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Considering getting a friend for my dog.

(26 Posts)
Carrotsandcelery Mon 20-Jun-11 19:07:02

How do I go about finding one that he will love and enjoy sharing his home with?

Our dog is fab and I don't want to ruin things by introducing a dog and everything going wrong.

At the same time, when my dog is at the dog walkers he has a great time with the other dogs and always comes home more playful and lively, which makes me think he would enjoy another dog to play with.

Carrotsandcelery Mon 20-Jun-11 20:55:54


Happymm Mon 20-Jun-11 20:59:00

I think it depends on whether you feel you have the time, space and energy for a number 2. How old is your dog? Maybe get a slightly younger one, but not a puppy unless you have loads of time for separate training sessions, walking for both for a while...

Carrotsandcelery Mon 20-Jun-11 21:03:26

Our dog is 2 but we have only had him a year. He wasn't trained when we got him (rescue) and was in a bad way. sad He is a happy, well adjusted, healthy weight dog now smile

I don't want a puppy really. I would prefer a rescue again but realise they need a bit more tlc and suspect this is harder when there are 2 of them.

I am also scared that we maybe landed on our feet this time and it could all go horribly wrong.

Happymm Mon 20-Jun-11 21:26:35

Think if I were you, as am bit lazy and find it hard, I'd stick with the loveliness I had, and just socialise more with other dogs?

TheCatInTheHairnet Mon 20-Jun-11 21:32:49

We got our second dog a matter of months after our first. I don't find it any harder at all. I train them together, they walk together and the first one is less clingy when he has to be left alone now. They adore each other and they adore us, so job's a good'un!

KeepErLit Mon 20-Jun-11 21:54:02

We thought our dog would like a companion due to the reason you state...always seemed so happy in the company of other dogs and would be company for him when we were at work.

The reality is that I have now have 2 dogs who would probably be just as happy without the other. First dog likes his space and, as he's got older, finds other dogs less interesting. No 2 dog prefers the company of people and other dogs are entirely beneath her contempt. They don't appear to feature in her world. They co-exist happily enough but they choose to spend most of their time in separate rooms and away from each other. When they go to boarding kennels we have to pay for 2 separate kennels for them as they would hate to be forced to share the same small space for a prolonged amount of time.

I don't think you could ever guarantee that another dog would enrich the life of your current dog. Only get one if YOU really want one and are prepared to cope with the potential issues if they turn out not to be the best of buddies.

Carrotsandcelery Mon 20-Jun-11 21:59:34

Keep I suspect that is very wise advice. It could be great but it is a massive gamble and as Happy says, maybe I should be content with my lot. Maybe enjoying the other dogs at the dog walkers makes the dog walker time more of a treat and a novelty for him.

He has had a rough start so maybe he deserves to be our one and only adored and pampered pooch.

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 21:59:45

my oldest dog was an only dog for 8 years so we had to be very careful about rehoming another dog.

we approached a rescue and explained that we had a bossy older dog (great with us but thought she was the only jrt in the world grin) and they paired us up with a submissive type dog. we did a few visits for dogs to socialise before bringing dog home with us. during this time dog was reserved for us but we could have backed out if the socialising didnt work.

now i cant imagine having only one dog. they keep each other company and i feel happier leaving them at home knowing they have each other. but it was hard work though. we needed to spend some time training new dog on a one to one basis - this didnt always mean going out with only one dog, i just thought of places we could go where older dog could sniff around safely off lead whilst i trained younger dog with some basic commands.

now it is easy and i have even have 3 dogs! i love watching them run and play

morethanyoubargainfor Mon 20-Jun-11 22:05:02

We have 2 beasties lovely dogs! We had one at 7 weeks and then got the loopy but lovely lurcher when the first born was 2 (a week before his 2 birthday in fact). The loopy lurcher was approx 1 when we got him adn he had had a bad start in life, unknown history (he was a stray in ireland).
It was the best thing we ever did, they are the best of friends even though the curly one is the superior one grin. We are now looking into to getting a third rescue dog to put in the mix. We have had the loopy one coming up for two years now. (do you see a pattern forming here!!).

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:06:04

when we were introducing dog no 2 i wanted them to be best of friends but the rescue explained to us that they dont expect that when matching. they only check that the dogs wont clash as they said dogs can happily co-exist without being best friends.

dog no 2 absolutely loves dog no 1. dog no 1 tries to pretend she tolerates him but i notice when we are out that they choose to sleep in the same part of the house and i have caught her kissing him

dog no 2 and 3 are best friends

i dont think it matters if they are good friends as long as they can live together

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:08:13

grin morethan. it is rather addictive. i never thought i would end up with 3 dogs. though definitely not going to have 4!

morethanyoubargainfor Mon 20-Jun-11 22:13:33

It really is chickchick, i have promised my dh that i will stop at 4 ish wink. I am working on the basis that in the 2013, when the next will be due, he would have forgotten this conversation grin.

Scuttlebutter Mon 20-Jun-11 22:17:34

Carrots, there are a few options, before going for a permanent second dog. You could consider fostering for a charity - this is a lovely way to enjoy having another dog around but without the permanent commitment. The charity provides lots of support, pays for food and vets bills and you'd have the satisfaction of knowing you helped a dog find its forever home - it's very rewarding in that sense.

You don't mention if you've ever taken your dog to classes? We took one of ours along to KC Good Canine Citizen and he loved it. We both learned loads and he really enjoyed the sociable aspect of it too. Why not consider taking him along to things like local charity fun events - lots of our local doggy charities often do things like sponsored walks, meet ups, and fun dog shows. Nothing like the serious world of showing (thank goodness!) - lots of classes like Best Rescue, Waggiest Tail, Best Pair of Six legs and so on. Lots and lots of fun to do (especially with DC), very sociable and rewarding. Or there's flyball, agility, obedience classes, Cani X, the list goes on. All of these have an important social element. If your dog has a particular set of doggy friends, why not have some doggy playdates or organise the doggy equivalent of a babysitting circle - over the years we've done this with other greyhound owners - greyhound owner can go away knowing their darling woof is in good company, ours can enjoy playing with their friend. And it can be reciprocated - very handy.

I grew up with multiple dogs and am personally very much in favour of having more than one,^ if this works for you and your lifestyle^. We got a second greyhound very quickly after our first - one of the issues that helped to persuade us was that most greys are brought up in their working life always surrounded by others - it is rare for them to be solitary. Of course, this is not an issue for all rescues. Dog No. 1 was looking a bit down and when No 2 arrived he was delighted (small bossy female who immediately took charge). We then fostered various dogs until permanent No 3 arrived (failed foster blush). Ours get on great together - it's wonderful to watch them play, sniff and generally hang out. If you can do it, two is not particularly more work than one (as long as you take care to match grooming/exercise requirements). I would say with hindsight though that the step from 2 to 3 was a big one, though I don't regret it for a second.

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:18:14

shock at 4. grin

though thanks to scuttle's special brainwashing powers i am dreaming of a future with a quiet house and a couple of greyhounds curled up beside me

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:18:46

x posts. but speak of the devil ........................grin

Joolyjoolyjoo Mon 20-Jun-11 22:27:45

I think it will always be a bit of a gamble. Ddog1 always loved other dogs, and loved to walk with them. When he was 4, I decided he was settled enough to get ddog2. He refused to look at her for 2 wks, but she established herself pretty quickly anyway- ie decided that all the resources in the house (toys, beds etc) were hers!

ddog2 has real issues that I am sure (and behaviouralists agree) are to do with co-existing with ddog1, usually involving pee and poo.

I love them both, but feel a bit sad sometimes as I feel that they have NOT enhanced one another's lives, and I feel somewhat guilty about it. Oldboy had a big comfy bed, she chewed it up and pooed all over it. Ditto any blanket they both get sad. Oldboy is not very bright, and I think she gets frustrated with him. They don't fight or anything, but just don't seem particularly close.

Having said that, I know loads of 2 (or more!) dog families where the dogs are best buddies. I suppose it's like hoping your children will get on and be close- no guarantees!

Carrotsandcelery Mon 20-Jun-11 22:42:04

Scuttle your fostering idea is a great one. I may well look into that. I shall mull it over for a while first.

We have been to agility but got chucked out. Our dog was great at it but hated the crowd.

We have also done one fun show and he did win a rosette but, again, hated how busy it was.

He does not like busy places with lots of people walking around. We live in the country and walk in woods where he can romp off the lead.

He is well trained and obedient in these circumstances but gets wound up in busy places (He is a collie X and I am told this is not unusual for the breed.)

Scuttlebutter Mon 20-Jun-11 22:52:51

No sofa is complete without a greyhound (or two) sprawled all over it, snoring, farting and lying there with their legs in the air. Our next door neighbour had some friends staying with them over the weekend. We bumped into them (not literally) as we were unloading the dogs after their walk. Neighbour's friend looked at them admiringly (well, they are very handsome and attractive grin) and said "I bet they take some exercising". I insisted that they were a bunch of couch potatoes who would then spend the rest of the day sleeping after their exertions (just over an hour in the park) - strangely she did not look convinced.

Carrots, sounds like your boy is a gentle, peaceful soul who prefers a quieter pace of life.

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:55:02

scuttle are you suggesting a quiet greyhound would be a good companion? wink

chickchickchicken Mon 20-Jun-11 22:56:11

carrots - our dog no 2 is a collie x

Scuttlebutter Mon 20-Jun-11 23:46:14

Might be...

Whistles innocently..... wink

BobLoblaw Tue 21-Jun-11 10:57:57

We had had our rescue collieXkelpie for around 18 months when we got rescue collieXhuntaway, they are best friends and despite having two beds they always share, walking them both is easy and they love running around together off lead. We took Penny with us to meet Oscar but left her in the car initially once we had met Oscar and had a play we introduced Penny they played together nicely and we walked them together before we decided to have Oscar. When we got Oscar home he adored Penny from the first day but she completely ignored him! It didn't last long and they are very happy together now.

I was very worried about upsetting Penny as she had a tricky start but had become very settled and happy but she loves having Oscar around, she used to hate being left but now they are just curled up together whenever we come home smile

Jaynerae Tue 21-Jun-11 13:34:09

We got CKCS when Beagle was 11 months old. CKCS was adopted and 12 months when we got him. CKCS is totally utterly wonderfully adorable and he is my shadow. When he first arrived Beagle would try and play fight with him and he would growl and bark and fight back and I was really unsure as to whether this was play fighting or serious fighting as it did sound nasty at times, but as the weeks went by they bonded and now I can tell they are play fighting (Still sounds visious!) but they chase each other around and play fight every day.

I am so glad we got CKCS he has tought Beagle to chase and retrieve ball in park which has taken her mind off less desirable behaviours!

CKCS lost his excess weight due to chasing ball and playing with Beagle - he looks fantastic now.

When Beagle went in to vets I left CKCS in car, when we came out, Beagle jumped into boot but kissed CKCS before she got in to her crate!

They don't sleep together as I crate them when we are not in room because Beagle destroys anything and everything, but they curl up on the settee together with me in the evening.

There are many things about Beagle's behaviour I would change - one of them being how jealous she is off CKCS - everything he picks up to play with she wants - it's like having a couple of kids fight over the same toy!

But I do not regret for a single moment getting second dog, I totally adore him. (and so does Beagle!) smile

TarquinGyrfalcon Tue 21-Jun-11 13:44:24

We have always had two or more dogs.

In my experience some dogs love having canine companionship, others aren't so bothered. We had a lovely JRT who was totlally people oriented and was jealous of all our other dogs.

Last year BigDog became ill and had to be pts unexpectedly and I didn't think I could face having another dog.
SmallDog (rescue dog who was now our only dog) had come from an enviroment where there were other dogs and he adored BigDog

Enter BigDog2 - she was also used to being with lots of dogs and they from the moment they met they loved each other. When SmallDog was the only dog he used to wonder around the house and find it hard to settle.

The are sleeping on the settee curled up together each sucking the end of the same ragger.

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