Introducing a new dog to resident dogs
Being dog friendly and actually living with other dogs are two very different things. Meeting dogs while out walking or ignoring other dogs on walks does not necessarily mean they can live together.
Many of you will remember our gorgeous girl Tia passed away back in July last year. We miss her presence every single day, often shedding a few tears.
Rocky and Tia, both passed but never forgotten
We had no intention of adopting another dog............ and then I met Freya!
Jack, Tia, Spudsy and Rocky
While they are dog tolerant and used to living with other dogs (and even foster dogs in the past) and Freya is dog friendly, this does not mean that dogs will automatically get on or be able to live in a house together, in close quarters.
If you are thinking of adopting another dog, please do get professional help to ensure they are set up to succeed.
The keys to a successful integration are patience and choices!
Use stair gates and safe spaces for all of the dogs, allowing them the choice to meet and greet or the choice to move away.
All three dogs have now successfully met, off lead in the garden and inside the house, through stair gates and up close and personal for brief moments. We are still managing them and taking things very slowly.
Day 1 – Sunday 10th March
Freya came to stay on 10th March for an overnight stay ....... she is still here 😊.
She has a troubled background, having lived outside for most of her life and is very fearful of people. Her choice is always flight, move away from the scary thing. However, she has resilience and over time, will come forward to meet people, in her own time, as long as she has the freedom to move away if she chooses.
Freya is scared of leads among other things and had never been walked so it was difficult to do introductions on lead as she quickly became frustrated.
We did a few meet ups with our two on lead being fed chicken pate and in no time, they were ignoring Freya and looking for more chicken. I posted a couple of videos a while back of these introductions.
We set up a bed and comfortable space for her in our conservatory which has direct access to the garden.
Rather than try to cuddle and stroke her and smother her with affection, we gave her space, taking her out regularly into the garden and then sitting a while in the conservatory with her. We allowed her to approach us for affection, which she did, but would then take herself off to the bed.
We had stair gates on three doorways, to allow the dogs to see each other from two gates away. All of the dogs could see each other if they chose or move away, with two gates in between. This helped them all feel safe.
No problems at all during the day so we settled her down for the night….....
We awoke to a pacing dog, a pile of dog poo and many torn and chewed items, not limited to window boards and a desk! We quietly cleaned up, completely cleared the room and set up what remained of her bed.
Look out for day two tomorrow………………….