It’s nearly Christmas, and your kid wants a puppy. His eyes shine when he tells you he’s written to Santa and asked for it.
Problem is, you already have a dog at home. What should you do? Of course you want your kid to be happy… but better take some things into consideration before you actually buy the new pet!
First of all, you should ask yourself: “Do I want a second dog?” If the answer is ‘yes’, than you should consider if you have enough space to house two dogs, if you can make time for them – to be honest, who’s going to walk the second dog? – and if you can afford to buy food for two. With a major economic crisis at hand, this is certainly a point to consider.
Also, you should not take another dog just because you think your first dog needs company.
Dogs are pack animals and feel happiest when they’re part of a group, but they easily form relationships with the humans living in the house. In fact, they consider their owner as the leader of the pack. Having two dogs in the house might even cause problems, because those two can start thinking they’re a group of their own, and make interaction with the humans more problematic.
Then they are a few practical points to consider. First is your first dog’s nature. If the animal is kind of dominating, the new dog should be of the submissive kind. When you go and buy that puppy for your kid, do a test. If the puppy you like lets you take it into your arms, just like a baby, it’s a sign that it is willing to be submissive. What can cause problems is, when your dog is submissive, the new one can try to dominate it and make its life miserable. Two dogs that are equal in character, will start fights. So choose carefully!
Another item to be considered is the dog’s size. When having a Yorkshire Terrier or Pincher already, don’t pick a dog that is twice its size! A big puppy may unwillingly hurt your smaller dog. If you have a Saint Bernard, it could be possible to add a small dog. More than one big dog has become the protector of a tiny lap dog!
Two female dogs in the house might also cause problems. You need to have at least one of them altered, unless you want to have new puppy’s all the time!
If you already have an older dog, please think twice. An older dog is settled in its habits, will have aches and pains and won’t be very patient with a small puppy that wants to play all the time.
Finally, some breeds of dogs will be less wanting to share your attention with another puppy. Breeds like Yorkshire Terrier and Pinscher often are spoiled and could be jealous of another dog. Pill Bulls and Rottweilers could have trouble with aggression.
So think twice before acting!