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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I've been getting the itch to get a 2nd lab. Partly for Ender, partly for me. It'd be a rescue, preferably a 2 or 3 year old (Ender is 3 and a half now). Several people on my block have two dogs (the new neighbor has THREE poodles in her basement 1 bedroom apartment).

I got the go ahead from my roommate last night who was initially against the idea, but said it'd be fine as long as he doesn't have to put any more effort into taking care of the new one beyond what he does with Ender, which is barely anything anyway.

I'm not traveling nearly as much anymore, and have several close friends in the area who can take in or watch the pups on the now-rare occasions that I'm away. There's a great dog park about 10 minutes from my house that Ender goes to all the time. I can handle it financially, but I'm just curious what any pitfalls or unforeseen issues or scenarios one my run into in having 2 labradors in a house in the city. Thoughts?
 

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Hey Eric!
I dunno. If it were me in your situation - roommate, 1 dog already, living in the city - I don't think I would. Two dogs can be tough! Would you be able to give them both enough time and attention? Would you have enough time to walk both of them?

But then again, you're talking about a rescue..... :)
 

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I just looked into getting a second dog and decided no for financial reasons (I coudl afford the basics and vetting but could not afford the number of classes I wanted to do for both the new pup and my current dog).

ALot will depend on the extent of the training of the dog you get. Even a rescue that has basics down will benefit from at least one obedience class and some one on one time for at least the first little while so make sure you have some time for that (meaning it wont' always be two for one - two dogs will mean more of your time). This is key to bonding. But then again, some rescue dogs have very little training and will require even more time to train, especially for walking.

Walking Rocky alone is great, he walks well. But with two even just a small tug on the leash to smell the flowers becomes a problem. So there is a learning curve for you and Ender to learn to include a second dog in the walk. You may have to take the new dog alone for abit to teach them to heel then work with the two of them. Oh then balance two dogs and two poop bags LOL! It's a special talent ;)

If things go well the two may play alot in the house so yoru roomate needs to be ok with that to a certain extend.

Potentially having two crates (or if Ender is no longer crated, the new one might so one crate).

For me it is easy to bring Rocky everwhere (Stores, car rides, family's house, friend's house) but with two dogs it is abit harder to bring them everywhere (take more room, harder to watch two dogs even if they are well behaved...)

Could you try fostering once to get an idea of how it will be with two dogs?
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Well I'd hope I could walk both of them at the same time and take both to the park. It's a looooooong shot that I'd actually get another one, I just want to make sure I'm asking all the right questions, thinking through all the scenarios, and making sure I have all my bases covered before I start looking and filling out applications. I might short-term foster one I'd potentially adopt in the near future and see how the dynamic is as well. And I'd be looking at 3-5 year olds, no way would I consider a puppy or a younger adolescent. Ender's temperment is as mellow as can be when he's in the house...very much a city dog and very relaxed.
 

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Walking two will be harder at first and depend if the second has had any on leash experience. At first you will likely have to spend more time walking the new one seperately.

You should factor in at least a little time to spend with them individually, especially for the first year. You don't want the new addition to bond more with Ender than with you. Be it for an obedience class once a week or whatnot. They need to be ok when seperated.

Most of the time you can do things with both (the day to day stuff) but at least once a week do spend time with them seperately (extra walk with one then the other, special car trip with one...etc)
 

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I can walk both at once but ONLY because tuck is good on a lead because koda pulls my arm off.

The trick is to get the right dog, Eric.. right now i'm dealing with jealousy and some guarding issues.. both are jealous of the other one getting attention, but play really well together. My situation is a bit different since koda's had two surgeries and crated for so long i'm not sure how well they'll bond since they'e not been given the chance, really.

But you'll have to work out things like will Ender get pissy if the new dog hogs the couch or bed.. will one start being protective over you or their food? How much more of a pain will it be to clean up twice the poop? They don't always have the same bladder schedule...

When i got koda there was a lot of "omg, you'll love having two dogs!"

I'm not sure i did at first.. it was rough.. but once we all got into a routine, i love having two.. both have different personalities, both make my lol and i'm hoping they'll find a good friendship in each other.

It takes time though.. and sometimes, a lot of work.
 

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Do you live in an appartment and with a roomate? I wouldn´t get the second dog in this case. It would have to be a very carefully chosen dog to match the temperament of Ender, as well as energy level.

If you had a place with a yard and no roomate, I´d say go for it, but in this circumstance I even think one big dog is actually a stretch
 

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Two dogs is much harder than one dog. There are so many little ways that you don't even think of - last night trying to get out of the house in a hurry but Otis wouldn't go pee, Kacey already had. Went to put Otis on leash to go out (surefire way to get him to pee). Kacey got so excited thinking we were going somewhere. It is so freaking hard to leash up one dog and get it out of the house and leave the other one behind - she was jumping all over me, slipping out the door... Kacey's a little nutty though so maybe it's just her.

Also, it was always easy to find someone to watch Otis for us when we went somewhere. Much harder to find someone who can/wants to watch two.

That said, I'll probably never go back to just one, but it is tough.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
No, I have a pretty large house as far as rowhouses in DC go, with a roommate who is almost never home, as well as a small front yard, and a big running area in the back where a lot of the neighbor dogs play. But I would definitely have to find a rescue with a mellow temperament if I decide to go through with it.
 

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Cost - I just spent $3600 on surgery for Sky 2 summers ago and just spent $5000 on Moose between his elbow surgery, having a fatty tumor removed and our latest incident I just posted about. I love them both so much - but it is something that should really be considered. If we go away it is boarding costs x 2, if we hop in the car it is with 2. It sometimes makes it harder to be spontaneous. Just be sure you really are prepared for the responsiblity of 2 dogs and if you are living with someone else in a place you don't own I wouldn't even consider it. My opinion of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Ender is insured and it covered $5000 on him in the last year for a triple lumpectomy and tooth removal, among other odds and ends. A second dog would be insured as well. But the vet costs are paid by me up front, so I understand the cost hurdle.
 

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Oh that changes the perception then. Then here´s my list of pro´s and cons of having 2:

Pros:
1. assuming your dog enjoys the company of other dogs, they keep each other company while you are out. Mine really LOVE each other, and seeing them play, cuddle and interact is a blast.
2. You get twice the love!

Cons.
1. Twice vet bills, poop, hair, feeding expense, etc
2. If they don´t get along fine you risk fights, jealousy, possesivenes, etc

I exercise mine together, Homer went to doggie school as a pup and Misha has always been good on the leash, so that´s no problem for me.

I have never regretted getting the second dog, even though it is a lot of additional work.
 

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Oh that changes the perception then. Then here´s my list of pro´s and cons of having 2:

Pros:
1. assuming your dog enjoys the company of other dogs, they keep each other company while you are out. Mine really LOVE each other, and seeing them play, cuddle and interact is a blast.
This has got me thinking. Ender is a pretty solitary dog. We go to the dog park, and as far as he's concerned, the only things that are of interest are me, the ball, and the water bowls. There's a pup next door about his size that is always trying to love on him and get his attention, but he completely ignores her. Same on walks, he doesn't go up to other dogs, he's focused on the end zone. He doesn't engage with other dogs, but I don't know if that's just that they aren't interesting to him, or if it's just his normal demeanor.

Which begs the question, is there a point to getting a second dog if he's not going to engage with it. I'd be doing it partially for him, give him someone to play with and hang out with during the day. Maybe his attitude answers my question. Like I said, it's a loooong shot I'd actually get another one, but the option is there now.
 

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Eric, my two don't play together. They'll sometimes lay near enough to each other that they're touching but that's about as much interaction as the two of them have. But that could be because Otis was already quite old when we got Kacey.

I sometimes worry that Otis would rather it still be just him, but there's no way to know how things will really be when you bring the second dog home.
 

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Whoever mentioned lack of spontaneity is dead right. You wouldn't believe the wheedling and cajoling and trickery I go through ANY TIME I want to just pop out for an hour or so on the weekends! It takes practiced skullduggery to create a window of opportunity to get out the door.

As for all the rest of it I wouldn't reduce my herd by one single animal. :)
 

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This has got me thinking. Ender is a pretty solitary dog. We go to the dog park, and as far as he's concerned, the only things that are of interest are me, the ball, and the water bowls. There's a pup next door about his size that is always trying to love on him and get his attention, but he completely ignores her. Same on walks, he doesn't go up to other dogs, he's focused on the end zone. He doesn't engage with other dogs, but I don't know if that's just that they aren't interesting to him, or if it's just his normal demeanor.

Which begs the question, is there a point to getting a second dog if he's not going to engage with it. I'd be doing it partially for him, give him someone to play with and hang out with during the day. Maybe his attitude answers my question. Like I said, it's a loooong shot I'd actually get another one, but the option is there now.
When Hershey Kisses and I go to the dog park, she concentrates on THE BALL and me. Did I mention THE BALL? The only attention she pays to other dogs is avoiding them on her way to THE BALL. I have started leaving THE BALL in the car every 3rd visit.

Guess what. NO BALL!

Okay, I will go play with those dogs over there.
 

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That would be my definite consideration actually. Some dogs like being only kids and are happy with their humans only. Based on what you mention I´d probably wouldn´t get the second dog.

Oh and following on Sharon´s post. Homer also went through ED surgery, and now he can´t run anymore (he wants to, but I can´t let him) which has affected poor Misha because we can´t play fetch anymore or run together in the mornings, now it´s just walks...
 
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