Does My Dog Need a Sibling?

Monday, August 23, 2021 14:33:24 PM America/Los_Angeles

Who can blame anyone for wanting two fur babies? If one pup is adorable, the thought of having two may seem simply irresistible. Having a canine sibling can be a positive experience for everyone, but there are some factors to take into consideration before adopting a furry friend for your dog. 

Photo by Alvan Nee

Is It a Good Idea to Adopt a Sibling for My Dog?

Dogs are naturally social creatures, and having a canine companion can be an enriching experience for your fur baby. Companionship can help prevent boredom, separation anxiety, and loneliness. The idea of adopting a furry friend for your dog is worth entertaining if they’re an “only child” and you already know that they love being around other pups.

One caveat: If you’re thinking of adopting littermates, it’s a decision that shouldn’t be made lightly. Adopting littermates can feel like the right thing to do because it keeps siblings together. However, treating two dogs as a set can lead to “littermate syndrome,” which includes behavioral responses such as intense separation anxiety and even aggressive behaviors towards humans or any other dogs who try to disrupt their bonding. An alternative is to adopt two dogs/puppies at separate times. This will help each dog to socialize properly as well as lessen the burden and chaos of having to train two pups at once.

Tips for Adopting A Furry Sibling

Raising two or more happy, healthy dogs requires that each be treated as individuals. If you’re thinking of adopting a new furry family member, make sure to provide each dog their own stuff to encourage their development as individuals. 

  • Each dog should have their own bowls to encourage healthy eating habits and to limit any territorial behavior. 
  • A separate bed and/or crate should be provided for each dog so that they can have their own space when desired. 
  • There should be the same number of pee pads as there are dogs. If a pet potty like Bark Potty is used, it’s important to either have one for each pup or have one big enough to accommodate both dogs. 
  • Similarly, things like potty training and crate training should occur separately. 

Having multiple dogs in the household can be double the work, but it can also be a rewarding experience for both you and your dogs as long as they have been socialized properly and treated as individual dogs with distinct personalities and preferences!