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Hello, I am a new member looking for advice. I am purchasing a puppy, the mother - purebred Lab/Shepherd cross, father – purebred Rottweiler. A few questions that I have are:
1 – I am getting a male, and would like to get him snipped. Are there better or worse times to do this in a puppy/dogs life?
2 – What ways can I help eliminate hip and bone problems (due to the Rottweiler in him)?
3 – I have trained a puppy in the past, but if anyone has any training tidbits that they found to be extra useful, they would also be appreciated.
4 – Lastly, is there anything special or different that I should know about with this mixture. The last dog I owned was purebred Lab/Shepherd mix.
Thanks in advance for all your help
 

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Hello, I am a new member looking for advice. I am purchasing a puppy, the mother - purebred Lab/Shepherd cross, father – purebred Rottweiler. A few questions that I have are:
If you want to avoid hip and bone problems, don't buy a dog from this breeder.

For housetraining, check the stickies. There are lots of housetraining stickies on this board.
 

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1. Six months is generally accepted as a good age for neutering, I think mostly because surgical risk is greater in younger dogs, although some vets will do it sooner. According to my vet, a male neutered before he reaches sexual maturity will have a smaller than usual head & neck and more feminine musculature. A large breed dog neutered before he is fully grown will develop longer legs with lower bone density. Those factors won't really affect the performance of your normal family pet, but should probably be considered for a working dog or athlete.
2. Joint problems are congenital, they can't be eliminated after the puppy is born.* They can be revealed with xrays. Regular exercise will keep muscles strong and postphone manifestation of symptoms. Avoid too much exercise and high impact activities before the pup is fully grown can help keep problems from surfacing early. There are joint supplements that might help.
3. Exercise the body, stimulate the mind, treat the dog with kindness and respect, and consistent discipline.
4. Big, strong, intelligent.

[*edit -- bordermom is correct, joint problems can be caused by the activities she listed. I meant to say, genetic joint problems can't be eliminated after the pup is born.]
 

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I second the don't buy from that 'breeder'. There are lots of mixed breed pups in rescue that need homes, so don't support someone who had an 'oops' litter or otherwise. Unless of course the pup is free, or they will agree to you paying the money directly to the vet to have mom and dad fixed.

Rant over...

I wouldn't neuter till around 18 months, or 2, unless the dog is being a total hormone, in which case I'd get it done.
Joint issues are partly genetic, partly situational, so keep him lean as a puppy, not fat, no jogging or other excessive exercise, avoid jumping in and out of the vehicle, launching off the deck and so on. Feed a quality all ages food or even better raw.
Read up on the forum, do crate train, do look into local training classes for him and actually go to the classes.
Read up on the breeds used in the mix, as well as people who have similar mixes, and keep in mind dogs are dogs most of the time and much of how they act is how they've been trained, or not trained. Look at the parents and see what they're like, and socialize, socialize, socialize.
 

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I wouldn't buy a mixed breed, but thats just me. Too many risks and it's against the AKC I think... I've read a lot about keeping breeds consistent/pure and not allowing multiple variations. I was also reading on different breeds how they came about like we see them today and they evolved over years with several different mixes into what we see as pure bred today. Also you should research the seller. If I am going to invest in a dog, I would want it to be top quality and healthy.
 

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I wouldn't buy a mixed breed, but thats just me.
I take this back... I think of the poor dogs in shelters and I would save one of these. A new dog yes, but saving another it could be any dog. Dogs are hard to have and I only have 1 now, I couldn't imagine having 2 or 3.
 

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I take this back... I think of the poor dogs in shelters and I would save one of these. A new dog yes, but saving another it could be any dog. Dogs are hard to have and I only have 1 now, I couldn't imagine having 2 or 3.
There's a huge difference between paying someone to produce mixed breeds and rescuing a dog from a shelter. I prefer mixed breeds myself, but I would be thrilled if I couldn't get another one ever again. That would mean no more oopsie litters, no more puppy mills, no more unethical back yard breeders, which would be a very good thing.
 

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It's still kind of surprising to me that people will pay for mixed breed dogs. I was conflicted about it myself, but couldn't resist when presented with a cross between my two favorites, bred for a particular purpose. I was not disappointed.
 

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The only money you should be paying for a mixed breed dog is an adoption fee from a rescue/shelter. Otherwise, you are almost guaranteeing that you're getting a dog whose parents were not health-tested. That could mean genetic hip/joint problems that the "breeder" didn't bother to check for. Mixed-breed "breeders" are those who breed solely for the money, as there really is no other reason to breed two dogs of different breeds than to make money (you can't show them; breeding won't improve a breed in health).

I got my mixed breed dog for free. It was an "oops" litter, and the puppies were all given to responsible owners. She's an awesome dog, but I know for a fact that there are some behavioral issues that were likely a result of her lineage, as her brothers and sister all have the same issues.
 

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A mix is not a pure breed. All three breeds in that mix can have joint or bone issues. See if the parents have been health tested, hips, elbows etc. You should have no special problems that arise any morsel than adopting from a shelter. While I don't condone breeding mixed dogs without a purpose, it is sometimes done for specific reasons. Not everyone shows dogs.
 

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I would not purchase a mixed breed either. We have two lovely, healthy, mutts, they came from shelters. Honestly, I don't believe there is such a thing as a reputable breeder of a mix such as you describe, so I would NOT buy from that "breeder". Sounds like they are just trying to make a buck to me and I do not want to support that kind of behavior.

If you want a purebred, do your homework to find a good breeder and buy from them. If you want a mixed breed, there are MANY lovely dogs at shelters and rescues looking for homes...you'd pobably actually be taking fewer health risks getting a dog from an unintentional breeding than from a purposeful, but irresponsible and uneducated breeding where the stock might be inbred.
 

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1. The general recommendation for snipping is 6 mos. That's what I did with my GSD/Lab. There is lots of discussion about the timing. My Vet has suggested that waiting until 2 yo may be OK with an experienced owner who understands what the behaviors will be - greater interest in females, potential for more aggression... These can be overcome with lots of socialization and training.
2. To reduce problems, ask a Vet to check the hips, provide large dog puppychow, provide lots of gentle exercise until about 1 yo, find a good supplement with Omega-3, and glucosamine/chondroitin.
3. Training - See the free downloads: http://www.dogstardaily.com/free-downloads... Google "Calming Signals" .... Train Bite Inhibition and lots of socialization
4. I think that GSD/Labs are sweet and intelligent. Don't know what a Rott adds to the mix. Maybe stronger/tougher?
 
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