A few months ago we adopted a lovely rescue dog who is now about a year old. He is VERY friendly - to other dogs and all people. He often whines when we see others and will go up on his hind legs in excitement, and is always tail-wagging eager to greet humans and other dogs. He loves the dog park and plays hard (lots of running and wrestling).
We're thinking about getting another dog, to add to our family and to provide a live-in friend for our very friendly dog. The only things holding us back are that we don't have a fenced yard (we do a lot of walking), and we haven't entirely figured out how to make a suitable safe space for two dogs to be left alone in the house (ie barricading an area, rather than crating). DH worries about the increased complications of having two dogs, and to some extent about the increased costs (we can afford it, but it's more obligation).
So, what's the good, the bad and the ugly of having two dogs rather than one?
Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.
well, I have never had just one dog so I might not be the right person to ask!
I think having a couple of dogs is great, if that is something you feel is a good match for your family. I would just suggest you wait until your current dog is out of the puppy stage, maybe at age 2-3? That spacing worked well for us.
Proud mom of three! Special needs teen princess , 7 year old happy girl , and my flower toddler
We have two huge slobbering dogs <3 A German Shepherd and Bernese Mountain dog mix
We got the Bernese mix first and added our second when he was a year old (Shepherd was a puppy..) they are both males and love each other dearly. My first dog is dominant and my second is very, very submissive so he's always licking Bailey (Bernese's) face and trying to get him to play..and play they do! It's nice because it takes some of the pressure off me : ) They go in the yard (or dog park, or regular park) and romp and run together, it's nice. They are like brothers, I want a third dog!
Space isn't an issue, IMO big dogs are way more lazy and after a good romp they are happy to be near us and nap.
Dogs are naturally pack animals - and we've always had two dogs. We got our current two from the same litter (sisters), but, have added another dog before. Within a week, they were getting along, and after a short while, they were "family". I really feel great about having two dogs - when we're gone they have each other for company, they play together, sleep together, etc.
The only downside is the increased cost, IMO.
Our dogs like their crates - we leave the doors open and they choose to sleep in the crates most nights, but, we also have a gated area in our entryway/hall with a dog door to the back yard - this set up has been a lifesaver. The dogs can self regulate when to go out, yet have access to shelter and heat/air. In your situation, I would seriously consider investing in a fence and a dog door - makes life alot easier!
We started with 1 dog and then added one at a time till we have 5. The biggest downside to adding another dog is COST, HAIR, and POOP! Besides that if you have a well adjusted dog there are no other downsides!! Our first dog was so happy when we got our second, she was a ball of energy and now could play in the house with him! We didn't have a yard at that time, so we went to the dog park a lot.
When we moved we didn't put up a fence untill we got our third dog. We trained our two dogs the boundaries of the yard and stayed out with them whenever they were off leash. We would walk them up the boundary and when they hit the edge give them a very small leash correction (not harsh at all, just enough to say STOP). They both got it figured out pretty quick. Adding the fence has been awesome though. It keeps other animals from coming in too (my dogs have killed a few groundhogs... ) and the fence helped stop that.
We adopted a female dog from the shetler in January, our first dog a male mini schanuzer will be turning 3 in July. The shelter estimated the new dogs as being around 24months in Dec when they spayed her, we are using her adoptiong day as her birthday. Our schnauzer isnt as lazy and loves playing with her. The new dog is a terrier mix in my avatar she is so mellow. We have a big backyard for them to run around in.
Harlan (11/4/2011)http://www.desertreadingloft.com--Independent Usborne Books Consultant