What is it like living with two Dachshunds?

This is a question I asked many times to other owners with double dachshunds and I generally got the same answer

“Just do it! You won’t regret it!”

Although they were right, there is more to this answer as far as I’m concerned.

The most common reason why people decide to get a second Dachshund is to cure separation anxiety and unfortunately, this does not cure it.

This was in some ways the reason why we decided to get a second Dachshund.

We actually struggled to leave Choco alone, he wouldn’t destroy our home, he would only bark and howl a little and he would just sit by our front door waiting for us to come home. We left him Kong’s, Chew Toys and various other items to keep him occupied, but he would sit by our front door waiting.

We felt if we got a second Dachshund, they might play together. However this hasn’t been the case so far.

So if you’re motivations of getting a second Dachshund is so you can leave them alone together, it doesn’t always work.

So I propose to you, before asking “”what is it like living with two dachshunds?” ask yourself “why should I get two dachshunds?”… then ask “why not?” and just do it!

But in all seriousness, there are many reasons to get a second and many reasons to just stick to one and I hope to shed some light on the positive and negatives to having two Dachshunds.

Firstly, lets start with the positives!

Double the Cuteness and Joy!

For all the same reasons you love your dachshunds, you’ll love the second. Every dachshund I’ve met has their own little unique personalities, but the one thing that seems consistent is how lovable they are! You will love both so much for their own reasons and coming home to both of them excited to see you and wanting to cuddle is just super lovely!

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Companionship!

I’m sure by now you’ve heard that they are pack animals. They tend to stick together and crave being with company. As humans, you have jobs to goto, work to do, chores to take care of and a life to live! So you don’t always have the ability to spend 24/7 with them, so having a second dachshund does help with that a lot. As I write this blog my two are happily playing and not needing my attention. You might not always will be able to leave them alone together for long stretches, but at one point Choco was nearly renamed to “My Shadow” as he was always there. Now he does more comfortably spend time with Cookie and they will either cuddle up with one another or play.

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Excercise!

Following on from the companionship point, because they are playing much more throughout the day, they are much more active so they will get a lot more exercise in. They’re only small with little legs, so them running up and down the hallway is probably an equivalent to a football pitch to us humans.

Likewise when you do go on walks with them outside, they have someone to run with. So they will definitely get more exercise in and we all know the more exercise anyone can get, the healthier they will be.

Reduced Risk of IVDD!

IVDD is something that worries many Dachshund owners and it is strongly advised to keep them fit and healthy to help keep their backs safe. Following on from the previous point of exercise, this added exercise through play helps keeps them fit and strong.

A study on the Dachshund IVDD Site shows there is a reduced risk of IVDD when Dachshunds live with more than one dog.

… Now the negatives…

Cost!

The cost of having two, as you can imagine, now doubles. Pet insurance, food, vet bills and doggy care (daycare/dog walker) are all basically doubled in cost. You do get of course some multibuy discounts where a dog walker may charge £15 for 1 dog but then £25 for two. But these costs still do add up and for the most part, owning one dog is expensive enough!

So the cost value is one thing, whether its worth it or not to you, but the other side is can you simply afford it!

Training!

If you’re confident in your first pups training, then you should be ok to introduce a second puppy into the mix. However, if for whatever reason you’re struggling with training with your first pup, the second will not make this easier!

Toilet, behavioural and trick training usually rely on the use of treats. You will feel guilty giving one a treat without the other and if the other isn’t performing great or they’re just too distracted by each other to ever successfully understand your commands, training will be very difficult.

Likewise not all dogs do well with crates so you might find it challenging if you have two with different temperaments to crates.

Off Leash Walking!

I for one, in the park I walk them off-leash. I prefer them to have a bit more freedom, especially since our home isn’t the biggest and we don’t have a garden. So I take them out everyday to the park where they can get some freedom. But when the two decide to go in separate directions, their recall training gets really tested! Squirrels, other dogs, a piece of poo can easily distract my two.

So it’s harder to manage on walks.

Likewise with the socials where you meet up with other dog owners, it’s harder to keep track of them both as they will for sure find different dogs to play with.

The above are the more general points everyone will come across, however your personal experiences will vary.

From my own personal experience, having two dogs has made my life so much more easier with the exclusion of off-leash walking.

Choco had been with us for 10months at the point where we introduced Cookie. Likewise he was nearly 1.5yrs old, so he had plenty of time to be settled into our home and had all basic training completed.

Choco did slip up a few times when we first got Cookie and that could be due to multiple reasons. Attention seeking, he saw Cookie pee’d inside so he felt it’s ok, or on our part we simply didn’t pay enough attention to the usual signals for when he needed to go like we would have otherwise been able to spot with only having one

However, 3 months later we have definitely found our flow with the two and happy to say we have minimal accidents inside.

Other than having the responsibility of carrying two Dachshunds down from a second floor flat, no lift, the only thing holding us back was the maintenance costs which we could cover.

Our day-to-day routine hasn’t changed much from having just one Dachshund. They both sleep together in their bed throughout the night. They take themselves to bed at around 9pm and usually wake up around 7am.

I take them out for their morning pee and poo, give them both breakfast and then they both go off and play.

Usually around lunch time I take them out to a park for an hour and then bring them back home to give Cookie lunch. Cookie is still currently on 3x meals a day.

I would usually sit or play with them for a short while between lunch and dinner. When I’m not directly with them it’s playing and napping until dinner time around 7:30pm and then its back to playtime for a bit before bed.

9pm back to sleep and then the day starts over.

I have to feed them separately as Cookie eats faster than Choco and will then make an attempt to help him finish his food.

How the day differs to just having one would simply be the same, except whilst they are playing and napping, I would usually have choco napping or perched up on my leg at my desk asking for attention.

Where I joked about it earlier in the post, but the real question you need to ask yourself is “Why should I get two Dachshunds?”

If it’s to assist with any social or separation anxiety, I would urge you not too get a second dog and consult a dog behaviourist/trainer first as they may be able to provide you with some tips and tricks to get your dog more comfortable with being alone or in the social environments with other dogs.

I have heard of some successes via this method, however be prepared as it may cost you a lot for their time and there are no guarantees that this would work either. But it for sure is a less of a commitment than maintaining two dogs for the rest of their lives.

Assuming your dog doesn’t have any major anxiety or social issues with other dogs, then I, personally, would recommend anyone and everyone whom has a Dachshund already to get another one and this is purely for them to have a companion. I feel they will always be happier when they have more company, especially if it’s from another dog.

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