Is one dog better than two?

(18 Posts)
Anchovies12 Wed 24-Aug-16 12:54:52

Our black lab, Buddy, died unexpectedly a couple of months ago. He was a rescue with bad separation anxiety and was generally quite anxious. About 3 years ago we got a rescue puppy (Flower) who really helped with his anxiety and bossed him around and generally made him much happier.

Obviously Flower is missing her pal now and is generally much quieter and her personality seems to have really changed. I am a teacher so despite having a dog loving cleaner and MIL who come between them every day in the week, Flower spends a fair bit of the daytimes in her crate on her own.

To be completely honest I am finding one dog much easier than two (possibly because my wonderful Buddy was high maintenance?) however I cant help but feel that Flower is missing out? Will she adjust? I loved seeing them together sad

We've always had two dogs then when our old boy died suddenly last year we decided to just have the one. 10 months later we now have an 11week old Lab puppy.... 😄 We found one dog was actually so easy to deal with that it was almost a novelty at first. But we also noticed the change in him - a lot quieter, almost withdrawn, sleeping a lot more than he used to as well. Puppy has been an absolute joy for the whole family and our lovely DDog has a new lease of life. It's all been good. Although, will your existing dog minders be ok with a second one to look after?

honeyroar Sat 27-Aug-16 19:52:37

I think two dogs is normally, but not always, better for the dogs. It just means they always have company and a playmate.

2kids2dogsnosense Tue 30-Aug-16 19:27:43

I like (dare I say it?) three dogs - I have no reason for this, I just do. As present we have two and currently dog sit our daughter's great dane (aka the common house horse) while she's working.

Dogs do love company and as long as you don't get two puppies together you shouldn't have any trouble with them leading each other into mischief. On the contrary, I've always found that the puppy learns from the older dog, and the older one calms down with the responsibility of the puppy (I know, I know - I'm anthropomorphising, but this is what I've found).

Flower, if she is a quietish dog to start off with, will probably love having the company, and you won't find it much harder (well - not when the housetraining is over and done with grin).

If you do decide to get another, she will probably be happier with a male puppy than a female. Dogs of opposite sexes generally settle better, though most dogs will get on okay if they are introduced carefully, no matter what sex they are.

honeyroar Tue 30-Aug-16 19:55:54

I like three dogs too 2Kids, I like that, hopefully, they will never be left alone when one dies (I have a staggered age range, 2, 7 and 10). But I do feel like the woman from Trumpton on acid sometimes when they're misbehaving on three leads!

2kids2dogsnosense Wed 31-Aug-16 12:02:53

honeyroar - LOL

That's just what I'm like - especially if we have the bigg'un out and he sees a staffie across the road/field/wherever. We had a staff bitch for the first four years of his life an he LOVES them - always wants to say "hello". DH and DD can make him behave - he takes the lend of me so I don't walk him.

We always staggered the ages too, for the same reason as you, but had two horrible, early and unexpected losses in the space of a year (5 yo apparently fit and well staffie bitch developed aggressive bone cancer and 11 and half westie developed "west lung disease". We had to part with both of them and it was, as you can imagine, awful.)

user1471453908 Tue 20-Sep-16 18:50:14

Both DH and I has always had 1 dog at a time until recently. About 18 months ago, we got StandardPoodle to give our old RescueGirl some canine company. We went opposite sex as seems to be recommended and it has worked so well. RescueGirl has helped train StandardPoodle and is very protective of him (even though he's distinctly taller than she now!). They get on very well; he keeps her young and she looks after him in a doggy fashion (not that she's learned to groom him or poo-pick yet!)

BlueKarou Tue 20-Sep-16 18:59:59

I really should have stayed with one dog; the slightly older of my two is a slightly nervy, person- dog whereas the young newer one is a dog-dog of the bounciest sort. They get on just fine, but life would have been a lot easier all round with just the one.

I think generally 2 dogs is better than 1, but it's not a hard and fast rule.

BagelGoesWalking Tue 20-Sep-16 20:59:13

Why not get an older 2nd dog rather than a puppy. Easier to cope with as you're working and they would still have companionship and playtime together.

One that's been in foster with other dogs, so his/her behaviour with other dogs is fairly well assessed - could be the way forward?

Wolfiefan Tue 20-Sep-16 21:01:35

Please tell me she isn't crated ALL day.
Get her a pal but employ a walker or use doggy daycare?

gettingoutofdebt Tue 20-Sep-16 21:51:49

No, as i said in the op i have a cleaner or my MIL coming in every day.

Wolfiefan Tue 20-Sep-16 21:55:17

But they surely don't stay for hours?!

gettingoutofdebt Tue 20-Sep-16 22:05:14

The foster dog is an interesting idea! And thanks everyone else for your thoughts - im still very undecided!

gettingoutofdebt Tue 20-Sep-16 22:06:35

My cleaner comes for 2 hours 3 days a week and my MIL comes at 2 and takes the dog to pick my dcs up from school.

gettingoutofdebt Tue 20-Sep-16 22:08:38

Cleaner (who loves dogs) worked out cheaper than a dog walker for an hour everyday when we had two dogs. Obviously thats not the case now but I cant bear to give her up!

Wolfiefan Tue 20-Sep-16 22:17:00

That still sounds like 6 hours in a crate some days?

FenellaMaxwell Tue 20-Sep-16 22:26:23

Does that mean on days when your MIL comes the dog is crated from the first thing in the morning until 2pm?! Hardly surprising it seems a bit miserable - poor thing!! Crates are meant to be used for max 3 hours, you can't create your dog for most of the day, most days. I'm sorry but that's awful!

gettingoutofdebt Tue 20-Sep-16 22:33:31

4 hours on 2 days a week, 2 hours on the other 3? I leave for work at 9.45

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