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Re: Adopting a new, older mix and my JRT

Posted by:  Marie Evans
Posted on:  November 20, 2002 at 17:41:01

In Reply to: Adopting a new, older mix and my JRT
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Posted by:  Kate Mower
Posted on:  November 20, 2002 at 13:29:49

Question:

: Hello
: I've had my EJRT Rudy (he is neutered) for a year and a half now. He is very sweet and friendly and I'm thrilled to have him.

: However, for some time now I've been thinking he could benefit from having a friend in the household. I volunteer at my local SPCA and have been keeping my eye out for a good playmate and companion. I recently found an older, female dog that is extremely friendly, great temperament and loves dogs, cats and kids. She is spayed and is between 7 and 9 years of age but is still playful even though she is quite calm. I'm thinking that she might set a good example for him.

: I know that she will be a wonderful addtition to my life, but how accepting will Rudy be? Although he can be submissive with other dogs, he loves to play and I think this dog might fill a void that I cannot.

: I'm wondering if you have had any experience with a situation like this one? I know that every dog is an individual, but can you give me any insight?


Response:

Hi Kate,

So glad to hear that Rudy is such a good boy!

As far as getting a second dog, here is what I advise people:

Make sure to really examine why you want a second dog. Chances are if it's to have a play-mate for your other dog it might not be the best of reasons.

Many dogs prefer to be the "only" dog and adding another dog can lead to some tough times ahead. Chances are your first dog will feel it has to now vie for your attention. This can create some resentment towards the new family member.

Some dogs will never accept another dog in the house and either will always be at each other's throats or just won't become the new dog's best pal.

It's always better to want a second dog because YOU want one. This way it's easier to work through any problems and their won't be as many disappointments. If it's YOU that wants the dog you won't be nearly as devastated when (in this case) Rudy decides he really doesn't want any part of the newest addition.

Case in point, I have two JRTs. Had my first one for a couple of years before deciding on adding another one. Didn't do it so it would be a "playmate" for my first, did it because I am insane lol!

Anyway, the first week was a nightmare (not because of my first terrier, it was actually my rescue that was the aggressor), it got better after a couple of months.

Do they play together? Sometimes. They normally don't cuddle together because they are both busy trying to cuddle with me! They don't sleep together. When Brody was in the hospital for four days, did my other one pine and look for him? Not in your life! He was happy to have his "parents" to himself! LOL!

Also be prepared for each of them to learn each other's bad habits haha! They so seldom pick up each other's good ones ;)

If you still decide to add this other dog to your house, make sure that their temperaments compliment each other. Don't bring two alpha personalities together because you will more than likely have problems. There will be some normally jockeying for pack status anyway so you don't want things to get real ugly.

And make sure if you bring this dog home to make sure you spend LOTS of quality time with Rudy. He will be worried about his status and you will need to reassure him that he is still top dog in your heart. Those two will sort out top dog as far as pack order goes, once that's established you can treat each of them accordingly.

Good luck and I think it's great you want to adopt one of the more senior dogs, wish more people would.

Regards,
Marie

Other Breed FAQ, Getting a 2nd Dog FAQ