Many people are hesitant to get a second dog because they are not sure if they are ready. This article explores the seven signs you might be prepared to welcome another pup into your household.
If you can relate to one or more of these, then maybe it’s time to stock up on some additional dog products and get ready for your future addition.
- You Have Enough Room
One of the main things you need to consider before getting a second dog is having enough room for them, both indoors and outdoors.
Dogs need exercise and room to play. If you don’t have enough space for them to run around in, they can become destructive.
So make sure you have an area where your new dog can exercise and play without disturbing your other dog or your neighbors.
- You Have Enough Time
Dogs also need plenty of attention. If you’re not able to spend enough time with them, they can become destructive or develop behavioral issues.
Remember, dogs love their owners. We are their entire world in most cases. If you struggle with finding the time to dedicate to your first pup, a second may be more than you can handle.
Additionally, you need to consider the breed and age of your first dog and the next one you’re getting.
You may end up taking separate walks or needing to hire a dog walker for extra rounds if you get a young puppy and already have an older dog.
- You Can Afford It
Think about how much it will cost to take care of two dogs. It’s possible that you may have to purchase a second dog crate, two dog beds, two different types of food bowls, and more leashes if you have multiple dogs.
You’ll need to keep extra dog grooming products on hand. If you have varying breeds and coat types, they may require entirely different brushes or shampoos.
If either or both dogs become sick or injured, the vet bills can add up quickly. You might not think much about vet visits when your dogs are young, but they can add up as the dogs get older, too.
- You Have Enough Time and Emotional Energy for Training
Training is essential for both new and old dogs. Still, it can take a lot of time and emotional energy to ensure it’s done correctly. In some cases, this may involve teaching yourself new methods as well.
That’s because older aversive-based methods are proving to be quite negative for companion dog welfare, and more recent, positive training methods are now the way to go.
If you’re unfamiliar with these newer methods, you’ll need to read up. If you’re not able to commit to training your second dog properly, they may end up continuing undesirable behaviors from the first dog or developing new ones.
Additionally, the dog you have may require training and effort to get along with their new sibling. Be ready for these kinds of variables!
- Your First Dog Is Patient and Friendly
If your first dog is not patient or friendly with other dogs, it may not be a good idea to get another one. Introducing a new dog into your household can be stressful for both dogs.
If your first dog doesn’t get along with others, things will be even more difficult. In this case, you’d be better off devoting the time and finances to helping your first dog overcome its social issues and helping them get along with other dogs. Then, you can consider adding another dog to your household in the future.
- You Can Handle the Stress
Adding a new dog to the household is fun and exciting, but it’s also stressful. If you’re in a period of life where you’re already feeling a lot of stress, adding another dog may not be a good idea. Dogs can add to the chaos. If you’re not ready for it, it can cause even more problems.
If you’ve recently had a baby, are going through a divorce, or are experiencing another significant life change like additional duties at work, wait until you’re feeling more stable before adding another dog to your family. Otherwise, you may find that the new dog ends up being more of a burden than you thought.
- You Have a Support System
If you’re getting a second dog, you need to have a sound support system in place. This involves asking friends and family if they can help with feedings and walks when you first bring the new pup home, to make the transition as seamless as possible.
It also means having a backup plan in case of emergencies. If you’re going to be out of town and can’t take your dog with you, who will take care of them?
Who will step in if something happens to you and you can’t care for your dog? Make sure you have a solid support system in place before adding another dog to your family.
Also, don’t assume that someone willing to care for your one dog will now happily care for two of them.
Last But Not Least …
Have you found a dog that you think would be a good fit for your family and home? Before rushing out to adopt or speak with breeders, take some time to honestly ask yourself if you’re ready for another dog.
Suppose you can answer yes to most of the items on this list. In that case, chances are good that adding another pup to your household will be a positive experience for everyone involved.
But, if you can’t honestly say yes to most of the items on this list or still have some doubt, then it might be wise to wait.
Remember that while adding another dog is fun and exciting, it does require a lot of work. And while all dogs deserve loving homes, having more than one is not for everyone. So don’t rush into something you’re not ready for.