Recently, a proud Pom owner asked me:
Do Pomeranians do better in pairs?
Do you think I should buy a second Pom?
In this article you’ll discover the answer. And you’ll also learn:
- When getting another puppy can be a blessing and when… not.
- Tips and tricks to successfully introducing two Pomeranians to each other.
- And more…
Table of contents
- Do Pomeranians do better in pairs?
- Should I buy a second Pomeranian (puppy)?
- Why you should take one puppy at a time
- Risks when raising two puppies at the same time
- Should my other Pom be male or female?
- How to introduce your Pom to a new dog
- Rough play
- Are my Poms playing or fighting?
Do Pomeranians do better in pairs?
Pomeranians are pack animals that do well in pairs when they’ve been raised together. If the two Poms are not siblings, it’s best to first get one Pom and after he matures a bit, take a puppy to keep him company. In this case, it’s also advisable to pick two of the opposite sex.
Before you get a second Pom, it’s necessary to consider the reasons why you’d want to do that. There are right and wrong ones.
This article will answer some important questions regarding whether to take a second Pomeranian and how to make the most out of it.
Should I buy a second Pomeranian (puppy)?
This depends mostly on your current lifestyle. If you have space for two dogs to roam around freely at home, that’s a plus.
What you have to consider next is if the two Poms are compatible. Just like humans, some dogs are more self-sufficient and might not enjoy another dog’s company as much as you’d think they would.
If they seem to get along and enjoy each other’s company it will be beneficial for them and you.
When you leave home to meet some friends or go to work, the two Poms will be there for each other.
And since they’re affectionate and sociable, that’d prevent them from feeling bored or lonely.
Last but not least, consider the food and vet bills. Can you afford to buy both Poms high-quality food?
If you can’t invest in the right type of food, some health issues might start bothering your Poms in the long run
Caution: That will result in more visits to the vet and hence higher vet bills.
Besides that, do you tend to travel a lot? If so, can you ask someone to take care of your Pom while you’re away?
If you’d rather have your Pom with you while traveling, it means extra airline costs. Plus, a crate. And when you have two Poms, that’s double.
Providing your current life situation allows it, getting another Pom has it plus sides such as:
- Both dogs will be of the same size and have the same energy levels.
- Getting two of the opposite sex will prevent aggression and fights.
- If the Poms are of a similar age, one won’t be pestered and the other one wouldn’t be underexercised.
- When both Poms are neutered, you wouldn’t have to worry about finding homes for a litter.
Why you should take one puppy at a time
Your intention is to secure a play buddy for your Pom. That’s nice of you. If you consider getting two pups, it could be way too much fun for them.
Puppies don’t yet have boundaries. So don’t expect them to distinguish between playing Tug of War together or shredding the sofa while enjoying each other’s company.
You might leave them sleeping like two little furry angels and come back to a house that’s upside down and barely resembles yours.
That being said, it’s easier to focus your attention on one puppy and housetrain it. This is a challenge on its own so you shouldn’t underestimate it.
A second puppy won’t lift the weight off your shoulders
Quite the opposite actually. You’ll have double responsibilities. From feeding to cleaning the house and pups.
Also, since you’ll need to train them that can’t happen when both of them are in the same place. Pups have a shorter attention span. If you try to rain them while they’re together, the only thing that’s really getting trained will be your patience.
Walks are an important part of the training so, considering the above-said, you’ll need to take the Pom puppies out separately.
That’s the only way you’ll be able to monitor them to not eat something dangerous and to come to you when unleashed and called.
Puppies need to be raised with a lot of attention-giving from their owners to become well-socialized loving dogs.
Risks when raising two puppies at the same time
If you speak to a dog trainer or a dog behaviorist, they will most likely advise you to get a second puppy after your first dog has matured.
The reason is that if you get two puppies, they will spend most of their time with each other. Hence, they will pick up on each other’s behavior.
What you want to have with your dogs is a solid human-dog bond. Building such one would be nearly impossible when you’re taking care of two pups in the same household.
Puppyhood is the time when the puppy learns about the world around him as well as what’s allowed and what isn’t
You’ll have a harder time showing your puppies the house rules.
It’s okay to have two dogs under the condition that you take a pup, he matures and then you take a second pup.
That’s because the first Pom will have already developed some habits, would know the difference between right and wrong, and will know commands.
In other words, he will be a reliable presence in the house and will be able to teach the newcomer pup appropriate behavior. He will also correct the pup if the little one bites too hard or is nagging at the older Pom too much.
They are likely to be fine together as the pup will be recognized as a child by the older Pom. Hence, no fights over territory will occur.
The older Pom will be a reliable presence in the house and will help you raise the newcomer well.
Should my other Pom be male or female?
Whether it is that you love the breed or want to lower the chances of your Pom experiencing separation anxiety, you must choose correctly.
While two dogs of the same sex could get along, it’s better to not push your luck. Chances are that two Poms of the opposite gender will react well to each other and live in harmony. To a big extent that will be because they won’t have such a strong struggle for dominance.
Canines need to have a leader so one of the Poms will take that role.
When the pooches are of the same sec, it’s harder to determine who will be the leader.
With a male and a female Pomeranian, there will still be a hierarchy but the question of who’ll be in charge will be answered much sooner.
Do you already have a Pom? Does he or she get easily jealous of other dogs when you take him/her on a walk?
If the answer is ‘yes’, then you should definitely get another Pom of the opposite sex.
How to introduce your Pom to a new dog
You might be over the moon with excitement about bringing a new dog home to your Pom but will your Pom feel the same way? Most likely not…
Although dogs are social creatures, don’t expect them to greet each other cheerfully and become best buddies from day one.
But hey – would you be thrilled if all of a sudden you get a new flatmate you weren’t even expecting? No, not in the beginning at least. It doesn’t matter that they’re human just like you.
If your Pom feels the same way, he will most likely voice it out immediately by snarling or growling. That’s how they warn intruders to get out.
Introduce the Poms on neutral grounds
So, to avoid any traumatic interactions, better introduce both of the Poms to each other on neutral grounds. A successful introduction is the base of your dogs’ relationship with each other.
Neutral grounds could be any place your current Pom doesn’t perceive as their territory. Just a heads-up: your Pom could consider places beyond your home and garden his territory. In short – any nearby areas should be avoided.
A suitable place to introduce your Pom to a new dog is the dog park. That’s all that happens there basically – dogs are constantly seeing new faces, experiencing new smells, and exploring.
While you introduce both Poms, they should be leashed
Give them some time to smell each other. Sniffing from the side is considered polite. Sniffing from the front could be intimidating and confrontational.
Don’t attempt to correct any growling or snarling behavior. Dogs are not and shouldn’t be like humans in this sense.
If you teach your dog(s) it’s not okay to show their emotions, anger could build up and at some point, they could snap and directly bite instead of giving a warning first.
What could be a winning approach is to have someone help you walk the two dogs side by side. That way they’ll walk parallel to each other, on a leash of course.
If you notice any tension, even if it seems small, don’t underestimate it and don’t force the dogs to be close to each other.
Give them positive associations
If you create positive associations for your Poms, chances are they will like each other better. That doesn’t necessarily mean they will become besties. As long as they tolerate each other’s presence in the house, it should be good enough.
Your aim will be to make your first Pom feel as good as possible while the newcomer Pom is anywhere near.
This means that every time your new Pom enters the room, you should act as if it’s your older Pom’s B-Day. And most importantly – don’t forget to stop the ‘party’ as soon as Pom number two exits.
You can try this technique even before your new Pom has set foot in the house. What you’ll need are several of his items. These could be a blanket, a toy, or a leash.
Make sure to leave these objects around the house and put a treat or two beside each of them.
This approach resembles very much the actions you should take when introducing your dog to a new member of the family – a baby, for example.
Reading tip: How To Train A Pomeranian (The Right Way)
Preventing fights over the owner
A lot of dog fights happen right in front of the owner’s eyes and that’s no surprise! Dogs are wired to compete for the owner’s attention.
One of the most effective ways to prevent this is by giving each one of your Poms quality time separately at first.
It’s totally normal to be excited about your new Pom. But try to put yourself in the shoes of your older Pom.
How would you feel if someone got to live in your family and all of a sudden everyone forgot about you and started showering them with attention instead?
The good news is you can still give the new Pom attention. Just don’t do it in front of Pom number one. And try to not make attention-giving too obvious. Otherwise, your older Pom will hear.
A helping hand from another family member of yours will be needed again. They can take our first Pom out in the yard or on a walk. Meanwhile, you can play and pet the new doggo.
Do the same with your older Pom while the new one is in the farthest room in the apartment or house. Or when away from the house.
Caution: Even though you take all the necessary precautions listed here, dogs can be unpredictable. Hence, introducing them to each other does come with a risk. They can get injured and so can you if you attempt to separate them.
Sometimes it could be hard to distinguish between rough play and bullying.
Yeah, dogs can be bullies too! It’s not only us humans who can suffer from bullying…
Bullying happens when a young pup wasn’t corrected by adult dogs and hence didn’t learn what behavior was appropriate and what not.
You can recognize easily if one Pom is bullying the other. Some of the following actions could give him away:
- Pushes your other Pom out of the way.
- Is acting pushy towards the other Pom.
- Takes the toys and food of the other Pom.
- Doesn’t stop when the other Pom gives signals he’s had enough.
- Stands up on his rear paws and puts his front paws on the shoulders of the other Pom.
- Pins your other Pom to the ground.
To be absolutely sure if what’s happening is bullying, look at the way your other Pom reacts to this behavior. If your other Pom interacts and comes back for more, chances are he’s enjoying this.
Or, the situation could be that the other Pom is trying to get away and looking uncomfortable. The body language that goes along with this is tail tucked between the legs. Also, is your Pom cornered? Then he probably can’t wait to get out of this situation.
When the play ends, is one Pom looking relieved? Almost as if he was forced into it?
If ‘yes’, then it’s a bully alert!
And your interference is needed.
When you notice one Pom starting bullying the other, you’ll have to stop the interaction before something goes wrong. This will be a plus since the ‘bully’ Pom won’t be able to repeat the bullying behavior over and over again.
Bear in mind that preventing such interactions on time is crucial so that your other Pom doesn’t develop unhealthy defensive mechanisms.
Plus, the bullying Pom will get the idea that as soon as he engages in such behavior, the play stops. And play is one of the highlights in a dog’s routine.
Don’t be quick to judge the Pom who is bullying the other one. Maybe the ‘bully’ needs more exercise and mental stimulation.
If the younger Pom keeps pestering the older to play and doesn’t let him rest, it’s time to tire out the younger Pom by taking him on a walk or out to play.
Plus, consider that both Poms should have separate sleeping places, feeding and drinking bowls.
It’s a must that the older Pom has a place where he can retreat without being bothered by family members or the Pom pup.
Caution: If the bullying behavior is an ongoing issue, you want to talk to a certified dog trainer who can help you overcome this. Some of them have correction dogs that can help teach your Pom the appropriate behavior without aggressive techniques and traumatic experiences.
Are my Poms playing or fighting?
Playing and fighting between dogs can look pretty similar. Both activities could involve similar elements such as chasing, pinning to the ground, mounting, barking, growling, biting necks, and showing teeth.
How can you make the distinction?
You know how we humans can say one sentence in a totally different way? For example ‘You look really good!’ said in owe is expressing adoration. But you can use the exact same thing with a sarcastic tone and a mocking way.
Dogs tend to communicate in a similar way. Only, they rely on body language instead of on words.
Your Pom may bow to the ground. What this indicates is ‘Hey, I’m fooling around, so don’t get worked up about it!’.
The next thing he does could be a neck bite to the other dog in the house. That’s okay as long as you see the bow before the ‘questionable’ activity.
The bow could also be your Pom’s way to say ‘Hey, time out!’ and chill before the next play activity begins. The time-out helps to control the arousal levels in both dogs.
You will recognize your Poms are playing when you see them switch roles. For example, the Pom who is chasing could soon stop and become chased by the other Pom.
Caution: Some dogs who haven’t been properly socialized might not interpret the bow as an invitation to play but rather as a thread. Then they could start defending themselves and showing aggression to the dog that bows. With early socialization, your Pom puppy will learn the rules of playing and can become a pro communicator.