If you’re considering adding in a second dog to your family, read this first!
As a dog-mum of three wonderful dogs (Indie, Shelby & Lucy), I’m pretty well versed on the multi-dog household and want to give you some tips and advice on the ideal time to introduce a new dog to the family with your existing dog.
It can be really tough to fight the urge to bring home a second puppy because the first one is so cute, and doing so well and you’re absolutely through the puppy blues, and it could be easier to just get all of this jazz done at the same time and leverage the efficiencies of having more than one dog, right?
I mean, if you’ve raised one, raising a second can’t be that much work, right?
Well, yes and no to both of those questions.
Here’s my recommendation….
When Is The Best Time To Get A Second Puppy?
When your first puppy is about 2 years old.
Aka, this is when you’ve finished the bulk of your training the first one to a reasonable and reliable standard. At this age, your dog (whilst still lively and energetic) is a lot more level headed, there will be fewer emotional swings, developmental changes and other factors associated with growth that will affect your dogs’ temperament.
When your dog reaches this stage, you naturally kind of take your foot off of the gas, and you get to enjoy your dog and switch your training to cruise control.
This is the perfect time to get a puppy, or throughout your existing family dogs’ adult life but before they become a senior.
Getting similarly aged puppies can be a benefit or a curse, maybe a second puppy should wait? The Benefits of Multi-dog Households
✅ Feeding, cleaning, watering and walking are no more work than one dog.
✅ They’re great playmates for one another
✅ You can occasionally fill a gap with a second pup (like if you wanted a cuddle dog but your first isn’t a cuddler)
✅ You can leverage things like recall training
Getting a second dog can be a great idea, and it can be everything you needed and more! Two dogs is double the joy, after all and if one dog is good, wouldn’t two dogs be better?
They can give you a lot of laughs and joy, and it can be a real blast having two woofs around the house.
when you’ve finished the bulk of your training the first one to a reasonable and reliable standard
Ali Smith, Rebarkable The Problem With Multi-dog Households
❌ Training takes way more work
❌ Vets bills are more expensive for contagious things
❌ Each dog needs alone time with paw-rents.
❌ They can teach each other bad habits before you curb the behaviour.