Questions about getting a second puppy

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狼の心- (Ookami no- Kokoro)

Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 4:27pm PST 
My fiance and I got our Alaskan Klee Kai, Kokoro at the end of June. He's 10 months old now. He surprised us by being very mature for a puppy. We didn't go through the chewing/teething stage, potty training was easy, and he's almost through basic obedience now.

We're considering getting a second puppy to be a playmate for Kokoro. We were going to wait until December when Kokoro turns a year old, but we found a puppy that we both fell in love with and want to adopt. But, since I've never had more than one dog at a time, I have some concerns.

Is 10 months old too young to start considering a second puppy? As I said, Kokoro is very mature and doesn't act like a puppy. The one we're considering is 4 months old. We didn't get two puppies when we adopted Kokoro because I read that they can become more attached to each other than their owners. Is this still a concern at 10 months? Kokoro is very attached to us so I doubt he would replace us with a puppy. But, how do I avoid the puppy getting overly attached to Kokoro? I guess, I take them on separate walks, separate training...any other suggestions?

Kokoro is male and the new puppy is male. I've been doing some research and it sounds like two males can get along in the same house as long as their personalities don't conflict. Is this what other owners have experienced? Kokoro is dominant but not aggressive and actually avoids confrontation with other dominant dogs. It doesn't seem like he has a preference over male or female dogs. He seems to play with everyone and treats them equally. (Unfortunately, the puppy we're considering is out of state so having Kokoro and him meet in person before adoption is impossible.)

Another concern I have is that Kokoro is settled in and has a schedule. I know bringing a puppy in will disrupt this. For people who have adopted a second dog, how long does the chaos last? I know that it will be different for everyone but I'd like to hear some experiences.

I feel like I had other questions but I can't remember them at the moment. I guess what I'm really looking for is advice from owners who have added a second puppy before their first was a year old...and from owners with two male dogs in the same household. Thanks!
Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 4:44pm PST 
As for his being a people dog vs a dog dog, I find that 10 months is a good age for adding the second dog. He will NOT change and it is likely the new pup will follow his lead and want to interact with you as well.
Two male pups is another issue, IMO. I am not sure about the Klee's breed traits when it comes to same sex aggression, so I can't speak for that.
I have extensive experience with GSD's, poodles, Frenchie's, and labs. My male labs would NEVER have an issue with another male lab, my male poodles rarely will have an issue with another male poodle, my Frenchie males NEVER got along with another Frenchie male, nor did my German Shepherds.
However, at 10 months your guy is really not sexually mature and issues such as SSA do not rear their ugly head until that happens, again, based on my experience. I can keep two Frenchie males together until they are 15 to 16 months old, then it all goes downhill from there.
However, if both dogs are neutered prior to sexual maturity and are raised together it is likely you won't have an issue. My poodles that don't get along ARE NOT neutered, I do have males that are neutered and are fine living together.
Hope this helps somewhat.
狼の心- (Ookami no- Kokoro)

Barked: Wed Oct 31, '12 5:10pm PST 
Thank you. Your comment does help. I should have mentioned that Kokoro is neutered and we do plan on getting the new puppy neutered as well. So, did your German Shepherd or Frenchie males get along if both were neutered? None of the breeders I spoke with seemed to have concerns about me inquiring about a second male, so I guess same sex aggression might not be an issue with AKKs.

One thing I didn't ask about in the first post: Kokoro is very attached to my fiance and me, but he is timid around people he doesn't know. Will the puppy pick up on this behavior? We're trying to get Kokoro used to strangers, but it's slow going. This is something common with the breed. I'm hoping getting a younger puppy (4 months vs. 6 months when we got Kokoro) will help with the socialization of the puppy. And I was hoping that maybe Kokoro would see the puppy walking up to people and learn it's not a bad thing.


"Stubborn" dogs- don't need- corrections
Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 3:19am PST 
I also have two males in the household, both of which have very different personalities.

There were scuttles initially (but keep in mind we were very inexperienced in dealing with this, and did not introduce them first) but eventually, those died down. Every once in a while, one will take offense to the other taking something of important value, but that's extremely rare, and neither dog is very physical if they can avoid it. As for breeds, Lobo is an Akita mix. The Akita is quite known for their same-sex aggression, from what I've read and heard from other Akita owners.

Basically, we just avoid areas we know will be touchy for the dogs. If we're in a stressful environment, we take Poppy out, so he doesn't have a chance to snap at anyone. If there are other dogs around, we bring Lobo away so he doesn't redirect. If there's food, it's picked up immediately and the humans break it up so that they can each have some(otherwise one - and it's different each time - will chase the other off). Feeding them both by hand has never been an issue, nor has tossing food aimlessly to the floor. The only *triggers* are if the food is in a bowl or a plate. I've even witnessed Poppy grabbing some meat less than a foot away from Lobo, and Lobo did nothing.

That's not to say that sometimes one doesn't annoy the other. As I said, we try hard to make sure that tension is very low in our family, and allowing the dogs their own personal time really helps a lot.

Also, walking them together AND separately. It's a lot of walking, but it helps solidify THEIR bond(walking together can be very bonding) as well as solidifying OUR bond.

Keep in mind, though, that some dogs might be good with other dogs who are visiting or something, but aren't good with LIVING with other dogs. And even if they are, there are good and bad things to owning two dogs. For one, the expenses. Lobo and Poppy are EXPENSIVE. From the monthly nail trims, to regular check ups, to emergencies. Not to mention quality food(don't forget, diet has been directly linked to behavior, so a healthy diet is imperative for mental stability; it works the same in humans, actually).

Umm, other than that, you need to watch out for bad habits. Lobo actually learned barking from Poppy(Poppy is the second dog) and Poppy follows Lobo around like a little shadow. Actually, Lobo is a well-mannered dog, so he managed to teach Poppy good things. Poppy had a jump-start on recall thanks to Lobo. He had a jump-start in basic training, just, really everything. Poppy also learned to dig thanks to Lobo(although, thankfully, neither dog digs underneath fences).

It is certainly possible for the other puppy to learn a timidness from Kokoro. It's also possible, however, that the puppy is extremely social and Kokoro learns that humans are okay. OR, nothing at all changes and neither learns anything from the other(although that I kind of doubt, lol). I mean, it could really go either way, honestly.
Dr. Watson

Not a wiener- dawg!
Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 6:36am PST 
I'm sorry if I misunderstood, but what breed is the new puppy going to be? Another AKK?

Woo-woo- whineybutt
Barked: Thu Nov 1, '12 7:17am PST 
Hi Kokoro.
Usually shyness / wariness of strangers is either from not enough socialization or is a genetic trait. Since you got him at the age of 6 months it might be the socialization. If you get your new pup at 4 months you will probably not have any problems (however I don't know much about AKKs).
I think the terms of the pup will follow Kokoro's lead is more like, in training. Like when you're teaching the pup to come when called, if you call Kokoro and the pup sees him get a treat, the pup is going to think "Man, I need to make sure I come when called so I don't miss out on treats!" He'll also (maybe) learn from watching Kokoro doing tricks / obedience or walking nicely on lead..

However I don't think it will effect his approach of other dogs / people, unless he is really timid.

Goodluck with your new potential pup!
Talah CGC

Suska's- Sanderling- Tailwind
Barked: Mon Nov 5, '12 4:06pm PST 
Got here just in time!

While I'm sure the other posters mean well, I'm going to have to disagree with some advice. Yes, some dogs might not change much after 10 months and shyness can be a training issue, but not with an AKK! Your AKK is just about to start an adolescent period, and just like with the larger spitz breeds, it can throw you for a loop. Some puppy behaviors will go away, but some new behaviors you might not like could crop up as well. What your dog acts like now is not an indication of the adult he will become. Also, shyness is a breed trait. They are not social butterflies. You can socialize the heck out of them and they still will likely be reserved with strangers at best, avoid them like the plague at the worst.

Case in point, Talah is a little over a year and has recently been going through a bit of a "frantic" phase in fun interesting places. She has also begun harshly correcting dogs in play. These behaviors have cropped up despite constant training and socialization (I am a trainer and she goes to work with me and daycare on a regular basis). I do think being around our adult dog helped her be more outgoing, but that was also begun when she was 12 weeks old. Since your dog is older, I doubt a puppy would be as likely to help him be less wary.

I would honestly wait until your boy is at least 18 months, when his adult personality has more set in. Don't assume he's an adult now. Most AKK are smart and people pleasers, so it's not uncommon for them to seem older than they are.
Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
Barked: Mon Nov 5, '12 6:18pm PST 
I have a different take. Nothing about the existing dog, though.

Sorry to be be dismal, but I usually space my dogs' ages so that I don't have to deal with two dogs dying to close together, as that's pretty difficult emotionally.

I made the exception once and brought in a GSD puppy when my Giant Schnauzer was a teenager...perhaps fourteen months old. It changed not an iota with the Giant, which I frankly wouldn't have expected it to, but given that the new puppy was a GSD, I had a rather laborious time establishing a good handler bond with him. He basically had to get to the middle of his teen stage, around sixteen months or so, before we really connected. Which for that breed is bizarre.

This has never happened when the existing dogs are adults. Giants mature pretty slowly, so my Onion was pretty puppy-like still when I brought the GSD into the mix. I think that had a lot to do with the GSD following him around in fascination. They were close enough in age to have been on the same wave length.

I basically had to wait for the GSD to outgrow the Schnauzer. Which did happen. Nothing awful, they remained the best of friends for many years, but for the first year and a half the GSD was a lot more attuned to his fun playmate and brother dog. Didn't matter if I had the juiciest treat or funnest ball in the world, if it was a choice of honing on me or going off to play with his Giant dogmate, that's the way he'd go. I had to separate them to get any sort of devoted attention, and then he was great. But when you are training a puppy in the home, which of course there was a lot of with manners training, etc., it was enough to really get under my skin. I really had to wait a year and a half for us to start enjoying each other. Then it was great, all was well.

Once bitten twice shy, I doubt I'd ever get a puppy again if the existing adult was less than two.

I think it depends on what you expect from your dog. I love training mine and have that very distinct, individual handler bond with them. Now if your dream was to have the two be a peas-in-a-pod pair, that's a different story altogether.

But I could definitely see why I had the problems I did. I just had to go through it for myself for it to dawn on me.