Bringing a new puppy home to meet your dogs can be a challenging experience. Your dogs are already set in their ways. They’re used to their schedule, to your affection and to their comfortable way of life, and bringing a new puppy into the mix can change that.
Bringing a new dog home may put stress on your dogs, so it’s very important that you use the following tips to help make the transition easier on everyone.
Introduce them neutrally.
Most people make the mistake in bringing the puppy home and introducing them to the dogs while there, but this is a big no no. Your dogs consider themselves the “owners” of your home, and bringing a new puppy home makes your dogs feel a breach of their own territory. Instead, try to introduce the puppy and your dogs in a neutral territory, such as on a walk or in a dog park. This way, neither dog will feel like the alpha dog, and it will allow them to introduce themselves to one another without any hesitation.
Keep the age of your dog in mind.
If you have older dogs at home, a puppy can be a challenge. It’s not that your dog won’t like the puppy, it’s just that your dog may not have the energy to deal with the constant needs and activity of a puppy. If your dog is used to a quiet house, a puppy is going to interrupt this. This change will have an impact on your dog, so it’s important to remember your dog’s needs as well as the puppy’s.
It’s very important that you eliminate toys and bones from the home until the dogs have settled. You do not want to cause tension between the dogs, and your dog may feel possessive about the items they consider to be theirs. By eliminating objects, you’re forcing the dogs to interact, not fight.
Stop the fighting.
If your puppy and your dogs start to fight, you need to stop it quickly. Make sure your dog and your puppy know that you mean business and that you will not tolerate fighting. This will teach your puppy how to behave, and it will teach your dog to respect the rules.
Reinforce positive behavior.
When you see your dogs interacting appropriately with one another, make sure that you show them praise. Dogs react well to positive praise and reinforcements, so make sure that you let them know when they’re being good dogs.
Spend time with your old dogs.
You have to pay close attention to a puppy. They need to be trained, and they need to follow a schedule. Because of this, your older dogs may feel as if you’re spending too much time with the puppy and not enough time with them, forcing them to feel as if they’re being replaced. Because of this, you need to make sure that you’re also spending quality time with your dogs and not just the puppy. Reinforce to them that you still love them, and everything will work out in the end.