Friendship is one of life’s greatest gifts. Everyone, even your Great Pyrenees, needs a friend. Positive bonds with a companion have been shown to increase happiness and lower stress levels. Dogs are domestic, social animals who benefit greatly from interacting with others.
When given the opportunity, most dogs will avoid isolating themselves. If your dog enjoys the company of other dogs and behaves well around them, you may consider getting your Great Pyrenees a friend.
Another indicator that your dog may need a friend is if they are sad or lethargic after a play date with another dog. Each dog is different and will have a different temperament around other dogs.
Many factors go into whether or not a dog needs a friend, including their training and expectations. If your Great Pyrenees does not enjoy the company of other dogs, you may want to reconsider before getting another dog.
If you are unsure about how to tell if your Great Pyrenees needs a friend, you’ll want to start observing their behavior. By putting your dog in more social situations, you can learn their personality.
You can determine if you should get another dog once you know if your Great Pyrenees is a social butterfly or a relaxed loner.
Do Great Pyrenees Get Along with Other Dogs?
Generally, Great Pyrenees get along well with other dogs. The two most important factors will be your Pyrenees’ personality and the way that they are introduced to other dogs.
Like all dogs, Great Pyrenees have instincts that can make first impressions less than appealing. Carefully introducing your dog to other dogs is key in making the relationship work.
While every dog will have their own unique personality, Great Pyrenees tend to get along with other animals including dogs.
Their overall temperament lends itself to treating other long-term dogs and animals as part of the family. Owners can take advantage of this by making sure to treat all their animals as an equal part of the family. The Pyrenees will see this and begin to see the other dogs as friends and family members.
Great Pyrenees get along best with other dogs of their breed. Many owners of Pyrenees’ choose to get a second Pyrenees. Others try to find another dog of a similar size. However, Pyrenees can get along with any type of dog breed in most situations.
Care should be taken to properly introduce the two dogs, no matter the size difference between them. This means that the owners should be nearby and the first meeting should ideally be in a place that’s neutral to both dogs, such as the park or at a friend’s house.
Another factor that will determine how well your Great Pyrenees gets along with other dogs is how well trained they are. Poorly behaved dogs are more likely to be aggressive around other animals.
If your dog knows basic and advanced commands, it will be much easier to prevent fights and keep order in a two-dog household. This also extends to how well trained the other dog is.
Overall, a well-behaved Great Pyrenees is likely to get along with most other dogs.
Read Next: Do Great Pyrenees Bond to One Person?
Do Great Pyrenees’ Get Lonely?
All dogs can get lonely depending on their temperament. This is especially true of dogs who have owners that work long hours. This loneliness may lead to acting out and bad behavior.
On the other end, loneliness can lead your Great Pyrenees to become overly attached to you, the owner. This makes it difficult to leave your dog for any length of time from a grocery trip to going on a vacation.
Some Great Pyrenees, however, thrive by themselves and prefer to do their own routine rather than be with other dogs. That’s completely normal!
If your pup prefers the company of themselves and people, getting another dog just for their benefit may not be the right move.
Many Great Pyrenees are social creatures. They love their owners and their entire family, becoming extremely protective of them. This can make adding a second dog to the family difficult.
However, sometimes when a Great Pyrenees has accepted a second dog as part of the family, they will be fiercely protective and loyal of them.
Why are so many Great Pyrenees abandoned?
The Great Pyrenees can quickly become attached to their owners to the point of developing attachment anxiety. This can cause them to become unreasonably clingy.
This is why many Pyrenees owners choose to add a second dog to their home. The social aspect of having a friend helps prevent Great Pyrenees’ from becoming too attached to one single person.
Questions To Ask About Your Lifestyle
When considering adding a friend for your Great Pyrenees to your home, you’ll want to ask yourself questions about your lifestyle.
This includes the behavior and personality of your Pyrenees!
Because there are so many factors and responsibilities that go with getting a second dog, asking these questions can provide clarity on your decision.
- How old is your Great Pyrenees?
- How much time per day can you devote to playing and walking two dogs?
- Can you financially support another dog, including medical bills?
- Does your Great Pyrenees enjoy playing with other dogs? (dog parks, playdates, etc.)
- How often does your Pyrenees show loneliness or clingy behavior?
- Does your Great Pyrenees display any territorial behavior?
- How well is your Pyrenees trained?
- Do you have experience (or a willingness to learn) how to lead a multi-dog house?
There are many different things to consider about both your human and animal family before adding a second dog.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of “does my Great Pyrenees need a friend?” because there is no two families exactly alike. Educating yourself about the responsibilities and preferred ways to introduce a second dog to befriend your Great Pyrenees is the best way to find the answer for you.
Additionally, consider the fact that your life may change over the course of your dog’s life. If you plan on moving within a few years, make sure to take this into account.
Also, consider if your job or free time will be changing as well. If you won’t have the time in your schedule to care for two dogs a year from now, it’s not responsible to add another dog to your family, even if your Pyrenees would benefit from it.
Read Next: The Sensitive Nature of Great Pyrenees: What You Need to Know
Why Your Great Pyrenees’ Personality Matters
Every dog is unique in its own way. Great Pyrenees’ are known for their loving personalities, but your dog may be above the curve when it comes to all sorts of emotions. A dog raised by a stay-at-home mom, for example, may need more attention once the mom goes back to work.
A dog used to long walks on a hiking trail may not have nearly as fun at a crowded dog park. These are crucial parts of your Great Pyrenees’ personality that you should consider before getting another dog.
How does your dog interact with other humans?
Are they friendly or aggressive?
How does this behavior extend toward other animals?
Can you safely walk your Great Pyrenees with another dog?
How about lunchtime? The answers to these questions and other day-to-day routines will help you decide if another dog would be right for you.
Other factors to consider in your Pyrenees’ personality include:
- How they handle mealtime
- What length walks they need each day
- What they do during ‘down time’ when the family is relaxing
- How and where they sleep
- What noise level they are comfortable with
Before adding another dog to your home, you’ll want to expose your Great Pyrenees to situations where other dogs are present to get a feel for how their personality plays out. Some dogs will be surprised, going from relaxed at home to a party animal when around a few other dogs.
Other dogs may be shy at first, taking their time to warm up to potential furry friends.
Keep a good eye on your Pyrenees when they meet new dogs, and take note of how they handle social interactions. Do not pressure them when they seem scared or anxious! Make sure each dog gets plenty of space to breathe and do their own thing even during a play date.
Pros and Cons of Adding A Friend
The pros and cons of adding a friend for your Great Pyrenees to your household is a long list. While not every point will be relevant for your family, consider the following carefully if you are stuck on the decision.
The more you know about what a second dog would mean, the more likely you are to make the right choice for yourself and your dog.
- Twice the love for your family
- A playmate for your Pyrenees
- Can ease separation anxiety in your Great Pyrenees
- Creates a secure “pack” environment for your dogs
- Helps deal with loneliness in your Pyrenees
- Double the costs for food, toys, and medical needs
- Training two dogs can be difficult
- Your Pyrenees may pick up or teach bad habits
- Extra time and care is required to properly introduce two dogs
Keep in mind that not every pro or con of adding a second dog will play out in your family. Your Pyrenees may not struggle with loneliness, and your second dog may not require as much food as they do.
Research dog breeds that you believe will work well with your family, including your Great Pyrenees. Many Pyrenees owners choose to get another from the same breeder. Other families choose to adopt from shelters or seek another dog breed entirely.
Only you can determine what type of dog will be the right addition to your family! Seek help from your veterinarian, breeder, and shelters to find the right dog to add to your home. Researching what responsibilities go into adding another dog to your home is part of being a responsible owner.
How To Introduce Your Great Pyrenees To Another Dog
The most important part of introducing your Great Pyrenees to another dog is having patience. It can take weeks to months before two dogs become comfortable around each other.
Even if your Pyrenees takes a while to warm up, don’t give up! Continue to properly introduce your dogs by following guidelines.
To start, make sure each dog gets their own space. Put their dog dishes on opposite ends of the room and their dog beds or kennels kept apart. This will give each dog time to become comfortable with the idea of having their own safe place, reducing territorial fights.
Make sure both dogs have boundaries. You, as their owner, should act as the leader of your pack. Both of your dogs will benefit from training, from the basics to learning how to walk with a harness on. Set expectations for your dogs by giving them equal structure.
Treat both your Pyrenees and the new dog with equal love and attention. Keep in mind though, your Great Pyrenees may grow jealous or resentful if you give all of your attention to the new dog.
See Also: Are Great Pyrenees Good with Other Dogs?
Above all, it is up to you to decide if your Great Pyrenees would benefit from a friend. The majority of Pyrenees are social and do enjoy having a companion.
However, every dog is different and every home has a different environment. Your dog may not enjoy having to share space, especially in the beginning.
However, with enough time, patience, and training your Great Pyrenees is likely to get along with any dog. The more time you spend training your dogs together, the stronger the family bond between them will become.
If your Great Pyrenees struggles with loneliness or attachment issues, a second dog can be a solution that benefits the entire family. Having a furry friend to rely on for fun, comfort, and security takes the pressure off their relationship with humans. It’s also twice the love for your family to enjoy, especially during walks and at playtime.
Canada, Bark Busters. “The Pros and Cons of Getting a Second Dog.” Bark Busters Canada, www.barkbusters.ca/blog/pros-and-cons-getting-second-dog. Accessed 10 May 2021
Team, Happy Puppy. “Great Pyrenees Temperament – Learn More About This Big Breed.” The Happy Puppy Site, 11 Mar. 2019, thehappypuppysite.com/great-pyrenees-temperament/#:%7E:text=If%20the%20Great%20Pyrenees%20sees,dog%20to%20an%20outside%20dog
Santo, Kathy. “When Should You Get a Second Dog?” American Kennel Club, 20 Apr. 2021, www.akc.org/expert-advice/lifestyle/when-should-you-get-a-second-dog