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Introducing a New Dog


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Hi

Everyone was so helpful and gracious to me a few years ago when I got a rescue BC and had some issues, and I was wondering if I could get a few lines of advice on my new situation. After getting my first BC (I am a retired dog trainer with 25 yrs. experience in GSDs) I was so in love with the breed that I decided that my next one should be a "split face"...and then I thought maybe I'd like a red one....and finally decided that a red split face would be perfect. Looked around...didn't want to buy (been there done that)...and thought a male puppy would be best.

 

I have a 9 yrs. old neutered male mix and a 4 yr. old spayed BC. My girlfriend called me a couple weeks ago and told me the dog of my dreams was on a local humane society website and there he was...a red and white split faced male (they said he was 2 and he could be...or he could be 3 or 4). Long story short...brought him home and isolated him a few days since the shelter situation wasn't the best and he had been neutered 4 days before and was having problems with the incision and swelling. Wanted to get him out of there and in a cleaner environment, so bought him home and had him vet checked.

 

He was quiet for a few days (probably neutering + trauma + he had been a stray running with two 6 mo. aussie mix girls and I think he missed them.) He has now been incorporated into the mainstream part of our home. I have him in an ex-pen right in the middle of the house where the dogs could meet him and get used to him and vice-versa. He goes out on leash and there is a play yard to be loose. However, I have not yet let all the dogs meet nose-to-nose.

 

I want to introduce these dogs in a way that puts success on my side. How long should I wait for them to meet without a fence between them? I am more concerned this time since it is two dogs accepting one. The male mix seems ok with him now...the BC girl seems not to be too crazy about somebody coming in. Any tips on introductions: when to begin them and how to go about it. I'm sure everyone has different philosophies on this, so it would be interesting to hear a variety.

 

Thanks for any input. I can't attach a photo since it asks for an http address instead of a file location....but he really is beautiful! :D

 

p.s. I should also add that when he is not in the ex pen, we take turns with him in different parts of the house -- just not with the other two dogs (for instance, he was just out on the screened porch with me for 2 hours...I was watching tv and he was just laying around.) I don't believe this dog ever lived in a house, so this is all new to him.

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Have you taken them all for a walk together yet? I would definitely do that first then let them be together in a park or somewhere other than your house. Do your dogs have a history of not getting along with other dogs? Otherwise after having him in the house already then walking them together and letting them loose in a neutral area, I don't see why your dogs would have an issue. By then you should have a good feel for how they are all interacting.

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Thanks, Waffles. Taking them for a walk is a great idea. I never put much into the "neutral territory" thing since years ago, I tried to introduce a puppy that way. My two dogs loved that puppy and loved playing with her....until she came away from "neutral territory" and into their house. Then it was a totally different story. They all eventually got along. But I do think the walk is a terrific starting point for interaction...and one that I wouldn't have thought of, so thanks, again!

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Yes, walking together is a great stepping off point. (pardon the pun) We often start there at the shelter where I work when doing dog meets. If everything goes well on the walk, we have some large fenced in areas where we go and can let everyone off leash if things are going well.

 

When I brought my foster dog in last year he was very anti-social and hadn't been around other dogs before. I actually went and visited at his home for four days before bringing him to my house, each time bringing along one of my dogs and taking him for a walk. He was soooo uncomfortable with this to start, but each day he got better.

 

We did the same when he came to my house. I enlisted the help of a friend and we took all four dogs for a walk before bringing him out into the yard. Within a half hour or so everyone was at least tolerating each other and he even started to play a little.

 

I feel that walking together is a bonding experience, plus the exercise helps them release any stress or tension that might be brought on by being placed in a new situation. If you anticipate one of your dogs having more of a problem, I would tire that dog out with an extra play session prior to the meet & greet.

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Thank you Secret BC..some very good points. We took our first walk this a.m. We did just one dog at a time. Both dogs seemed more interested in the walk than in the new dog. We did have some sniffing, but for the most part, my old dogs seemed to ignore the new one. But I guess it was good that no one got mean. I like the walks and think we'll do this 2-3 times a day. Then, an idea I got from your post, we will try ending the walk by walking in the yard. I have two acres, so no one needs to feel pressured or confined. I won't let them off lead on two acres...but then maybe I'll progress to leaving them off lead in the "play yard" I have which is much smaller. Thanks for your comments...they were very helpful. I am really interested in all the different ways people have gone about this.

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