The ideal family is one where there is harmony between all the members and canine family members are no exception. There are many benefits to having a multidog household, but choosing the right breeds is the first step to ensuring success. If you’re considering getting a second dog or wondering if you should start with two, this guide is for you.
We’ll consider the benefits of a multidog family, look at the best methods for adding dogs to the family, and give a list of the best dog breeds for other dogs.
Should You Get a Second Dog?
There are many reasons why you might consider adopting more than one dog. You could be looking to benefit your dog, or you might be hoping to train a new dog as a therapy dog.
Benefits of a Multidog Household
Dogs are naturally social animals designed to live in family groups, for the most part. Some dogs are content with the company of one human owner or a small human family, but others have higher social needs. Some breeds are more independent, but others can’t be left alone for long.
If you have a busy schedule and find yourself away from home for many hours of the day, your dog may feel lonely. They may be exhibiting separation anxiety, such as destroying furniture, toileting indoors, acting anxious when you prepare to leave, or being overly excited when you return.
If changing your routine is not an option, you should consider having a dog walker check in on them during the day. Getting them a dog companion may also be beneficial and help reduce separation anxiety.
When Should You Get a Second Dog?
While there is no exact timeline for adding dogs to your family, there are some guidelines you may want to follow. You should avoid getting two new dogs at once– particularly puppies.
A new dog should be introduced to the household after the first dog is trained and your routines are firmly established. This makes it much easier to train the new dog and helps them find their place in the household dynamic.
Some of the Best Dog Breeds for Other Dogs
Here are some of the best breeds for getting along with other dogs, organized by size category.
Best Large Dog Breeds for Other Dogs
Sometimes, the biggest dogs have the sweetest temperaments. If you have the space for a larger dog, you might consider one of these breeds.
Saint Bernards are gentle giants that are often referred to as a ‘nanny dogs’ due to their patience and loyalty. Their calm, easy-going personality also makes them get along well with other dogs. They are a great addition to a family, particularly one with children or other dogs.
This Canadian working dog is a major cuddle bug. They love to be around people and other friendly dogs and shouldn’t be left all alone for extended periods, making them ideal for a multidog household. Their gentle demeanor helps them get along with most pets and people.
There’s a reason why this is the most popular breed in America. Labrador retrievers are affectionate and easy-going, happy to get along with everyone, human and animal. These dogs are active and sporty. They are also very curious, so be ready to keep their bodies and minds occupied.
Best Medium Dog Breeds for Other Dogs
There are several medium-sized dog breeds that are great companions to other dogs.
These energetic herding dogs do require a lot of physical and mental stimulation, but overall, they are even-tempered. They will make a good companion for other dogs that need a lot of play.
Cocker spaniels are a friendly, playful dog breed that makes a great family dog. This includes families with multiple dogs. They do have a strong prey drive, so be sure to train them carefully and monitor them when they are introduced to small animals for the first time.
Poodles have brains as well as beauty, and they are popular family dogs. Poodles get along well with other dogs but do best with dogs that have similar traits. Choose a dog breed with a similar energy level and intelligence to your poodle for the best companionship.
Best Small Dog Breeds for Other Dogs
Small dogs can have a big impact on your family and be the perfect companion for your dogs.
Corgis may have small legs, but they’re big on personality. This charming dog can be a bit sassy and stubborn, but they can happily be companions to other corgis and other breeds as well. They actually enjoy being part of a pack and have an easy-going demeanor.
Kind and sociable, beagles love to meet new people and are tolerant of other dogs. Their active nature can help bring more timid dogs out of their shell and bring a lot of joy to any home or family.
A cute ball of white fluff, the Maltese dog breed is affectionate and well-behaved. They’ll get along well with most other dogs, but they do like some alone time and aren’t as high-energy as some of the other breeds on our list.
Enjoy a Multidog Home
As you can see, there are many benefits to having more than one dog, and there are many different dog breeds to choose from when considering adding another dog to your family. What’s most important is that you take the time to train and establish routines with your first dog before adding another.
Remember, each individual dog will have their own quirks and personalities. However, this guide will help you narrow down what breeds to look for when determining the perfect second dog for your family.