Advice on GSD and introduction to adult dogs and Cats
I just rescued a 2 year female GSD and brought her home yesterday from the vet after having been spayed. I have 2 dogs and 3 cats and would like information on how others have safely and effectively introduced and integrated their adult GSDs with household pets. The GSD was stress tested at the shelter and showed no interest in the cats, but I know that this really doesn't mean anything. I have no history on the dog other than it was an outdoor dog. While at the shelter, the dog was submissive and docile with no signs of aggression.
Yesterday was day 1 at home, and Zoey was anxious (as expected) but not interested in any of the various outdoor wildlife around our home (squirrels, rabbits, birds, sea gulls, etc.). She saw the cats but they have been moved to other parts of the house and have made themselves scarce. I have not made any attempt to introduce/integrate at this point.
We introduced Zoey to our 2 adult dogs (lab mix, 12 year fem; cocker mix, 9 yo male) on neutral territory, on leash and walked in pack with no problems. We spent about 1.5 hours with the initial introduction. Yesterday while indoors, Zoey was on leash and the other dogs off. Zoey was walked on leash with neighbor dogs as well and showed absolutely no signs of aggression. Outside all dogs are leashed and behave well. Inside, today I noticed Zoey T-stancing the other dogs and my cocker-mix reacted and a brief scuffle ensued. Since that time, I have separated Zoey inside from the other dogs via dog/puppy gate. Outside, I have not seen any signs... they all do their thing. We walk as a pack and they were allowed off-leash (Zoey remains on-leash just-in-case) in a fenced yard and showed no signs of dominance aggression. Zoey is not crate trained but the cocker is.
This is my first GSD and I have read Barron's Training Your GSD and another GSD book as well as numerous GSD magazines and Internet articles. I am trying to do as much right as possible as i want to make this work. I have always wanted a GSD and I felt strongly about adopting from a shelter. I had the option of purchasing a trained GSD, but it just didn't feel right. My husband found this GSD at the shelter and we both just fell in love with her, so I need to make sure I do everything I can to make sure everyone in the family remains safe and secure. I am going to take Zoey to obedience classes but live in So MD so my options are limited. My ultimate goal is to hopefully train Zoey in SAR - I'm taking one step at a time though.
Sorry for the length. I appreciate all advice/ideas/tips anything I can get.
Thanks in advance!
Zoey, GSD rescue
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