There’s a saying “first you get a dog for yourself and then you get a dog for your dog”, we have to somewhat agree with it. But it is not as simple as that. Getting a dog, especially a second dog is a big decision. In this article, we hope to share our thought process regarding why we decided to get a second dog and how we chose our breeder. If you are considering a second dog we hope this will help you with the decision making process. And if you are considering getting your first dog and hoping to get a Cavoodle read our blog post on why we got a cavoodle.
Are we ready for a second dog?
As soon as our first dog Ollie grew out of the puppy stage I started having puppy fever! The time as a puppy flies so fast. I feel like I spent most of that time worrying rather than enjoying his puppy days. I wanted to experience the puppy days all over again as soon as possible. But I needed to consider whether it is the best decision for our family.
Are we ready?
The second dog comes with loads more needs and responsibilities so we had to make sure that we are prepared for it. First of all just like with Ollie, it took a long time to convince my partner that the second dog is a good idea. A lot had to come into place for him to finally say yes. When we had Ollie we lived in an apartment, a year later we moved into our own home. Which meant more space to have a second dog.
Puppies also don’t come cheap, they also need a lot of time and attention. So we needed to make sure it is the right time to have a puppy. We were just figuring things out as we went with Ollie, Ollie was my partner’s first dog and our first experience with raising a dog in Australia. We were anxious about doing the right thing it took us a long time to feel confident with what we are doing. While there are many unknowns, now we both feel we know how to take good care of a dog like Ollie now. So this is as ready as we will ever feel.
Is Ollie ready?
It is vital to know your first dog before getting a new puppy. After all, they need to live in the same household without tearing the house down or harming each other physically or emotionally. Ollie is the most gentle dog, he has never been aggressive towards another dog or exhibited any alarming territorial behaviours. Ollie was never food driven, so naturally, he’s not food aggressive.
We had many instances of Ollie’s friends staying with us at our home or going on trips. So Ollie got to be with other dogs for more than just a playdate. Which helped us observe his behaviour around other dogs. Especially when having them in his space. Most of all we noticed how lonely he was when he was alone at home, my partner works from home full time and during COVID I worked from home a lot too, but that didn’t mean we could play with Ollie whenever he wants to. We could see how having another dog would mean much-needed companionship for Ollie.
What finally convinced us
Last year just around the time I was talking to my partner about getting another dog we got the opportunity to take care of Ollie’s best friend, a female cavoodle called Winnie. He loved having Winnie at home, they were two peas on a pod. He shared everything with her, he loved having someone to play with him throughout the day. Just seeing them together was all the convincing we ever needed.
What kind of dog are we ready for?
In our previous blog post, we discussed why a cavoodle is the best choice for us. More specifically Ollie is an F1b cavoodle also known as a second-generation cavoodle. This just means they have more poodle in them leading to curlier hair and other qualities just like Ollie. Having Ollie for over two years convinced us that cavoodles are the best dogs (ok we are biased). They are intelligent, affectionate, do not shed everywhere, and poodle mixes can contain hypoallergenic properties that are helpful for asthmatic people (my partner is one). But most of all Ollie gets along with cavoodles better. So naturally, we wanted a dog just like Ollie.
But this time we decided to go with a female cavoodle. Ollie doesn’t usually hump but the handful of dogs that he has humped so far has been male. We have observed Ollie’s behaviour with female dogs and it has always been positive.
There’s a myth that male dogs like female humans and female dogs like male humans, I have to somewhat agree with this. Ollie is like velcro to me, he has always been momma’s boy no matter what. When we had Ollie’s friend Winnie at ours she always gravitated towards my partner. While there’s not enough scientific basis for this theory I’m hoping having a girl will add a nice balance to our family dynamics. But we are also aware that female dog comes with differences such as the way they pee, their menstrual fluids before desexing, and avoiding unwanted interactions before desexing. While they aren’t in any way disadvantages knowing them helps to prepare well.
Large breeder or a small breeder?
Once we made our decision to get a dog we knew it was going to be a long wait to get the right dog. So just like with Ollie I signed up for waiting lists. Our choices for breeders came down to two in the end. Ollie’s breeder, who is a reputed large scale breeder, and a home breeder who is one of our good friends and decided to have their first puppy litter with her female cavoodle we have known since she was 8 weeks old.
Our experience with a large breeder
With Ollie’s breeder once we get on to their priority list we get a position in the list, the longer we are on the list higher our position is and get more choices on the puppy. As they are a larger breeder they have puppies available more often. We get to see photos of the pups at 6 weeks and get to select our pup of choice and pick the puppy up at 8 weeks. They offer a 5-year health warranty on genetic issues, training sessions with a reputed trainer, and a puppy pack which was important to us at the time as first-time dog owners who didn’t know much about dog breeding in Australia. However, we don’t get to experience puppies growing up and we don’t get to know the siblings. Ollie had 5 siblings and we still don’t know where they are. So this time around we needed a different experience.
Our experience with a Small breeder
We decided to get our second puppy from our friend, Jo who is a home breeder. You can find them on Instagram. We knew the mum (Rosie) for close to 2 years, we knew her sweet nature, her behaviour, and what a perfect mother she will be. I got updates about her progress with pregnancy all the time. Jo was generous with her time and allowed me to visit the puppies every other week since the day they were born. It was the most magical experience. I got to photograph their journey and select a puppy that I fell in love with, who has a personality that will perfectly suit our family and will specifically complement Ollie. Also, we get to see all the siblings growing up together. Hopefully, they can have playdates and celebrate their birthdays together too.
We were lucky that we got a friend who decided to have puppies around the same time we needed a puppy. If you are getting a puppy from a home breeder that you found online please be wary of puppy scams. Make sure that you meet the parents and they are DNA checked, get the relevant documentation, and confirm that they are registered breeders and not backyard breeders.
I hope this will help you to decide on whether to get a second puppy and how to go about it. In our subsequent blog posts, we hope to share how we introduce our new puppy to Ollie, the puppy checklist, and other important things every dog parent needs to know about raising a puppy. Stay tuned for the name reveal of our little girl too! In the meantime follow us on Instagram to keep up to date with our adventures in raising two cavoodles.
Woof Woof! X