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Should I get a second dog

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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
for starters, sorry if this is meant to be a question for the New Addition Section, but since I technically don't have a new addition, I assumed it would be ok to post here.:ponder:

I have a female cavalier king charles spaniel mix, who's just turned 14 months.

i live alone and work full time.
I have recorded her during the work days periodically to see what she gets up to and she just seems really bored. and sleeps most of the day away.
she is timid of bigger dogs but gets on fine with other small dogs.

I am wondering if it is too soon to consider getting a "sibling" for her to play with. she does seem to enjoy our one on one time, and she still is really bouncy with puppy energy, though she is extremely well behaved and has always been no trouble.
(Nobody in my family or friends have a dog - strange, I know!)

what do you think? I am certain this is the right move, but my family is trying to talk me out of it. I currently live by myself and own my own home.

Please share your experiences.
how old was your pup when you introduced a new fur baby?
how did they react?

what breed should I consider for my cavalier x shih tzu/pomeranian?
I'd like a pup with less maintenance, eg short haired.

and the biggest question I have - is should I get a male or female?
as I've heard female/female pairings tend to fight, but I wonder if this is the case for small breeds?

any input would be much appreciated :thumbsup:
 

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Personally, I staggered my dogs quite a bit so that I don't end up with a bunch of old dogs at the same time. They're 14, 7 and 2. But if you're wanting a playmate for your dog, getting one now would probably be a good idea.

I would get a male. I ended up with 3 females, and it's definitely harder. Females can get along well though, it depends on the dog.
 

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We got our second dog when our first was 11 months. Looking back, I wish we had waited a little longer, just because they are going to be old at the same time, which will be pretty heart-breaking.
With that in mind, you have to know your dog. Levi LOVES dogs. All dogs. So we knew bringing in a second dog wouldn't be a problem with him and he would be overjoyed. That said, you should never get a dog for your current dog. You should only get a dog if YOU really want a second one.
We added a female to compliment our male and have had zero issues. Also, my guys are home together, and they spend pretty much all day sleeping together anyway. :p

As far as breeds go, what about something like a Min-Pin or Dachshund? If you're not too concerned about adding some exercise, a Beagle might be a nice addition.
 

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I've almost always had dogs in 'pairs' Most of them were female/female pairs. At one point I had a dog named Ernie who was younger and had 3 different older companions, Hey You, Shilo, and Lacey. He passed away while I had Lacey, and Lacey ended up with a female companion, Harper.

Now, I have HaHa (male) and Jaya (female).

Honestly, in all the decades of having dogs, I really don't think the male/female stuff makes any difference as long as you get personality types that are similar. Like a low energy dog with a low energy dog, and two dogs that are similar in size seemed to work for me. Shilo was an itty bitty thing, and she was constantly knocked around (on accident of course) by first Hey You and later Ernie who were a bit larger.

Also, I think that while it's hard to lose pets within a year or 2 of each other...it's also hard for an older animal to try to keep up with a much younger one, so I tried to keep my dogs age differences not more than 3 years apart from each other.

That was one of my biggest concerns with Ernie. He was so laid back and as he got old, and Shilo died before he did...I didn't want to go out and get a puppy that might end up bullying him, or trying to play with him when he just wanted to sleep....or Ernie and his old joints trying to run and keep up with a younger dog even if he did decide to play.

Also, while I never monitored my pets with cameras... I don't think they did much more than what your dog is doing when you are gone...sleeping....lol. But at least when they were awake, I felt better knowing they had some companionship while I was gone. Dogs are social animals and I think loneliness does affect them...and they are healthier emotionally when paired up with the right canine companion(s).

Stormy
 

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I definitely feel better when I have 2 dogs instead of just 1, because I feel less guilty leaving them alone during the day, and I've also found it tends to be MUCH easier to raise a puppy if you have a well socialized adult as well.

My family waited until our older dogs were 6 both times before adding a second dog- the first time we added a large breed puppy to a house with a small dog and the second time we added a small breed puppy to a house with the now-adult large breed dog. We've always had 2 girls, which for the most part hasn't been an issue, but I do think most people suggest getting the opposite sex when adding a second dog and most people I know with 2 dogs tend to have 1 male and 1 female.

After living with 2 different pairs of dogs, I will say I've decided I don't ever want to bring a second dog into the house until my first dog is really, really well trained. It's a pain to have to work with 2 different dogs, and if neither have really good leash manners it makes walking them both at once REALLY annoying, especially if you can't stand dogs pulling like me.

Definitely wait until you want to get a second dog before adding one, and don't get one only because you think it will make your other dog happy. It is a HUGE adjustment to add another dog, and it will turn your world and hers upside down. She may really enjoy the company, but she is still going to get less attention when a new puppy comes home, and it will take time for them to bond. You will almost definitely end up feeling a little bad at times that you brought a crazy puppy into the house. There's no good time to bring a puppy home, but it makes it much easier if your existing dog doesn't have any nagging problems you want to work on/change (ie, reactivity issues, leash manners, barking, whatever) so that you can focus more energy on the new puppy.

It is worth thinking about if you want 2 dogs to be in their old age at the same time. That will likely be both an emotional and monetary strain as they'll likely need increased end of life vet care at the same time and then eventually die close together.

Maybe you might consider fostering or fostering to adopt? That way she has a playmate, you can see how it is to have two dogs, but you also aren't committing to keeping the dog for sure. Maybe you could foster a dog or two and then re-evaluate if you want a puppy.

I don't think its too soon, but I definitely suggest REALLY thinking it through, making some pro-cons lists, and generally soul searching about having 2 dogs be very old at the same time and if you'll be able to handle that.

ETA: for breeds, I would suggest looking at the shelter for some smaller breed pups. Little Chi/Terrier mutts are super common, short coated, and smaller and seem like they'd fit the bill. Other breeds to think about would be Min Pins, maybe std/toy Rat Terriers (a little more needy in the exercise department, but not too crazy), Boston Terriers or Pugs (brachy, so that's something to think about), Chihuahuas. If getting from a shelter, be weary of the Jack Russels and Jack Russel mixes- they can be a bit of a handful. Beagles are nice dogs, but they are definitely a breed to think carefully about before you bring them home. IME, they're pretty terrible to live with if they're not trained well, and they do tend to be resource guarders. It's also worth noting that they shed A LOT.
 

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how old was your pup when you introduced a new fur baby?
how did they react?

what breed should I consider for my cavalier x shih tzu/pomeranian?
I'd like a pup with less maintenance, eg short haired.

and the biggest question I have - is should I get a male or female?
as I've heard female/female pairings tend to fight, but I wonder if this is the case for small breeds?

===============================================

We adopted willow when she was 8 mos from the animal shelter, we had for about 3 years when we adopted Rusty. Needless to say she was not a happy camper, but after a few months they warmed to each other and were good friends. Rusty died earlier this year, we were all devastated. It was 5 months ago, I thought I would never get another dog his loss was just too hard..

Willow actually showed signs of depression, refusing to eat and not playing with toys just sitting. she did start to play but only when we played with her.

She lost weight and I rethought the no new dog thingy.. here we are 5 mos later and we have Dusty! Willow plays again and she eats again, she is happier than ever.. SO I am a firm believe in a companion for your companion.
 

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I voted no, wait only because of the age issue. I can attest to waiting. I really, I mean REALLY wanted another puppy when my lab mix was 7-12 months of age but I waited and I'm glad I did. There are a lot things that can happen between 1-3 years of age. For instance, in my case, my dog became reactive/barrier frustrated. She's so much better now than before, in fact she's no able to meet other dogs on leash without stress, but I wouldn't have been able to dedicate the time to working through this issue if I had 2 dogs.

I also don't like the idea of getting a dog just for your dog. Do YOU really want another dog? Or are you just thinking that your dog would be better off with another canine companion? What if they don't get along? Are you prepared to for the possibility of rehoming the new addition in case they don't? (it could happen).

I personally would wait until you are ready for a new dog, that way it will benefit you and your dog. Also think about when they get older. Sure having them young together is great and all, but do you want to have 2 senior dogs aging and passing away near each other. Will you be able to afford 2 dogs expensive senior vet bills?

In reality, no one can tell you when you're ready for another dog but don't forget the pros and the cons.
 

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FWIW, my wife's oestopath gets a new dog when the current one is nine years old. Always the same breed. Golden Labs. Not known for their longevity.That way, she has a period for the new one, normally a puppy, get used to the surroundings and the routine.
 

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It really depends on you, your lifestyle and of course the dog you already have. In our case Samantha does very well alone, so a second dog is not something we plan to do. She has in her own way, (told) us, so to speak, she is quite happy being an only dog.
 

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I am wondering if it is too soon to consider getting a "sibling" for her to play with.

This and only this is the critical bit of information I need.

It doesn't matter the age of the dog, you need to be interested in getting a 2nd dog FOR YOU first and foremost. Having a playmate for your other dog is just gravy, and should not be the main reason for getting a dog.
 
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