Adding a Second Dog to Your Family: Pros and Cons
February 27th, 2020 by Cherished Companions
The more dogs, the merrier, right? Sometimes. 🙂
Each pet family is different, so it’s awesome you’re thinking
through the decision of adding a second dog.
Dr. Melanie has always had two dogs, and she sees A LOT of
multiple dog families.
We asked her to share potential benefits — and
cons — of getting a second dog.
Plus, scroll down for her thoughts on good ages and genders for
a second dog, so you can choose well for your family.
Benefits of getting a second dog
- You can double the fun and silly antics in your home.
- Some dogs LIKE having a companion. If you have a
nervous dog who suffers from separation anxiety, for
example, a second dog in your home may help lower
your first dog’s anxiety.
- Younger dogs can become playmates for each other.
- If your first dog is destructive from boredom, you
may be able to redirect your dog’s energy, so the dogs
entertain each other instead.
- If you have kids, a second dog can make another good
- One person can usually still walk two dogs. (Think
about the size and strength you can handle.)
- If your dogs are a few years apart, you’ll still have a
furry friend when the other passes away.
Cons of getting a second dog
- Two dogs take more time, even if they’re
entertaining each other. Make sure you have enough
time for one dog before considering a second dog.
- Two dogs are a greater expense. Depending on the
size and age of your dogs, you may be doubling your
food, boarding, grooming and veterinary care bills.
- Some dogs like to be the only dog. Not every dog
wants a buddy. You may change the dynamic with your
- If you travel a lot or know you’re going to deploy, it
can be easier (and less expensive) to find care for one
dog rather than two.
- If someone in your home has allergies, you’ll need to
look for an allergy-resistant dog.
Alpha personality and gender considerations
when adding a second dog
Dogs consider you their pack.
There are some dogs that have more of an alpha personality
than others. (It could be either a female dog or a male dog.)
Mixing the genders can help if you have a dog with a strong
In this case, look for a second dog that is the opposite sex and is
more laid back and mellow.
Avoid getting two strong alpha personalities, and always have
them meet in a neutral place, so you can see how they interact.
(If one dog is physically aggressive to the other, this is not good.)
Can dogs of the same gender get along together?
Our veterinarians have had personal experience mixing two male
dogs and two female dogs together. The dogs have done fine.
The key is to be in tune with each dog’s alpha tendencies.
Age considerations when getting a second dog
Generally speaking, there isn’t a “best age” to get a new dog, but
there are a few age considerations:
- Avoid introducing a puppy if you have a geriatric
dog. (Your dog is 10+ years.) It can be really taxing on
your senior dog.
- If you get a younger dog when your dog is 6-8 years
old, this may help keep your older dog acting more
- If you’re getting two puppies from the same litter,
make sure you spend time separately with each dog, so the
dogs bond with you (and not just to each other).
Otherwise, you may be treated as an outsider.
On that note, ANY TIME you’re getting a second dog, it’s always a good
idea to make sure you’re spending quality time with each dog
separately, so they bond with you.
- Adopting an older dog versus a puppy: Pros and cons
- 5 questions to ask before you adopt a pet in Castle Rock
- Choosing a rescue dog? Be alert for dogs with this behavior
If you’re adopting a rescue dog, ask about our FREE 1st exam for rescue pets within 14 days of adoption.
Call our Castle Rock veterinarians at 303-688-3757 or:
Cherished Companions Animal Clinic is a veterinary clinic in Castle Rock, Colorado. Specializing in the care of cats and dogs, our goal is to help you and your pet feel more comfortable, keeping your stress to a minimum.
This article is intended to provide general guidance on adding a second dog to your family. If you have specific questions or concerns, please contact your local veterinarian. (If you live in or around Castle Rock, we welcome your call: 303-688-3757.)
© 2020, Cherished Companions Animal Clinic, All Rights Reserved
What Is the Best Diet for Dogs? 5 Things to Consider
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The best diet for dogs is a healthy diet, but…
It can be really hard to figure out what a healthy diet is!
There’s a lot of confusing advertising about what your dog should be eating.
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Looking for local dog parks around Castle Rock, Colorado?
Scroll down for the best Castle Rock dog parks based on input from local families.
Choosing a Rescue Dog? Be Alert for Dogs With This Behavior
December 10th, 2018 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
It’s the big day.
You’re ready to adopt your rescue dog. (Yayyyyy!)
All you need to do is choose one.
Adopting an Older Dog vs a Puppy: Pros and Cons
November 27th, 2018 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
Getting a dog will change your life!
To help you choose the best dog for your family, here are some pros and cons of adopting an older dog vs. a puppy.
How to Introduce a Second Cat or Kitten (With as Little Drama as Possible)
October 2nd, 2018 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
So, you’re getting ready to bring a second cat or kitten into your home…
Everyone is delighted about the new addition to your family… except your cat that already lives there.
Hiss, hiss, me-ooooow!
We know that feline World War III is not your idea of a good time. That’s why we’ve asked Dr. Ivy, one of our cat veterinarians, for guidance.
Here are her tips to help you bring a second cat or kitten into your home, so you can introduce your cats with as little drama as possible.
Intestinal Parasites in Colorado Cats: What You Need to Know
February 27th, 2018 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
If you’re wondering whether your cat has intestinal parasites, it’s best to start with two questions:
- Is your cat a kitten or an adult?
- What’s his or her lifestyle? (Does your cat spend time outdoors?)
Dog Parasites That Are Common in Colorado
January 30th, 2018 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
What to know about giardia, roundworms, coccidia and tapeworms
Living in Castle Rock, Colorado, we don’t see as many cases of dog parasites as in other parts of the country.
Still, it’s definitely possible for your dog to get intestinal parasites here.
Our veterinarians typically see two cases of dog parasites per week.
Bringing Home a Shelter Cat: 8 Tips to Make the Transition Easier
September 12th, 2017 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
So, you’re thinking about bringing home a shelter cat or kitten…
Congratulations! We hope your new kitty will make a wonderful addition to your family.
Here are 8 tips to make the transition easier for you and your feline friend.
Ear Mites in Cats: The Good, the Bad, and the Itchy
May 2nd, 2017 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic
First, the good news! Ear mites in cats are not as common in Colorado as in other parts of the country.
But, yes, your cat can still get them in the Castle Rock area.
We’ve put together some helpful information to introduce you to the wonderful world of ear mites in cats.
And if you live in Castle Rock or Denver, you’re always welcome to give our veterinarians a call: (303) 688-3757.