• Ten Tips For Introducing a New Dog to Your Pack

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    1-Before you bring the new puppy or dog home, remove anything your resident dog might guard, such as food bowls, bones, chew toys, toys, and beds. Even if your dog has never exhibited possessive tendencies before, it is best to exercise caution.

    2-It is best not to introduce the dogs in your house or yard because the resident dog may become territorial. An open area in the park is perfect because there are plenty of interesting sights and sounds to distract the dogs and they can move away from each other if they choose.

    3-Bring the dogs together and allow them to greet each other. Do your best to keep slack in the leashes (or let the leashes drop) so the dogs won’t feel like they are being held back. Allow them to sniff. A puppy will typically adopt a submissive position, such as lying down or even rolling over to be investigated by the adult dog. A well-socialized adult dog will likely check out the puppy and then either play with him or ignore him. When two adult dogs meet, they often stand tall and “posture” to each other. They may sniff each other, circle each other, urinate, play, or just decide to ignore each other. Don’t panic if they push each other a bit, growl, or even try standing up on each other’s shoulders. Allow them to do what they do to establish a relationship, with as little intervention from you as possible.

    4-If the dogs try to fight, however, you will need to intervene. If you see signs of serious tension, such as raised hackles, growling, showing teeth, prolonged stares, or snapping, call the dogs away before things escalate. Try not to pull them away by the leash, as the tension on the leash might trigger an attack. If the dogs won’t come away on their own, wave a treat in front of each dog’s nose and then lure them to turn away from each other.

    5-Keep the interactions brief at first. After the dogs greet, go for a walk together. If you have multiple dogs, introduce each dog to the newcomer separately before bringing everyone together as a group.

    6-When the dogs are ready, bring them into the house. If they got along well at the park and in the yard, let the resident dog off the leash first. Permit the new puppy or dog to explore the room or house on the leash. If the resident dog acts in a friendly manner, let the new pet off the leash.

    7-Always supervise interactions between the dogs until they have been friendly with each other for one to two weeks. They should not be alone together before them. Keep your mealtime, bedtime, walk and play routines the same as before the new dog arrived, so things don’t seem too different for the resident dog.

    8-Do not put the dogs in small spaces together, such as a car, crate or small room, before they are completely comfortable with each other.

    9-Each dog should have his or her own food bowl, bed, and toys.

    10-If a fight breaks out, DO NOT let them “fight it out.” It is always better to interrupt fighting so the dogs do not develop a pattern of aggressive behavior.

    Source: aspca.org