If you are a dog lover, you know how much fun it is having one puppy. Now imagine how much more fun you will have when you get a second pup. But before you rush into getting a second puppy, there are some factors you need to consider.
For instance how much space do you have? How big is your family? Also, you need to find out which breed will be the most compatible with the pup you already have. You will also consider your neighbors.
If the first dog is noisy, how much more noise will your family and neighbors be exposed to with a second puppy? You also need to understand the costs of maintaining and treating two puppies, and the time to walk and feed them.
Feelings of your Second Puppy
Many people who get second dogs say it’s because they want company for their first one. But if this is your main reason, then you know that not all dogs love the company of other dogs.
You will have to ask yourself if your first puppy is ok sharing his territory, humans, toys, resting places and food with a second dog without feeling displaced.
You don’t want your two puppies fighting because of territorial aggression. To avoid this, you will have to introduce your old and new puppy to each other on neutral ground.
You can ask a friend or family member to bring the old puppy and meet you with the new one in a place new to both puppies.
Don’t Bring Your Current Dog to Pick Up the New One
If you want to drive home safely, don’t bring with you the current puppy with you to pick the new member. Have you thought about the confusion, fighting and commotion the two dogs are likely to cause?
Also, you need a clear mind when choosing which second pet to pick. When you bring along the current one along, you might be inclined into choosing the dog the current puppy seems to like instead of choosing a perfect match.
Use a Loose Leash
Keep both dogs under control by using loose head halters or leashes. Don’t let the dogs feel vulnerable by using tight leashes. Instead let each human holding a dog have firm control so that they don’t escape to fight or confront each other.
It’s Ok for the Dogs to Investigate Each Other
Allow the dogs freedom to circle and sniff each other when meeting for the first time. Usually they start with sniffing the rear ends and move to eye contact.
Ensure the introduction process is positive by talking to both dogs in a calm and pleasant voice. As you talk and rub them, be on the lookout for any posture and body language that might signify aggression.
In case you notice any form of aggression, intervene by redirecting and distracting the dog. Don’t be scolding any of them in case they growl or snarl as it suppresses their emotions.
They will start to fear you when you come around them. Your main goal is to have both dogs have a safe social hierarchy that is peaceful even in your absence. When you notice them ignoring each other, it is fine.
They will get to know each other with time, so don’t force them.
Taking them Home
Once you realize the dogs can tolerate each other, now you can take them home. But remember the goal is to create a social hierarchy, usually it’s the old member that takes the ‘lead’ position.
It is OK because it is their home and environment that you are bringing a ‘visitor’ or ‘new member’ to. Take the old dog with you inside the house and let the other person walk the new one.
This allows the original dog room to ‘invite’ the new member into his domain.
If you love dogs, the thought of getting a second puppy is a pleasant one, especially if you have been enjoying the first one’s company.
However, there are a number of things you need to consider like the type of breed, the old dog’s feelings and temperaments, noise, age, maintenance and treatment how much space you have in your backyard.