Why Getting A Second Dog Is A Good Idea

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Today I’m jumping into the time machine turning the clocks back to 2004 when I first picked up my rescue dog, Linus and also the first time I thought about getting a second dog.

When I was a kid my mother read me Where the Red Fern Grows (affiliate link) and ever since then I always wanted two dogs: a brother (Old Dan) and a his little sister (Little Ann).

However, after doing a ton of research and reading several books on raising and training puppies I decided that picking up two puppies at the same time was probably not the best idea.

I guess I wouldn’t be living my childhood dream to be like little Billy Colman and his two Coonhounds.

So how did I end up with two dogs?  Keep reading to find out!

Why Not Two Puppies?

Golden Retriever Puppies
Be careful! Your two adorable puppies could end up being a two-headed MONSTER!

Before finding Linus at our local shelter I researched the many different dog breeds and studied everything from potty training to basic obedience to crate training.

I was prepared to adopt my first puppy and during this time I learned that two puppies was not necessarily twice the fun.

I can tell you now from experience that raising one puppy takes up almost all of your time and tests your patience to the limit.  Now lets consider two puppies.

Two pups require extra attention as they should be coddled and trained separately within your home otherwise you risk the two pups bonding to each other more than they bond with you.

Now imagine trying to housetrain two puppies at the same time…can you say, “twice as many accidents in the house!”

While Snoopy from Snoopy’s Dog Blog would be thrilled to hear all of the mischief surrounding two puppies I don’t think I could put up with more than one mischievous puppy at a time.

The Temptation Of Two Puppies

As fate would have it when I went to our local animal shelter and found Linus low and behold he was lying right next to his sister.  She was a beautiful tri-color Australian Shepherd mix.

She looked much more like an Aussie than Linus who was all black.  I was very tempted to bring them both home with me, but decided to stick with the experts advice and wait at least a year before getting a second dog.

Should I Get A Second Dog?

First take a gander at this wonderful video from Pets Add Life (PAL) showing why “Pets need a pal to talk to”.

When Linus was about 2 years old I decided just like the video that he needed a pal to talk to and play with.

I started by fostering puppies and dogs for one of our local dog rescues called Cuddly Canines.

I was probably within inches of adopting one of our German Shepherd foster pups, but all 7 found homes fairly quickly and I was happy to see the smiles on each family that brought home a pup.

In the end I started volunteering as a puppy raiser for Guide Dogs of America.

After my first puppy in training, Stetson was career changed I ended up adopting him as my forever pet.

It was a long journey to a household with two dogs.  Our city only allows each household to have three total dogs and so I have not yet adopted another dog as I still volunteer as a guide dog puppy raiser and also as a foster.

So even though I have only two dogs of my own I often have three dogs living at my house.

What About Doggy Number Three?

There’s always that possibility that I might end up with doggy number three perhaps keeping one of my fosters or another career changed guide dog.  After all there are so many benefits to owning a pet or two or three 🙂

If you’re looking to add that second or third dog I highly recommend adopting from your local shelter or rescue.

Across the country there are millions of homeless pets who need your help.  From puppies to kittens to senior cats and dogs (and everywhere in between).  Furry, scaly, big, or small all homeless pets deserve a second chance.

Pets Add Life (PAL) put together a Facebook Pledge Page to help these homeless pets by asking people to take action now!  Take a look, make a pledge, and please share with your friends and family.  Here’s a link to the PAL Facebook Pledge Page.

Does your dog or pet need a friend?  Are you thinking about getting a second dog?  How many pets do you have in your house?  Tell us all about your pets in the comment section below.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by the Pets Add Life campaign and the American Pet Products Association. We are being compensated for helping spread the word about the benefits and joys of pet ownership.

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65 Comments

  1. Rooo I would love to have a little puppy around to play with, but I think my humans need another couple of years rest before getting a second puppy. Apparently I’m ‘hard work’ – no idea why they say that *waggy tail*

    1. Hi Alfie,

      You may be “hard work”, but I bet you’re loads of fun! Raising a second puppy definitely is a lot of work. The guide dog school keeps calling me asking me if I’m ready to raise another puppy, but I keep telling them I need a little bit longer break just like your parents. I’m sure they’ll get you a little friend to play with someday.

      Take care,
      Colby

  2. That’s funny! I loved that book always dreamed of having two coonhounds. Fortunately, I did some research on the breed and realized they probably would not be happy living in a residential neighborhood. But they are beautiful dogs!

    I still just have Blueberry. Still haven’t pulled the trigger on fostering a dog yet. I used to have two dogs – but it was a lot of work for just me. Although I did enjoy it when they would play together and I could chill out and just watch them play. I don’t know – it has its pros and cons like anything else.

    1. I never really looked into getting coonhounds I was just interested in getting a brother and sister when I was a kid.

      It’s a lot of work especially if you decide to foster puppies. It’s just me when I was taking care of Linus, fostering puppies, and raising guide dogs. It’s definitely tough and takes up a lot of time. It would be a lot easier with someone else to help with all the dogs.

      You might start talking to your local rescues. They’ve asked me to do some short term fosters for only about 2 weeks which might be up your ally.

      1. Hi Colby and Doggies,
        What you explained here was rather interesting for me, especially now that I am considering getting a second dog, a female Mini Schnauzer puppy that is. My biggest concern relies on our current dog, 7-month-old briskful Mini Schnauzer: he is beyond stable, obedient, doesn´t bark, doesn´t chew/bite things that aren´t his, always goes potty outside (apartment life here – in Madrid, Spain) since his first week of training. In sum, with my 24/7 training/educating and his noble innate characteristics, Nano has been a dream dog so far. So, what is your opinion regarding my scenario? Awaiting your reply, I greet you all guys. Hugs, Alan.

        1. Hi Alan,

          I felt ready for a second dog when Linus was about 2 years old. At 2 years old Linus did great adjusting to life with a new puppy. Getting a second dog is a big decision. It’s up to you to decide whether you and your current dog are ready to bring in another dog into the household. All I can say is I really enjoy having multiple dogs at my house.

          Good luck with your decision.

          Take care,
          Colby

  3. Your babies are beautiful. Our babies came as a set. Aussie mixes, they were rescues, brother/sister litter mates. I love that they were already housebroken when they came to us. Sure, they love each other very much, but the male bonded with me and the female bonded with my husband. Having two dogs is definitely better than having one, just like having two ducks is better than just one. 🙂

    1. That’s awesome that they came housebroken. I wish I got that every time I started raising a puppy. Perfect that one bonded with you and the other with your husband. One of my friends dogs bonded really closely with the other dog and unfortunately any time their separated one dog doesn’t care, but the other one cries.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      Colby

  4. Hi Y’all!

    Just hoppin’ by to say “hi”.

    Hey, don’t give my Human ideas! I used to live in a huge family and like be the one and only!

    Y’all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

    1. Are you sure Hawk? You might enjoy having another buddy around to romp and play with. Maybe you should try fostering to see how you like having a live in playmate!

  5. Getting Torrey was a huge decision, we thought about it a lot. At first Roxy, who was 7, was not thrilled. Now they play together, and are great buddies. I think Roxy would miss her, and I know for sure Torrey would miss Roxy.

    1. That’s great that Torrey and Roxy get along so well. Stetson and Linus used to play together in their younger days, but now that their older they kind of do their own things…I do think they would miss each other though.

  6. We actually do plan on getting a second dog, and I always ask people with two dogs for advice and what they think about having two dogs. One woman told me it was the best decision she ever made and will never go back to having just one dog. We just need a bigger place first. 🙂

    1. I love having two dogs. When I have three it got a bit difficult because it takes forever to take all 3 dogs out on a walk. I’d love to get a bigger place too so my boys could run around and play, but for now we’re in a small condo so we just go on several long walks every day.

  7. We’re always tempted to adopt a second puppy, but I know it would be too much extra work and expense. Since I work from home, Daisy’s not left alone every day, but I’d still love for her to have a full-time playmate. Ah well, maybe if we win the lottery! 🙂

    1. Hi Daisy,

      We really enjoy having two dogs at home, but you’re right, if you can’t handle the extra work and expenses then it’s not a good idea. One thing you could try if you were interested is helping your local rescue by fostering. We did this way back when we only had Linus. Depending on the dog it could be a lot or very little work. We actually raised several litters of puppies which was a lot, lot, lot of work, but the rescue paid all the expenses (vaccinations, vet checks, spay/neuter, etc).

      Thanks for stopping by!
      Colby

  8. Hi Colby,

    You’re right, I say the more puppies and Mischief the better!! Tee Hee 🙂

    When my Mum was getting a Golden years ago she was going to get 2 puppies at the same time and like you decided it was best to get one and then get the second one a year later.

    Just after she got the second one she broke her leg and was on crutches for 3 months.

    She clearly remembers all the Mischief of the little pup and 1 year old pup, as she was trying to avoid her crutches sliding on the tiles when she was potty training the second one and the first thought it would be fun Mischief to pee over it (despite previously being potty trained!)

    I would love to have a Cat or Dog to play with, but Mum says it’s too much and so I play with Cosmo next door 🙂

    Big Wags to all,

    Your pal Snoopy 🙂

    1. Hi Snoopy,

      I’m glad Stetson and Linus haven’t pee’d over any of the little pups potty messes. I think you should lobby for a kitty or puppy. Just tell your Mum that it will make for some great Snoopy plus puppy mischief stories and would be perfect for your book!

      Take care,
      Colby

  9. On seeing the same breed every living being will feel better,It would be so nice to play,eat,and share other feel together.Having more puppies will make our home so beautiful.But managing all these is little bit difficult.

  10. I wish one of my brothers or sisters could have come home with me, we’d be able to make LOTS of mischief together. My humans told me, that if I’m a good girl and everything is ‘just right’ then I’ll be allowed to have some pups one day. I’m only a pup myself, so it’s a long way off but my human said I’d get to keep one when I do. ONLY if I’m a good girl and teach it ALL the rules. I’ve got two rabbits though, so I talk to them when I’m bored.

    1. Hi Bella,

      I’m glad you have a couple rabbits to talk to when you’re bored. Yes, two pups make lots of mischief and I’m sure you would have caused some real trouble together.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      Colby

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