Some Things to Consider…
So, you’ve decided to get a second dog. Your resident dog may or may not be enthusiastic about the arrival of a new addition to the family. He may become especially possessive of toys, food, people or territory. He may grumble at the new dog and mark his territory by urinating inappropriately in the house. This can cause potentially dangerous conflicts between the dogs. On the other hand, many dogs welcome the addition of a new buddy. They thrive on having a new friend to play with, sleep with and just generally share the fun and beauty of the day. Adding a second dog can be a wonderful thing for both dogs and for the whole family. The introduction just has to be handled carefully.
Keys To A Successful Introduction
Think carefully about how to introduce your resident dog to its new playmate. Both dogs will need plenty of space and time to get to know one another and shouldn’t be forced into confined areas. They probably will be playful, frightened, excited, happy and occasionally aggressive at different times as they work things out. Keep the atmosphere as calm and quiet as possible. The resident dog should be lavished with more attention than the new dog, to set the hierarchy straight and make it clear who is “top dog.” One of the most important things when introducing a new dog into the home is to manage competition over food and toys. The house should be prepared well in advance. New blankets, bedding, food and water dishes should be brought in before the new pooch arrives. It’s also smart to buy some new toys that can be given to the dogs at the same time, so that they have an opportunity to share and play without being overly possessive or dominant.
It’s tempting to give the new dog the spotlight, but this can lead to controversies. Just give the dogs an opportunity to get to know one another on their own terms. As they take walks around the neighborhood and romp in the back yard, they will realize that they belong to the same family and hopefully will become the best of friends.