Getting a new puppy is such a fun and exciting time in any home – for the owners at least. If you have an older dog that’s been in the house for a while, that new furry bundle of energy may not be quite as exciting for them as it is for you. Every dog owner wants their new addition to blend seamlessly with the older dog, but it’s rarely that easy. If you notice signs of aggression or annoyance from your dog towards the new puppy, follow these steps to make the transition easier for everyone!
Spread Your Attention Evenly
It’s easy to get so wrapped up in the cuteness and excitement of a puppy that you give them all of your attention. Try to think about this from your older dogs’ point of view. They have previously been the center of attention, and now a new puppy came into their home and is taking that attention away from them. This can lead to lots of tension very quickly! Ease the tension by address your older dog first and ensuring that both dogs are receiving plenty of love, even if one has more energy and excitement than the other.
Give Each Dog Their Own Resources
Your dog shouldn’t feel like they have to give up their resources to the new puppy. Give each dog their own food, water, toys, and space. If your older dog has a bed that they always lay on, the puppy should learn to respect that space and use their own bed instead. All of these things help to ensure your dog doesn’t feel like a new addition is taking over their home, but rather that they’re just learning to share the home!
Reward Positive Coping Methods
Your older dog can choose either positive or negative coping methods when the puppy starts to annoy them. Negative methods include aggressive or destructive behavior. To discourage that type of behavior, focus on rewarding the dog for using positive coping techniques. Positive coping includes things like getting up and walking away when they’re feeling irritated to put some space between themselves and the puppy in a non-aggressive way.
Contact Argos Dog Training
If you try these methods and are still struggling to get your fur babies to get along, it may be time to call in the help of a professional. Argos Dog Training is highly experienced at dealing with canine behavior and understanding the dynamic of adding a new puppy to a household with an older dog. We offer group training classes and private one-on-one training to address specific behaviors. We want to help you find the right tips and tricks to achieve a harmonious household, so give us a call today at 617-302-7467 to get started!