By Jemma Norton // October 2018
Here at Dog School Devon, we're seeing an increasing number of enthusiastic owners taking on two puppies at a time! Whilst it can be tempting to get your puppy a little friend, there are some important things to consider:
Double puppies mean double training!
Puppies need to learn all sorts of valuable skills from an early age – with two on the go, that’s a big commitment! It’s important to give each of our puppies plenty of one-on-one training time, too.
Double the vet bills!
Even if we have puppies who aren’t particularly accident prone, they’ll each still need regular vaccinations, flea & worming treatments and maybe grooming, too. The bills can stack up quickly and depending on the breed, the food bill might be equally weighty!
Strength in numbers!
Two bouncy Labrador puppies are adorable, but two fully-grown bouncy adults will be strong on the lead and can be quite a handful. Keeping up with their escapades could become quite the challenge.
With any new puppy, we recommend teaching them lots of skills as early as possible. Important topics to cover include housetraining, loose-lead walking, recall and socialising with people, dogs and new environments to ensure they grow up to be confident, well-rounded adults!
So, where do you start with TWO puppies?
Start doing things separately!
It’s a great idea to take your puppies to training classes, where they can learn in a professional, controlled environment. Consider taking them to individual classes or attending the class with a friend or family member, so you can have one puppy each. Dog School run training classes specifically for puppies! Enquire here for more information.
Take them for little walks separately. This means the pups are used to being without each other, as that’s something that can be challenging if they aren’t used to it early on.
Feeding your puppies separately means they each have plenty of time to eat and won’t get worried about having one another near their bowl. Dogs love dinnertime! It’s better they get to enjoy their delicious meal all by themselves, without any concerns about having their siblings pinch that last bit.
Pups may need to be separated for many reasons, including medical procedures or holidays, so it’s worth getting them used to it slowly. It means you can practice your training with one at a time, rather than trying to train two at once!
Make sure whichever pup stays home has plenty of things to keep them entertained and build up the time gradually.
4. Have lots of breaks in play
Oftentimes, puppies from the same litter can play and play… and play! Whilst it can be cute to watch, they may get a little “over the top” or demonstrate high energy play.
Make sure they get time out from playing with each other, to help them practice polite play.
Take your puppies to meet a range of dogs with good social skills to help them become familiar with different styles of play and interaction!
5. Get support!
Especially in single-carer households, having support with your young dogs is essential. Whether this is a dog walker/sitter to help you practice separate exercise and/or training sessions or a trainer/behaviourist that can make a training plan with you, having the right support from the start can help prevent problem behaviours and take a load off you, too!
Remember: If you need advice or support, we are always happy to take your call.
Why not look into our Dog School puppy classes? We help get your puppy (or puppies!) off on the right paw!