At what age do I make a decision? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 03:46 AM Thread Starter
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At what age do I make a decision?

The puppies we are choosing from are 3 weeks old... our new baby can come home with us at 8 weeks. Right now all I have to go on is colors but not making a decision based on that. However, at what age DO I choose? 6 weeks? 8 weeks? We have first choice and our friends have second choice.

I saw puppies today and fell in love with all of them! The one male I love for his coloring is the most rambunctious in the litter at this age and also the most vocal but I think he's just the first to discover his voice. Or he was just a hungry guy.

What was SO adorable today was when all the puppies started "singing" when the mama was feeding them. I even took a short video with my camera -- I've never seen that before!

Here are links to the two videos I took -- not the best quality since they were taken on my phone:

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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 09:19 AM
and Murphy & Gracie too!
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IWAP!!! They are so sweet, how lucky for you that you get to see them when they're so tiny. I'd get advice from the breeders on here but that one that was already climbing out...I'd be scared of that one.

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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 09:27 AM
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I think you'll know when the time is right. Give them a little more time to develop their personalities and on one of your visits one of them will be calling out to you. BTW, those videos are adorable. What a chorus!

<b>Just Milo and me, and . . . </b>Bailey makes three . . . until Ruby said, "hey, what about me?"
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 09:47 AM
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They look so sweet! I'm with Ann...that brave little thing would scare me

Kim, Santos & Brew
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 09:56 AM
Quincy's Mom-Vinnie too!
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Who are you getting your puppy from?

Is the little white one with the bow tie on the back a male or female? That one is very interesting with the unusal markings to me.

Vincent-Quincy's playmate

"Behind every unstable dog is a lesson for the owner"-Cesar Millan
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 10:05 AM
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I agree that you should strongly consider the input from your breeder... she will likely know how puppy personalities develop. (although things can always change from week to week) It's fantastic that you live near enough that you can visit regularly. This will really help you watch the puppies develop, and will help you recognize what behaviors are a one-time thing, caused by a puppy who is overtired or overstimulated, and what behaviors are part of the puppy's innate personality.

If you want a dog to do agility and other performance work, you might choose the most adventurous pup... for many people, that pup might be too much dog. A pup with a strong personality might work best if he has to integrate into a family that already has several older larger dogs with whom he will have to hold his own. In general, for a "good pet quality" pup, you want to pick a puppy who is temperamentally in the middle of the litter. Not the bossy, dominant one, but not the shy wallflower either. This is especially true if you haven't had a lot of experience raising puppies. The more experienced you are, the easier it will be to curb the dominant behaviors of an alpha pup, or to encourage a shy pup to be more confident and comfortable.

But there are some things that will definitely be more apparent to the breeder, who spends all day every day with the pups than they will be to you, even if you can visit often. For instance, in Kodi's litter, there was one pup who always seemed to be on the bottom of the pecking order, he'd get jumped on by the others, and then be screeching for them to let him up. The Kings pointed out that while it LOOKED like he was the bottom pup in the litter, in actual fact, he was, more often than not, the instigator of these little scuffles. He was a rabble rouser in disguise.<g> Now, how that personality works out as the pup gets older, I have NO idea. (and this wasn't one of the pups I was considering anyway) But it was interesting to watch once it was pointed out to me.

Another thing to look at is how people-oriented a pup is. Of the two in Kodi's litter that I was seriously considering, one was super adventurous, exploring everything, and very bold. He was friendly, for sure, but most of his attention was on exploring his world, less on the people sitting there with him. Kodi, OTOH, although also interested in exploring, would break off playing and exploring to come to us, the moment we attracted his attention. He had incredible eye contact, even at a very young age. He was a bit more cautious than the "explorer" pup, but that eye contact, and his intense desire to work with PEOPLE is what made me fall for him head over heels. I wanted a dog who was bold enough to do agility and obedience work, but really wanted to work with ME.

That's what I got. Kodi lives to work. Not that he doesn't enjoy a good romp, play, tussle or RLH as much as the next dog, but he'll also follow me into the kitchen and look me right in the eye. I'll ask him, "Do you want to do some work?" and he'll come right over and set himself up in heel position. He turns himself inside out trying to figure out what you want him to do. He's a joy to train. BUT as I've mentioned before, I don't think someone who wanted a cute pet to lay on the couch and just "be there" without keeping his mind busy would be as happy with him as I am. If you don't keep him busy, he'll find something to do for himself, and it's unlikely to be something you WANT him to be doing.<g> You have to be clear about what YOU want in a dog (not just a puppy... remember, ALL puppies are cute!!!) before you will know what puppy is right for you.

I think the most important thing to remember is that, assuming that the breeder is breeding good tempered stock in general, none of the personality types I've mentioned are "good" or "bad" they are just different, and will fit in best with a different family.

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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 11:43 AM
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Those videos were so sweet!

~Sue, mom to Gabi, Dylan & (furbaby)Peanut
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 12:05 PM
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Very good post, Karen.
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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Karen, thank you for all the fantastic advice!! Wow! I appreciate it so much and will watch for everything you have said! You're right -- the breeder will know what they are like and we only get to see them for a few moments at a time so we will definitely listen to what she tells us. My daughter is spending much more time with the puppies but she said they sleep a lot right now, too.

It will be interesting to watch how Mr. Rambunctious will develop!

And I loved the story of the little rabble rouser.

Thank you again!

Julie, we are getting our puppy from a local breeder -- this is her first litter. Our daughters are friends and that is how we found out about them. The little white one is a female and she is beautiful! The others are boys.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2010, 12:57 PM
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Great advice! I'd like to add that I was in the same position as you in choosing a pup. I got to visit each week from the time they were born. My first early choice was based on color and adorable girl. However...I kept laughing at her one brother that was much like the pup you are drawn to. He was the first to do everything and was always wandering off to explore. After 6 weeks I realized that the girl I had initially chosen was not right for me. She was a bit shy and would back away and try to hide when people approached. The little guy the breeder had named "Tank" came right up to everyone with his tail held high! I took Tank home and now his name is Riley and he's the most friendly, smart and snuggly guy. I credit the forum for educating me. I joined, just as you have, when I was in the choosing phase and they told me to wait...not to be swayed by color or sex! Wonderful advice and SO much support!!

Give yourself time. You'll know. Can't wait to see who chooses YOU! Oh...and the video of them singing just melted my heart!

Jean, Riley and Zeus!
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