Sitting for dogs of different ages

I’ve had a few sits with 2 dogs of different ages e.g. a 12 year old and a 4 year old, 11 year old & puppy. Generally the older dog can’t do as much walking as the younger dog so, to be kind to the younger dog I would take him out for an extra long walk alone after walking with the older dog for a shorter time (although hated leaving the other dog home alone). The dog and puppy can walk for a similar amount of time but the puppy is more energetic and the older dog has to catch her breath. These are just two examples which has made me think that it would be much easier to have 2 (or more) dogs closer in age or just the one dog.
I’d be interested to hear what people think about these, and similar, scenarios.

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i’ve had a few sits like that. With one, I just walked them both around the block, which is all the older one needed, then dropped him home to snooze and took the kiddo for a long walk. on another, there was a dog park nearby so I’d take them both there with me and the older one would nap while i threw the ball for the younger one until he was worn out. then we’d go home. It just depends on what’s in the area. if you can go off lead, it’s a lot easier as you can throw a ball/sticks for the young one to get a lot of running while you plod along with grandpa.

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I think your solution to the issue is excellent. Makes great sense for both pups and I am sure the older one was very happy with the opportunity to “snooze” while the kids play!

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Yeah. I’d have to nudge his bum to get him moving again. He liked to sleep a lot and would have been quite happy with NO walks at all but even old bones need to move a bit every day. :slight_smile:

I did a sit for one pair that was an older girl and younger boy. the old lady moved slower and could do a decent out and back. the younger one loved to run. there was a dead tree near the start of the path so our routine was to pick a good stick at the start of every walk and I’d throw it as we walked along. turned out, miz old lady LOVED chasing sticks. she’d run like a puppy and was just so excited. then we’d get home and she wouldn’t move for the rest of the day. lol. her family was shocked when I showed them video. they always threw a ball for the boy, which she didn’t like, so she never chased that.

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I think the older/younger dog scenario is so that the pet parents aren’t left with no dogs. It is so difficult to even contemplate another dog when one dies but this way the dog is already part of the family.
Yes, short walk for both and then a long energetic walk for the youngster.
Dare I hijack your post and ask another question?
What about different sizes of dogs in the same household? We have had a couple of recent sits with a Labrador retriever and a dachshund. I worried about the smaller dog keeping up. Little did I know the energy these tinys have. What fantastic dogs we look after.

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@ElsieDownie We had a German Shorthaired Pointer and a Dachshund to sit and the little fella had no trouble keeping up! He had to stay on the lead as he’d be down a rabbit hole otherwise and wouldn’t be seen for some time so we got told!

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It also makes it easier to train the younger dog. Older doggo teaches the youngun good manners. :slight_smile:

In my experience, little dogs are like energizer bunnies. They just go and go and go.

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I did one in Scotland a couple of years ago, with 2 spaniels. One was about 14, the other 2. The house was a Scottish country house with acres of land. So most of the walks were on the property. The old dog would come as far as he wanted, then turn and head home, and I could take the younger dog over the fence to a farm track if he wanted a really good walk. The old dog was always waiting back at the house for his food.

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gotta love the ones that are just like ‘ok, i’m out. see you at home. wake me for lunch’ before they toddle off. lol

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One of my first sits was like the sit Petermac describes - 16 year old and 2 year old black labs at a 19th C grade 2 listed castle in Somerset with lots of land - woods, meadows, even a lake. The young dog would bound off ahead, the old girl would move at her own pace, occasionally breaking into a trot to catch up. And sometimes, but not often she would go home on her own.
The weather was great and there was a large lawn and so both dogs would spend all day outside. The old girl did go walkabout on her own a few times, but always came back to the dog whistle!

I also sat with an interesting trio - an 8 or 9 year old flat coat who was calm, relaxed and a real gentleman dog and a pair of year old bernedoodles - flat coat was about 80 lbs and the b’doodles about 60 lbs each who were pretty rambunctious. I did walk all 3 together but it was interesting.
We also went to a great dog park in Ft Worth with pond - all went in to the water, but the flat coat would go diving for rocks and bring them out - 5 or 8 lb rocks. He could stay underwater for 2 minutes!

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Yes, I’ve done that too

Funny how we sitters can find new ‘tricks’ and places for walks that the owners hadn’t considered

Yes, you’re right Elsie and I do think it’s a little selfish but understand.
Of course you can hijack my post. I must admit, I haven’t had different sizes of dogs yet

I suppose you could be right there. The older one also either puts the younger one in its place or gives up and hides away for a quiet nap

Now that would be the ideal solution Peter :blush:

I had two Spaniels, one was 3 the other 11 or 12. Exactly as you describe. The younger one would bound off into the woods while the older one walked along beside me. I would call the younger one and she’d pop her head from the woods about half a mile ahead. So funny! But, yes, they both got good walks that way. I may be guilty of walking dogs further than they’re used but at least they sleep well and will have enjoyed the variety of walks I take them on

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We have one like that coming up. The younger dog will get two walks a day and the older one only comes along for the first one. Makes sense to me.

We also had one in the past where we walked to a field and the old dog pottered around while the young dog played fetch and ran around the field like a hooligan. :slight_smile:

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Most of the people I know who have gotten a puppy with an older dog, that’s why. So the older dog would help train the puppy in the way that dogs understand best.

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i almost always take the dogs for longer walks than their owners. i generally have more time. i remember a sit i did in edinburgh, i was staying out by dean college and i’d walk them to the pub with me in the afternoon for a pint. they’d just chill outside with me, the pub would give them some water, and we’d watch the people go by. they LOVED it. the HOs had always thought it was too far. and maybe all as one walk it might have been. but going there, resting for an hour or so, then going back was perfectly doable.

and i did one in germany and the dog and i would head to a nice forest area right in the city and we’d wander for 3-4 hours. the HOs normally did 2 30 mins walk with her. so she really got a chance to run and play a lot on our walks. but most people don’t have that amount of time when they also have all the normal daily stuff to do.

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Thanks for this post! I grew up with cats, but then had family with all variety of dogs. It was great to see how they all interacted–age, agility, breed, health and hearing challenges–it was wonderful.

I agree with a lot of the posts with spring/fall dogs: older ones teaching younger ones, older ones knowing their limits…this reminds me of one of my favorite ALL TIME movies, Homeward Bound, with Chance and Shadow. I have seen this movie over 200 times, and I still cry :heartpulse: :heartpulse: :heartpulse: Corny but awesome.

My parents have always had rescue dogs. They most recently had two older dogs, one deaf, one blind, and a younger pit who was super energetic. They would walk them as others suggested in this thread, with shorter walks for the older ones and a longer play date at a dog park or off-leash if those options are available.

There is also the energy and health of the human in this equation to consider…

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