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I am hoping that you can all give us some wise tips. We have an American Eskimo (Bella) that we have had for 12 yrs. Got her at ten weeks old. She has always been an only house dog. We all love her very much and she has always been wonderful. A week ago we got a new puppy. She is a Shih Tzu (Phoebe). Now Phoebe just has been a wonderful blessing. However, Bella is having a really hard time excepting the pup. Phoebe tries soo hard to make friends, but Bella just wants to not be bothered by her. She growls at her. Phoebe just get heartbroken. Bella has not hurt the pup, but gets very touchy when ever the pup goes near her or her things. We love them both so much, and I know age a breed has some to do with it. Any advice on how we should approach this issue?
 

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I would keep them separated for now, using baby gates ideally. Bella is an old lady, Phoebe is a baby trying to get the old lady to play. Unsurprisingly, Bella is annoyed with the little one's antics. Plus, for 12 years, Bella had all the attention, now she has to share with this invader.

So, for right now, I'd keep them separated. That keeps Pheobe from annoying Bella and prevents Bella from developing a habit of being aggressive to Pheobe. Slowly introduce them, always making it positive for Bella by showering her with treats (or attention or games, whatever is very high value to her).
 

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Thank you for responding. What you have suggested is pretty much what we have been doing. Bella has always been a somewhat aggressive dog and we went into this knowing there would be issues. Bella is old and the vet said she probably only has a year or two left at best. She has overcome cancer once and we think it might be back. Due to the cancer, she had to have atotal hysterectomy and has never had puppies of her own. I think this might have a little something to do with her behavior. As I said, we love them both so much and Bella is such a huge part of this family. My children have grown-up with her. We are making Phoebe a part of the family as well, and growing to love her the same. Thank you again.
 

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That's good advice. Do you walk them both? Do you walk them together? I have heard that walking dogs side by side, but not super close, can help create a bond between them.
 
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