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Old 01-09-2014, 01:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
havery
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Default Posturing for dominance?

How far should I let it go? We introduced an older (8 year old) male into our household with a young (16 month) female. The first day was tense, but after a couple hours they tolerated each other, the only outbreaks happened over a ball he had brought with him. He's very calm and easy going, she is not. I've been giving them periodic breaks from each other (alternating crating) because she's been annoying him. The second day they were fine, he just needed a break from her every couple hours. Day 3 they played like buddies and things were looking good. We're now on day 4 and every time I let them outside together (away from my influence) she's been posturing. There has been no biting, but a lot of teeth shown from both parties, and she appears to be taunting him, dancing around with teeth showing. I feel like our extra long play session yesterday showed his arthritic hips and she's trying to take advantage to gain the upper hand. She's not doing it in the house or when I'm around, they're perfect angels then.

I guess my question is, how far should I let it go? I know they're going to have to figure this out, but how much should be acceptable to keep everyone happy? I've been careful to give her extra attention and reward the good interactions between them. Am I doing this all wrong?
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