When it comes to your dogs, does their sex matter? Do you prefer one over another? If so, why?
For most of the time my partner and I have kept pets together, we’ve seemed to gravitate more towards males. Our current two dogs, Kitsune the papillon and Fenrir the Alaskan Klee Kai, are both boys.
When I used to keep house rabbits, I initially adopted males because I had heard that females were more prone to moodiness and aggression. However, when I did eventually adopt my first ever female rabbit, a little back and white Holland lop named Berry, I was surprised by how sweet she was. Berry dispelled any myths I may have held about female rabbits, and I eventually went on to adopt another female, Poppet, who was without a doubt the sweetest, friendliest rabbit I had ever met!
But we still went on to select two boys when it came to getting our dogs!
There are so many other factors to take into account!
Behavior trends based on an animal’s sex seem to be just that – trends. They don’t mean that all members of a certain sex will all behave the same way. Female dogs are often generalized as being more aloof than their male counterparts. But, like with my rabbit example above, that isn’t always the case. For every story you hear about an aloof, independent female dog, you’ll hear another about one who is super snuggly and obsessed with her people. It seems, big surprise (note the sarcasm there) that an animal’s personality is based on a lot more than just their sex.
But Sometimes, Sex Does Matter
That doesn’t mean that sex differences can always be written off completely. A big issue that comes to mind is same-sex aggression in dogs. Seen more often between two female dogs, same-sex aggression is exactly what it sounds like. Oftentimes, if you are thinking about adopting a second dog, your best option will be to get one that is the opposite sex of your current dog. Aggression is documented more often between two female, or two male, dogs than it is between male-female pairs.
However, you may have a reason to select a specific sex such as, for example, your current male dog being unneutered. With two male dogs, whether they are neutered or intact, you wouldn’t have to worry about any accidental puppies. There are sometimes some physical differences between males and females that make people favor one sex over the other. Female dogs tend to be, on average, smaller than males.
Or Maybe Girls Rule?
There are some other physical differences that can cause people to prefer one sex over the other. Males of many species tend to have more noticeable…well, you get the idea. Many people don’t like that male dogs mark, even if they keep their marking activities outdoors. Males, especially when left intact, are also more likely to display unwanted sexual behaviors. However, humping in many species is not always solely a sexual behavior. It can also be used to display dominance, for example, and is not a super unusual behavior even in fixed pets.
With female dogs, of course, you do have to deal with them going into heat until they are spayed.
It all Comes Down to Personal Preference
Some people just seem to prefer one sex over another for no discernible reason. I don’t have anything against female dogs, I just prefer keeping males. I don’t know whether I can entirely explain why. It’s just personal preference, I suppose. I don’t write off the chance that I’ll someday share my life with a female dog. But when given the option I feel like I’ll always be more likely to select males. Although I admit it would be fun to have an excuse to buy pink, girly dog supplies!
What do you think? Feel free to comment below! If you prefer to keep pets of one sex over the other, do you have a specific reason for doing so, or is it just personal preference?
I know what you mean – I have only male guinea pigs. I’m not sure whether there’s really any difference in temperament, as both males and females can be territorial or bossy. Maybe boars are slightly more likely to come up with a male dominance issue where neither will back down, but it’s taken a long time for me to find two boars that wouldn’t tolerate each other – and they’re brothers! Go figure.
You can find some of them blogging from A to Z this year, on George’s Guinea Pig World
My first ever bonded pair of rabbits was two unrelated males. I had heard so often that male/female pairs were better, but my boys loved each other. I had also heard before that females were generally less affectionate, but the female rabbit I have now is a sweetheart. Go figure, my male is the one who really doesn’t like human attention.
I’ll stop by and check out your blog! Guinea pigs are one pet I’ve never had the pleasure of owning, but they are adorable.