Introducing Your Puppy to Other Pets
Bringing the new puppy home is an exciting time; but must be done carefully, especially if you already have other pets living in your home. With these tips for introducing your new puppy to it’s new home (and new roommates), hopefully you can create a peaceful coexistence between pets.
Transporting your new puppy into a new environment can be stressful to begin with; now imagine bringing it home to new pets as well. It’s important to take this process slowly, to give your new pup and your older pet time to acclimate accordingly.
As dogs are territorial by nature, you may want to first introduce your two dogs in a neutral location, where they don’t have to protect their space. Try introducing the two leashed dogs in a park or yard, allowing them to sniff each other and interact for the first time. If you have more than one pet, introduce the newcomer separately to the existing dogs, as to not overwhelm him. Be aware of defensive body language, growling, or hair standing up. Once both animals seem to tolerate each other, bring them to your home.
One Step at a Time
Throughout the introduction process, pay equal attention to each of your pets and reassure them that everything is fine. It may feel natural to baby the newcomer, but you must help your older pets feel that they are still an important part of the household. Try spending some quality time with each of your pets whenever time permits.
Never leave your animals alone without your supervision until you are confident that each animal can get along without becoming defensive and aggressive. You may need to bring your new puppy into a separate room until the other animals can adapt to the new presence. In the meantime, make sure your puppy has his own food and toys to play with.
Encouraging a peaceful coexistence between your new puppy and existing pets may take some time and lots of patience, but with these tips your pets should be friends in no time. If you are still having trouble getting both animals to get along, contact a professional dog trainer to help you with this process.