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Going from one dog to two(20 Posts)
We’ve had our dog for two years, we have always wanted another but it hasn’t been the right time. But now we think it would be great for him to have a little friend. We are trying to look at it from all angles though, bad and good. If you already had a dog and then got another, how did that work out for you? Is it a lot more stress or do you not really notice? TIA
Not really any more stress in my experience. We got a second dog when our first was 18 months old, as we thought it'd be nice for her to have company when we were out at work etc (as well as having a dog walker visit twice a day). We got a male of the same breed on the advice of our trainer who said getting a second female might be problematic in terms of jealousy, considering the personality of our first.
Our second dog is lovely, completely different and very laid back personality and absolutely idolises her. Unfortunately the feeling isn't mutual and she completely ignores him most of the time and resents when he gets any attention whatsoever, which can be difficult. Ultimately I do think she enjoys not being alone when she can't be with us though, so in that sense the plan at least half worked out.
What are your reasons for wanting a second?
We just recently rescued another Lab, our Boy is 5 and we've had him from a puppy. Long story short is friend of a friend runs kennels and girl Lab was handed in, take her for a few days and see how she settles they said. That was a year ago....
Girl is 7 and fabulous, great on lead, off lead etc. A bit more needy than the boy but I think that is expected with a rescue.
She adores him and lies beside him, he tolerated her for around 3 months but now will choose to lie down beside her.
There honestly hasn't been any stress with having two dogs, they are great company for each other when we are out, we check them on a camera.
Our boy is so laid back he is horizontal though, she thinks she is the boss but isn't!!
The only down side is the HAIRS, our fault for having 2 Labs though.
@rottiemum88 for the same reason as you really in that he is never on his own for too long and has a walker come, but we thought it would be nice for him to have company while we are working/out. Plus we just love dogs so another would be lovely just for having one. Did you know you wanted the same breed? We have a lab but were thinking about a smaller dog. What you said about jealousy and resentment is my biggest worry to be honest and he gets spoiled rotten with attention at the moment! And obviously I would want to give the other one plenty of love and attention too.
@catzrulz that's so lovely to hear that they adapted to each other and they get along well now. The hair thing is one of the reasons why we aren't thinking of another lab! I just about keep on top of it as it is! They are wonderful dogs though.
Our boy is about 3 inches taller than the average Lab, he is huge. Our girl is really petite, she is honestly half his size, he's yellow and she is fox red, so it is almost like having a different breed.
Our boy's best friend is a JRT and they get on really well too.
We were not looking as he/they now are not on alone much, but it is great to see them playing together. Go for it, you'll never notice another 40 trillion dog hairs... a day!
Did you know you wanted the same breed?
No, and personally I'd have liked a smaller dog for our second too (we have two rotties so the opposite of small), but DH isn't a fan of small dogs at all. To be honest it hasn't been too much of an issue though, apart from meaning that I can't walk them both together on my own... or fit on my own sofa when they both decide to get on before me
Our current two are great but the oldest was barely 6 months old before we got number two. They're friends most of the time. Definitely company for each other when we're not in. But they're both small so easy to manage etc. First dog does not like second dog getting attention. Second dog is crap at being left completely alone. Both these issues I think reflect the order we got them in.
We’ve two of the same breed, both from puppies. One is 12 and the other 8. Totally devoted to each other, stressed out if separated,. They only end up apart if they’re having a haircut or if one needs to go to the vets. The older one cries if the younger is gone and she hides and shakes if he’s not there. That’s the only issue. Love them both to bits
No extra stress or work really.
We took on a friends dog when his relationship broke down, so wasn't planned but we hardly noticed. It was nice for the dogs as they were like best friends most the time.
I got a puppy then rescued an older dog not long after (I couldn’t resist when I heard about him). I was apprehensive as they’re both male and the rescue had a bit of a tricky personality but they absolutely love each other. I haven’t found it any more work, I feed and walk them at the same time and they entertain each other or cuddle if I pop out. I think it was beneficial getting the 2nd when the first was still young as he’ll grow up with him and didn’t try and dominate/establish his domain when the second arrived.
It's a slippery road... We thought that two were not much more work or trouble than one. And it led to four being only 'marginally' more work, plus a failed fifth foster. For some reason, my DH seems to get nervous when I am my various dog rescue sites. No idea why...
PS: DD has measured assorted spaces where more dogs could fit. I fear it is inherited.
How settled and well trained is your existing dog? You can see a relapse in behaviour with a second.
Would you get a pup? Puppy needs a lot of time with you and not just with the older dog.
It’s more work. More expense. More tiring. But more fun!
Our older dog is well-trained and pretty fabulous, so our second dog seemed to slot in quite well. He's a bit of a knob at times, but she seems to keep him in check. I also found things like his recall were amazing because he would follow her lead - from a very young age he was much more obedient purely because he picked up on her cues.
She's getting quite old and slow now, but I wouldn't hesitate to have another when we lose her; two dogs just feels like the right number.
We had one male black lab. Added a female springer three years later and she was the perfect companion. We lost the lab earlier this year and now have a 5 m old male lab. The springer has been AMAZING. I've always preferred the labs but the springer has entertained, played with, told off when appropriate and we are en route to another fab lab thanks to the springer.
We've always tried to work it so we have two together. Always the same breed. Only that plan didn't quite work out and we ended up having three for two years which was a bit of a handful. Two is perfect, only it's twice the amount of hair to have to hoover up. Introducing a new one has never been a problem, the new one has always been a pup and they soon find their place.
Reading with interest - our old dog was a Patterdale who HATED other dogs so a second was never an option. She died last year and we now have a male puppy - nearly 8 months - who lives for the company of other dogs, so much so that I feel a 2nd is not just a nice idea but a necessity for his sake!
He's a bit young yet and currently going through adolescent regression. Should we wait until he's 18 months or so, then get a female puppy of the same breed - or put our name down to rescue an older female dog sooner?
I'm torn. Reading the rescue descriptions they often have issues, and after 12 years of an aggressive, difficult dog I don't think I want to go down that road again.
We recently got a puppy to join our old lurcher, she is a rescue so we don't know her age but vets say she is a teenager.
It has been hell frankly but it is to do with personalities, puppy is confident and domineering while old girl is quiet and doesn't want to play with him.
Puppy has given the old girl some quite nasty bites so we now have a behaviourist and trainer helping us out. It has impoved a lot but still not been fun.
That may also be the age differential, @BanditsBum. DB had a five year gap and Older Girl was seriously unimpressed with puppy (a more dominant female).
When Older Girl sadly died young of cancer, Second Dog was 2, and despite the fact that Older Girl had never wanted anything to with her grieved noticeably, and really took to Brand New Puppy, mothering her and happily sharing toys, sleeping with her from the start, etc (the previous two had to be separated at night to stop the younger one bothering her sister). This pair now still get on really well.
From other friends' experience, imo two years is the perfect age gap - young enough to play, old enough to be a good example and teach puppy how to be a good household member.
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