owning two border collies?!?

andy1948September 4, 2009

hi there, I currently own 1 Border Collie and I am thinking of getting a second older dog as a companion for him....are there advantages to owning two dogs??

One of my worries is the food bill every month, what is the best value for money food? I have heard that buying the high energy food that you purchase from a farmers wholeseller is the best option...has anyone bought this type of food before?? Would really appreciate all your assistance as I am a little bit new to this game! LOL!


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DUCK!!!!! INCOMING!!!!!!!!

Seriously, there is absolutely no reason not to have two dogs---I recommend that, since dogs are pack animals.

There are some cautions, however.

Can you provide sufficient exercise? And appropriate exercise> BC's are herding maniacs and need a lot of that type activity to be healthy.

Can you be the pack leader? Herding dogs often have dominant personalities and can become troublesome if not in a rigid pack structure.

Now---the really controversial question---food.

I have not raised many high energy dogs---simply because I never had the time nor place to do so. And I prefer a different type of dog. I do now have a whippet mix---as a companion to our GSD/chow mix guard dog. He picked her----we have to adapt to her needs. And that requires a lot of time---which I now have since retirement.

I have used Pedigree for years for large, medium and small dogs---keeps them healthy and at the right weight(more a function of feeding amounts).

Molly(the whippet) needs a special diet---lamb and rice or chicken and rice seem to fit that need. I have been using Purina formula for almost a year. She does quite well---evenm had to cut down on the amount as she gained too much weight.

My preferrences are blasphemous to many people---so just offered as one idea.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 2:42PM
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I my own personal self would never own one dog that's smarter than I am, let alone two...

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 3:19PM
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Hi Andy, if you can give the names of some of the dog foods you are considering, I am sure people whill chime in with opinions. Be aware that a lot of us use the super-premium dog foods, some even get organic. Since we tend sometimes to get a bit argumentative about this subject, it would be better if you just read the conversations we have already had. You can read in the FAQ section. The link is up at the top of the page that says Pets Forum and lists the titles of threads. Another thing you should do is scroll way down past the list of titles and you will find the "search" box. Type in "Dog Food" and you will get over 600 different threads that mention dog foods.

Happy Reading!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 5:44PM
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Questions - How old is your dog and is it a female or male? Some of the issues related to owning two dogs (especially herding dogs) is that they will bond with each other and ignore you or that (especially in the case of females) they may fight. Can I ask why you are thinking of getting another dog?
You have a working dog and they need alot of stimulation. This can work to your advantage or not depending on your lifestyle and what kind of daily paces you put your dogs through. If your dogs are properly stimulated (flyball, running, hiking, frisbee trials etc) then things might work out fine. Remember these dogs are bred to have the energy to work from 4am until sundown to keep up with a horse and rider or to herd for hours at a time. I would suggest that you meet the new dog on neutral territory and let them play for a couple of hours at a lake, park, beach or whatever you have as far as open space goes. Good luck.
As far as choices on maintaining your dogs, you might want to look into Natural Balance they have a wonderful range of products. Keep in mind the better the food, the less your dog will eat, the less it will poop and it should be a healthier dog in the long run. Good luck with that as well. There are a number of postings on dog food here on this forum you can do a search to find out all there is. I suggest whatever you choose you stay away from filler ingredients like "meals" and too many grains and especially corn and or maize which is high in sugars. Good luck

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 8:23PM
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sylvia ... that was the best response! LOL!!!

    Bookmark   September 9, 2009 at 1:14PM
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I have one border collie and she is definitely smarter than I am at times. Two?? I don't know about you but I could not possibly fit in the time and energy to keep up with two. Mazer is right by the way, if your's is female she may fight with another female whereas a neutered male would become more of a playmate. Unfortunately she may disregard what work you have for her in favour of playing with him. Mine herds cattle with me and I would be lost without her as I have a cow/calf Angus herd and she really does know instinctively how to get them to go where she wants just with a crouch and a gaze. I prefer a good quality food, she prefers cattle ration, go figure.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2009 at 9:32AM
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Hi Andy, you got some great advice from the posters here. I have 3 dogs now, but had just my aussie several years ago (similar temperament to the border collie). By the time he was 6 months old, he was wearing both me and my husband OUT. We just could NOT keep him stimulated enough. We decided to get a second dog as a companion to him and got a spayed female english shepherd (picture "Sam" the dog on True Blood - lol - also an english shepherd). She is also an active herding type. They were INSTANT magnets to each other and we'd have a ball watching them play. He still got his training and play with us (as did she, but at the time she could care less about humans - that took a while). It has worked out wonderfully and that has been over 8 years now.

I won't go into food details, since I'm a stickler on their nutrition also. But there are lots of great foods out there. However, bear in mind if your working/herding dogs aren't actually working and herding on a farm, then you'll need to be cautious about feeding them like they are. They likely wouldn't need a specialty working dog food.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 12:52PM
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I have a friend that has 2 borders and seems to have no problem...She also has 3 cats and when she gets home from work, the cats are usually herded into the bathroom and 1 of the dogs will be standing guard....She said the cats go along with the antics to a certain extent and if they don't want to play, they'll give them a swat....One big happy family.....

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 3:47PM
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If I'm not too late.. Personally I liked it better when I just had the one Border Collie. It's much easier, the dog really becomes an extension of you when there isn't a second dog around. Plus it's cheaper food and vet wise. Housecleaning is easier with one as well.
I had two BC's and when the old guy passed on last fall I got an Aussie pup for my 6 yo BC who seemed very depressed about it. They get along great but it's work.. so like I said if I had my druthers I'd stick with just one.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 12:41AM
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I have to laugh, PK guy, DH was saying just yesterday that if we only had one dog, we would be better dog owners. We have three now, and the one who bonded with DH is likely an Aussie mix. (Though her brother looks like a yellow Lab that was cut off at the knees). We were even fine with two dogs. It was adding the third that turned the home into chaos. Then we had to go get another third dog when our first dog died - go figure.

I remember how my Megan was like an extension of me. I would notice her move, look up, and her posture or facial expression would alert me to whatever caught her attention. Being outside with her, our eyes would meet and we would communicate about the sudden breeze or bird that had flown overhead. It is a special feeling.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 2:58PM
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How about a herding dog mix, like a Border Collie mix or Aust. Sheperd Dog mix of the opposite sex as your current dog?

My Border Collie mix was half high energy breed and low energy breed. Averaged out to medium energy, and that worked out well. I walked him twice a day, and he seemed happy. Some border collie people in my area never seem to walk their dog, and I doubt they run them much. One BC was so obese I had to ask the owner what breed it was!

One of the more informed owners I talk to has a BC/ASD mix who improved her behavior when a male Aust. Shepard dog was added.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2012 at 4:47PM
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I don't have dogs, I have Welsh Corgis and I always have two. I feed them lamb and rice food from Costco.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 5:50PM
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