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How much time to spend with 3 dogs?
  • brscrnsbrscrns
    Posts: 447
    We have 3 Shibas, my husband works and I stay at home. The Shibas range in age from 3 years to 6 years. The oldest wants to play but usually only does it after she eats and after she comes in from outside. She likes one on one play. The other 2 are males and they could play non stop all day if I had the time. I try to spend equal time (about 5 - 15 minutes) with each one in different ways, but when I am not with them, they just seem to mope around and feel left out, especially the youngest. So my question is, how much time is normal to spend with each dog?
  • kumaDUDEkumaDUDE
    Posts: 1259
    Why not do a group play? Find an enclosed field or a court, bring tennis balls and let all three chase after it. Typically they will get bore and play with each other or play keep away with the tennis ball. My shiba takes about 2-3 hours of dog park play until he gets tired or 30min of fetch and tug.

    I have never had 3 dogs at once, only two and non shibas, but with both dogs, I try to walk them at the same time and play in an enclosed tennis court for about 15min. Then home and play inside the house one on one for 5-10min.
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    I don't think there is a "normal" amount of time to spend with each dog as it varies from dog to dog. I currently have 2 dogs and i've had three (when babysitting @Tatonka).

    Just monitor them and play as needed. If your two males are fine playing with each other, then play with your oldest female. I usually like to be the "filler" when one dogs wants to play but the other doesn't. But sometimes I will play with both to get them in the mood then let them wrestle each other.
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8587
    Well... I guess it depends on what you mean how much time is normal to spend with each dog...

    I have two. Bella will be eight this year and Nola will be five. Bella is for the most part healthy (hypothyroid and food/seasonal allergies) and Nola has some medical issues (brain tumour, seizures, hypothyroid, immune system issues, allergies, etc.).

    On average, Bella and I spend about 2 hours a day of one on on walking, playing, training, and just being together.

    On average, Nola and I spend about an hour and a half of one on one time, shorter because she can not walk quite as long as Bella.

    In addition to the one on one time, we do spend several more hours of together time with all three of us (or four or five, if we have company). We do together walks, play time, training, and just lounging.

    So, all in all, each dog gets on average about 5-6 hours of me time between one on one and group time.
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • XabiXabi
    Posts: 432
    @brscrns I can relate, and I only have two shibas. My oldest has developed a bit of complication from his neuter surgery two months ago, so I'm hoping that is to blame for some of his current mopeyness. But he definitely isn't his typically (agressively growly) playful self at the moment. I always feel like my youngest gets the short end of the stick, but she seems to be the evenest of keels. It's definitely hard to feel like you're not coddling one and abandoning the other. I don't know what to recommend for your youngest. Do you do anything like training classes or doggy day care for only that one?
    X & I signature smaller
  • LosechLosech
    Posts: 2516
    I've got three dogs, but I for sure spend more time with Conker. (The other two are actually family dogs.) However, I do spend a lot of time with the Girls as well, usually as a pair since they are somewhat inseparable.
    Anywho, I will take all three hiking, for walks, or play fetch as a group. Then I'll do individual things with each of them. Fetch with Juneau, wrestle/tug/fetch with Conker, and just regular petting with Sasha since she won't play with a toy to save her life. Sometimes I walk them individually or in pairs. Just depends on what I feel like doing.
  • brscrnsbrscrns
    Posts: 447
    Thank you all for the suggestions. I am just looking for a new routine for all of us. We seem to have gotten into a rut and need a change, if that is possible. Warmer weather will always help! I hate walking them when there is snow and ice and a cold wind, but they don't seem to mind it.
  • tatonkatatonka
    Posts: 1210
    5-15 minutes per day?
  • GatsuGatsu
    Posts: 651
    I have 2 dogs. Yeah I'd suggest taking them out somewhere and throwing a ball around every once in awhile. Or if you have a big yard do that. But daily walks are great. As for around the house. Well personally laying around and watching tv usually means cuddling time.
  • jennajenna
    Posts: 154
    I have 3 Shibas and I spend as much time as I can with them. Sometimes that's a lot and sometimes they have to amuse themselves. (I'm a single mom working 50 to 60 hours a week plus various volunteer work as well.) If I'm tired, we nap together. If they're crazy and throwing toys at me, we play. If I'm busy, they play with each other.

    The youngest (2 yrs) needs a lot more exercise, but she's learned to ask for it - she lets me know when she wants to play or she pounces all over my male (9 yrs) till he plays with her. My oldest (12 yrs) mostly wants to sleep in sunny spots and snuggle next to me in front of the TV. They ALL need more structured exercise - time outside walking - but I managed to move into a neighborhood where I can't walk them without loading them all in the car and going somewhere else. As soon as I remedy that (soon, I hope) we'll be back to taking two 30 to 45 minute walks together every day. They will still all get their individual play and snuggle time though.
    jenna -> founder of nyc shiba rescue, inc.
    snickers -> master of shiba mind control
  • brscrnsbrscrns
    Posts: 447
    I guess I am just feeling somewhat guilty for not trying harder than I am. I go to school in the evening and then my husband is at home and he is tired so he tries his best to be with them. At least they do not cause much trouble if they are bored. They lay around a lot though.
  • jennajenna
    Posts: 154
    Exercise is crucial for good health. Going for walks and playing games are good for them both mentally and physically. I feel guilty right now that mine aren't getting as much exercise as I think they should, but my life right now just doesn't permit it. I try to look at it averaged out over their lifetimes and I know they're fine, but I'm looking forward to being able to do better.

    I guess what I'm saying is that you are right to be concerned about it and you should make an effort to spend more time playing with them, but so long as you do right for them over their lifetime, don't feel guilty for the occasional lapse. :)
    jenna -> founder of nyc shiba rescue, inc.
    snickers -> master of shiba mind control
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    @brscrns, at least you are trying! And yes it is hard too especially if you're still a student.
    As long as they get the daily walks and cuddle time. I think it should be fine. I've seen dogs worst off...getting crated 24/7 since their owner feels "too tired to deal with them"

    My two girls don't need much from me, they usually just want my prescence. If i'm not home all they do is sleep. Once i'm home....they do their own thing knowing i'm on the bed/sofa watching.
  • Hmmm I agree with everyone else about the group exercising plan. I have two male shibas about a year in between ages. They both highly demand attention but in different ways. First I would figure out what type of attention they are craving. Xavier my older dog likes attention from a far, or just being in his presence he will be happy (for the most part) the other one is very demanding for physical attention. They both get along very well for being male shibas. But like i said, figure out what type of attention your three dogs require, then fulfill each individual dog's needs about 20-25 mins a day. Going for a hike with a special someone with all three dogs would be great socialization! You need a schedule of group and individual one on one time with each dog. When conducting one on one time with a dog make sure the others are outside, or in a different room so jealousy doesnt arise. Also note that dogs need space too from their family so 20 mins of alone time with mommy or daddy will satisfy their needs.
    Shiba Mom of Two (Xavier 1 1/2 red male) & Argo ( 6 month red male)
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    I agree with @jenna, that exercise and stimulation is crucial for good health.

    We all know the power of healing if we are in good mental states too, so health is a balance of physical and mental well being.

    I don't know why you feel guilty if you are trying as hard as you can. If you are balancing doing what you have to do and then giving your free time to them, you shouldn't feel guilty.

    My only suggestion, if your not doing it already, is making sure your free time structure includes the dogs in some way even if it is just lazy time.
  • brscrnsbrscrns
    Posts: 447
    I do spend lazy time with them. The one problem I have is the youngest always interferes when I am with one of the others and when I put him in a separate room the others don't cooperate. I seem to have many problems. One other problem is the middle one(Kuma) doesn't like to play unless he is just with me, otherwise he will just take a toy and sit in a chair. We are waiting for a new park nearby to open in the spring. Yay!!
  • kumaDUDEkumaDUDE
    Posts: 1259
    Expen, place one you plan on training inside the pen, or other way around. This will seclude the others but still will technically be in the same room
  • JuniJuni
    Posts: 1269
    Why not get or make some activity games or hide treats around the house for them to search for? Maybe one room each? I think it's good training too. Juni must sit and wait while I hide them and start search on my command, then she comes and tells me when she's finished or if she needs help with any treat.

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