What is the Best Gender Combination for 3 Dogs?

3 dogs playingI’ve had so many readers ask me over the years what I think is the best gender combination for 3 dogs. Having lived with multiple  dogs for more than 30 years, following is what I think based on my experience.

These are pics of the most recent combination of my 3 dogs—two males and a female, all different breeds, and each spaced about 3 years apart in age.

3 dogs on couch

What You Need to Know About Dog Gender Combinations

Because I started with a dominant female. I went with two males. They loved to play and they loved each other. But it took work to get there. 

To start, this post is going to assume that you already have two dogs and are thinking of adding a third. (If you are starting with a different combination, I’ve already answered many of your individual questions about whether you should add a second and/or third dog, and if you do, what is the best gender combination in this post. Read through the comments and you can probably find your specific situation.)

What to Consider

While gender combination is a very important consideration when adding a third dog, it’s equally important to take into account your current dogs’ breeds, personalities, ages, sizes, training, and whether they’re already tightly bonded to each other. Whether they’re neutered/spayed or intact should also be factored in. And, last but not least, whether either of your dogs have any aggressive tendencies.

The Bond

If your dogs are already tightly bonded and doing well, then I’d ask you to think long and hard about why you’re feeling the need for a third dog. If you’re determined, just know that strongly bonded dogs will take more time to accept a third dog. You should plan on initially introducing them on neutral territory and then keeping a careful eye on them while they are adapting to each other in the home.

Aggression

If either of your dogs has any aggressive tendencies, I would consider passing on a third dog all together. Pack behavior intensifies with each dog that’s added. Aggression has a way of spilling over and coming out sideways in all kinds of unexpected ways. Don’t add fuel to the fire. It’s not worth it—said from deep, sad experience before I knew better.

Age

In a perfect world, it’s better to have dogs of different ages (so you have time to bond with and train each one, as well as to fully understand their personalities). That said, it’s important to consider the overall dynamics. For example, if you have an old dog, an energetic puppy or young dog could be too much. You don’t want your old dog feeling badgered, even if it’s for attention and play. On the other hand, an older dog can be a good role model and help with training of a younger dog. Dogs close in age can make good playmates, but they may also be more likely to compete for status within the family. A good general rule of thumb is to stagger the dogs a few years apart.

Breed & Size

Having the same or different breeds isn’t as much a factor as the individual personalities. Size and weight difference matters. It’s a good idea to have no more than a 40% weight difference between dogs so the smaller dog doesn’t get plowed into and accidentally injured.

Proper Introductions Matter

It’s never a good idea to just throw dogs together and assume/hope it will just work out. Dogs, like people, have strong preferences. So, when choosing a new dog, it’s important have the dogs meet on neutral territory before you make a final decision. While they may not play right away, do they pay any attention to each other? Are there any signs of stress or aggression? Pay close attention to how they respond to each other. If you can, it’s even better to have a positive dog trainer with you to help you observe.  But also pay attention to your instincts. If your gut is telling you it isn’t a good match – no matter how much you love the dog you’re considering, for everyone’s sake – keep looking.

What is the Best Gender Combination for 3 Dogs—Final Answer

Unless you have dogs with same sex or sibling aggression (in which case, again, don’t add a third dog) or intact animals and your dogs are well-adjusted and generally like other dogs, the best gender combination for a group of three dogs is one male and two females, or two males and one female–not from the same litter or the same age. You want to try to stay away from all three being the same sex to reduce the potential for trouble.  Opposite-sex dogs generally get along well and are less likely to fight or trigger dominance issues.

But, I can’t say this enough, the most important factor in determining the compatibility of a group of dogs is their individual personalities and temperaments, rather than their gender. For instance, if your dog is outgoing, it may do best with a friendly but less demanding dog, If your dog is shy, you might think of staying away from hyperactive bulldozer types, etc.

Just know that no matter what sex your new dog is there will be an adjustment period where it will be important that you don’t leave them alone unsupervised until the new pack order has been established.

 

 

55 thoughts on “What is the Best Gender Combination for 3 Dogs?”

  1. Hi there. I found this article helpful but I am still unsure of what gender our next pup should be…
    Our current roster is a 3yr old, 17lb, chi/fox terrier mix, male neutered, and only vision in one eye, he was bought by the original owners as a puppy. He gets along well with all the dogs we’ve met and I don’t forsee any issues with him. We also have a 2yr old collie/hound mix, 30lbs, female spayed who was found as a stray at about a year old. She also gets along with other dogs. She is the dominant of the two but not in an aggressive way. I mostly work from home so they aren’t alone for extended periods of time. They also go to daycare weekly where they are around other dogs & we haven’t had any issues. They are very rough & tumble together, they rip & race & play daily. I would say her only downfall is sometimes she doesn’t know when enough is enough when they are rough-housing but there isn’t any aggression involved. There is one neighborhood dog who she seems not to care for & has a fit if it’s walked near our fence (the owners insist on walking it next to the fence instead of further down in the park which our yard backs up too). They’ve never met other than this & I wonder if this is more of a territorial thing vs an I don’t like that dog thing. She does it with others as well but not to the degree that this dog gets it & those dogs are also further away. She also spends weekends at my parents house with their 2 older neutered male dogs and she has no issues there. I get the feeling she knows who wants to play her way & who doesn’t. With all that being said as I am looking to add a 3rd dog, I am leaning towards female for really no other reason then I don’t want another boy dog. The one we have is housebroken when he wants to be, he also wasn’t neutered until I rescued him as an adult and I don’t want another male dog to be tempted to mark in the hosue. I also think a dog close to her size maybe better than another smaller one but I am really unsure. Maybe a smaller dog would be less of a threat to her? I honestly don’t have a preference for size or gender, except my 1 reason above but I am willing to try with a well behaved, truly housebroken male dog.
    We will be adopting/rescuing & it will be an young adult dog. Thanks for this article & I appreciate any advice.

    1. Hi Kristi

      Your preference for a female dog is very understandable, given that you want to avoid potential marking issues associated with unneutered or late-neutered males. Since your girl isn’t exhibiting any type of aggressive behavior (yes, the dog near the fence is highly likely territorial behavior) and there have been no incidents at daycare where I presume there are other females.

      The main points to keep in mind to minimize any dominance or rivalry issues are to go with a different breed, and a different age. And make sure the temperament is sweet and trusting.

      Size and Energy Level: Since your collie/hound mix enjoys rough and tumble play, a dog of similar size and energy level would likely be a good match. A smaller dog might feel overwhelmed or become a target for overly enthusiastic play. I might be inclined to look at lab mixes. They generally have very low aggression tendencies and love to play.

      Temperament: It sounds like both your current dogs are social and adaptable, especially given their daycare experiences. Look for a dog with a friendly temperament. Avoid dogs that exhibit signs of aggression or extreme timidity during initial meetings.

      Introduction Process: When you find a potential new dog, arrange for a few supervised meetings in neutral territory before bringing the new dog home. This will help gauge the initial reactions and compatibility with your current dogs.

      Adjustment Period: Even with a seemingly perfect match, there will be an adjustment period. Ensure you have a plan for gradually integrating the new dog into your household, monitoring interactions, and providing plenty of positive reinforcement.

      Given these considerations, a female dog close in size and energy level to your collie/hound mix could be a good fit. If you do come across a well-behaved, truly housebroken male dog that fits the temperament and size criteria, I’d still be inclined to go with that. The key is to focus on the individual dog’s personality and how well they mesh with your current dogs during the introduction phase.

      Good Luck

  2. Hi Karen, I’m so happy I came across this site. Very informative. I have a 12 yr old spayed female lab who is sweet & playful, & a 4 yr old neutered male pomeranian who is so sweet, smart & somewhat protective. They both get along fine. I’m thinking of adding another pomeranian & thought a female would be better. What are your thoughts? I’m going tomorrow to look at the litter of poms. TY so much. I’m nevous of how they’ll get along, & your advice to others has eased my mind somewhat.

    1. Hi Elaine, because your female Lab is sweet and older, she would probably accept a male or a female. But just be aware if you do get a female Pom, your male may tightly bond with her and your Lab could feel left out. Or, they could all get along swimmingly. No way to know in advance on this one. Other than to say I don’t think you getting a female in this case would cause aggression issues.

      If there’s any way you can have them meet before a final decision is made, I would highly recommend that.

      Best of luck!

  3. Hi Karen!

    I have a 9 year old NAID male and a 4 year old NAID female. The male is mellow, the female is a tomboy. The dogs get along well.

    We are looking to add a third dog – a Great Pyrenees, and are think a male might be the best best since our older male gets along well with both males and females, and because our female is probably the dominant one – not “aggressive” per se, but she’s a wily little devil when she wants to provoke the male to play, etc.

    Also thinking a male Pyr, due to size and tolerant temperament, might balance the female while getting on well with our male.

    Does this sound like a good plan, or would we be better off with another female?

    Hope to hear from you! :)

    Thanks –

    Tom

  4. Hi! I have two females, both large girls, but one has about 15lbs on the other. They have a love hate relationship, and there’s definitely give and take on who’s in charge. They are both rough housers when they play but they also annoy each other and they can be competitive of one another. There is some tension I attribute to them being female. I was wondering if getting a male of the same size and play style would be beneficial in easing the tension, all fixed of course. My shelter does offer foster to adop programs to be sure it’s a good fit.

    1. Hi Gina, it sounds like your girls may be too closely matched in dominance without a clear winner, so they go back and forth taking over. I would definitely NOT get a female. A male of same size and energy with good temperament may help. If you can foster first, that’s a great way to “try before you buy.” Best of luck!

  5. Hi!
    I have a male Rottweiler who is entire, 3 years of age. I also have a female 5yo Wire haired Dachsund who is also entire but soon to be spay. We recently lost my other Dachsund who was 2 years old. My other Dachsund is now left at home alone when I’m at work (she has the garden and access to house) and I’m thinking of replacing her play mate. The current Dachsund is the boss, the Rottweiler is petrified of her (ha ha) but they get along great although I only allow them out for short periods of supervised time together due to size difference. (Rottweiler is a companion the dachsund a tracking dog hence the difference in size. Id very much like to get an EBT, would be a mid sized dog able to play with both of my current dogs, but im stuck on gender? It’s worth mentioning that the female dachsund is the boss, even over previous female Dachsund. What sex would work well with both? Baring in mind the majority of the time will be spent with the female dachsund?
    Many thanks

    Nick

  6. Hiya, I currently have two huskies both intact females 1y 6month and the other one 10 months old. I am looking at getting a Samoyed puppy but unsure of what gender to go for . I ideally don’t want to get my girls sprayed. If I got a male I understand I would have to get him fixed but wouldn’t do this until he’s at least two (gives him time to mature and delevop properly)

    What is your advice? What do you think I should do ?

    1. Hi Carlie, ooph this is a tough one. Because you want to keep your girls intact, even though you’d have to deal with going through a couple of heats with managing a male, I’m still gonna recommend a male to reduce the risk of aggression or dominance issues. Don’t know if you’ve ever experienced female rivalry, but I have and it was horrendous. Even with months of intensive management and training (with professional help) it was unresolvable. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone. Better to be safe than really really sorry. Best of luck.

  7. We have 2 female show Miniature Bull Terriers aged 5 yrs and 3 yrs both intact. There were dominance issues when younger girl matured, but nothing in last 2 yrs. Older girl more reserved around other dogs, so we put her in back rooms when other dogs come over. Our concern is that we have two families returning their minis for re-homing. The first is a 4 yo neutered male whose family is returning to Europe. He’s reported good with young kids, other dogs, cats, etc. But the second is an intact 2 yo female who has not shown aggression but is too rough with owners’ two young children. Good around other dogs. Neither dog will be permanent but will likely be with us for 2 to 4 weeks. Are there actions we should take?

    1. Hi Gail,

      Introducing new dogs to your household, especially when there are already dominance dynamics does require careful management. You may already know all of this, but here are my thoughts:

      Initial Introductions:

      Neutral Territory: If possible, introduce the new dogs to your dogs on neutral ground before bringing them into your home. This should help reduce territorial aggression.
      Slow Introduction: Allow the dogs to meet one at a time, starting with the neutered male, as he is less likely to challenge the established hierarchy.

      Separate Spaces:

      Create Safe Zones: Ensure each dog has a separate, safe space to retreat to. This can be a crate or a different room to avoid constant interaction and potential conflicts.
      Rotate Time: Rotate the dogs’ time in shared spaces to prevent overstimulation and reduce chances of altercations.(In reality, this may wind up being your best option if neutral introductions don’t go well.)

      Supervised Interactions:

      Monitor Closely: Supervise all interactions between the dogs, especially during the first few days. Look for signs of tension or aggression and intervene immediately. (When it comes to possible aggression I do NOT believe in the “Let them work it out” method.
      Controlled Playtime: Keep play sessions short and controlled to prevent rough behavior from escalating.

      Maintain Routine:

      Consistency: Keep the feeding, walking, and playtime routines consistent for your dogs to reduce stress and anxiety.
      Reinforce Training: Use positive reinforcement to encourage calm and appropriate behavior from all dogs.

      Behavioral Management:

      Use Commands: Utilize basic commands (sit, stay, come) to maintain control during interactions.
      Professional Help: I know the new dogs may only be there for up to a month, but if you notice any signs of severe aggression or dominance issues, consider consulting a professional dog trainer or behaviorist. It would be worth it for your sanity.

      Gradual Integration:

      Gradual Increase: Gradually increase the time the new dogs spend with your resident dogs as they become more comfortable with each other.

      This should help you have a smoother transition and minimize the risk of dominance issues or conflicts.

  8. I’m glad to have found your post while researching adding a 3rd dog to our home. We have 2 male Golden retrievers–one traditional and the other English cream. They are 10 years old and 8 years old. They’ve been buddies since day one and we’ve had no issues with aggression or dominance. The older dog is clearly the alpha though not established through aggression. The younger has some tendencies toward anxiety but otherwise they are happy and healthy–and pretty lazy in their advanced age. We would like to add a corgi puppy to our home but not certain if we should consider a female rather than a male which was my first inclination. It’s possible a female puppy would be less rambunctious which might be better for our old guys but it’s also possible a female might not fit in well with our two bonded boys. Any thoughts or insights would be greatly appreciated!

    1. Hi Gina, you don’t mention whether your guys are neutered or not, but for the sake of discussion, I’m going to assume they are. Also, you don’t mention whether you’ve had corgis before or why you’re thinking of switching breeds. corgis, as herding breeds, have a much different disposition than goldens (though not necessarily incompatible). All that said, if it were me, I’d go with a female. A female might be less likely to trigger territorial responses from your older males. Also given your dogs’ older age and laid-back nature, a female Corgi might indeed be less boisterous and easier on your senior dogs. Corgis are active but can be trained to adjust their energy levels. Good luck!

      1. Thanks so much for the response! Both boys are indeed neutered. We’ve not had a corgi before but we’re interested in adding a dog that’s not quite as large in size as our two boys. In the past my husband has had hunting dogs that he’s trained and I’ve had a Sheltie mix that had high energy and herding tendencies so we’re hopeful a Corgi will be a great addition to our home.

  9. Hi Karen,

    We are currently thinking of adding a third dog (Golden Retriever puppy) to our family. We currently have two West Highland Terriers. 7 year old Male and 2 year old female.
    Both our Westies get along well together and are both dominant in their own way. They both get along well with other dogs. Our male is laid back but our female is more of the “guard dog” between the two…

    while I realise adding a third to the dynamic will be a fair bit of work. The main reason is for our 10 year old daughter who has always wanted a Golden retriever, suffers from anxiety. The retriever will be mainly her dog. Obviously we will help her with training etc but it will be her companion dog.

    My main question I guess is what sex would be best suited to our dynamic?

    Your help and advice would be much appreciated.

    1. Hi Christine,
      Since your female Westie displays more guard-like behaviors and dominance, introducing another female could potentially lead to rivalry as they establish a hierarchy. So I’d go with a male.
      What a great gift to give to your daughter. Good luck!

  10. Hello, I’m considering adding a 3rd dog to my mix. Reason’s being that my sweet submissive 12yr old neutered bedlington terrier, and my 3 yr old submissive spayed mutt ? Cattledog/ collie ? Are just too cute. I’m a recently single mom, and I’d like a more deterrent type dog. Something that basically looks scary and barks when someone comes into the yard. We a nice situation for another dog, big fenced yard, twice a day groceries, indoor living for the housebroken types. I can’t handle puppy energy, but I’m looking quietly at the local pounds for an older dog that might fit the bill. Am I crazy? . Should I sway to a male or a female?

    1. Hi Julianne, given your circumstances and reasons for wanting a third–no, I don’t think you’re crazy. Given your description of your dogs, it probably doesn’t matter a whole lot whether you get a male or female. I think it’s more important if you are able to have a meet-n-greet on neutral territory with each dog individually with the dog you finally narrow down as the likely one, to make sure they all do okay together. First, introduce them individually, then try both with the new candidate. They don’t have to love each other at this point (though that would be ideal) but at the very least there should be no signs of aggression or intimidation. And you may already know that it takes up to 6 months for a rescue dog to feel comfortable enough in their new living situation to show their true colors.

      I also like to recommend that you find a good positive trainer that would be willing to go with you to evaluate the new dog, because it’s always incredibly valuable to have a second pair of experienced eyes to give their opinion.

      Good luck!

  11. Cynthia Troise

    Hi! We have 2 Australian Shepard/Redbone Coonhound/American Pitbull mixed brother and sister from the same litter that will be 3 soon. We want to add a German Shorthaired Pointer puppy to our family. Should we add a female or male?

    1. Hi Cynthia. Since you want to a add different breed that would also be a different age, gender would not be as critical here. But I’d still be inclined to go with another male. Good luck!

  12. Barbara Zanca

    I have an 8 yr old Shepherd/Cattle mix “God dog” that I must host in my home for six week blocks, twice a year. She was very bonded with our (now deceased) Catahoula and considered my house her second home. Our new (2021) very bonded pair, one now 4 yr old Cattle and one now 5/6 yr old Shepard/Huskie mix, have been completely unwilling to welcome her inside the boundaries of our home or car. Meeting elsewhere for hikes and play is no problem, but we have to keep them completely isolated on separate floors and separate entrances to the home. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Barbara,
      Integrating a visiting dog into a household with existing pets can be challenging, especially when the resident dogs are showing territorial behavior. Here are several strategies you can use to help your dogs coexist more peacefully.

      The first thing I’d do is a slow reintroduction with each of your dogs separately with the visiting dog. Trying to do all 3 together will definitely kick in pack behavior with your two. Since they get along well outside the home, use neutral territory to reintroduce them, again separately, to each other slowly. Start with short, supervised interactions in a neutral area, gradually increasing the time they spend together. This helps to reduce territorial behavior by fostering positive associations outside the home.

      Use Positive Reinforcement: Reward all the dogs with treats, praise, or play whenever they display calm or friendly behavior towards each other to create positive experiences when they are in proximity.

      Before bringing the visiting dog into your home, swap bedding or toys between the dogs to get them accustomed to each other’s scent. Scent is a powerful factor in how dogs perceive each other, and familiarizing them with each other’s scent can reduce hostility.

      Gradually introduce the visiting dog into your home under controlled conditions. Again, with each of your dogs separately. (The other one should be out of the home somewhere else, ideally–so there’s no barking, etc to set each other off. Start with short durations and increase them gradually. Use gates or crates to manage the space between the dogs, ensuring they can see and smell each other without direct contact initially.

      Work on basic obedience commands with all the dogs, such as sit, stay, and come. This training reinforces your role as the pack leader and can help manage their behavior when they’re together.

      Make sure each dog receives individual attention and affection from you. This helps to reduce jealousy and competition for your attention.

      Ensure all dogs get plenty of exercise to burn off excess energy. A tired dog is generally more relaxed and less likely to display aggressive or territorial behavior.

      Always supervise and monitor their interactions and be ready to intervene if tensions rise. I’d keep an eye on them probably forever–only half kidding–or until they obviously happily can coexist together. Use a calm, assertive voice to redirect their attention and separate them if necessary.

      And last but not least, consult a Professional: If the dogs continue to show aggressive or unwelcoming behavior towards each other, consider consulting a professional dog trainer or behaviorist. They can offer personalized advice and training strategies specific to your dogs’ needs.

      Remember on this one, slow and steady wins the race. Make sure you are chunking down into small enough tiny bite-size pieces each step of the reintroductions, separately, and then starting back at zero again when you’re ready to reintroduce all 3.

      Good luck!
      Karen

    2. Hello. I have a 14 years old neutered min pin. We recently lost our female. Our boy is sad and lonely. I am adding a 7 month old min pin female. I would like to add a 3rd dog so the younger dogs provide company but don’t harass the older dog.

      I am looking at a Toy Fox Terrier 4 months of age. Should i get a male or female.

      1. Hi Anna, in this case both options could work, but a female might slightly edge out as a preferable choice if you want to minimize dominance issues, provided she gets spayed. The key will be to match personalities and ensure that both younger dogs don’t overwhelm your older Min Pin. A gentle introduction and observation of how they interact in controlled environments before a final decision can also provide additional insights into what might be the best fit for your family.

  13. Oof messed up…sorry!
    Please disregard first comment. Corrected below:
    Hi there,
    We currently have an almost 2 yo male Rhodesian Ridgeback (92 lbs) who really needs a playmate. He’s a typical ridge: high energy, playful, but super sweet.
    We also have an almost 13 yo female chihuahua/Jack Russell, (12-14 lbs. shy & nervous, but loved to play w/the ridge when he was a small puppy). She will ignore or snarl at him when he wants to play now.
    We lost our almost 14 yo male lab end of January.
    We’re all grieving his loss, so not rushing into anything.
    We know we’ll eventually need to add a 3rd dog for our ridge.
    With an outgoing, young male & older, reserved female, we are thinking a young dog, maybe out of the puppy stage, but we don’t know if a pup would be better to learn correct behaviors. We’re waving on female vs male…seeing both sides, but maybe leaning toward female.
    1. Anyone have a gender recommendation?
    2. Age recommendation?

    1. Hi Melissa,
      Not surprised to hear 13 yo female chihuahua/Jack Russell doesn’t want to play with your Rhodesian Ridgeback. That’s another thing to keep in mind when adding dogs–size compatibility.
      And, if you get another dog while your female is still alive, I’m going to actually recommend a male medium size dog. Don’t really think puppy or young dog matters so much. The reason for male is that if you get a female, your Ridgeback could get protective of her as “his” mate. If your female is no longer with you when you add your next dog, then gender doesn’t really matter.

      1. Thank you for the insight!!!
        Sorry if post came back again…I closed out and came back, not realizing the new comment I’d started typing was still there. Embarrassed.
        Duke (the ridgeback) has had a significantly decreased appetite & is lying around more lately. He sometimes won’t get out of bed until we call in the morning.
        We know he’s grieving, and it’s a process, but we’re a little concerned about his wellbeing…don’t want to let it go on too long.
        We’re hoping the right size pack member will help Maddie, too.

        We don’t want to rush or wait too long.

        1. Hi Melissa, yes there is no question that dogs mourn the passing of their dog family. The way I’ve gone about finding all of my dogs is that I quietly look until they find me. :) I hope the same happens for you and Duke before too long.

          1. Thank you. :)

            Every dog we’ve had has been because of a specific circumstance….things aligned, and it was meant to be.
            Sounds as though you understand. :)

  14. Hi there, I’ve seen very good tips here and wanted to ask your opinion on this. We currently have a bullmatian male who is very goofy and playful and loves attention, we also have a Doberman pinscher who is more shy and reserved , more needy in the sense that he’s always wanting to sit by you or be on you if you’re not already petting him etc.. both males. Both pretty healthy temperaments and attitudes towards each other. The bullmation tends to be the more assertive one. we are considering adding a third dog, a German Rottweiler, do you recommend against having a third male, considering it being an entirely different breed as well?
    The new dog would come as a puppy while the other two males will be near the 2yr old mark.

    1. Hi Nahum,
      Having three male dogs can definitely be challenging when it comes to dynamics and getting along. However, since your current two dogs have relatively healthy relationships and temperaments, adding a Rottweiler puppy could potentially work.

      A few things I would consider:

      • As I’m sure you know, Rottweilers tend to be confident, strong-willed dogs. Make sure you have the time to dedicate to the puppy, so he respects you as the leader and gets along with your other dogs.
      • Supervise all interactions closely, especially as the puppy grows. Dogs can become less tolerant of puppy behavior as the puppy matures.
      • Make sure all three dogs get one-on-one time with you, training sessions, walks, etc. This prevents jealousy or competition for your attention.
      • Having multiple crates, beds, toys, food/water stations can help prevent resource guarding issues.

      If managed properly from the start, three male dogs can co-exist nicely. But it will take more leadership, training and management than just two dogs. Make sure you have the bandwidth for a third before getting a Rottweiler pup – they require a lot of dedicated hard work to become well-trained, obedient members of the household.

      BUT… would adding a female german rottweiler puppy instead of a male be a safer addition?

      Yes, adding a female Rottweiler puppy instead of another male could potentially be an easier introduction. Here’s why:

      • Two male dogs with an existing bond (your current Bullmatian and Doberman) may see another male dog as more of a “threat” or competition for resources and attention. Whereas a female is less likely to disrupt the male-male balance.
      • Female Rottweilers tend to be a bit smaller and less pushy/demanding than male Rottweilers. So she may be easier for your current two dogs to accept as she grows.
      • There would be no risk of same-sex aggression between males. Female-female issues are rarer in most breeds.

      However, you will still want to take precautions by:

      • Properly introducing the new female pup slowly and in a neutral setting
      • Supervising all interactions at first as she gets to know your resident dogs
      • Making sure all three dogs are obedience trained and see you as the leader
      • Providing spaces, toys, food that allow comfortable separation

      With training, proper socialization, and management, I think a female Rottweiler pup would blend well with your existing dogs and be less likely to cause tension than bringing home another male. If you take your time with introductions and are patient – three can work!

  15. Hi, thank you so much for this information. I have a 14 month old, female pitbull, who has been spayed and an intact 20 month old male. The opportunity to adopt a 5 year female Cane Corso whos parents were show winners that has a great personality and demeanor has come about and Im considering it. What are your thoughts?

    1. Hi Mark, you don’t mention temperament of either of your 2 current dogs. Since both Pitbulls and Cane Corsos are no joke, and 2 females are always more of a concern than 2 males, is there a way you can introduce them on neutral ground to see how they do first? Since the Cane Corso is so much older than your girl, that’s a help. Usually same-sex issues arise when they are closer in age. Again, not knowing the personalities of your dogs, my best suggestion is to introduce them to see how they do. Even then, if all goes well, you won’t know for sure for a few months. That’s how long it takes for a new dog’s personality to become fully apparent in its new home.

  16. Hello please could someone help, we have a male pit mix 6 almost 7 months old and a female pressa canerio 1yr 8 months. We are going tomorrow to view a cane corso as me and my partner have always wanted one. In doing research(probably a bit late) we have found that female cane corso could display aggression towards other females and our priority is of course our current dog. However I have seen a lot about it being about the dogs temperament and our girl gets on with all dogs of all genders but maybe slightly prefers females, she is a big friendly giant she isn’t aggressive or assertive or dominant at all she is just a lover same as our boy and we don’t want to risk shaking up our family unit throwing in a completely different dynamic. Again our dogs are completely loving and I don’t believe they would fight even if it was forced upon them which gives me hope. The cane corso puppy is 4 months old so I assume that it wouldn’t display any care for dominance for at least 6-8 months and by the time she might display that they would already know here positions in the “pack” and wouldn’t need to have any problem. Again my dog would instantly back down so I don’t believe they would still need to have any type of problem. But I really don’t want my dog to not feel like she is my priority as she is literally my best friend, why I think I want another female. I’m just worried that it doesn’t go well but I still really want the pup. From what the current owners have said the pup is socialized and lives in a home with 5 or 6 adult dogs and all there sibling and have good temperaments. As I said I’ve seen a lot of people say just it’s all on temperament so I hope that is true but would love some outside opinions and advice. Thank you

  17. Hello could someone please help, I am considering getting a 4 month old female cane corso tomorrow and I’ve heard they display aggression towards same gender and I have an amazing pressa canerio female 1yr8 months. She has a lovely temperament and is quite timid and not assertive or dominant at all and likes all gender dogs from what we have gathered whilst socializing. She is generally kind to all dogs and very accepting. We also have a boy pit mix who is 6 months and the kindest dog too. We love the cane corso but don’t want to throw another dog in the mix if she won’t fit into the family unit we currently have. I have done a lot of research and a lot of people say it depends on the temperaments and my dogs have amazing temperaments so I feel like it will be fine especially as she is a puppy and won’t show any dominant traits for a while and by the time she gets to have these types of emotions they will already be bonded and be friendly. Of course our priority is to our current dogs but we have always wanted a cane corso and planned on getting 4 dogs 2 boys and 2 girls without realizing the complications before hand. Please help, thanks.

    1. Hi Shannon, I hear what you’re saying, but having lived through same-sex rivalry, you wouldn’t believe how ferociously awful it is. I would never take the chance again. Your call, and it sounds like you’ve done your research. But since you’re asking me, I would say don’t take a chance on blowing up your current happy family. Maybe if you had a coupla fluffy dog breeds and were considering another fluffy breed… but your dog breeds are no joke.

  18. We have a 8 year old laid back Cane Corso (female) a3 year old Silver Lab (male). Looking to add another lab…..think male would work best. Your thoughts?

  19. We have two male cavalier King Charles, one is a Velcro dog and follows my every move. The other is independent and hangs alone. We want to add a golden retriever but can’t decide male or female.

    I have dogsat 2 other male dogs in my home for a week at a time and everything went well ( but they know them from walking together)

    1. Hi Jeannette, in your case with Cavaliers the gender combination isn’t as critical as it is with some other breeds. You could safely go with either, but my vote would be for a female next, if I’m being uber safe.

  20. I have one rescue, male, and he’s a corgi jack russel mix and we also have enorher dog male toy poodle who’s still a puppy however I have been considering adding a Australian shepherd puppy but my two male dogs behave perfectly should I add another?

    1. Hi Hannah,
      You don’t mention the motivation for wanting to add a third dog/puppy, so without being privy to your thought process, I’m probably missing some key information that might sway me more one way or the other. But strictly going from the info you’ve provided, my vote is always if you have two happy dogs together, keep it that way. I would also be concerned about the size disparity between a toy poodle and an Aussie. You don’t mention if you’ve had Aussies before. If you haven’t, then I would be even more inclined to encourage you to keep your happy dog family as is. More is not always better… :)

      1. Hi there,
        We’re considering getting a 3rd pup because our almost 2 yr old male ridgeback needs a playmate. He’s your typical ridge: high energy, playful, strong-willed, and super sweet…think Baby Huey.
        We also have an almost 13 yr old female chihuahua/Jack Russell mix rescue (Maddie) we’ve had since she was 1. She is shy & nervous, but she’s not afraid to stand her ground.
        She absolutely loved to play w/our ridge when he was a puppy, but she doesn’t want to pay with him now that he’s huge. I get it. She is happy to curl up with him to sleep, but that’s about it.
        We just lost our lab rescue end of Jan. He was almost 14, and we got him at 9 wks from the pound.
        Since we’re all grieving his loss, we’re not rushing into anything, but we know Duke (ridge) needs a buddy.
        We’re thinking a younger rescue, maybe under 1 yr, something mid-sized, (maybe a hound or boxer mix…not sure), so maybe Maddie will have more fun, too.
        We’re not positive on age…concerned if we don’t do a puppy, we can’t train the way we’d want.
        I walked all 3 at once; they’re all very good on a leash.

        Since we have a male & female, any suggestions regarding gender?
        Suggestions regarding breed?
        Thanks in advance for any help/advice.

  21. Thank you for the insights Karen! We have two male Labradoodles and are considering adding a third dog. Our two boys get along well and play well together. The older one is definitely the alpha of the pack. Based on your advice we clearly should be going for a female to compliment the boys.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top