View Full Version : Who has at least 4 dogs

20th January 2009, 11:13 PM
Ok we are seriously thinking about getting another cavalier--*sigh*. lol I cant get enough of these guys. I feel like I'm saying to hubby that I want to have another baby and lets get pregnant. I might add that I only have 2 4-legged grown children--lol. I have contacted some breeders locally and have found a black and tan almost 3 year old that we are thinking of getting and then that would be it. Is having 4 dogs insane??? For us that would mean:

7 year old shih tzu
5 year old tri--its Abbey's birthday tomorrow :):)
14 month old blenheim

The one that we are thinking of checking out will be 3 in April.

Feedback please.

21st January 2009, 12:13 AM
It really depends on the personalities of the dogs, the time each needs, and the time your family can give them and whether you feel you have your hands full at present. I have four but honestly, would much rather have three and will stick with two or three in future. Three is a lot easier to manage than four, and two is easier than three. But then I manage all these on my own. :)

But keep in mind every extra dog means less time you will be able to give to each individually and probably their overall quality of life may suffer compared to having fewer dogs that get more time. I think there's a balance that has to be found. I know from time doing rescue and working with my trainer friends that often a dog will really blossom if rehomed to a situation where it isn't lost in a group of dogs. Also a really bright, active dog is definitely going to lose time with someone doing activities with that dog -- agility, obedience, one on one activities -- that really are satisfying to that type of dog.

Love my Cavaliers
21st January 2009, 02:54 AM
I totally agree with Karlin. I have 4 - just couldn't resist getting that tri-color to complete my color set. But, 3 is easier than 4 and 2 is by far easier. I don't think I will ever be without 2 or 3 dogs though. What Karlin said about some dogs getting lost in the pack is true - Madison is a little put out by Oz's presence in the house. He's a year and a half and we've had him since he was 10 weeks old, so I'm not really counting on her coming around. I think Madison feels somewhat neglected now. I do love all my four and love coming in the house and being surrounded by them, or having them all next to me or on me on the couch, but I'll say it again - 4 is a lot. More difficult to walk, and more difficult to give personal attention.

21st January 2009, 10:16 AM
I wanted to add that I didn't end up with four by choice -- it was entirely circumstance and wouldn't have been an option I would have taken, all else being equal. Jaspar, who is a very bright and active dog who wants to be doing things, definitely gets less time than he needs and deserves, due to there being four. I regret this all the time but I try and give him as much extra time as I can, doing agility weekends etc. But as an option, I like the idea of having three over two in some ways because you can take one out and still leave two alone at home with each other's company.

Brian M
21st January 2009, 10:40 AM

I have three and found the jump from two to three a huge difference so I think for the foreseeable future I shall stick at that ,I would dearly love another and often almost press the button but then logic tells me no .So as Karlin says I think I will have a happy and contented threesome than a foursome who I may not devote enough individual time to .

Karlin I know that you take Jasper out individually for his agility training but what other reasons would you take them out separately for and do you consider its beneficial for them to occasionally take them each out on their own ,I must admit that when the girls come out with me it is always all together.

21st January 2009, 11:08 AM
When I went from 3 to 4 dogs, the whole dynamic changed. There was some fighting between the dogs. They were jockeying for their place in the pack. We got through it, but it wasn't fun.

It is also 4 times as expensive at the vet's office.

I would never give up any of my 4, but I wouldn't do it again. 3 will be my maximum in the future. They all want to be on your lap and they all want to be petted. It is fun, but it is harder to give them all the loving they need. My parents give them lots of rubs too, so that helps. :lotsaluv:

Love my Cavaliers
21st January 2009, 01:47 PM
Brian- sometimes I have to take just one to the vet and that leaves the others at home to keep each other company. In the past two weeks, Riley has seen her neurologist, Maddie was hospitalized from eating Advil, and Oz had a visit to the cardiologist. When the one who was gone comes home, that is the only time they don't greet me first. They just love all the smells.

21st January 2009, 02:38 PM
I wouldnt say I find 2 dogs a lot but I find them enough especially for now. I also have a ten year old and a toddler so its a bit of a mad house. My OH retires when he is 38 so after that I would have more dogs. I would love to have a cavalier in each colour but for now 2 is loads :p

Its also quite the juggling act trying to walk them and push a stroller at the same time!

21st January 2009, 02:42 PM
Thanks for the responses. We're still debating. We have two cavaliers and one shih tzu. The shih tzu is NOT a lap dog at all and doesn't require alot of attention. He gets it of course but he's not like a baby like the cavaliers so in a sense it would be like having 3 toddlers and a teenager. I work in the home--meaning hubby has his own business and I do the bookwork etc. My kids are grown and gone with babies of their own. Right now we're leaning towards it but not jumping into it at all. Alot to think about. Also, if we do get one it would be older. Not a little puppy.

21st January 2009, 06:05 PM
I have always had at least 2 dogs in my house at any one time, and have had 4 at one time and it was chaos and I would not do it again (granted the 4th was a lab.). I've had 3 for a long time, and now back down to 2. I'm involved in rescue now, so I always have the opportunity to add another and it is so tempting, but each time I think about the dogs- could I really bring 3 to work? How would Casey feel? I already feel like I'm pushing her off my lap every 5 seconds b/c I have to get up and do something with the other dogs, or the cats, or my son...I wouldn't want her to have to share with another. I am content with 2 for now and definitely think 4 is too many.

21st January 2009, 06:10 PM
Linda- I also want to add that I feel I'd like a 3rd (at times) for Ollie mainly b/c he is so active and would play all day if someone would play with him. Casey does not play, she follows me around and waits for my lap! :o But then I think, "do I really want to bring another *active* dog into our lives"? And then I think, no...if I were to bring a 3rd dog in, it would have to be a very easy-going lap dog. I can't take another crazy one right now! So we just keep hoping Ollie will calm down a bit as he gets older, but I'm not counting on it. I, too, have guilt about not being able to do as much with him as I could be if I had fewer animals and humans!

Love my Cavaliers
21st January 2009, 08:09 PM
When we got Oz - our 4th cavalier - I had the choice of him or his very mellow sister. We chose Oz because we thought he would play with Maddie and we thought she would like to play. We really thought she would like a playful pup around. How wrong we were!!! I never anticipated that she would seem to resent his intrusion into the order of things as they had been established for years. So the dog I thought I wanted, turned out to be not the dog I probably should have gotten. Oz's sister is so laid back and he is such a dynamo. Turns out, she might have been an easier one for Madison to accept. So, the moral of my story is that you don't know what the dynamics of the dog pack will be when you add another (despite your best intentions).

Daisy's Mom
21st January 2009, 08:31 PM
You all are braver than me. I would dearly love to get a SECOND Cavalier, but the thought of twice as much hair in the house and on our clothes just makes me cringe! :o Every time I leave the house in one of my black winter coats, my husband tells me I look like I've been rolling around in a dog bed! (Yes, of course she's worth it, but honestly it's hard to imagine what the house would look like if we happened to get another heavy shedder!)

I suspect some day we will get a 2nd dog (definitely a rescue or shelter dog), but my husband is resistant so far. From our experiences fostering and being around my brother's family and their shih tzu, Daisy really doesn't pay much attention to other dogs once her initial meeting with them is over. (And she is very dog reactive at initial meetings, and not in a good way.) She gets over the initial pushiness pretty quickly, but she's still just not that interested in playing with them, even when they try to get her to play. She basically does her best to ignore them completely.

22nd January 2009, 12:17 AM
I'll second that! Ilsa, I'm sure, would love another dog to play with sometimes, but can be so jealous of my attention. I don't think either dog would be happy if we added a second.

That, and it's so much more difficult to travel with 2, Ilsa goes everywhere with me.

Though I've always seen happy multiple dog households and thought, someday!

Jen and Ilsa

22nd January 2009, 12:34 AM
Brian, I know my trainer friends and Dr Ian Dunbar when at a seminar here in Ireland also thinks it is always important to give each dog one on one time. Not least because shy dogs can become even more shy in a group dynamic plus maybe think of it in terms of kids -- every child really values that time alone with a parent... same with dogs. I try to take each dog out on its own at least once or twice a week. Group time isn't the same. I alternate who I take in the car for example... and sometimes take out one or two dogs together leaving the other two or three at home. I walk an elderly neighbour's old collie a few times a month and usually bring Jaspar for the extra walk and time with me too. :)

22nd January 2009, 01:17 AM
I think three dogs is the easiest dynamic. It is easy to take one and leave the others and you don't have to worry about having one dog left alone and stressed while you are gone with the other dog since you are actually leaving two together. It is easy to spend one on one time since three dogs isn't all that many and you can squeeze that into almost every day. (I have three kids, too, so that might be why I think that).

22nd January 2009, 02:03 PM
One thing we do always try to do is give each of our dogs individual time - be it a separate walk occasionally, or even accompanying us in the car somewhere, or a special bedtime cuddle. Or sometimes we just mix up the team dynamics a bit by taking them out walkies in different combinations, rather than all at once.

As an example, Kevin used to visit lots of places with OH and I, and old ladies always fell in love with him :). He was well-behaved enough to go into a pub with us for a meal etc., so enjoyed that aspect of life - that was 'Kevin time'. Bradley time involves a walk in a brand new place. Cazy time is the evening, when she sits on my lap for cuddles and then goes to bed early with me. Jemima's a daddy's girl but loves spending time with me when I'm getting ready for work in the mornings.

Obviously all get plenty of group attention too, particularly when we sit down to watch tv at night and they either sit on us or on the sofas :).

Having had 6 in the past, I wouldn't want to go down to as few as three, but that's because I like them to 'team up' in groups of at least 2 in separate rooms when they're on their own - it just works for us and them :)

22nd January 2009, 02:15 PM
Well, after considerable discussion with hubby we have decided that we want 4. 3 cavaliers would be and a shih tzu. The shih tzu isn't a cuddly type at all--he likes his space so it will be like having 3 dogs in a sense. I held my 3 year old grandson yesterday with 2 cavaliers in my lap also so I have room for 3 cavaliers. Also, my kids are grown and can give them individual attention etc. which we do now. My dogs are like my kids and guess I want to get pregnant again--lol. We are going to go look at a black and tan female tomorrow night--she will be 3 in March so she's a bit older. I don't want the small puppy--too much work with 3 other dogs and a grandson. Also, this one knows commands such as sit, stay, come etc. and of course is potty trained etc. I have checked the breeder out extensively on the net and have spoken to her quite lengthy on the phone and am satisfied that she's a good breeder. So tomorrow night I may be the owner of 4 dogs. :-)

Love my Cavaliers
22nd January 2009, 02:41 PM
Best of luck to you Linda. I think it's smart that you're getting an adult dog. When we got Oz at 10 weeks old, I had forgotten how much work a puppy is. Riley, who we got at almost a year of age, has been my easiest dog. Have fun!

22nd January 2009, 10:15 PM
haha....:jump: "I guess I want to get pregnant again"....Both of my Cavaliers came at times when I wanted to get pregnant and the hubby said NO WAY...and then we got another dog instead. They're really so much easier than kids anyway! Still pushing for human baby #2, but maybe we will end up with 3 Cavaliers afterall!

Elaine 2
22nd January 2009, 10:44 PM
Good luck, and don't forget to take plenty photo's we want to see your new girl, Ive got 4 dogs and l love it :)

22nd January 2009, 11:36 PM
Hey Chloe: I watch my 3 year old grandson 1 1/2 days a week and thats the easiest. Being a grandparent is the best. You can send them home when you're tired of them--lol. I do miss the 2 legged kids being little though--they both have kids of their own.

23rd January 2009, 04:39 AM
We are nuts. We have five. The more the merrier, well, maybe, but the biggest negative thing is the vet costs. Everyone is getting older which means more medical costs, special diets etc.

It takes two of us to do mealtime, everyone needs a little something different. Meds, extra supplements, etc.

We travel a lot and everyone goes with us which makes things a little harder. Chelsie can't jump any more so we need a ramp for the truck, Daisy shouldn't jump so we need a ramp for the trailer, Lucy can't hold it as long any more so more potty stops are needed, Chelsie can't walk as far so we take two walks - one short and one long.....

We will probably have no more than three in the future, but then again............