When it comes to introducing a new puppy to your older dog, there are certain things you need to consider ensuring everything goes smoothly. Older dogs can become very dominant in their own home, so it's important to keep this in mind when bringing your new puppy home.
Before They Meet
Before you even introduce your dogs to each other, you need to make a few necessary changes to the house. Firstly, remove any toys or chews that your older dog plays with, as this can be something that they become very territorial over. Similarly, move any food or water, as you don't want your puppy to eat any of the food that they aren't used to or have your older dog getting jealous if they eat their food. It's also really beneficial to create a few spaces within the house for your dogs to go to in order to have their own space, if it all gets a little too much for them to handle.
You should also consider purchasing two new dog toys, that are the same if not similar, for your puppy and dog to have. By giving them both something to play with, that they both have, there won't be any jealously or feeling of being left out. Take a look online at retailers like Petwell who have a huge selection of toys to choose from.
The First Introduction
Itâ€™s important to remember that your older dog has lived in your house for a long time and therefore sees it as their own home too. Find an area in the house where you can introduce your puppy and dog that is neutral and calm, as this will help to keep them calmer and settled. You need to remember to stay calm during the introduction, giving both puppy and dog plenty of attention and praise during the initial meeting. This will help to keep them comforted and ensure they don't become stressed. If you notice your older dog becoming distressed, growling or snarling then be sure to comfort them and take them out of the situation for a moment, to let them calm down before you introduce them again.
Things to Avoid
When you introduce your dog and puppy, you need to ensure you avoid doing certain things. For example, you should never let one dog bully or dominate the other, as this is going to result in the other dog feeling vulnerable and scared. You should also ensure there are no fights, if your dog's start to fight you must nip it in the bud and ensure they know how naughty it is to do so. If you feel your dog's aren't quite gelling straight away, don't force them to spend time together. It can be a slow process and you need to give them the time they need to get to know each other comfortably.
Sure, you could help things along by maybe sharing activities with them - it could be as simple as whipping out the Dog Nail Clippers and having a grooming session together, or maybe even going to the park and having them goof off together. By allowing them to co-exist in multiple situations, they'll start to rely more on each other and even, after a while, miss one another when the other one isn't present for some reason. It's all about being patient - after all, relationships aren't built in a day!