Mumsnet does not check the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you're worried about your pet's health, please speak to a vet or qualified professional.
This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Golden retriever puppy with elderly labrador(17 Posts)
We have an almost 14 year old lab mix. She's been a delight - great with the kids, active but not crazy, and it's hard to see her age. She doesn't have arthritis but she does have inflammation in her hips, which we treat with anti-inflammatory tablets. She still eats well and enjoys daily short walks.
I have always wanted to have a golden retriever, and have spent some time looking at golden rescues. The ones near to us have waiting lists of 12-months plus, and until this week I'd never seen a golden retriever in a rescue. I feel very strongly that we should get our next dog from rescue (as our lab was) rather than a breeder.
This week, a local rescue posted on FB that they had a litter of six golden puppies. I responded right away and after all the screening was completed, we were approved as potential owners. We have been earmarked a boy puppy, who is currently 9weeks old. Next week we will have our home visit and the Golden's foster will bring the puppy to meet our old lab.
Our lab has always been more interested in people than dogs - even though she is regularly around other dogs as she goes to daycare twice a week. No aggression or anything like that - just not terribly interested. As she is aging she is getting grumpier, for certain, and a few people have suggested that she will not like the puppy one bit, and even worse, she'll feel as though she's being replaced. On the other hand, I've read that some elderly dogs get a "new lease of life" when a puppy joins the family.
Can anyone share their experiences of introducing a puppy to old dog? I'm getting quite anxious about it. As much as I love the old girl, I'd hate to pass up on a golden puppy, from a rescue, because I'm projecting human feelings onto a dog...
I have got a 14 year old lab, friend to the world, she has been a fantastic dog.
I wouldn't subject her to a puppy tbh. I think she needs to live out her days in peace.
I had the chance of a failed guide dog puppy last month, there is a huge waiting list for them and you only stay on the list for 6 months before you need to apply again.
When I applied I didn't think our old girl would still be here but she is and I feel that she needs to remain my priority.
Must add that I get the whole 'new lease of life' thing but I don't think that is for such an elderly dog, at 10 or 11 in a reasonably healthy dog, yes. But not 14.
Ours are 12 and 13 and very different personalities- dh feels like black lab (youngest) would not do well with a puppy, whereas choc lab (oldest - 14 this summer) would be great and totally go ‘new lease if life’. Not that five minutes before seeing this thread I noticed two black lab puppies in a local rescue, oh no.
To be fair, he always said 3 kids and 2 dogs, or 2 kids and 3 dogs. He always asked me which kid we were giving away when I looked cow eyed at goldens, but, you know dc1 is at university now...
Our issue is that our two are pair-bonded and have been together for his entire life. He can’t be left without her as he gets very distressed. He is super healthy but she’s really not, and the idea of him being left alone is unthinkable.
Sometimes a puppy can give elderly dogs a new lease of life. In my experience your lab will probably pretty much ignore the puppy for about a month and then you will see that they wag their tail when the puppy is around. Obviously protect the older dog from being bomb by the puppy and give them separate areas to chill etc
Elderly dogs and puppy's are a good mix, they both need restricted exercise and rest - there is time when the other is sleeping to do brain games and training with the other dog.
It could go either way, really.
What I would be worried about, though, is what you're going to do when the old dog dies and your pup suddenly has to get used to being completely on their own - I know lots of people who have multiple dogs have smaller age gaps for precisely this reason (or have three dogs, so a pup, one about 4-5 years old and an older dog) so that there'll always be two dogs in the house iyswim.
You'd need to make sure the puppy doesn't become overly reliant on the other dog. I've seen it go disastrously wrong otherwise!
Can I ask how you found the golden puppies in a rescue and the pp who found the lab puppies in a rescue? None of our rescues seem to have labs/Goldens!
I think it really can go either way - when my foster pups go to homes with elderly dogs we spend much more time than usual watching them together, and I usually try and do more than one visit. I had one pup go to a home with a 16 year old dog who genuinely ignored a puppy bouncing all around him and had a new lease of life in his final months. But we've also met dogs who really didn't like it, and I'd say if your dog is generally grumpy and not interested in other dogs it might not work
Thanks for the advice. Jaz it was incredibly random. I logged into FB and the posting for a litter of six Golden's popped up. They were all gone within the hour.
I'm not surprised they were gone so quickly! I'd love a golden or lab or a suitable cross with them in but never see any. I would happily take in an older one not just a puppy! No breed specific rescues nearby either and from what I've read they'd only consider you if you have previous experience with the breed!
I registered with the Guide Dogs association Jaz.
You can specify what age, sex, breed or mix you would like.
@boxlikeamarchhare thank you very much I will look into that x
They are great to deal with Jax. Very strict on you not planning to leaving the dog alone as they are all used to going everywhere with their owners.
I work but can take a dog into my office or work from home.
That's great @boxlikeamarchhare I am not working so am home 95% of time bar the odd appointment/shopping trip/after school activity. My oldest has anxiety and we've been considering a lab or golden as a type of therapy dog for him and I'd def prefer a slightly older one so I don't have to go through puppyhood with a toddler at same time! 😂
Our 16 year old lab cross has definitely been a lot happier since we got a puppy (large mongrel) about a year ago. She occasionally finds her annoying and snaps but 99% of the time is happy. They often play fight (something she stopped doing a couple of years ago previously), and likes all the extra little walks and plays in the garden that have happened. She is always delighted when she comes back of they have been separated. Would wholly recommend.
it will be hard because even if its ok now, you know youll be having to do seperate walks with them in the very near future as your elderly dog wont be able to do massive walks, and will not want a puppy jumping all over her or dominating her.
My 9yo hasn’t liked our new pup and has been reserved and growls quite a bit.
However now he’s getting older and learned more manners she’s becoming increasingly tolerant. I was a little surprised as I expected her to enjoy having another dog around more based on previous experience.