I've always planned on having more dogs- I wanted a small pack of 4-5.
Delilah, it seems, gets very stressed out about other dogs. Actually, everything stresses her out- she's pretty neurotic and has issues with anxiety and compulsive disorder.
My parents got a new puppy and we've been spending a lot of time with the new puppy, probably a total of about two weeks between us visiting them in MA and them visiting us in VT.
Delilah never really warmed up to the puppy- she just growls when it comes near her or tries to completely ignore it. I mean, she's very polite and tolerant for the most part, and I thought her corrections were fair- that puppy is super annoying and obsessed with her. But she definitely wasn't happy about it.
She also gets very overwhelmed and snappy towards bigger dogs and/or rude/high energy dogs. Being 7 lbs, most dogs are bigger than she is.
She's been an only dog for over two years now. I think she enjoys it. I don't think she likes having other dogs around.
Here's the thing, when I was looking to get a dog, I specifically had agility and hiking in mind as the things I wanted to do with it. She gets so stressed out at agility classes, she loses focus and starts fixating on lights or dust. We'd practice all the time at home, she'd get down weaving or directionals or something really well, we'd do it in class, and she'd just lose her mind and run to a corner in the room to chase dust. We're going to start private lessons in the fall and see if that goes better than group classes. But I don't know if we'll ever be able to do classes, and I definitely don't expect to be able to compete with her ever.
And hiking, that was my favorite thing to do with my old dog, but Delilah's so small most of the dogs we see on the trails seem to think she's a cat or rabbit and try to attack her. The owners have no control over their off leash dogs at all. And when I spray compressed air to scare them away and keep my dog safe, the owners flip out at me, even after I explain that she's been attacked by "friendly" dogs in the past. So even an activity that used to be enjoyable for me is just stressful with this dog. I feel like I can't do anything with her that I wanted a dog for.
I've been thinking about getting a second dog for a while, I've contacted a breeder I like who said they thought I would be a good home for one of their puppies. They seem to breed maybe every other year or so- it's been about two years since they've had a litter. So if I want a puppy from them I should probably jump on their next litter, which will probably be at some point within the next year. I've started saving up specifically for that puppy. But I feel so guilty knowing that Delilah will feel stressed and maybe even betrayed.
The other thing is that I want to handle explosives detection dogs for the TSA, so if that goes according to plan, in the next 2-3 years I could be bringing home a BIG dog (lab or pointer).
I don't want to ruin Delilah's life, but I don't want her to be the only dog in my life for the next 15 years.