1 vs. 2 dogs in med school

violetbaudelaire

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Hi, For anyone who is in med school with a dog or multiple dogs, what is your recommendation for 1 vs. 2 dogs? I haven’t started school yet but currently have a chihuahua puppy, however I won’t attend school until 2021 so I’ll have ample time to train him (chis are considered adults at age 1 unlike larger breeds). I was planning on getting a second chi puppy in a few months so he would have a companion when I was gone during the day, but talking to some MS3s it sounds like it may not be the best plan, especially because people sometimes move for clinical rotations. Should I stick to 1 pup instead? I’m saving my money from working and open to doing daycare instead, I don’t mind paying I just want what’s best for the dog.
 

wanderingorion

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It's a lot easier to find someone to watch/help with/live with one dog as opposed to 2. I have 3, 0/10 would not recommend, haha. You can always reevaluate/get another pup down the line.
 
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violetbaudelaire

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It's a lot easier to find someone to watch/help with/live with one dog as opposed to 2. I have 3, 0/10 would not recommend, haha. You can always reevaluate/get another pup down the line.
Thank you! I don’t even really want a second dog bc my baby, although I love him SO much, can be such a headache as you know. I only wanted a second dog because I want him to be happy, but you’re right, thanks for the advice, being so small he is manageable but 2 might result in a situation that’s worse for both the dogs
 
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scubascuba

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Another dog is sometimes good if you're going to be gone a lot. I like to advocate for people to have more than one pet so they always have a buddy. However as you said, you will likely have to move and it will be more difficult with 2 dogs. A lot of apartments do not allow more than one pet so that will limit you. Also if doggy daycare turns out to be a good option you'd have to pay double, as well as if you need to board the dogs or get a pet sitter. I'd just stick with the one for now and maybe look to hiring a dog walker or going to doggy day care if it becomes a problem.
 
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penpenclown

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However as you said, you will likely have to move and it will be more difficult with 2 dogs. A lot of apartments do not allow more than one pet so that will limit you.
Oh man, apartment hunting with two dogs is a nightmare. "Oh hey this apartment looks nice and it says it's dog friendly!...only one dog though. This one is also dog friendly. Oh wait, only <35 pounds? Well my smaller dog is good. Can I get away with saying my 45 pound dog is 35? What about this one? Oh, dogs only allowed in certain buildings, which has a higher rent than is listed."
 
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longhaul3

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Yeah, I agree with what everyone else is saying. It's hard to get someone to watch more than one dog and can be hard to find a rental that will allow it, depending on where you live.
 
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Fission Chips

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Personal anecdote: my wife and I got our second dog during the first semester of my MS-1 year. We already had a ~10 year old dog at that time, and we rescued an 5-month old adorable pyrenees mix from the local shelter. It was one of the best moves we've made. They were able to keep each other company during the daytime, both of them were pretty pooped after a 2-3 mile run, and it forced me and my wife to exercise daily, even if we felt we were too tired to go running. If you got another one, just make sure you get a pretty low-energy breed so they can just chill after you exercise them. They make for good study break companions too. We basically just didn't tell our apartment company that we got another, and because neither of them really ever barked, nobody asked.

The 10-year old died 4 years later (MS-4 year), and our pyrenees mix was heartbroken. For months he no longer wanted to run or play and he lost about 15 lbs from eating less. We ended up getting an 8-week old Labernese from a ranch that was from an accidental litter. It has been awesome raising her from a puppy, and she is a super chill sweetheart. I guess we're just a 2-dog sort of family, because I couldn't imagine just having one dog now. To be honest though, my wife isn't a physician so I wouldn't have any dogs if I were single in a surgical residency. It just isn't fair to them unless you have a ton of money and can get essentially a doggie au-pair.
 
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violetbaudelaire

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Personal anecdote: my wife and I got our second dog during the first semester of my MS-1 year. We already had a ~10 year old dog at that time, and we rescued an 5-month old adorable pyrenees mix from the local shelter. It was one of the best moves we've made. They were able to keep each other company during the daytime, both of them were pretty pooped after a 2-3 mile run, and it forced me and my wife to exercise daily, even if we felt we were too tired to go running. If you got another one, just make sure you get a pretty low-energy breed so they can just chill after you exercise them. They make for good study break companions too. We basically just didn't tell our apartment company that we got another, and because neither of them really ever barked, nobody asked.

The 10-year old died 4 years later (MS-4 year), and our pyrenees mix was heartbroken. For months he no longer wanted to run or play and he lost about 15 lbs from eating less. We ended up getting an 8-week old Labernese from a ranch that was from an accidental litter. It has been awesome raising her from a puppy, and she is a super chill sweetheart. I guess we're just a 2-dog sort of family, because I couldn't imagine just having one dog now. To be honest though, my wife isn't a physician so I wouldn't have any dogs if I were single in a surgical residency. It just isn't fair to them unless you have a ton of money and can get essentially a doggie au-pair.
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thank you for your input. I did want a companion for my little guy but I think I’m better off spending the money on daycare and budgeting/planning for that. Since I’m not in school yet I don’t know what kind of residency I’ll end up in, but I think I should probably hold off and see how it goes before getting another dog. Maybe I can get one after/during residency depending on my situation then. Since he’s so small he should live a long time so maybe a puppy in his middle age would be better
 

proudofmykids

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thank you for your input. I did want a companion for my little guy but I think I’m better off spending the money on daycare and budgeting/planning for that. Since I’m not in school yet I don’t know what kind of residency I’ll end up in, but I think I should probably hold off and see how it goes before getting another dog. Maybe I can get one after/during residency depending on my situation then. Since he’s so small he should live a long time so maybe a puppy in his middle age would be better
Is doggy day care affordable as a student?
Locally in Midwest suburbs, day care costs $35-$50 per day, or dog walker $15 per 30min walk.
 

medstar11

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Personally I always advocate for people to have more than one dog if they are going to be gone alot. This gives them a sense of companionship and will also help with separation anxiety which can destroy your apartment. Having such little dogs will likely not pose as much of a problem. Personally I have 3 75+ pound mutts but I wouldn't trade them for the world. We usually just offer to pay a higher deposit or sign a clause in the lease saying we will replace anything they tear up. I would definitely say get another one when your puppy is a tad older though. The older one will train the puppy instead of morphing the older one back to puppy habits.
 
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violetbaudelaire

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Personally I always advocate for people to have more than one dog if they are going to be gone alot. This gives them a sense of companionship and will also help with separation anxiety which can destroy your apartment. Having such little dogs will likely not pose as much of a problem. Personally I have 3 75+ pound mutts but I wouldn't trade them for the world. We usually just offer to pay a higher deposit or sign a clause in the lease saying we will replace anything they tear up. I would definitely say get another one when your puppy is a tad older though. The older one will train the puppy instead of morphing the older one back to puppy habits.

yeah thats what I thought, what held me back was when I talked to some 3rd years who moved for clinical rotations and couldn’t live on campus for that time, because then I might have a hard time finding accommodations for 2 dogs whereas within one it should be more manageable (some air bnbs allow pets, etc)
 

medstar11

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yeah thats what I thought, what held me back was when I talked to some 3rd years who moved for clinical rotations and couldn’t live on campus for that time, because then I might have a hard time finding accommodations for 2 dogs whereas within one it should be more manageable (some air bnbs allow pets, etc)
I have multiple classmates that have multiple animals (up to 6) and most people have not had any extreme difficulty finding a place to live. Pets are a pretty common thing these days and small pets are basically no big deal to most places.
 
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AW0320

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Obviously it depends on the dog, but I think most are happy to have a buddy. Just make sure to do a dog intro before you adopt so you can see how they get along before committing. I went from one dog to two about a year ago, and it's honestly made my day-to-day life a lot easier since I'm not 100% responsible for providing all the physical activity and mental stimulation. They have hardcore play sessions 2-3x a day, and that really seems to keep them happy and worn out. As far as housing goes, I wouldn't worry about it with small dogs AT ALL. A ton of places allow pets, and as long as your new pup is <30lbs I can't fathom that it'd be an issue. I found a place for my two big dogs, and one of them is a pitbull. So it can definitely be done, you just might have to do a little more leg work. Also, be sure to think about what your daily routine will look like... is there green space nearby, are you close to school so you could pop home to take them out mid-day, etc.
 
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sunshinefl

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New M4. I got 2 chihuahua puppies a month ago. They’re my first pets I’ve owned as an adult. It’s nice being home to mother them and train them right now (not back on rotations due to pandemic). They definitely appreciate having each other to play, and to cuddle. My husband is a respiratory therapist so he works 12 hour shifts too, but only 3 days a week with alternating weekends. So once I do go back they’ll be home alone an average of 2 days a week. I’m debating getting one of those fancy 2 way interactive puppy call camera things and some indoor pens, vs if I need to actually pay for puppy day care. So far they’ve only been alone by themselves one time for 3 hours.

TLDR: get another chi puppy!
 
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violetbaudelaire

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New M4. I got 2 chihuahua puppies a month ago. They’re my first pets I’ve owned as an adult. It’s nice being home to mother them and train them right now (not back on rotations due to pandemic). They definitely appreciate having each other to play, and to cuddle. My husband is a respiratory therapist so he works 12 hour shifts too, but only 3 days a week with alternating weekends. So once I do go back they’ll be home alone an average of 2 days a week. I’m debating getting one of those fancy 2 way interactive puppy call camera things and some indoor pens, vs if I need to actually pay for puppy day care. So far they’ve only been alone by themselves one time for 3 hours.

TLDR: get another chi puppy!

I am glad to have another chi owner to relate to! I think I'll wait a little longer so I can save more money, I have a year still so maybe in 6-9 months I can get my dog a buddy when he's fully trained. I don't have a partner to help but perhaps that's more of a reason to get a second one, because then he won't be all alone when I'm not there
 
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violetbaudelaire

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Obviously it depends on the dog, but I think most are happy to have a buddy. Just make sure to do a dog intro before you adopt so you can see how they get along before committing. I went from one dog to two about a year ago, and it's honestly made my day-to-day life a lot easier since I'm not 100% responsible for providing all the physical activity and mental stimulation. They have hardcore play sessions 2-3x a day, and that really seems to keep them happy and worn out. As far as housing goes, I wouldn't worry about it with small dogs AT ALL. A ton of places allow pets, and as long as your new pup is <30lbs I can't fathom that it'd be an issue. I found a place for my two big dogs, and one of them is a pitbull. So it can definitely be done, you just might have to do a little more leg work. Also, be sure to think about what your daily routine will look like... is there green space nearby, are you close to school so you could pop home to take them out mid-day, etc.

Thank you for your input! I know I can probably find an apartment for two 6 lb dogs easily enough, I guess I was more concerned that I might have to move around for clinical rotations and find temporary living situations like air bnbs, but maybe even then it won't be as hard as I'm imagining it to be. I think I'd get another puppy because usually the older dog won't feel challenged/may act less aggressively toward the new dog
 

AW0320

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Thank you for your input! I know I can probably find an apartment for two 6 lb dogs easily enough, I guess I was more concerned that I might have to move around for clinical rotations and find temporary living situations like air bnbs, but maybe even then it won't be as hard as I'm imagining it to be. I think I'd get another puppy because usually the older dog won't feel challenged/may act less aggressively toward the new dog
Yeah, I've stayed at airbnbs with my giant doggos. You'll be fine! :)
 

Rachapkis

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There is a formula to determine the perfect number of dogs for you. N + 1 = the perfect number of dogs; N = the number of dogs you currently have.
 
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