doggie dude ranch & training center

BOARDING | TRAINING | DAYCARE

doggie dude ranch & training center

BOARDING | TRAINING | DAYCARE

Pins & Needles – Dogs Meeting Each Other: Introducing a Second Dog to Your Present One

"I realized at the end of the session, that I had walked her through what must be a terribly anxious scenario for many other dog owners. During our session, she kept saying, “I would never have thought to do that!"

A client came to me the other day, for help introducing a new puppy to her older, cranky-ish male terrier.  She was terrified of the dogs meeting each other, fearful the older dog would fight first and ask questions later.  I realized at the end of the session, that I had walked her through what must be a terribly anxious scenario for many other dog owners. During our session, she kept saying, “I would never have thought to do that!”, or “That’s just opposite of what I would have tried.” I decided to write a blog post around the advice I gave her.

Here it is:

1 ~ Choose a neutral place to for the existing family dog to meet the newcomer. A fenced outdoor area or large room is best – but NOT on the family dog’s turf.  If dogs meet each other on the existing dog’s home turf, s/he might feel the need to guard it from the “intruder”.

2 ~ Remove all toys/food/other high-value objects from the meeting area. Again, you don’t want to encourage competition over a special resource.

3 ~ Decide which of the two dogs is most likely to be ‘snarky’ or bite-y. Attach a drag leash to that dog’s flat collar.  (No training collars).

4 ~ No human interaction, please. No talking, no petting, no nothing. No physical affection to either dog.  Let the meeting occur in its purest, natural form. Inserting yourself into the mix can sometimes make you the object of jealousy, especially for the existing family dog. Jealousy causes fights. Don’t we know!

5 ~ Do NOT pull on the leash, even if you think the dogs are approaching “critical mass” and a fight might break out at any moment. If a fight IS on the brink, pulling on the leash can actually tip the scale and cause the fight to begin.  Only use the leash to extract one of the dogs if a skirmish actually occurs.  Otherwise, leave them alone.

6 ~ If the dogs come close to where you are standing, move away from the dogs.  Distance yourself physically from both dogs whenever possible.  Again, it’s the jealousy thing, as well as the two’s-company, three’s-a-crowd thing.

7 ~ If you are sitting in a chair, stand UP if the dogs congregate near your feet.  Sitting, you too close to the action, and again more likely to be that “bone of contention.”

8 ~ Do NOT reprimand one dog in front of the other. That just messes with the hierarchy that the dogs are trying diligently to determine. Let them figure out who will be boss.

9 ~ Don’t predetermine who should be boss and who should play second fiddle. Let nature and the dogs figure that out! The boss might not be whom you think, or even whom you want. Nature might have other plans, and you must go along.

10 ~ When both dogs seem to be walking around comfortably, repeat the same process in the existing dog’s backyard. If that goes well, repeat the process inside the family dog’s home. Then you’re set!

Camilla Gray-Nelson

Camilla Gray-Nelson

Camilla has over 50 years experience with animals (she grew up on the farm!). She has trained, bred and shown dogs since 1989 and brings this broad background and knowledge of dog behavior to her clients and her business. Her life-long understanding of the animal mind helped her develop what has become her signature style of natural dog training and voice control, now simply referred to as the “Dairydell Method”. Camilla and her Dairydell Method have been featured in numerous newspaper and magazine articles, as well as on San Francisco TV’s Evening Magazine and View From the Bay. Camilla loves teaching – whether it’s dogs, their owners, or the horses you see her riding in Dairydell’s beautiful arena. When she’s not training, teaching or riding, Camilla is writing about her favorite subject: dogs and their people! Camilla holds professional memberships in both the National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors (NADOI) and the International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP).
Camilla Gray Nelson

Camilla Gray Nelson

Camilla has over 50 years experience with animals (she grew up on the farm!). She has trained, bred and shown dogs since 1989 and brings this broad background and knowledge of dog behavior to her clients and her business. Her life-long understanding of the animal mind helped her develop what has become her signature style of natural dog training and voice control, now simply referred to as the “Dairydell Method”.

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6 thoughts on “Pins & Needles – Dogs Meeting Each Other: Introducing a Second Dog to Your Present One”

  1. There’s gotta be a canine equivalent for “horse sense.” We’re thinking of getting a new dog as a pet for our 10-year old Lab-Retriever mix. Good advice from the best dog trainer we ever met!!

    Reply
  2. I love this new blog! We have a new dog coming in a couple months and I have been wondering how best to introduce him to Zumi.

    Thanks again for your timely advice – I will keep you posted on how it goes.

    Aliene – Rohnert Park

    Reply
  3. I almost called your center with that very same question, as I have to take care of one of my friend’s dog for few weeks. Thanks for answering it.
    Nazzi

    Reply

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