5 Things to Think About Before Getting a Second Dog

Dogs are man and woman’s best friend. They enrich our lives as we enrich theirs. We simply cannot live without them. Well in that case, the more the merrier, right?

5 Things to Think About Before Getting a Second Dog

Seems legit… however multi-pet households are not always the best option for some people. Have you ever heard that saying from Lays potato chips?betcha can’t eat just one.” Change it up a bit and the phrase “Betcha can’t have just one” rings so true for many pet owners.

Pets can be addicting, and with good reason. But before you decide to add to your pack, lets go over 5 things to think about before getting a second dog.

1. Money

As much as we love our pets, they do not come cheap. Between vet visits, a good food, grooming supplies, any medicine they need and more…. it can be pricey. While it is all worth it for our 4 legged friends, it’s important to ensure you will be able to care for your dogs financially.

2. Do you have enough time?

A lot of people believe that having 2 or more dogs take so much extra time to care for than just one. I argue that one a little bit…. I mean, yes, multiple dogs will take a some extra time, but when it comes to walking, feeding and things like that… heck, walk both dogs at the same time, no extra time. Feeding is as simple as putting food into 2 bowls instead of one. (unless your a raw feeder, then preparation can take longer. That being said… there are other things that will of course take a bit of extra time with multiple dogs.

3. Are you getting another dog for yourself, or to keep your current dog company?

This one is a bit of a hot topic as well. Dogs are very social, yes. Adding another dog can definitely be beneficial to your current dog. But there are things to think about, such as:

  • Has your dog always been an only dog?
  • How old is he/she?
  • Are you home most of the day, or working?

If your dog is older and has always been an only dog, chances are he couldn’t care less if you add another pup or not. In fact, it could even stress him out. He is used to having you all to himself, now half of your attention will be towards the newcomer.

If you are away most of the day, will you be able to have someone come check on the dogs? Especially at first…. some dogs can take quite some time to accept each other into their own lives, while others could welcome a new pet with open paws.

4. Know your dog. Know his personality, play style etc…

Have you had him around other dogs? Was he nervous, anxious and cautious, or was he welcoming and playful?

Knowing these things can help determine how he will react if you do bring in a new dog.

5. Dogs learn from each other

Undesired behaviors from one dog can rub off on the other.

Personally I love having a multi-pet home. We have 3 Siberian Huskies, 3 kitties, and a bearded dragon. A lot of work, yes. Worth it? Yes. Is it for everyone? Definitely not. Consider your options and reasons for wanting to add to your family. Remember, the health and happiness of both your current dog and a dog you will bring in depends on you.

Tell us about your pack! 

Do you have a single or multi-pet home?

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jenna drady headshotJenna Drady

Jenna Drady is the author and creator of ownedbyahusky.ca. She is a mother of two beautiful daughters and 3 Siberian Huskies. Being a husky mom for a long duration of her life, Jenna was inspired to begin writing about them. In doing so, she began doing massive research on dog behavior, and all things dog in general. Jenna is inspired everyday by her family, and loves to bring her readers valuable information as well as a little humor too! Jenna has created her own business partnered with her lovely mother while blogging called Pawz N Clawz Jewelry N Things. They currently sell handmade jewelry with added pet charms, as well as a few dog toys too! As an animal rights activist, and huge believer in helping pets who have been stuck in shelters, they donate a portion of their sales to local shelters throughout Canada.

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17 Responses to 5 Things to Think About Before Getting a Second Dog

  1. Great post! We have often toyed with the idea of another Chi in the mix – but with international travel we decided best not to. t’s already expensive to fly one small dog in cabin I don’t fancy the cost of two! And well he’s always been our solo dog I think he’d actually resent the other dog. Montecristo DOES go to daycare twice a week to socialize with fellow canines.

  2. Carleen says:

    We keep thinking about another dog, but haven’t gone there yet exactly because of considerations such as these.

  3. Ruth Epstein says:

    I would love a second, have weighed the pros and cons, and it is Money that stops me as I have the fear that I would not be able to give them everything they need.

  4. Mr. N is the only pup and he likes it that way. He is capable of sharing and we’ve had fosters and dogs come to visit but he’s always glad when they leave!

  5. Jana Rade says:

    Every time we got a second dog it was for our existing dog – to have a play buddy. Personally, I’d be just happy with one. Right now, though, we can’t really afford a second one. We’re considering fostering, though.

  6. Dear Mishu says:

    Great article! My friend got a second dog because her dog was always so miserable when they were away. Now they have 2 dogs that wait by the door all day…

  7. Adding another dog or pet can be complicated and these are great points. My dog Gonzo is so dog-friendly we knew that he would love to have a play mate at home. We hoped also it would keep him young and active. The transition was interesting, but I can’t imagine not having two dogs.

  8. These are such important things to consider. Sometimes a second pet is not the best thing, and it is a very responsible decision to say so. When I was looking for a second cat, I really had to be sure I could afford it.

  9. Great things to keep in mind before adding another pet. Unfortunately, most people bring in a second or third pet because they had no choice like mom taking in Taffy. It’s been a struggle but she could never have not done it. Love Dolly

  10. Kamira Gayle says:

    Great points. I remember discovering these things when I got my second cat off the street. Luckily everything worked out okay. My eldest never really loved the youngest, but was able to tolerate her. They had very different personality types. Both the loves of my life though. Good memories.

  11. Important information to know. I’d never had more than one pet before getting Truffle and Brulee. The fact they are Persians and require daily grooming is definitely something I had to consider. They do keep each other company and their totally different personalities keep me entertained. They are, however, a lot of work, expense, and care but I love them.

  12. Pets are definitely addicting!!! That’s how we ended up with 6 cats, a dog, and 2 sugar gliders! But we know our limits, and we have cut ourselves off. We want to be sure that can provide and care for the ones we have and don’t want to stretch ourselves too thin.

  13. Great points. You should always do your research and think seriously before getting one dog, let alone more. Kilo the Pug does not seem to like other dogs at all so even though he would benefit from company as he loves to play, we will have to stick to giving him human attention. Luckily I work from home a lot.

  14. Beth says:

    I live in a multi-pet household, and I love it. In addition to having three dogs, we have a cat, a rabbit, a tortoise, and an aquarium. All of our animals get along or ignore each other, so it is pretty peaceful. I wouldn’t want to have multiple animals if it involved a complex setting of keeping them separated.

  15. sherri says:

    I’m not considering getting another dog but I am considering another cat. Vet bills however are killing me.

  16. Yes, it is definitely an adjustment on many levels, as you mentioned. I adopted the Poodle Pair together almost two years ago, and am still adjusting. The rescue wanted them adopted together, so after much thought I decided to accept the challenge. They’re good dogs, but some days, having two dogs and one cat can be pretty crazy.

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