Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Birmingham, AL
New Puppy Meeting My Adult Dogs
I am new to this forum (Yay!) and I'm sure this question has been posed many times before. I'll give all the details before asking, though. I have a total of 3 dogs now, a Shiba Inu (Koji, M), a German Shepherd/Husky (Ringo, F), and a purebred GSD (Oswin, F). Koji was the first in the group to become a part of my life. I got him when he was 8 weeks old, trained him on my own, though looking back, I know I could have done better. He's always been a great dog. My vet even comments on how well behaved he is compared to her other Shiba clients. He's just over 5 years old now. He grew up being very well socialized with both people and other dogs of all sizes and ages. He never showed any kind of aggression toward dog or human until about a year ago and he started showing very mild aggression (a little snarl or snip if they got in his face) towards unalterd, adult male dogs and no one else. I only recently had him neutered due to the fact that he is spending more time outside as I moved into a house with a large fenced backyard. Alright, so that's Koji's background. Ringo, who is also roughly 5 years old now, I brought into my life when Koji was just over 1 and a half. They clicked like they had known each other since birth. Ringo was a shelter rescue, meaning she was spayed prior to adoption, and I got her when she was about a year and 4 months, give or take. Ringo has never shown aggression toward anyone or anything. She and Koji play and rough-house, she lets kids pull her fur and play with her tail, she's just a very tolerant pooch. I don't have much else to say about Ringo, except that she's the perfect dog. Now, we introduce the interesting situation. I got my new GSD puppy, Oswin, a little over a week ago. I assumed with her being female, I would have no trouble introducing her to either of my dogs. So, on her second day home, I took her to meet Ringo and Koji. Leashes were on and I had help from my S.O. to keep everyone separated. Ringo, as I expected, was great and let Oswin lick her face and crawl under her, etc. Koji surprised the mess out of me and snarled and snapped at Oswin we she got close to him. Oswin went back to her space and Koji to his, by our hands. No harm done anywhere, just startled me. I gave it some time and tried again today with Oswin kenneled, and one dog at a time. Ringo, again, did perfect. Koji mostly ignored Oswin when I brought him in alone. He sniffed her through the kennel and left her to come back to me. I treated him, told him what a good boy he was and tried to keep his attention more focused on me, while treating him when he sniffed Oswin without any snarls. So, I let Ringo back into the room. Koji got snarly with Ringo around. Koji has been around 8 week old pups before with Ringo and never had problems. This is a fairly surprising, new occurrence for us. So, here are my questions, as I've never had trouble introducing dogs before:
1) Could Koji be protecting Ringo? Even though Ringo is showing no signs of fear, etc. with Oswin.
2) What tips do any of you guys have for introducing them slowly, while stopping the snarls?
I've read books, articles, and other forums on this situation, but they all seem to addressing dogs who show severe aggression and have for a long time. The aggression is new for Koji, and still mild.
I have plenty of time to keep introducing them slowly, and have a ridiculous amount of patience for my dogs. I just want to ensure everyone is safe and happy for when they are able to start spending more of their time together in the yard. Thanks!