Dogs are some of the most important members of our family. They bring you untold amounts of joy, unconditional love, protection, entertainment, and more. Owning a dog is also a big responsibility.
For some families, the love and joy from one dog just isn’t enough. Getting a second dog is something almost all dog owners eventually discuss. And it’s not as easy as choosing your favorite, bringing them home, and everyone instantly being one big happy family.
At Rick’s Dog Deli, your dog’s health and happiness are our number one priority. That’s why we’ve provided some tips on getting a second dog, how to know when you’re ready, how to acclimate them to your home, and more.
How to Know If Getting a Second Dog Is the Right Move
Being a dog owner is not all fun and games. It’s a big responsibility you’re undertaking, both personally and financially, so it’s not a decision that should be made lightly.
Here are some questions you should ask yourself before getting a second dog.
How Does My Current Dog Get Along With Other Dogs?
If your current dog loves going to the dog park and playing with other dogs, they enjoy running into other dogs around your neighborhood, and they don’t go too crazy when other dogs pass by your door, that’s a good sign that they’ll react well to a new dog in their own house.
If you’re thinking of getting a puppy as your second dog, be sure to consider all the extra energy and needs puppies have compared to adult dogs. While your adult dog may be perfectly fine with a similarly aged dog, a puppy could be a different story.
Getting a second dog of the same or similar breed and size is usually a good step to ensure compatibility.
Does My Dog Share Well?
Your dog may play well with other dogs in the park, but do they get possessive over their toys and food in the house?
If your dog gets aggressive when someone—human or canine—gets too close to their toys or food bowl, that behavior must be addressed before getting a second dog.
How Much Would Getting a Second Dog Cost?
With a second dog, you’ll be doubling not just your dog food and treat purchases but your vet bills as well. When you travel, boarding your dogs or getting a dog sitter will cost more too. You’ll need a new leash, new dog toys, and more.
Make sure these are expenditures you can afford to take on.
Do I Have Time to Dedicate to a Second Dog?
Whether it’s just you or your family or roommates, a second dog will need just as much love and attention as your current dog. It’s important to consider whether you and your household truly have the time to dedicate to raising, training, and caring for a second dog.
This is also especially important if you’re considering getting a puppy, as raising a puppy will take a lot more time and energy.
You might have other questions that come to mind about getting a second dog, such as whether your house is big enough to accommodate or if your apartment charges an additional fee. Whatever questions are facing you, it’s important to consider every detail and not rush into getting a second dog.
Getting a Second Dog to Settle Into Your Home
Once you’ve decided to get a second dog, it’s not as easy as just bringing them to their new home. Just like when you brought your first dog home, there is an adjustment period.
And this time, two dogs are going through the transition.
A helpful thing to do is to introduce the two dogs in a relaxed and neutral environment, so neither one feels territorial and make sure these early meetings are supervised.
Once you’ve decided your two dogs are comfortable with each other enough to bring your second dog home, make sure they each feel special. They should have separate food and water bowls, toys, beds, and more.
Be sure you’re still spending as much quality time with your first dog and giving them treats for good behavior.
The worst thing you can do when getting a second dog is to neglect your first one. That will lead to resentment.
How to Adjust to Your Second Dog
Getting your first dog to adjust to a new dog is one challenge. Another adjustment is getting yourself to adapt to the new dog in your house.
When the new dog first comes home, you’ll need to adjust your schedule to dedicate a bit more time to both dogs. You’ll also need to supervise your dogs more heavily in these early stages, and you’ll need to adapt to both animals’ new sleeping and eating habits.
The main thing to remember is not to compare your dogs to one another. Your second dog won’t be exactly like your first, and that’s OK.
What’s most important is that you recognize that you and your family will need to be flexible during these early months. The more flexible you are, the quicker your new dog will settle into your family.
Feed Your Dogs the Best With Rick’s Dog Deli
Every dog owner wants the very best for their fur babies, and that starts with proper nutrition. At Rick’s Dog Deli, we believe what you feed your dog is the most important thing in them having long, healthy, and happy lives.
We use only the freshest, highest quality ingredients in our dog food. We have meals for breeds of all sizes and therapeutic meals designed for dogs with specific health needs. And if your dog needs a unique blend, we’ll create custom meals just for them.
Contact us today to learn more about our signature meals and custom dog food.