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Is one or two puppies better for our family?

Published on 24 May 2021

Two beige puppies lying on red bag chair.

We’re a family of four (kids aged 8 and 10). Is one or two pups better?

One or two dogs is a really tough decision. There’s no easy answer as it really depends on your exact situation, as well as the temperament of the pups.

Personally, I have one dog and would find looking after two almost impossible with my two young kids. However 8 and 10 is a different story. At this age, they can really engage in looking after your dogs, as well as understand what they mustn’t do.

A sure fire benefit of two dogs is that they have companionship all the time, even when you are away. For you, it also means more to love and double the puppy love back!

However, two puppies are also twice the work. Twice the toilet training, puppy training, feeding, medical costs, grooming costs, pet minding, backyard messes; it all adds up.

While having two means more company, it actually doesn’t eliminate the risk of boredom or anxiety either. There are many things you can do to ensure one or both are entertained while you’re away.

Having two doesn’t necessarily increase your exercise time, but it also doesn’t reduce it. One or two pups still need to be walked a minimum of once a day.

Two can be a great decision when you’re fully committed to spending the time and money needed for proper care and positive training. You’ll have two very happy, healthy dogs.

If you’re nervous about what’s involved, it might be best to start with one and see how the family goes. Even looking after one is time intensive initially (much like a newborn!). It definitely gets easier with time and safe socialisation is essential to help.

Whatever your working situation, there are obviously going to be times when they’re left alone. One of the most important things you can do is teach your pup/s to be confident and happy on their own.

Dr. Claire Jenkins VetChat founder & CEO

Dr. Claire Jenkins

VetChat founder & CEO, BVSc (Hons), MANZCVS (SAM)

Claire has spent the past 15 years caring for animals as a Small Animal Veterinarian in the UK, Melbourne and is now based in Sydney. She is passionate about early intervention and how easy access to the right advice drives better health outcomes for pets. Claire’s a life-long animal lover, passionate problem solver and adorer of her gorgeous Kelpie ‘Red’.

Dr. Claire Jenkins's Pets

  • RedRed

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