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Considering a third dog...specifically, a puppy.

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  • Considering a third dog...specifically, a puppy.

    We already have two dogs, a Border Collie and a Kelpie/Aussie. Both are five.

    The BC is somewhat neurotic and a stage three clinger; his job is to worry about starving children in Africa and wonder when we're going to replace him. He does NOT work livestock. The Aussie is very laid back but has some dog aggression issues, which is why we have him. When working cattle in a group, he would turn and rip into another dog who came too close and then go back to working as if nothing happened. His owner got tired of stitching up his dogs, and sold him to DH.

    We had the BC first, and there has never been a problem between the two of them. When around other dogs, at home or away, our dogs have been aggressive to them (not the very timid dog or eldery dog). The BC seems to be the instigator, posturing and provoking; the Aussie not so much, he'll ignore until ignoring doesn't work. We watch them both, and a verbal command is generally enough to head off any problems. After that, they get "trucked" if we're out, or put in the yard at home.

    Well, DH found a litter of mini Aussies, which is something I've wanted. These are puppy-puppies, not adolescents. We would not tolerate aggression to the puppy from the existing dogs, beyond the normal "get away" or "I'm the boss" or "enough." Anyone brought a puppy into a settled group of dogs and had it work? Not work?

    As an aside, I'm not interested in any training tips for the existing dogs.
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

  • #2
    I think your current setup doesn't sound like a great environment for a third dog, no matter what breed it is. Just being honest.

    We are a dog family and always have three (so you can take one and the others have buddies!) and have had more on occasion. We regularly dog sit, and last weekend had five dogs, the two visitors from different households. Our own dogs are just so content to be part of a pack that they are accepting of any outsiders and always make them feel welcome. Our last two were brought in as puppies, and just sort of fit right in. When we had a grumpy old dog, we didn't get a puppy...instead, we found an older shelter dog that grumpy old dog got along with.

    Before truly committing to a puppy, I would be inclined to bring your grumpy dog to a neutral location to meet said puppy. Puppies can be overwhelming (for everyone!) and some dogs, particularly if they're already agressive, just do not handle them well. Some dogs love puppies and would be content if a whole litter of them was dropped off. If your grumpy dog has not interacted with puppies much before, I would look to do some sort of introduction beforehand, carefully supervised.

    My concern with your setup is that it doesn't sound like your guy gives any warning before his attacks. Which, for an unsocialized puppy, is going to be confusing/devastating if he actually causes any damage. But, his agression issues could have been simply related to a working environment, and not occur anywhere else.

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Could be. For example, friends brought over very rambunctious adolescent German Shorthair (I think, or similiar). Dog was all about no personal bubble. The BC stared intently at me to prove how good he was being, while other dog belly crawled under a chair and started licking BC's hind foot. The Aussie...well, the Aussie nipped the other dog at one point after tricking him into body checking the Aussie, if that makes sense. Aussie did NOT like the other dog. Aussie has tolerated other dogs in the house.
      COTH's official mini-donk enabler

      "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

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