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Hi everyone,

I am considering getting a new red head puppy. I've started contacting breeders, doing my research and hopefully by this time next year I'll be on my way to get a new baby girl.

Right now I have two girls, mother and daughter, 6 and 4,5 years old. Which means that they'll be 7 and 5,5 next year. 

I have made a decision to get a new puppy at this point because Pi has a heart condition and is not getting any younger. I'd like to get a new pup while she has the patience and energy to help me raising her - I love Pi more than anything in the world and really do want her to pass as much knowledge and even her way of being in life to this new dog; being a bit like Pi is something I look for in my dogs!

I also think Romã is ready to help me out and will need a playing companion soon, so she'd benefit from this as well.

I think it'll be the right time for me and both my girls to add a new red head!

I was curious as to what age did it feel right to add a new puppy (or old dog, I just want personal experiences)? And how did you introduce them?

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I think your thinking is right on Q. I had my third at more or less the time you are talking about, Abbie had 17 month with Elsa and helped to train her in good maners. Also Sofie had a new play mate so two months ago when we lost Abbie this helped Sofie ( and me) to start building a different routine I wish you luck in finding your perfect new family member. 

Hi Teresa! How exciting for you and very brave!! I think we did it all wrong, well according to the text books anyway but it worked like this for us...We got Merlin, not really knowing an awful lot about Irish Setters, I had just always dreamed of having one...he came to us at three months old and we adored him from the start of course. My husband, not an ardent dog lover at this point, thought Merlin looked sad an lonely at times and needed a companion so we started to look a round as you are doing, we found our Jack, there was only 7 month between them...in our ignorance we just brought him home and introduced him to Merlin who welcomed him with open arms. We had started to show by now and realised that neither of the dogs we owned had particularly good conformation and then we found Harry.....the gap this time was 2yrs and we just replicated the whole bringing home thing.....both the older dogs took a little while to come round but were fine and Jack and Harry became firm friends. Jack sadly died aged 5yrs from megaesophagus.....at this point our first breeder had just had a litter which we went to see...fatal of course and we thought the boys were really grieving over jack as were we and we came home with George.. Harry and Merlin were both suffering from hypothyroidism at this point but unbeknown to us and Harry in particular took about a week to come round to George's persistant wanting to cuddle up....they are all very firmly bonded now and hate being apart. So...not the way to do it maybe but it worked for us...I wish you joy with your new baby when you do get one, it's so lovely to see the older one teaching the younger...Merlin used to take George out for a wee, wait for him and then take him back in again......


I think the best time to get a new puppy is when it feels right for you and your circumstances.

We've had multiple dogs since our first one was about 6/7 and was slowing up. It seemed the right time to give him a young friend to pep him up...so Dollar joined Dino and was immediately accepted. They were great friends and we did our best to make sure we trained Dollar well, unlike our devil dog Dino!! Well we all learn from our mistakes(sometimes)!!

Times were tough with two young children too, but we managed.

When we lost Dino we didn't think twice...we got a new puppy as soon as we could.

Over the years we started showing and then things really took off, getting up to 7 at one point. the gap was usually no more than 2 years, but then there was the time we had a litter and kept 2! and when we had a litter and kept Kiefer only to get Bridie about 9 months later because we had bred her Mum who was our litter favourite though not best for the show ring.

Go with your heart and instinct if you can afford the time and expense to do well by a new red pup.

So sorry to go on, but memories are precious at the moment with Kiefer just gone and Bridie becoming more poorly with stomach cancer. That's something to factor in. The shorter the gap between them, the harder it is later when you lose them in quick succession.

Its an exciting time for you, and I wish you and your girls all the best in your quest for your special new addition.

Joan and In have always had multiple Irish Setters and the age range between them has varied greatly.We haven't had any problem with integration,the puppy seems to accept the older dog or dogs authority.We have always made sure the older dog enters and leaves the house before the younger and their food is put down before the puppy's.

At the moment we are in a quandry.Joan and I have only got one dog now and he seems quite happy with the situation.But we would love to have another ,however, I am now 70 and Joan is 69.Is it wise to consider getting a young dog who will probably put live us?

Dear Howard, if you and Joan would love to have another Irish Setter, do it! Age is irrelevant. None of us knows how long we are going to live. Setters keep us all young and active and healthy. Also you will be giving this dog a wonderful and loving home. Susan

Howard, even if your new dog did outlive you (which it'll not, because we want you with us for many many years more!) you could always make arrangements in advance to make sure you have the perfect home waiting just in case... I'm 25 and I have that agreement with two good friends - if anything happens we'll take in each others dogs and make sure they have a good life - as good as they would have with their current owners. It's a really nice feeling, just knowing your dogs have a safety net should something happen to you.

Also, you could always consider adopting an adult setter - will probably have challenges as well, and you do miss puppy months... But you'd still be giving a perfect home to a setter in need!

Whatever you decide for your family will be the right decision, but it just seems a waste of a great home!

I don't think there's any rights or wrongs to when Teresa! Only that it's hard when they all are senior at the one time (I have three, didn't obviously give it a lot of thought!!!) all three seniors have had surgery cancer, cruciate and ligament. And my poor " Wild Irish roses" have had to be slotted in when I'm not traveling to specialists. In saying all that I feel the age gaps the others have mentioned sound sensible!! Understand my Irish found me.....I was never going to say no anyway to giving them a loving home. Lucky you Teresa, enjoy your new addition when the right one comes along. :o)

And Howard & Joan. Go for it, as you will already know an Irish will keep you fit and the very drive we all need for life. Even maybe consider one that needs home placement from a reputable breeder. All the best, Dianne x

Diane, I completely agree with you, there is no right time to get a dog, it varies in each situation, and each of us knows when the right time is!

But it's still great to hear everyone's experiences, not only because it's always good to hear how others did it and pick up some ideas, but also because I love reading all your stories! :-)

Pi and Romã are pretty close in age, but with all her health problems over the last two years, I have learned to see Pi as if she is at least 10 years old instead of 6 - it really was the best way to cope with all the changes and make the right adjustments to her life.

But I have to be honest.... Going from a dog that ran for 2 hours straight without panting to one that gets tired after a 30 minute walk (not run, just walk) in a month was really hard! She's doing better now and will be out for 1 hour, mostly walking, but if it's cool enough she'll even run for a few minutes. 

But looking at my pack right now.. Trigo is 2 years old, and basically a big puppy. Romã plays with him, but not too much because he can get rough... Pi will sometimes play with her, but she can't keep up, and they have been playmates all their lives. Ginja is now 11 and is busy being grumpy all day long, so no one even tries to play with her anymore! I'm finishing college and this summer should be working and making my own living - so hopefully me and the reads will be getting our own place this summer...

Looking at all of this, it just seems that one year from now, we'll probably be ready for a puppy! It also gives me one year to contact breeders and make an informed choice.

Oh, there is one big risk I'm taking: my parents want a new cocker when Ginja passes, and guess who's job it is to raise and train that puppy? Their puppy will come and live with me for house and obedience training whenever the time to get it is. They want a puppy from the same breeder we got Ginja and from the first litter available after  she passes (at least my parents know what and when they want it!)

Worse thing that could happen is me ending up raising two high energy pups at the same time, but if others can do it, so can I!

Oh Sue just read your reply....thoughts your way and I love what your wrote....so very true and heartfelt! Take care Dianne & Irish x




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