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Im new here, not sure if I'm even doing this right, but oh well!

I have a 3 year old male shih tzu (Jasper) and we just recently adopted a shelter puppy. She is a smooth collie mix (Fiona). She is only 3.5 months old so we do leave her crated when we aren't home for obvious reasons/until we think she is fully house trained. We have always let Jasper roam the house since he was house trained and are now wondering if we should let them roam the house together when we think Fiona is ready (house trained).

Will it be dangerous because of their size difference? Should i be worried of fighting that could lead to serious harm to either of my dogs?

Thanks!
 

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It's really individual to the dogs. Some dogs are fine together their entire lives, some dogs are a little too prone to rough play, resource guarding or aggression. There is always the risk, you never know. How big that risk is and whether you're willing to take it is up to you.

Personally, with a big size difference, I wouldn't do it. Then again, I saw what happened when a woman left her GSD and yorkie in her car to run into the bank and deposit cash. She was gone under 5 minutes and when she got back, the Yorkie was in pieces. Those two dogs had lived together for years without incident. I'll never get that image out of my head.
 

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I do not let my dogs be loose in the house together. One dog gets crated, everyone else is separated by a door.

I have size differences, deafness, and terriers all in the mix. So, yeah, ain't no way.
 

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I don't have size differences, deafness or terriers and my dogs still get separated when I'm not home to supervise them. Because what is the point of leaving them together when you don't have to? Why choose to take a (large) risk when there is an option not to have to risk anything at all?

They've gotten on well since day one, and choose to spend the majority of their time together when we are home to supervise, but it's still not happening. While I think that they'd be perfectly fine and even happy to hang out for an afternoon if Moose somehow escaped from his crate, I won't ever actively allow that to happen. It's a peace of mind thing.
 

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I only have one and this issue is a big part of what stops me from getting another, since I live in a small, one bedroom apartment.
Lock one in the bedroom and let the other have the rest of the apartment? Once they're out of a crate/if they don't need one, I mean.
 

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Then again, I saw what happened when a woman left her GSD and yorkie in her car to run into the bank and deposit cash. She was gone under 5 minutes and when she got back, the Yorkie was in pieces. Those two dogs had lived together for years without incident. I'll never get that image out of my head.
Ugh. Did you actually see that? That sounds awful.
 

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It depends on the dogs in my house at the time as I foster. Currently I have a shih tzu foster and my permanent 55lbs mix (gsd/bc/lab) Ranger. They both have the run of the house along with three cats. There is zero RG issues with either of them, both are house trained, and my bigger guy is the least aggressive dog I've met.

Last week I had a senior italian greyhound staying here as well as I gated her away from the other two; mainly because Ranger is a giant derp and she was far too frail to leave out with him. Other fosters have either been in their crate or gated off in the kitchen depending on the need.
 

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I let both of mine free in the house together. They sleep on the couch together and sometimes I see them on cam playing together. For me the benefits outweigh the negatives. I would be wary of leaving 2 dogs with great size differences together.
 

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before with my GSD's unless someone was in heat,, I left them all loose together when I was gone,, they started off all crated when we first started transitioning from outside kennel life to full time indoor dogs in our very first place. I spent a year crating everyone after we moved to the new place.. and allowed different groups to be together loose until I felt confident living with them all loose in the house they were fine..

change of dynamics with different breeds, younger dogs to older and no equal matches in size. And the current infighting with J and Adele.. J 50lb gsd is in my bedroom in a crate with Ra 120lb GSD but 15 years old.. Arka and Adele are loose in the house for guarding and protecting.. and cat is in his cat house.

does depend on the dogs.. especially in groups of more then two ... even then anything can happen on a bad day or a sudden find of some high value item, the excitement of someone coming to the door and in the excitement they redirect on each other because of it. .. I always feel better if the dogs are evenly match .... that I have seen them interact with each other and how they handle disputes with each other.. "what drives them"
 

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Mine are physically similar in size but both are large and strong and even when playing nicely, apt to damage something in my not-that-large house. Neither is aggressive but the potential for a small tiff to turn into a full blown fight still exists without a human there to intervene before it got that far. I see no benefit in letting them be loose in the house together and only a range of potential negatives from the likelyhood of damaged furniture or minor injuries from playing roughly all the way up to the less likely but far worse occurrence of a serious fight.

Chester has the range of the living room, kitchen and bedroom. Eva has the "dog room" with a couch, rug and her open crate with dog bed in it. Both have a window or two to look out of and their own space to sleep. No stress for them, nothing to argue over. When I am home, they are both loose in the house with me or in the yard with me expect during meal time.

On the other hand, when I dog-sat some friends two dogs, those two dogs spent the days loose together in the dog room and I wasn't particularly concerned about them. Smaller, lower-drive dogs who are both far more likely to "back off" from an issue than my dogs would be.

In general, I just don't see enough benefits for most dogs and most households to let the dogs roam if they can reasonably be separated to their own rooms or crates to make it worthwhile compared to the maybe unlikely, but potentially serious, risks.
 

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I own 2 young bull breed mixes and a 14 year old terrier mix, they are all separated when i am gone, i believe if you own more than one dog, and one of them is a bull breed, the responsible thing to do is to separate them when you are alone... BUt i wouldn't leave my terrier mix alone with any dog cause she only puts up with so much
 

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My two are the same breed and will likely be within 10 pounds of each other when the pup finishes growing. Still, I wouldn't be comfortable leaving them alone unsupervised. They get along, but tend to play rough and, I think, the puppy annoys the older dog. Things could escalate quickly without someone intervening. Although, at this point, I don't know that the puppy will even be trustworthy outside his crate of a safe room.
 

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With my small dogs, my one male and my spayed female are loose together, my other two are both crated. Kris is crated as still don't quite trust her loose and Susie usually stays outside unless it is really cold, then she is also loose in the house.
 

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When I had two terriers that were the same size and had no history of dog aggression nor tussling with one another I left them out loose together. My folks' dopey retrievers can safely be left out together, too, the worst they're gonna do to one another is fall asleep in a pile and crush the life out of the dog on the bottom.

Current dogs get along fine but get separated when no one's home. They're also separated in the truck.
 

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My dog has lived with a whole bunch of different dogs because I petsit on a regular basis (and I used to foster too).

He's 7 lbs. Any dog larger than 10 lbs is definitely not left loose with him. With small dogs I only leave calmer ones that I know get along 100% with him and do not have any aggressiveness. Meeko and Sara (another Pom-x from the same mill seizure) lived uncrated no problem. They have known each other since they were babies though. Meeko and Taz (Shihtzu x Poodle) also have known each other since Taz was a pup, and Meeko is able to get away from him because Taz is unable to jump onto our couch.

Any other dog that I have petsat or fostered have been crated or separated. I do not take the risk unless I know the other dog extremely well, and as long as there is no huge size difference.
 

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I don't have dogs with a major size difference, but they do roam together. When we first added our female dog to the family, our boy was at a point where he was trusted (as long as no flip flops were in sight!) to be out in the house by himself. Since our female was new, we kept her crated. After awhile, our boy would get so destructive and irritated that he couldn't play with her that we'd come home to MAJOR messes. Mostly just him destroying the garbage, but he would find anything he possibly could to tear apart. lol When we started letting her out of the crate, the destruction stopped. Haven't had a problem since! Although we have fostered dogs and the foster, no matter the size, is always crated. We never have them long enough to start leaving them out on their own.
 

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I like to mostly keep dogs separated when there is no one home to supervise. However, I have left a foster dog out with my own dog. The foster had separation anxiety that was completely eliminated when she was left out with another dog. I only tried it after an extensive observational period, and after having watched them interact in a variety of situations (including potential guarding situations), there was no issue. Of course, the foster was totally in love with and/or submissive to Snowball, so I don't think it would have ever been a problem if I had kept her.
 
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