Having a dog is a fun and wonderful experience for everyone in your family. In fact, it has been so much fun that you are now seriously thinking of getting a second dog. However, it is important that you really think this decision through, because having two dogs can be an entirely different experience from having one. When you have two dogs you are now the leader of “a pack” of dogs. Ami, The Chicago Dog Coach, recommends that you make a list of Pros and Cons to help you make an informed decision.
If you are enjoying spending time with your dog, then there is no doubt that a second dog can enhance your life. A second dog might be a little overwhelming if you are the only person in the house. It can be a rude awakening to suddenly have two dogs totally relying on you for everything every single minute of the day.
Companionship is one of the main things that people think of when they are considering getting a second dog – companionship for their canine friend who may be lonely for someone to play with, sleep with, and socialize with. This can be an especially important consideration if your dog is forced to spend a lot of time home alone each day. With another dog around to keep him company he may be so busy goofing around and getting into mischief with his new friend that he may not even notice when you come in through the door.
Even with two dogs that are extremely well behaved, they still represent twice the responsibility for you , says Ami the Chicago Dog Coach. Essentially, this means the potential for twice the cost: in vets’ fees, for food and medicine , for personal care products like shampoos, leashes, and so on. There is twice the possibility for health problems to arise, and if both of your dogs should need extensive medical care the situation could quickly get expensive.
We naturally assume that two dogs will get along with each other just fine, but in fact that is a very big assumption to make. It is entirely possible that your old dog will not take kindly to having his or her space invaded, and he or she may take it out on the new family member. The possibility for personality or same-sex aggression conflict is definitely something to be concerned about. If it turns out your two dogs can’t get along, for whatever reason, what will you do?
Beyond the Pros and Cons
In truth, the list of pros and cons really boils down to just three things – dog behavior, breed specific behavior and and the energy level of the dog when compared to yours. If both dogs behave well with you and each other, and don’t break anything or bite anyone, and if their health is basically sound,then make the decision by heart!