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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This is my first post, so I first wanted to say what an amazing forum this is. So much great information by respectful members!

Background First, a little background about the puppies and my question. I was introduced to a friend of a friend that was selling German Shepherd pups. I went to the breeder's house and the first thing I noticed was how filthy the pup's environment was. There was an unusually strong smell of feces and all of the pups seemed to partially covered in it. My parents accompanied me during the visit and we decided to buy the last two pups (1 female and 1 male). We were told they were about 6 1/2 weeks old which I knew it wasn't the best idea to get them before 8 weeks, but after seeing the house, I thought it was worth the risk. We've had them for over 4 days now and they are doing great.

The male pup is mine and the female is my parents. I don't live with them, but I do visit every weekend, especially since most of my friends live near them (I live an hour away).

My question: Right now, the pups are living together at my parents to help socialize them and reduce stress from being away from their mother. Is this a good idea, or should I bring my pup home with me right away?

If I continue to keep them together, I plan to bring my pup with me to my house after they are about 9 weeks old. I would then bring my pup with me to my parents every weekend so they can play with us humans and my parent's pup.
 

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Personally, I would keep the pups together until 9 weeks or so.
 

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First, unless you're giving the money to a rescue you did not rescue these puppies, you bought them.
The condition that they were living in doesn't matter, it was still a purchase.
This is a HUGE pet peeve of mine.

I think keeping them together until 9 or even 10 weeks is a good idea. They'll learn from each other during this time.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you both for the recommendations. I'll keep them together for at least another 2 weeks.

My apologies for my use of the word rescue.
 

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You do realize that by giving that person money for those pups you have encouraged them to breed more puppies who are kept laying in their own filth? Personally I would have called Animal Control and had THEM rescue the puppies and the mother dog.
 

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Your heart was in the right place for getting them out of those conditions, but unfortunately you just encouraged that irresponsible BYB to have another litter.

Yes, keep them together until at least 9-12 weeks and start training them (young pups learn VERY quickly), there are some great threads in the first time owners and training forums that help teach basic manners. Once they've had their first set of shots, get them into a good puppy K which will help with socailization as well as training.
 

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I think it might actually be better to take your pup home but visit the other pup regularly. The reason is ..they are not being corrected or fed by the mother, and gsd 's form such a bond with their owners..particularly the caregiver at this age. It may be confusing to have to move and adjust twice at such a young age. Just my opinion. I think its great you took both pups btw.
 

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Congrats on the two new additions. It would be a good idea to keep them together until they are at least 8 weeks and you probably would want to take them to the vet to get them checked out, de wormed, and find out about a shot schedule immediately. People do have strong opinions on "back yard breeders" as I have learned because mine came from the same situation. Some people will try to tell you your dog isn't as good as a dog that came from a good breeder, etc. In your heart you did the right thing. You can call animal control and report these people but unless the dog is starving or being abused, animal control is not going to do anything and they wouldn't have taken the mom and two pups out of the situation and if they did it would have been three more dogs getting put to sleep(so in a sense you did rescue them). Just keep an eye on the pups to make sure they remain healthy, take them to puppy classes and socialize them. Good Luck.
 

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I think it might actually be better to take your pup home but visit the other pup regularly. The reason is ..they are not being corrected or fed by the mother...

I think its great you took both pups btw.
Perhaps not, but they learn bite inhibition from the litter-mates not from Mom. Taking both would have been fine if they had been given away, but to PURCHASE both from an irresponsible breeder who'll be encouraged to breed again and keep pups in filth, not so much.
 

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When I grew up..all pups found new homes at 6 weeks. That standard changed because the mother was able to correct some bad habits such as biting and nurse longer which is healthier for the puppies. This is not the case here. Your pup was taken from familiar surroundings, and the one person associated with care and feeding. He went to a new place and is now being cared for by a new person. I feel uprooting the puppy a third time would be detrimental much more than taking a playmate away. You shpuld be bonding which is a full time job at his age. He can certainly socialize with his littermate, but you should definitely be the primary caregiver. Like I said, your pups age used to be standard in adoptions even by the spca a few years back.

Whatever age he is there is going to be a lot of whining and crying at night and he will also certainly go through months of being a landshark. There is no avoiding it.
 

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Perhaps not, but they learn bite inhibition from the litter-mates not from Mom. Taking both would have been fine if they had been given away, but to PURCHASE both from an irresponsible breeder who'll be encouraged to breed again and keep pups in filth, not so much.
First of all, bite inhibition is taught much more effectively by the mother, and second of all, its insane to assume these pups wouldnt have been sold.. I am sooo glad they landed in the hands of someone who cares enough for their welfare that they would sign up and get advice from a forum. German shepherds usually have big litters..do you honestly think if these puppies had to be culled from lack of sale that they wouldnt breed again?
 

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No, I think it would have been better to call AC, report the atrocious conditions and the fact they are being separated from the mother before 8 weeks (against state law in most places) and had the pups and mother seized and the greeder charged with neglect and cruelty. Developmentally the pup is best off with it's littermate for a couple weeks, it may not be ideal to have the pups separated from mom, but it better that they are together and still learning lessons from EACH OTHER for now.
 

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Its ok ..I can always state my opinion, and agree to disagree. I have owned shepherds for 26 yrs and I know that the bonds formed by this breed is the most important thing in their lives. I stand by my assessment and advice as do others.

Reporting the breeder is an option dependent on the situation. Its possible this was an accidental litter and they were overwhelmed and unintentionally neglectful due to ignorance of the responsibility. Puppy pens can get disgusting very quickly. I dont know, its also possible they breed every heat and dont care.

Speculation will not help the poster of the question. She didnt ask if it was a good idea to rescue them, she asked for advice on raising, and I have given mine.

Good luck!! And dont feel hestitant to ask other questions, not everyone will attack.
 

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My honest personal opinion is that the pups should be together for a couple more weeks and they should see a vet for an initial check-up. If they go to the vet be sure to crate them or keep them off of the floor and to take disinfectant wipes to wipe off the exam table. Just to be safe.

Even though I have had many dogs in over 41 years of owning them and purebred GSD's, Dobermans, Rough Collies, and Afghans and mixes ... I was ignorant ( lack of knowledge ) over 5 years ago as well as my parents and purchased two brothers from the same litter from a BYB. It is just now showing that there was no health testing done on the parents and a designer breed to boot! One is now having internal organ issues and seizures and both are having skin and allergy issues. They will not be 6 years old until August 26, 2012. Too young to have to suffer all these ills.

The BYB moved and left me with a fake phone number, address, and now I cannot tell them their once perfect money making scheme is taking a toll on these innocent little dogs. More than likely they are off breeding more unhealthy pups. Purchasing from a BYB is a mistake that will never be repeated by myself for sure!

I do however feel happy that your pups are in good hands now. Life is a learning process. And pictures would be nice too. :)

Good luck with your little ones. I hope the pups and yourselves can live a healthy many years to come.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
The vets office was closed the day we got them, so both pups were taken the day after. They both received their first shots and were given de-worming pills.

Calling someone about animal abuse did cross my mind, but besides the feces problems, there was nothing else to really make a case.

They are doing perfectly fine now and we couldn't be more happy with them. They are friendly with everyone, they play with the ~10 toy they have, their regular eating schedule is working great, and they are already house trained (besides the small accident here and there because of their small bladders).

Thanks again everyone for your advice and opinions. They'll be together for at least another week and I'm confident I made the right choice buying them. If I didn't, someone else would have. Who knows what kind of people they would have been.

Here is a pic of them the day after we got them: http://imgur.com/PNREF
 

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They're adorable, I look forward to watching them grow up!
 

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Awwwwe ... they are adorable! :)
 

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Congrats on your puppies! It still wouldn't hurt to report them, if nothing else maybe they will get a clue as to how animals should be raised even if nothing is done other than a visit. No telling where they would have ended up if you didn't get them, probably another poor breeder.

I usually have to seperate the litters in half around 8 weeks, as some begin to really get rough. At this point, the bitch usually lets the pups work it out, so that doesn't benefit the weaker ones. Seperating them now will be fine, since mom isn't around to teach corrections anyway. Play dates are great, and hopefully with them getting a break from each other they wont develop much litter mate aggression. Good luck with your pups!
 

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Awwww, they are little cutie's, maybe you could still report the breeders though, the mother dog may get a chance at not being a breeding machine then.
 
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