setters, according to all the research I have done.

In NZ Labradors are the breed mainly used for duck shooting ....i guess some people use Setters for hunting, but they would definitely be in the minority. Goldens are sometimes used for duck shooting, but its not all that common. Huntaways & Vizlas are mainly used for other forms of hunting, or sometimes terriers I think. Setters are usually only used for pets ....different in UK though. Over there, Setters are mainly used for waterfowl hunting, I think.

Anyway, getting back to my concerns . Firstly, these seven month old pups have not had exposure to cats at close range. The breeder does run a boarding chattery & kennel from her premises, so they do see cats from a distance, & she said the pup will be more likely to stay away from the cats, until it feels confident that the cats won't hurt it. Then it will just get to know them & they will be part of the pup's new family. Secondly, my husband has read that Gordons can sometimes get jealous of other dogs in the family .....I have read that too, but I have also read that they can be wonderful with other dogs. These pups are exposed to different dogs almost on a daily basis, as new dogs are boarded at the kennels virtually every day, & the pups are living at the kennels & use the same exercise area as all the boarding dogs. And that is my third concern, that they are seven months old & have never lived in a family situation. They have had a lot of exposure to different people & different dogs, but in a kennel setting ....the breeder also has a riding stable, so the pups get to meet up with lots of people. I don't know if the breeder has the pups in her house at all.

This breeder is passionate about Gordons & I think she would be fine with letting us have the pup on a trial basis for a few days, to see if it would be a good fit for our family. At this point though, I am just not sure if we will do this, as my husband is having a hard time bonding well with Loki ....the problem being that I have been off work with a herniated disc & nerve compression since a week before we got Loki. That made it difficult for me to look after a young puppy, but it also meant that I have been home virtually 24/7 since the day he joined our family, whilst my husband works full time. I put a lot of effort into the puppy, training him daily, taking him to fun places like the park, talking to him, etc. My husband takes him for his evening walk, but that is only in the last month ..up to then, I was doing both walks, as my husband wanted to relax when he got home from work at 6pm. I told him he needed to spend time on his own with Loki, in order to really start bonding with him, because I will return to work in another week or so, & will not be here late afternoons & evenings four days one week, & two days the next.

My husband is now saying that Loki doesn't want to do things with him, because as with our other dog, he is very closely bonded with me. Last night Loki did not want to walk with him, so he got as far as two houses away & then bought him back ...Loki kept sitting down & refusing to get up. I took Loki out instead. My husband has had little interest in doing any training with Loki, so I can handle it when he misbehaves, but my husband can't. Loki is always excited to see my husband come home & my husband seems happy to see him, but I think the problem is that he wants to relax when he gets home from work, & when Loki is snoozing at his feet, he really enjoys having him around. But when Loki is behaving like a puppy & jumping about, my husband doesn't enjoy having him around, & doesn't know how to cope. We are fortunate that Loki is very mellow & does not act up much at all nowadays, but I think my husband is worried that bringing another puppy into the equation, is going to make his life more difficult, as he will then have two large puppies that he does not know how to handle, & Loki might become more active. I guess he might be right about it making his life more difficult, & although I think it would be nice for Loki to have another dog to romp about with, I am starting to now worry that my husband will not cope when he is on his own with the dogs. Strangely enough, it is my husband who is the large dog person. I have always been more drawn to the smaller breeds! I am just worried that Loki is turning into a lap dog, preferring to be indoors than out ...snoozing the day away, in between walks or trips to the park. I was thinking that another large puppy would motivate him to romp about in the garden, instead of snoozing in the lounge, & make him more interested in going on his walks. Sorry for this very long comment!

Last edited by Dwyllis; 12-13-2012 at 04:58 PM.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 05:00 PM
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I think given your concerns that you should really rethink the idea of a puppy. It sounds like your husband really just wants the companionship of a well behaved dog, and not the work that comes with a puppy. Perhaps you could check with the breeder to see if there are any adult Setters that need a new home.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-13-2012, 05:10 PM
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Hi Dwyllis!

I followed this and another post of yours. I have the Papillon and 16 month old GR pup . I also raised and showed Irish setters some years back. If I were in your current situation, I would be waiting before getting another dog until everyone has adjusted to having a GR puppy. Amber is now 16 months old, but is still a handful sometimes even with both my husband and me to handle her. Add in our Papillon and they require much monitoring as the Pap is small and mighty, but can be breakable. We monitor them whenever they are together. In one incident, Amber had the zoomies and the house was fairly dark at dusk. Amber zoomed around the corner, tried to jump over Piper, knocked her flying with a back leg. Completely accidental, but needless to say, no more zoomies in the house. In my world, I cannot imagine adding another puppy to the mix. Having said that, I had two Irish setter littermates and had no problem with them. They kept each other busy. I wish you the best whatever your decision. Vicki
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