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One Rottweiler can bring an incredible amount of love, loyalty, and joy into your life.
So can you expect double the fun with two Rottweilers? Should you get two Rottweilers at once?
Having two Rottweilers at once can have advantages like the dogs entertaining and learning from one another, sharing their possessions, and forming a unique bond. However, there are serious potential downsides like littermate syndrome, difficulties with training and socialization, and trouble bonding with you.
Here’s what you need to know about the potential advantages and disadvantages of getting two Rottweilers simultaneously, as well as some things that you can do to make potential problems less likely and set yourself up for success in enjoying having two Rottweilers at the same time.
Possible Advantages of Getting Two Rottweilers at Once
Let’s start by reviewing the advantages of getting two Rottweilers at the same time.
They May Form a Unique Bond
Whether you get Rottweiler puppies or adults, getting them at the same time means that they will adjust to living with you together, which can result in a unique bond between them.
Rottweilers don’t always get along with new dogs that they are introduced to later in life. This can be particularly true if you try to bring a new dog into their home, which they may be protective of.
By getting two Rottweilers at once, you avoid this problem and help your Rottweilers to bond from the beginning on neutral territory. People who have successfully raised two dogs together often find that they form a relationship that is unlike any other since they’re working from similar starting points.
They Can Learn From Each Other
Rottweilers are extremely intelligent dogs, capable of learning not just from you but also from other dogs. By choosing to have two Rottweilers at once you can use the training that you do with one to benefit the other.
For instance, if you are teaching both Rotties a new skill and one picks up on it first and gets the reward, the other one is likely to observe what the first one did and catch on quicker than they may have if they had been learning alone. In short, you double your chances of teaching either dog a particular skill within a particular time, since if either dog picks up on the skill, the other one is likely to learn from the first dog.
This is very helpful if you teach the Rotties together, but it also works well if you teach dogs separately. You can teach one Rottweiler a skill, then have them perform it in front of the other Rottweiler. You may be amazed by how much more quickly the second Rottweiler picks up on the skill when the first one demonstrates it for them.
Sometimes you may find that one Rottweiler learns much more quickly than the other and that it is advantageous to teach this Rottweiler skills first. That doesn’t mean your other Rottie isn’t smart, but you should take full advantage if one of your Rotties learns complicated tricks faster!
They Can Entertain Each Other
Rottweilers are not particularly high energy compared to many other working breeds of their size. That said, Rottweilers are very active dogs, and their intelligence means that can quickly get into mischief.
Two Rottweilers together can provide endless entertainment for one another. Instead of looking for ways to create trouble in your home, they can wrestle, play tug-of-war, and chase each other around. Rottweilers have a long history as working dogs and so all that energy has to go somewhere!
You may find that two Rottweilers end up being less destructive and less prone to separation anxiety than one. Besides, it’s a lot of fun to watch your Rottweilers tousle around and have fun together. Two Rottweilers can extend the effort you put into playing with them. For instance, a game of fetch also turns into a game of chase as one Rottweiler chases the one who got to the fetch toy first.
You may find that you need to actively exercise your Rottweilers less when there are two of them. Because they will spend time wrestling, running, and playing together, they won’t need as much exercise as one dog who may spend more time lying around and waiting for you to entertain them.
Keeping your Rottweiler in toys, chews, beds, etc as they grow up can get expensive. Your Rottweiler will need different toys as a young puppy, when they are teething, and when they are adults.
If you have two Rottweilers, they can share many of the essential things that you’ll need to buy for them. You would likely find that you need between three and five chew toys for your Rottweiler at any given point, but you won’t need six to ten toys for two Rottweilers.
Instead, the Rottweilers can share toys, taking turns chewing on them. Rottweilers often enjoy sharing a bed together as well. While they should have separate crates, they can enjoy the same lounging areas around the house. They can also enjoy the same fetch toys, tug toys, etc.
Just check out these two Rotties sharing playtime, attention and toys:
Possible Disadvantages of Getting Two Rottweilers at Once
But it’s not all sunshine and roses! Let’s talk about some of the downsides of getting two Rotties at once.
Perhaps the most serious potential downside of getting two Rottweiler puppies at the same time is the potential of littermate syndrome developing. We discussed above that two Rottweilers coming to your home together may develop a special bond between them.
Unfortunately, this bond can sometimes backfire, resulting in a range of behavioral issues. These issues aren’t just a risk if two puppies come from the same litter and are related. It can also come up whenever two puppies of the same age come into the family at the same time and are raised together.
Not every pair of puppies raised in the same home develops littermate syndrome. Many people find that their dogs get along very well throughout their lives and don’t have any behavioral issues as a result of having been together since they were very young. However, when littermate syndrome does arise, it can cause serious problems:
- Fearfulness of other dogs and people
- Separation anxiety when separated from one another or their people
- Insecurity or fearfulness when doing things alone
- Fighting with one another
- Training issues
- Difficulty bonding with their people
Littermate syndrome is much less likely when puppies have plenty of time away from each other, are crated separately to sleep, and are trained and socialized separately. The dogs can certainly spend time together, but they should have plenty of time and important experiences alone as well.
Needless to say, this results in a lot more work for you as the trainer.
Think very seriously about whether do you want to take the risk of littermate syndrome in adopting two Rottweiler puppies at the same time. Adopting adult Rottweilers at the same time will not result in the same issues, since they will have had time to develop appropriately before they are together. If you are considering adopting adult bonded Rottweilers, look carefully for some of these issues to be sure that they do not already have littermate syndrome.
Difficulties with Socialization
Extensive socialization is extremely important for Rottweilers. Because these dogs have strong, natural protective instincts, teaching them when and whether they need to be concerned and protective towards other people and dogs is absolutely essential.
Trying to socialize two Rottweilers simultaneously can be very challenging. If Rottweilers are always socialized with other people and dogs when they are together, they may end up seeming fine with other people and dogs when they’re together but have serious issues when they are alone.
You will also struggle to control two powerful dogs during socialization if you are by yourself. Don’t fall into the misconception of thinking that if your two Rottweilers are fine with one another they’ll be fine with other dogs as well. If your Rottweilers don’t get plenty of socialization as they’re growing up, dog aggression becomes very likely, regardless of how well they get along with one another.
It is true that two Rottweilers can learn from one another, making it easier for you to train both of them. On the other hand, two Rottweilers can also distract one another and teach each other bad habits.
You will likely find that you need to separate them for training sessions at least some of the time. You may find that they do well in individual training sessions, but seem to forget all of their training when they are together and would rather play and romp with one another than respond to you.
Training self-control skills like coming when called, staying, and not to bark can be especially challenging when you are training two Rottweilers together. Make sure that you have time to separate the dogs and train them both individually and time to train them together in order to set yourself up for training success when raising two Rottweilers at the same time.
May be Less Likely to Bond Well With You
One of the reasons that we love Rottweilers is that they are extremely loyal and dedicated to their people. These are dogs that are willing to fight and die to defend their family. However, raising two Rottweilers together may cause them to bond more closely with one another than they do with you, which can get in the way of their job as protection dogs and make them less well-suited to being great family companions.
Bonding with a human takes work. Your Rottweiler needs to learn what you want, develop self-control of their impulses, and learn to understand that delicate human skin and bodies can’t handle the kind of roughhousing that a dog can. On the other hand, Rottweilers can have a lot of fun just playing with one another and it doesn’t take them nearly as much effort as it does to build a bond with a person.
Therefore, your Rottweilers may choose to spend time with one another instead of you. This can lead to all kinds of problems in behavior as well as making you less satisfied with your Rottweilers.
Double the Expense and Maintenance
While it is true that two Rottweilers can share with one another, reducing the overall number of things you need to buy for them, raising two large, powerful dogs at the same time does come with increased expenses. You need to pay for two sets of vaccinations, twice the food and treats, and spend twice as much time grooming and cleaning up after them.
With just one Rottweiler, you can encourage them to do most of their playing and roughhousing under certain circumstances, such as when you go to the dog park or out in the yard. However, two Rottweilers may be more likely to play in your home, making a mess of things.
Constantly running and wrestling in your yard can tear up grass end result in very dirty dogs when they come into the house. You can expect to spend twice the time or more brushing, cleaning up muddy paw prints, etc. You also have twice the likelihood of medical conditions developing and resulting in significant vet bills.
Getting Adult Rottweilers Versus Puppies
There is a very big difference between adopting two adult Rottweilers or two puppies at the same time. With puppies, you need to worry about littermate syndrome, socialization, and basic training.
Adopting adult dogs that are already well-socialized, do not seem to be exhibiting littermate syndrome, and have some basic training is a very different story. Rottweilers are often kept in pairs as protection dogs for property. These dogs frequently come up for adoption, giving you the opportunity to adopt them together.
This can be a great situation for the right home, but it can also come with difficulties. You may have more trouble correcting problem behavior in a pair of Rottweilers, particularly if both exhibit the problems. On the other hand, it may be easier to incorporate two Rottweilers simultaneously into your home than it would be to get one and then get the other down the road.
In general, you may find that it is easier and less problematic to adopt two adult Rottweilers than it is to get two puppies at the same time.
How to Set Yourself up for Success if You Want to Get Two Rottweiler Puppies at the Same Time
If you have your heart set on a pair of littermates or you have already adopted two puppies and there’s no going back now, there are things that you can do to set yourself up for success:
- Set aside time to raise them separately. Make sure that you have time to train, socialize, and bond with each dog individually and that they don’t end up spending too much time together.
- Set rules and boundaries for them as a pair. Repeat the training that you do for your dogs separately when they are together and separate them if they are unable to pay attention when they are together.
- Treat them as individuals. It can be easy to fall into grouping your Rottweilers together, but they are individual dogs with individual personalities and need to be treated as such.
- Consider getting opposite genders. Rottweilers may tend to be slightly more likely to show aggression towards the same sex as opposed to the opposite gender, so to set yourself up for success, getting opposite genders may be ideal. This is true of any breed that you try to match with your Rottie.
Alternatives to Getting Two Rottweilers at Once
If you really want two Rottweilers in your life but you’re concerned about the potential issues that can arise if you get them together, the solution is very simple: Get your second Rottweiler at least a year after your first.
This will likely eliminate the risk of littermate syndrome and give you time to get your first Rottweiler trained and socialized before you get the second Rottweiler. At this point, pretty much all of the advantages of having two Rottweilers together will still be true, but you will have eliminated many of the potential disadvantages.
Your trained Rottweiler can help you train your new Rottweiler, and the two will likely develop a very close bond that nonetheless will be unlikely to negatively affect their relationship with you or cause the problems of littermate syndrome. If you go this route, make sure to set aside time to train and socialize your new puppy individually.
By the time your dog is a year old, they should already be accustomed to spending time alone and be okay with you leaving them while you take out your new puppy to socialize or train.
Enjoy your Rottweilers
Having a pair of Rottweilers can be a lot of fun. As long as you think carefully about your decision and keep potential issues like littermate syndrome in mind, you will likely find that you take a lot of joy in watching your Rottweilers bond and play together as well as enjoying them separately.