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Are two dogs better than one?

November 9th, 2007, 09:52 AM
I know this seems a strange question. We currently have a 5.5 month old female border terrier. Olivia is very quiet in the house and very playful outside. An opportunity to recue a one year old male has come up and I think it would be great to see if he will fit into our family. The only thing is that my husband thinks that if you have two puppies in the house someone should be home during the day. I think it would be better for her to have a playmate and she wouldn't be lonely. We don't have kids and Olivia has become somewhat of a Daddy's girl and he worries when we leave her alone. She is never home for more than 4 hours without us and we have our neighbour come in a lunch to take her out.

What are your thoughts on this?

November 9th, 2007, 10:20 AM
I can only guess that it would be a good thing for her to have a playmate.

I have cats, and when I adopted Vlad my first, I read on several sites that its always good to adopt two, that way they will always have each other for company and you give them an instant friend.

And two is no more difficult than one really.

November 9th, 2007, 10:31 AM
I am not a dog owner so my doggie knowledge is not great, but was wondering if you would be able to have the dogs meet to see if they would get along first?

November 9th, 2007, 10:52 AM
To help you feel better about having two dogs and leaving them at home while you are away at work or whatever, keep them in crates. This is not a punishment or cruel to keep in crates. Dogs will see the crates as their own "room" and probably will like going in them even without being told to.

I used to have a crate a long time ago, dog didn't mind one bit. My brother and his wife have two dogs and they both work/go to school and they keep the dogs in crates during the day. One of them goes home for lunch and lets the dogs out for a bit, then when they get home at the end of the day the dogs are let out again.

Crating could potentially save furniture and prevent messes in the house. And your hubby won't fret over it while he's not there - hopefully. lol Some people hate the crating idea. But from personal experience, I couldn't have kept animals in my apartment and work full time without having the crate. It was truly a lifesaver.

Just wanted to throw that out there for you to consider in the decision to get another dog.

November 9th, 2007, 11:10 AM
We have the opportunity to have a home visit with Henry. This might give us a better idea of if they will get along.

Olivia has a crate and it is her home! She loves it in there and goes into it all the time on her own. Of course she prefers the couch but who wouldn't???
Olivia isn't a 'normal' dog in that she roams around the house on her own free will. She ran too fast on the hardwood once and slid into the coffee table now she is afraid to walk on the wood. She is ok on the carpeted back portion of the house though. I think that getting another one will bring out that curious nature again too.

We have another crate that we could use for Henry.

November 9th, 2007, 11:43 AM
2 is better than one , 3 is better than 2 and 4 is better than 3 :D (please Hazel , keep out of this one :laughing:)

I think it's better , if they get along ....

November 9th, 2007, 12:30 PM
Yeah, I agree with Frenchy, the more you have the better it is IMHO, however the last thing you want is 2 dogs that just dont get along. I am in this boat ( not so bad now, but from time to time...)
Its like they are natural born enemies ( they are each others nemisis I swear) Its definately a good idea to introduce them first, and if possible take the other one home on a trial basis. Sometimes for some reason 2 dogs just dont get along.

November 9th, 2007, 12:48 PM
I have three big-gish dogs and wouldn't trade it for the world. When Declan came home two years ago there was a year or so of adjustment ~ Bridie hated him on sight but she treats him pretty much the same as she treats her sister Ceili ~ she's a bossy cow! :laughing:

November 9th, 2007, 12:54 PM
There are lots of bonuses to having more than one dog and I prefer more than one in our home as well. But, it's been my experience that it is more work. Not that I mind, but some people may. I train and spend time playing with my guys separately. In our case, we have to walk/run them separately as well.

The only thing I wish I had been prepared for was how Lucky influenced Penny's behavior. She used to be such a happy-go-lucky girl who loved everybody. Unfortunately, I feel that because of Lucky's anxiety and his extreme fear of strangers (and the fact that Penny is much younger than he is), she's picked up a few 'habits' such as guarding and mistrust of strangers. On the other hand, she's helped him a great deal with his separation anxiety issues (but it could always have turned out the other way where she could have developed anxieties of being left alone).

I think my greatest suggestion to you would be to ask for detailed info regarding Henry's personality such as, does he guard, in what situations does he exhibit fear and/or aggression (if it applies to him at all), what is he like when left alone, etc.? At least you'll be armed with some ideas of what you may have to work on. And depending on your training experiences, I'd also recommend obedience school for each of them.

:fingerscr Good luck, I really hope it works out for all of you.

November 9th, 2007, 12:56 PM
I have two and they do keep each other company when I'm not home - which isn't often but when I do leave them I am less concerned than when I only had one.

Having two really isn't any extra "work" - Bobby did much of Amber's house-rules training which actually saved me a lot of work! When we are out in the wilderness and off-leash I have to be a bit more alert - only because one is usually 1/4 mile ahead and the other 1/4 mile behind...

November 9th, 2007, 01:11 PM
I don't think you're going to find anybody here say not to get another dog. :laughing: I've always had two and wouldn't have it any other way. In fact, I'd have more if we could. :D

November 9th, 2007, 06:51 PM
I didn't plan on having 2 dogs. Mitzie was an only dog til someone asked if I wanted Boo. I can not resist a yorkie. :) Then,Mitzie died and I grieved so much,I didn't think of Boo needing a playmate. Then,someone offered me Bonnie and again,I could not resist. We were lucky in that they hit it off from the moment they saw each other. They play together,sleep together and never fight. I bough two dog beds but Bonnie insists on sleeping with Boo in his bed. Bonnie loves to clean Boo's face for him. I think she's part cat.
They are a lot of work and I can't always afford to take them to the vet. But,God always provides.
They are so much fun.

November 9th, 2007, 10:28 PM
I have 2 puppies, half brothers, same father, different mothers. Baxter is 2 months older than Bentley. One is 8 months old, the othe is 6 months old. They're alone in the house with full run of the kitchen, livingroom and hallway with no problems. The rooms are all puppy proofed, kitchen cupboards can't be opened, nothing within reach for them to get like tv remotes, wires, cords, etc. I give each of them a bully stick and a pork roll to chew on before we leave for work.
I think they're wonderful company for each other during the day while we're away and they have a grand time playing together in the yard when we get home. 2 puppies are more expensive and time consuming for sure, but it's been well worth it.


November 9th, 2007, 10:49 PM
2 is better than one , 3 is better than 2 and 4 is better than 3 :D (please Hazel , keep out of this one :laughing:)

I think it's better , if they get along ....

spoil sport! :p

It'll be great fun, oliviasmum!

The first addition is always the most work--essentially, you're doubling your work load. After that it's all downhill...when you add the third, you're only adding 1/2 the work. When you add number 4, you're only increasing your workload by 1/3... See? The more you get, the less work they are! :D

This is the reasoning that got hazel eight. :o Best not to listen to her! :laughing:

November 9th, 2007, 10:53 PM
See? The more you get, the less work they are! :D

:laugh: ya ya less work :whistle:

November 10th, 2007, 03:22 PM
I've almost always had 2 dogs and they do keep each other company. Here are a few suggestions:
1. Are you financially able to have 2? vet bills and food costs?
2. Introduce them off your property and take them for a walk. See who is the one out front (dominant) one. This is very important so don't skip this step.
3. Decide if your girl needs to be the dominant one, after all it is her house, and then when Heny comes for a visit, make sure she is patted first, fed first, enters the door first etc.
4. Keep dog toys away for a few weeks after he arrives at your house. Toys can cause squabbles and sets them back in the bonding.
5. Make sure each has their own bed and space for awhile. Later you can relax the rules.
6. Feed them totally separately for a long time. My boy is fed outside but given his bowl first because he is the dominant one and my girl is fed in the laundry room.
7. Make both dogs work for treats so they know you contol them 100%. Do not put up with any aggressive behaviour from either dog.
Good luck and hope you take in Henry!!!

November 11th, 2007, 07:05 AM
Hi Oliviasmom!!
Very exciting time for you. I now have 2 dogs. A 6yr and 8month pup.
There are so many great reasons for two dogs. My Cagney has come to ador her pup and they have alot of fun in play. I think it is more work-ie 2 baths after the park (very dirty little girls!!). In and out the backdoor-cleaning 2 sets of feet. More money-Vet/Nutrition/ prepared. I just coughed up about 2500.00 for a eye specialist with my pup.
Be prepared for "the pack". They move around the house operating like they have one brain. I think my oldest has become more bold and I find she insists on everything the pup gets (unfortunately when training the pup, she learned to compete for treats). I find it is harder to go away for a day because leaving my dogs as a pack is alot to expect my friends/family to do.

Anyway- wouldn't change a thing. Love my dogs. We have had to adjust in many ways but it is worth it to us. I must say I love when we have tired them for the day--very enjoyable to have 2 happy kidz.

2 border terriers-wow, love the breed! I would definitely crate each dog. Hopefully the 1yr old knows what a crate is. I wouldn't trust them at this time with the reign of the house-double trouble!!