Thinking of Getting a Second Dog?
They say that one is the loneliest number… but when you have a dog, that isn’t always the case. While it’s true that dogs are pack animals, some pups get set in their ways and have no problem being “only children.” Still, there’s something so sweet about watching your two pups playing together or cuddling up together after a long day.
But are you ready? Ask yourself these questions:
1) Is your first dog healthy, happy and well cared for? If you have a pup with health issues, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get another one. But you will have to be mindful of the time it takes you to tend to your dog’s well-being as well as keep an eye on your second dog. If Pup number one has IVDD and wears a dog back brace, Pup Two has to remember to play gently.
2) Are all family members onboard? Is your partner as excited as you are about the idea of having a second dog? How about the children who have to “puppy sit,” walk the dog and clean up yard waste? Last but certainly not least…does your current pup enjoy interacting with other dogs?
3) Do you love your current dog with all of your heart? This one seems like a no-brainer, but remember, dogs are work…some might argue that having a puppy is a bit like having a baby. If you go above and beyond for your first dog, be ready to do the same for your second.
4) Can you afford a second dog? You don’t have to make the dogs raw food from scratch every day or buy organic treats and expensive toys…but even if you cut costs, dogs are pricey. Especially when they get sick or you travel. Be ready to double, or even triple, your current canine budget.
5) Can you get a second dog where you live? If you are renting, check with your current landlord or management company. Sometimes only one pet per household is allowed….and sometimes, if your pup is well-behaved, they’ll bend those rules.
6) Do you know what kind of dog your current one would like? If you have an excitable, energetic dog, he or she will probably grow bored with a super mellow, moody older dog…and the dog coming into your home won’t appreciate a mismatch either.
7) Do you have other pets besides dogs? You might not think your little hamster or your daughter’s iguana matter in the decision-making, but if you have other pets, you should probably consider getting an adult dog who has been raised around these animals. You don’t want a tragedy to occur.
8) Do you have time to spend training a new dog? Whether you get a brand new puppy or a senior citizen pup, you’ll have to show him the ropes. Investing time and love is the only way to do this. If this is an especially busy time for your family, you might want to hold off.
If you’ve considered everything on this list and you know your family would be happier with a second dog, by all means, start doing your research and trying to find the perfect canine sibling. There are so many wonderful dogs out there just waiting to be rescued. You’ll feel amazing when you give one a chance at a loving, safe, comfortable home.
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