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  1. #1
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    Introducing a new pet

    We've been contemplating getting Grommet a companion as she's home alone during the work day and we think it'd be cool to have two dogs :)

    I found a candidate on petfinder and spoke with the woman at the shelter, she thought they would be a great match personality wise.

    Does anyone have any advice, caution, stories about introducing a new pet? Did it go smoothly or did it create chaos?

    thanks
    jt

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  3. #2
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    I've done this so many times.

    Grommet doesn't really need a buddy, but it will make you feel better that he has a partner in crime. Dogs are pack animals so they do well with others, as long as it isn't too many. Have five dogs and you may have pack issues. Two dogs and you are still in control easily.

    I had a nervous sorta mid sized dog, very sweet but traumatized. I went to the shelters and read all the notations on each dog that seemed remotely likely. I wasn't looking for one who would overwhelm her, just a companion. I settled on one because she was clearly smart and trained, and very eager to meet me as her prospective parent.

    I asked the volunteer at the shelter if I could bring my dog to meet this new one, and that was fine. I had to follow a few rules, like pull up to a certain gate, and bring my dog on a good lead to another gate while the volunteer brought the new dog onto a neutral grassy plot. It apparently was used for just this purpose: neutral territory. It didn't stink of the kennels to human noses, didn't get regularly marked by mean or fearful animals.

    Both girls were antsy, we held both on very close tight leads. A little bared teeth, a lot of sniffing and starting to pull away, but they recognized the humans were comfortable so they settled down. I adopted that dog right then and there. (They'd already had a waiting period on record for me and knew me as a conscientious pet owner.)

    It took them a couple of days and a bit of posturing in the house and yard, but they did work it out. Within a week I could walk them on a dual lead, shoulder to shoulder.

    Grommet is your first, but he may not be dominant with another dog in the house. They have to work that out.

  4. #3
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    thanks for the advice, we adopted Kenya and she and grommet seemed to get along at the shelter, but we're having territory issues in the house, kenya has snapped, growled and barked at grommet. I've never heard grommet growl in her life but just a few min ago some people went to the unit next door (strangers) and grommet started to growl, it's like this house is crazy, I'll have to see how things go but grommet may be a one and only :(

    I went to the humane society to talk to a professional and she lent me a crate and told me that the city shelter does not euthanize adoptable dogs and is open tuesday so kenya got a bit of a pardon, but things aren't looking so good as the woman told me that females will fight to the death in some cases :(

    jt

  5. #4
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    So what are you doing with Kenya now? Is the crate for temporary inhouse use until they both settle down? Or are you leaning towards taking her back to a shelter?

    Yeah, dogs can fight to the death, but that is so unlikely. Really. Isn't Grommet a big golden dog with brownish muzzle? Looks like a sweetie?

    What is Kenya like? Do you know what breeds or crosses she has? And is she spayed? I hope both girls are spayed. That will make things easier if they are.

    Some dogs are only dogs. I'd bet Grommet isn't, but if Kenya is a very territorial dog or has recently had a litter, she might be the problem.

    Maybe both dogs are PMSing while they sort things out. I always allow a few weeks for things to settle, but it's usually resolved in a few days.

    If you can, try some quality time alone with each of them. Just like you would if they were two kids suddenly forced to live together. Use your commands to control them. If you get both of them to Down or Stay or Sit, they will recognize that you are the dominant one. They will establish their own hierarchy, but be a little afraid of crossing you.

    Sounds nasty and authoritarian but that is what dogs want: a clear leader.

  6. #5
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    yup that's grommet.

    Kenya is part rottweiler part ridgeback, looks like a rottweiler with a tail and a ridge.

    The woman at the shelter recommended not keeping them together, she said it's better to find the second dog a loving home than put them both at risk. There have just been too many occurances for me to trust kenya.

    I know they want order, but i don't know how much more order i can give them, kenya is very selective in her hearing, so it's leading grommet to do bad things too, i.e. jump up on the couch b/c she saw the other dog do it... :(

    jt

  7. #6
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    uh-oh. sounds like it was an ill-fated match. Kenya's heritage is a little aggressive to command easily. I'm sure some Rotty-ridgeback crosses could be, but she seems to be pretty dominant.

    I hope it all works out for you in some fashion. It's emotionally draining to have to deal with this, and you need to consider poor Grommet, too.

    I see you've posted about this in another thread. Haven't read it yet, but saw just enough to commiserate with you. Some people, including some here, will think they know what you should do, and they can be pretty damn ugly and judgmental. Piss on em. I hope you get good support here. There is no perfect solution to your dilemma. Hugs for you and grommet, girlfriend.

  8. #7
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    Thank you for your kind words lizzy, I've been in tears about this and really have been searching my soul. After having consulted with the professonal at the humane society, talking to my insurance co under an assumed identity and talking to a friend about this, I think Kenya is just too much of a liability. I don't want that to seem cold and unfeeling. My brain is telling me not to keep an untrained dog with stray in her background, agressive behavior towards my dog that might make me lose my homeowners insurance, my heart tells me i have to keep her, it's tough to look into those eyes and not want to keep her. However in the best interest of EVERYONE, I think it's best to give her up. My friend pointed out that the dog has a chance at this no kill shelter to get a home where it's the only dog and gets the love and attention it deserves. This way my dog also isn't feeling completely threatened and also I'm not liable for a dog that is termed 'agressive' and lose my insurance. My b/f is attached, it's hard not to be, she's such an adorable dog, but I really think that at this point I've examined all these things with a rational person and we've thought of all the cons and they just seem to outweigh the potential pros. The pro would be having this dog, the cons are all of the above, I think we can all benefit from my giving this dog up, this is a lesson well learnt that will not be forgotten, to really think about something with a rational mind, before letting your heart get involved and clouding your judgement.

    Thank you for listening

    jt


 

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