Bringing Home a Second Dog

Introducing your new dog to your established dog can be fun if you approach it the right way. When you already have a dog at home, make sure your dog meets the new dog on neutral territory; not in your house or yard. Both dogs should be on leash, and ideally you have a friend helping you. Have each dog do a couple of easy commands for you, then let them go nose-to-nose briefly. Take both dogs for a short walk together so they are not so focused on each other and can just enjoy each other's company. Now you can bring them both home. Show the new dog his place (a crate or confined, pleasant area) and confine him for a little while. Make sure you feed the dogs separately and establish boundaries and rules. As you add pets to your home, you need to re-establish yourself as leader. This type of preparation is well worth it, because the dogs will follow your example and co-exist nicely.

About the author:
Amy Robinson's Care and Training School was the first of its kind in the Midwest when it was founded in 1991. She has appeared as a training and behavior expert on national and local news and news magazine shows, including BusinessWeek, The Chicago Tribune, The San Francisco Chronicle and ABC's Working Woman. Amy volunteers at Chicago-area animal shelters, teaching seminars and training dogs to ready them for their new homes.

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