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Owners of more than one dog - opinions wanted

Beautygirl
February 23rd, 2006, 01:10 PM
Dh has mentioned adopting another dog, a playmate for Precious. We had discussed this with our last dog, even went to look at a dog, but it was already adopted, so we didn't adopt a 2nd. Now dh has mentioned it again. Do you think it's alot harder with 2 dogs or does having the companion make things easier? Would you reccommend having 2 of the same breed or 2 different breeds? Would it be better to have 2 females, 2 males or one of each? Big and small dog, or 2 of the same size? Obviously if we did decide to adopt another dog, both dogs would be spayed/neutered. We wouldn't do it until after Precious goes in to get spayed. There is another little dog at the shelter that has been there for over 3 months and dh wants me to contact them to see if they would be willing to pay for the spay or find a sponsor to pay for part of it. Any thoughts?

Skryker
February 23rd, 2006, 01:36 PM
We were only going to get one puppy, but I caved in and we took two. They are great companions for each other for sure.
When I was young, we had just the one dog, but she went everywhere with us and was rarely alone for more than an hour, so I don't think she ever missed a canine companion (she also thought she was a person) in the house. She got along fine with the cat and the rabbit we got, but was less enthused about the doberman puppy-but the first dog was 16 at the time and not tolerant of puppy play.
I would introduce another dog as soon as possible if you are going to, before Precious gets too used to being the only dog.
If they are s/n, I don't think gender matters. It's more of a personality thing. If Precious is very dominant, there might be some going at first.

jawert1
February 23rd, 2006, 01:42 PM
I adopted 2 dogs at the same time, my Simon Pointer (male) and Peaches Chow (female). As their middle names suggest their breeds, Simon is a purebred English Pointer and Peaches is a GSD/Chow X, both near the same age (best guesstimate). Given Simon's mental and physical condition when adopted, it was an easy choice to get Peaches too - she's the reason he knows how to be a dog and has turned into a very loving companion and mamma's boy. His SA is also GREATLY reduced, though it still exists, they provide each other with companionship and also a pecking order (she'll tackle him if he starts barking repeatedly and forces play so he's no longer freaking out). I've always found having companion animals to be really helpful, especially if one's already trained and knows the ropes.

Prin
February 23rd, 2006, 02:11 PM
Do you think it's alot harder with 2 dogs or does having the companion make things easier? No. I mean, you're walking one dog already, picking up one load already, playing with one dog already. The biggest work difference is between one dog and no dog, IMO.
Would you reccommend having 2 of the same breed or 2 different breeds? 2 different breeds. This way, you can have a dog for everything. Like we have Jemma for playing with and running with and we have Boo for chilling out with. You can have a breed to suit your mood. I think having 2 Jemmas would wear me out, and same for 2 Boos...:D

Would it be better to have 2 females, 2 males or one of each? I say one of each. Not only would their dynamic have a better chance of being great, but if you're a couple, the female will tend to bond more with your man and the male with you.

Big and small dog, or 2 of the same size? One big and one a little smaller. But that's totally opinion.

There is another little dog at the shelter that has been there for over 3 months and dh wants me to contact them to see if they would be willing to pay for the spay or find a sponsor to pay for part of it. Any thoughts?Chances are, if you aren't willing to pay for the surgery, they're not going to adopt to you. Looking like you don't have the money to care for a pet does not leave a good impression on rescues.

BernerLver
February 23rd, 2006, 02:40 PM
Do you think it's alot harder with 2 dogs or does having the companion make things easier?
****
I found it a little more difficult to coordinate 2 dogs the first few days but now that we have all adjusted I'm not having any problems.

Would you reccommend having 2 of the same breed or 2 different breeds?
****
I think this is a personal choice. Hubby and I LOVE BMDs and since we had one, adding another was a natural choice.

Would it be better to have 2 females, 2 males or one of each? Big and small dog, or 2 of the same size?
****
Again, I think this comes down to personal preference. We have 2 males and some people cautioned us agianst this. I think it really depends on the dogs. Both of our are very laid back and neither is overal submissive or dominate. Occasionally they have "words" but overall they get along quite well.

In terms of size, I prefer big dogs so we got another big dog however I think it depends on what the best fit for your family members (furry and non-furry) is :D

The one thing I will say is that it was great that our new guy was in a foster home before we adopted him. It allowed us to ask questiosn and get a good feel for how he would adapt to our home. I'm not saying that's the only way but I think when you have 2 dog personalities to consider, it's best to have as much info as possible.

Marie-France
February 23rd, 2006, 03:50 PM
When we decided for greyhounds, we went for 2 (1M-1F), because we both work outside and thought they would appreciate the company. Since they are siblings, we had no problems .

We just added a ney member at our family, We think it is a Bichon/poodle mix (M), and so far so good! And no, 3 isn't that bad neither...;)

phoenix
February 23rd, 2006, 04:35 PM
Hi! Here are my 2 cents...
I've always found my dogs happier when there are two of them. The two I have now are constant companions.

Do you think it's alot harder with 2 dogs or does having the companion make things easier?
Not a lot harder. Easier if they play with each other because they aren't always romping around you! It is more expensive, with 2x the food, toys, beds, vets, so if money is a problem this might not be a great idea. Harder to walk 2 unless there are 2 people to go (then it is more fun!!)

Would you reccommend having 2 of the same breed or 2 different breeds?
I've always had 2 breeds, to complement. When we chose Maia (boxer), we decided on her breed because we needed high energy to match Sam (mostly lab)'s play style and energy. She has turned out to be a big couch potato tho!!

Would it be better to have 2 females, 2 males or one of each? Big and small dog, or 2 of the same size?
I've heard 2 females are a bad idea, but we had 2 girls growing up and they weren't a problem. This time I have a boy and a girl and she is definitely the boss even tho she is outweighed by about 60 lbs. When they are finished growing, Sam will be about 90 lbs and she will be about 55-60 lbs. I wouldn't get a tiny dog and a huge dog, but otherwise I think it mostly doesn't matter!!

Good luck with your decision. BTW, is your Precious socialized? Do you know if she likes other dogs? I would try her on some playdates first.

Beautygirl
February 23rd, 2006, 05:39 PM
Thanks for all the info. :) The reason dh mentioned having the SPCA have the dog's s/n sponsored was just because often times if a dog is there for a long time, they will get a sponsor so that the dog is considered more adoptable. Precious is getting spayed next month and having to get both of them done at one time might just be a little expensive.

Precious has been playing with another dog in our neighbourhood. It is really funny, she is much smaller than him, but he is very submissive around her. With our last dog, he was more dominant. Precious is really good around him, I think he's just not sure how to handle the fact that she's just as active as he is....lol

twodogsandacat
February 23rd, 2006, 06:13 PM
One dog wasn't enough so I got two. I now know that 1.5 dogs would of been perfect for me. ;)

Frenchy
February 23rd, 2006, 06:53 PM
I think the most important thing is to bring your dog along when you go to chose the second,you can get any dog,as long as the 2 will like eachother.Like Marie-France;3 is not bad either!

Bushfire2000
February 23rd, 2006, 08:25 PM
I think the most important thing is to bring your dog along when you go to chose the second,you can get any dog,as long as the 2 will like eachother.Like Marie-France;3 is not bad either!


This is such a good idea.

I have four dogs. Three girls, one boy. Lacey is the boss of the bunch she's only 6lb. but rules the house. My experience is the younger the dogs are when they meet the better they get along. Walking them would be a chore but, fortunatly I only need to take one or two of them for a walk(with a leash) at a time. We live in the country and walks don't usually involve a leash although I can't stress enough a very strong "come" comand is needed. I'm not sure I would have planned to have three girls but if everone does what Lacey says there are no fights.

domesticzookeep
February 23rd, 2006, 09:25 PM
As long as you are good with twice the money for food, vet bills, toys, and twice the poo, hair & doggie energy - then go for it....:thumbs up

But...I would recommend if Precious is fairly new to your family, then make sure she has had her basic training classes (at a minimum) before bringing in the second. Not only will this help from having to pay for two classes at once, having two untrained dogs in the house can be very hard - you can't walk them together (they need individual att'n for correction), and if they start getting into things - you need to be able to command their attention to get them to stop :eek:
I currently have two young female herding dogs (read: high energy, w/ minimal training) as fosters - and lets just say, some days, its a really good thing they're so darn cute!

When you do decide to look for a second dog - make sure you tell the humane society / rescue that you are looking for a playmate for Precious - no matter what breed / age/ gender they will have a better idea (esp if the dog has been fostered), if the dog is a good playmate - or more of a 'people' dog - or if they have a suitable 'play style'. Ie - I would not recommend putting a dog that is very boisterous in play with one that likes gentle / quiet play time with other dogs.

Good luck & keep us posted :)

C.
:ca:

Prin
February 24th, 2006, 01:33 AM
One dog wasn't enough so I got two. I now know that 1.5 dogs would of been perfect for me. ;)
I have felt that way too sometimes...:eek: :o

Frenchy
February 24th, 2006, 12:15 PM
Beautygirl;one thing I forgot to mention is ; if you get a second dog,make sure to treat your first dog as alpha (even if she's not) Precious get's to eat first,go out first ect...and give Precious a little bit more affection too.So she won't feel the other dog is taking her place.It may sound like a lot,but really,if the dogs gets along,you won't have any problems.Good luck and keep us posted.

PetFriendly
February 25th, 2006, 07:30 PM
Hi Beautygirl

Havin to on accasion care for my boyfriend's dog (3 lbs yorkie) I can say that two is no more work than one so long as the smallest of the two isn't a cry baby.

I only say that because when Charley and Little Buddy go play outside, or I take them for a walk, everything is fine, everyone gets along. But as soon as Charley (weights 12 lbs) has something, be it a toy, bed, bone, you name it, Little Buddy (3lbs) cries like he's been hurt. Now he does this because his owner never realised that dogs can 'fake it' and would come to the rescue every time. Good example of dog teaching human... lol

But other wise, I've taken the two out on walks, in the back yard for a game of fetch, out in the car to see my parents and its no harder.

Dogastrophe
February 25th, 2006, 09:09 PM
I have three; one around 7 - 8 years and two under two. Having started with the oldest then getting the younger ones, we increased the work required but this was only due to us gettting an older, generally laid back, low maintenance dog and adding a young, high energy, high maintenance one (and then another of the same).

The only trouble I have with them is keeping track of their whereabouts in the house and keeping them all going in the same direction when on walks.

More work? not really
Pain in the ass? occassionally
Enjoyable? always.

:pawprint:

starr
March 7th, 2006, 01:38 PM
We have been told by numerous dog owners, breeders and trainers to get the opposite sex when getting a companion dog to minimize arguing over the alpha position. We have done this quite well.

We started out with a rough collie/great pyr cross (female). When she was 6 we got a male Hungarian Kuvasz. When he was 3 we got a female Golden. Then when the older dogs passed away and we were left with the female golden we got a male Kuvasz/Maremma and 7 months later, a female Kuvasz.

The male Kuv/Maremma passed away before he got to be an old dog, unfortunately, and we got a male Kuvasz.

So now we have the older Golden female, and the younger female and male Kuvasz. We have always staggered the "sexes" and had no trouble with fighting. It is nice to have 2 dogs but three is a handful. We also learned that if the older dog is well behaved and the alpha, the youngers learn from them and you're set with some pretty great dogs. However, if your alpha has some bad behaviors, look out. Our Golden began to find ways to break out of her very large fenced area (12 acres) after our older dogs passed away...because she was lonely. However, even after we got her a new companion and then a second companion, her bad behavior continued and she began to teach the younger dogs how to get out. It was not good.

I won't get into everything but we believe we've dealt with the situation after quite a bit of cash spent redoing all our fence lines.

So, the advice in a nutshell is to stagger the sexes and be mindful of who is learning what from the alpha. Finally, two is good...three is ok..as long as you have a well behaved alpha.

Only my opinions of course. Others may disagree.

Good luck

Rick C
March 7th, 2006, 02:18 PM
We have two female Golden's.

Abby came to us as a puppy. When Abby was one year old, we got Keeper, also a one year-old, as an owner surrender.

They've been fast friends ever since.

Abby is Alpha on some things but Keeper beats her up pretty regular in their playfighting. In other words, they seem pretty equal.

They've fought only a couple of times in their lives, once over a deer ear found in a field and the other over a mouse running through the feet of one of them.

We tried to introduce an eight year-old female owner surrender into the mix a couple of years ago but that ended up in a massive Alpha war between the newcomer and Abby, with some blood resulting . . . . . a short experiment.

Keeper doesn't like the boy Labrador next door and doesn't like boy dogs much in general if they're assertive but we have no issues when out walking and encountering other canines.

We also have three female cats and one male kitten who grew up in the group.

Golden buddies . . . . Keeper and Abby.

http://www.goldentales.ca/P1040292_edited-1.jpg

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

Frenchy
March 7th, 2006, 06:37 PM
Hope you don't mind Rick,I just put Keeper and Abby as my screensaver.I love older goldens and this picture is so cute.

jesse's mommy
March 7th, 2006, 06:40 PM
It is a gorgeous picture. Rick, you really do have the best pictures!

Rick C
March 9th, 2006, 08:54 AM
Hope you don't mind Rick,I just put Keeper and Abby as my screensaver.I love older goldens and this picture is so cute.

Be my guest . . . . I got a billion of 'em.

My current, "winter blahs," screensaver on my home computer is this one . . . .:

http://www.goldentales.ca/P1080735_edited-1.jpg

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

Dukieboy
March 9th, 2006, 11:20 AM
Having two is great. I feel like Duke and Wizard were meant to be together. What Wizard (BT) lacks in size he makes up for in energy and spunk. Duke is the alpha but he lets Wizard away with his BT characteristic growlies and sometimes little bites. There is nothing more amusing than watching Wizard chase Duke all over the yard.

OntarioGreys
March 10th, 2006, 12:24 PM
THe first month bring in a new dog can sometimes be a little uneasy as the animals get used to each other and figure other their pack orders, I am careful about not leaving the new dog and existing pack together unsupervised until I know for sure they are getting along well, as well no food or treats are left out that they could fight over. When feeding each dog has a seperate bowl spaced several feet away from each other, gender is not as important as compatible temperaments, there are basically 3 temperament submissive, easy going and dominant/alpha, putting the "same sex" alpha dogs together is where troubles can occur, any other combination normally works out just fine.

Having multiple dogs is great as it provides companionship for when you are not there, having 3 or more is even better at least I think so, because if one needs to go to the vet or eslewhere the remaining still have companionship. As for choosing same breed or another, I have a mixed pack more impartant is to find a dog that fits with your families activity level or lifestyle.
http://www.mypetpages.net/artists/1731/0/da3b55110ffe3b4a7fb91b19b046967c.JPG

http://www.mypetpages.net/artists/1731/0/fee1acbd3bad0a31341ff35b5687ada4.jpg

http://www.mypetpages.net/artists/1731/0/4ddf6e25b75d36369eb7f3e3d01d77c8.jpg

I currently have 2 females and a male if I were to add another my choice would be to add a dominant alpha female, Sunny my male is the alpha one right now but he really is not keen on being the leader, he is much more content having a female to boss him around but my 2 existing females are submissive personalities, he got the position by default when Callie pased away.