Welcoming a Second Dog to Your Family

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You have a one dog family.  Perhaps you are considering welcoming another.  Super!  Have you considered taking in a dog from a shelter or humane society?

Perhaps you haven’t yet decided if a new dog would be right for you, your family, and your current dog.  There are a few things you may want to think about before taking this big step.

Is your current dog socialable towards other dogs?  If you aren’t sure of the answer to this question, take your dog to a local dog park to meet other dogs.  Many dogs may need to work on their social skills before welcoming another dog into their family.

Introducing your original dog to the new one needs to be done properly.  Take your original dog to the location of the newer dog.  Never introduce the dogs on the original dog’s terrain.

Introduce the two dogs on neutral territory.  Keep the dogs apart until they appear friendly towards each other.  One of the best ways of introducing them is outside with a fence between them.  And a fence that can be seen through is best.  If possible allow the dogs to meet without leashes.  A leash will interfere with the full expression of the dog’s body language.

Never introduce two dogs inside.  Furniture and lack of space may interfere with your ability to control the two dogs should they become unfriendly.

When introducing your original dog to a puppy, do not be surprised if the original dog avoids them.  Your original dog is just being cautious and wants to make sure that your puppy’s mama is not going to come running when they yelp or cry.

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