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Hello,
I wasn't sure which forum to put this in, so hopefully this is fitting...

I just adopted a 5.5 month old puppy on Wednesday. My office is a family-run business. My Father brings in his two dogs maybe twice a week. Everyone is already asking when I'm going to bring mine in.

I'm under the impression that I should allow my new dog some time in our house to get to know the place it calls home. I wasn't sure if bringing her in the office so soon would be confusing or not.

Can anyone guide me in a proper waiting time, whether it be an actual amount of time or just specific behaviors or situations to look for to know that my dog is "ready" to spend the day at the office?

I'd love to hear thoughts from someone who understands dog psychology. Thanks!

Bob
 

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Is the dog coming in from a foster home or from a shelter/kennel? How much has the dog been around other dogs and new people as far as you know?

Personally, I like a 2 week "chill out" time for new dogs. For the first 2 weeks, we hang out in the house and my fenced yard and after the first week, take walks in quiet areas during low traffic times. I don't have more than one person over at a time and I don't introduce the new dog to any dogs that are not already a part of my household and even that is limited interaction.

That gives time for the new dog to sniff out his new digs, get used to me and my voice, get used to the basic rules of the house (like, here is where the water is, wait for the gate when I open it etc), and mentally decompress from the stressful situation that is a shelter. A dog coming from a foster home might be less stressed than coming from a shelter, but its still a time for the dog to get his bearings. It is also a time for me to assess the dog. How potty trained is the dog, how likely to chew furniture or walls, how does the dog do when seeing small animals like birds or seeing dogs at a distance? That kind of thing.

Since your father brings his dogs, I suggest that after a 1-3 week chill out time at home, that you introduce your dog and ONE of his dogs at a time in a neutral location if possible or depending on how his dogs are known to do with other dogs, on a nice long walk. That way your dog has less new stuff hitting him (mentally) at the same time when going to the office for the first time.

Depending on how the office is set-up, I suggest only bringing your dog during a time when you know that if needed, you can slip away and take the dog back to the house or crate him in an area he won't be disturbed. Meaning, don't bring him for the first day when you have client appointments or meetings which can't be interrupted. Always be double careful of security for a new dog who might slip a leash or dash out a door.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the in depth answer, Shell! To answer your questions and paint a clearer picture...

She was in a shelter in NJ for a month. They took her from a kill shelter in Alabama, so I'm not sure how long she was there. She's only 5.5 months old so at least a majority of her life has been spent in the shelters.

I am currently keeping her in one room in the house for two weeks as I've read that was good before introducing her to new areas of the house, so I was kinda thinking along the lines of at least two weeks before taking her to the office.

I'm currently assessing her behaviors and I've only had her since Wednesday, but so far... no accidents in the house. She goes in a crate at night. No chewing of anything yet. I've only had her on three walks but I get her walking loose leash a ton... way more than I expected at first. That said, she is definitely distracted by all small animals, dogs, people, loud cars, and geese poop. I know this will take some work. I haven't let her get close to any dogs yet, but definitely want to socialize her as soon as is possible and recommended.

I'll try setting the dogs up in a neutral location first. That's a great tip.

As far as my office goes, we don't ever have visitors and the security, we are used to because of my Father's dogs so I have that covered. I know my Father wants me to bring the dog in so I'll be sure to tell him that if I'm not liking the way the day is going or if its too much too soon for my dog, I'm going to return her home.

Sooooo... Maybe I'll wait two weeks minimum, come in early, take her for a decent walk around the neighborhood where the office is, then maybe have my Dad bring his dog down the block to a park and hang out there for a bit and see how they do before returning to the office if all is well. Does that sound pretty good? Again, advice is welcome. I want to do everything right or correct myself as soon as possible with this dog. I have high hopes for our relationship and activities in the future so the less mistakes I have to correct, the better!
 

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Shell gave some really great advice.

Sooooo... Maybe I'll wait two weeks minimum, come in early, take her for a decent walk around the neighborhood where the office is, then maybe have my Dad bring his dog down the block to a park and hang out there for a bit and see how they do before returning to the office if all is well. Does that sound pretty good?
I would suggest having your dog meet one of your dad's dogs in a neutral place as Shell suggested, but not on the same day as you take her in to the office. Have them meet beforehand on a different day. Then do the same with your dad's other dog on another day. THEN bring your dog into the office, but on a day your dad's dogs are NOT there. Let her adjust to that new place on her own and get used to all the new smells and people. Then I would have her meet both your dad's dogs in a neutral place, then eventually work up to having all the dogs in the office together. You want to keep everything a positive experience for her and there's no point in rushing anything. You're going to have her for a long time. Better to make the first experiences great and as stress-free as possible, it'll be better in the long run if you do.

Also make sure that there is a "safe place" for her in the office, where she can go and get away from everyone and be left alone if she wants to be (behind a gate is good, with a crate or bed).
 

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I got my (high anxiety, international shelter) pup at 6 months too. I picked her up on a Saturday, and took her to work with me on Monday because I had no choice. The other office dog wasn't there the first few days, which helped. But it took a ton of management and we had to solve some resource/territory guarding issues later, so I definitely recommend the slower approach. Meeting the other dogs one at a time off site is a very good idea.

I second the 'safe place' idea. If possible, put it farther away from the entrance (are you in an office?), so you're between the pup and the door/access/approach that other people and dogs could be coming thorough.
 
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