New year new pet! Planning on adding to your furry family in 2016? While as current pet owners you know the financial and time commitment a pet requires. Although you may be ready for a new furry friend, the current pet or pets in your house might be a little apprehensive. Here are some tips on introducing a new pet to your current ones.
1.Use A Neutral Zone
You should always introduce new pets in a neutral zone. Dogs are extremely territorial and can become aggressive when a new dog is on their territory. We suggest a park, preferably one that your current dog has not been to. Or have you and a friend take both dogs for a walk to get them some exercise and allow for sniffing to occur.
2. Let Dogs Be Dogs
Let the dogs sniff and interact on their own, don’t force it. Let the dog’s dictate what actions they take. Remove the dogs from each other at the first sign of aggression. Don’t be dismayed if your dogs seem uninterested or aggressive, these things take time.
3. Stay Happy
Keep a happy and upbeat tone of voice. This helps your dog feel at ease and shows your dog that you are ok with the other dog and not in danger or frightened. Give praise and rewards for when they get along to encourage the dogs to learn that positive things happen when they are together.
4. Keep it short
Keep the first encounter with your dogs short and sweet. This keeps the dogs from getting stressed or scared. If you have the option to introduce the dogs over a couple of days is best, but this is not an option for everyone.
5. Take Them Home
Once your dogs are getting along and you feel comfortable how the dogs are acting take them for a walk or walk them home from the park. This allows both dogs the experience of coming home together. Now your old dog is near their territory and can begin letting the new dog experience it. Once home, give each dog his own water and food bowl. The first dog can become territorial over his stuff, so make sure each dog has his or her own toys, water dish, food bowl, and bed. You may also want to feed the dogs in separate areas to prevent one from taking food from the other.
Eventually the dog dynamics will be sort out and the dogs will get along.
If you need more tips on how to introduce your new dog to your current dog watch this video.