Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner
1 - 1 of 1 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,375 Posts
This is a big question and there is no black and white answer. Here are some things I consider when mixing my own dogs as well as strange dogs or clients' dogs:

Before introduction I want to know for each dog:
-What is the dog's fight history, and bite history (bite = breaking skin). If there is any bite history, I want to hear details.
-Socialization history and general exposure to dogs. (ie, if this is a dog that's never interacted with another dog, versus dog park dog)
-What is the dog's play style.
-Size of dog
-Any special considerations (ex. super old or young dog, arthritic, etc.)

The answers to these questions determine where and how I introduce dogs. There is no solid equation. Generally speaking, I like to start with dragging leashes with social dogs in a low risk try (generally social, no bites, not reactive, similar size). If I feel like there is a risky size difference or difference in play style, I sometimes choose to have the 'rowdier' or 'riskier' dog dragging a leash, or even handicap that dog by holding the leash so that the other dog has the ability to move away. For reactive dogs, sometimes I start with some engage/disengage type exercises from a distance and progress to parallel walking, into a natural greeting with both dogs on leash and handlers circling to keep the leash loose. For barrier reactive dogs, I start by having one dog behind a visual barrier and having the second dog come in, letting both dogs go once safely close enough for supervision, and letting them both greet swiftly and without tension.

Any dog with a puncture history with another dog is introduced with a muzzle (with the exception of very context specific bites like... dog is good with all except bit once over a raw bone, or something like that). Dogs with huge size discrepancies are introduced with the larger dog dragging a leash or handicapped. Plenty of interruptions for pushy dogs.

With Brae, I do off leash intros with me close by, since I can verbally interrupt or correct him. He is very social but can be pushy and rude. I ALWAYS supervise with Brae since if he's bored he will sometimes push the other dog for interactions, and though he has a beautiful dog history so far I know he wouldn't back down if things escalated. If he wasn't responsive to my verbal cues, I would handicap him with a leash or long line.

With Sor, I do leashed intros with smaller dogs and/or dogs who are known to take corrections well. I do muzzled intros with larger dogs and/or other confident dogs who might not take corrections well. I make sure they don't have a bite history, or else it wouldn't be fair for Soro. I ALWAYS supervise with Sor because of his history. But after the initial introduction he is actually pretty easy to have around other dogs. He doesn't care for other dogs as much.
 
1 - 1 of 1 Posts
Top