How to Introduce a Rescue Dog into the Family

Photo by Helena Lopes on

There are so many dogs that need new homes and families who have the homes and hearts to take them in. However when the family already owns a dog/s it’s not as easy as just bringing home a new dog and thinking it will run smoothly. Below are some helpful tips to introduce a rescue dog into the family

Make sure you are ready for another dog.

  1. Being ready finically is a necessity before bring in another dog. Since you have to pay for the dog and everything that comes with the dog.
  2. Make sure resident dog/s are already established. It can take up to a year for a dog to fully feel at home and understand the rules in the house.
  3. Fix all bad habits of resident dog/s before bringing in a new dog. Whether if it is leash pulling, excessive barking, nipping or jumping on people the bad habit can become worse and harder to break when a new dog is added to the mix.

The finding the right dog

  1. Find a dog that’s personality matches your family. A lazy basset hound wouldn’t work well in a high active family. While a hyper dog wouldn’t work well with a resident dog/s that is a couch potato.
  2. Two dominant dogs will not work together because they will be fighting for control, so one dominant and a submissive dog work well together. However you don’t want to have a dog that will be a bully to the other dog/s. If they are keeping a dog from you, not letting them into a room, not letting them eat or drink then they are being a bully dog.
  3. Some male dogs don’t do well with other male dogs. While females usually do well together. Old dogs can become aggressive with puppies who have high energy.

The first introduction

  1. Try to meet at a neutral setting
  2. Keep all dogs on a loose leash. Being on a loose leash will make it easier to help control the situation, while letting the dogs can come and go from the interaction.
  3. Try to let them meet nose to nose first then let them sniff each other. Some dogs do not like to have their butts sniffed. Meeting nose to nose helps the dogs see each other and feel more comfortable.
  4. Look for any signs of uncomfortable and hostility
  5. Have a half hour to an hour blocked out
  6. Take the dogs for a together to see how they will interact with noises and distractions.

Off the leash.

  1. Let dogs play in a fenced in yard with room to run
  2. Let dogs figure out how to play together and who is dominant/ submissive, some growling and biting may take place.
  3. Be ready to jump in if things get out of hand.
  4. Give dogs time to themselves so they can have a break, and each gets alone time with you.
Be prepared to punish both dogs. Do not let bad behavior slip through just because of the new dog / new environment. Letting the dogs know who really is in charge will help keep bad habits under control.
Finally know that it can take up to two weeks for dogs to fully get along and work together. There will be times like most siblings when the dogs will dislike each other just let them figure it out and be ready to step in.

Not Every Day Is Easy

Photo by Daria Obymaha on

When people look on social media they only see a snippet of your life. They only see the parts that you share with them. The smiling cuddly baby, the ever adoring husband, and the obedient puppy is all people see of my life. However, like everyone else I have rough days with my family.

My son isn’t even a year old yet, but that doesn’t mean every day is a picnic. My son is a very clingy momma’s boy, so he always wants my attention 24/7 with no break.  This is very draining on me both mentally and physically, at times I don’t want to have a baby climbing all over me. Late nights of teething and constant nursing, can make for hard days of praying for long naps. But as any parent knows it doesn’t work that way. He is a great mostly happy baby with his moments of fits. I know it will only get worse as he gets older and when I have more kids. However ever hard moment will come with many more happy moments

Anyone in a relationship knows it is not always “a walk in the park”.  Ever healthy relationship has disagreements and rough patches. With pressure of kids, work, finances, family, and the every day to day can add stress to a marriage.  Our spouses become our outlet for our frustrations in our life. In my marriage my husband is my sounding board.  I am a very vocal person on my emotions, and I hate letting things sit and I need it to be fix as soon as possible.  While my husband is someone who likes to think things over and then just let it go. The way we argue is different, but it works, it is very hot and cold.

Being a dog parent can be just as challenging as being a parent to a child. Dogs become part of the family. Any good pet owner gets very invested in our pets. They have good and bad days just like us. They get sick, depressed or hyper, sometimes they don’t listen, they destroy stuff and sometimes they are well behaved. My Austrian Shepard will be two at the end of the year, she is still a puppy and has her moments when she is so wind up that it takes a while to calm her down. I wish most das she will lose her voice box, because the barking is never ending.  She is also very obsess with my son loves to share her toys and food with him. Watching to make sure she isn’t giving him dog food, or having to yell at her for constantly wanting to like his face can become very repetitive.

 Some days are just hard to be a parent and be in a relationship. When we share our lives people don’t see the hardships. They believe your life is struggle free not realizing it is hard for you at time as well. No One has a perfect day every day. No family is perfect, we all have our hard times.

Preparing Your Pet For A Baby

Pets are a big part of people’s lives. The love an owner develops for a pet is strong, they become part of the family. Many people even prefer their dog’s or cat’s company over other people. So when it comes to making sure that our pets are comfortable is very important to us.

One thing that most people never think about when they get pregnant is preparing their dog for the new arrival. Our pets take time to adjust to things like we humans do. Babies come with a lot of stuff and noises. Giving your dog time to react to all the new changes before your new arrival comes into their space, will have a better outcome than just “ripping the band aid off” by bring the baby in. By letting your dog adjust to everything, you can keep your dog from lashing out at your baby, keeping the dog from becoming depressed, or the dog getting overly jealous.

When my husband and I first found out we were expecting our son we just got an Australian Sheppard a few months prior to finding out. She quickly became very spoiled, with a lot of toys and attention. We lucked out with her because she is very smart, she was pottied trained in only a few day of having her. However like most Aussies she is also very stubborn with picking up tricks she only wanted to learn sit, shake and lay down. Once we found out about our bundle of joy coming I started to look into what will help my spoiled Aussie expect my son. Here is what we did

Talk to your vet

Luckily for us we already had a vet appointment scheduled for our dog not long after we found out. We made sure she was updated on all shots and had no fleas or worms. We asked our vet what she recommended to get ready our dog ready. Some of the below listed is what she recommended.

Get baby’s stuff and set it up slowly over the 9 months.

 The number one thing our vet recommended is getting the baby stuff set up over 9 months instead of all at once. We set up the crib in the baby’s room first, then slowly set everything else up such as a swing and pack and plays. By slowly introducing things to her it helped her learn not to be afraid of them and to get use to them.

Baby Noises and Grabbing

We all know babies make a ton of noises from crying to babbling to just full on screaming.  Plus they also love to pull on things like hair and anything they can grab easily. We started to play baby sounds and very gently pulling on our dog to start getting her use to it. She was confused with the noises at first but adopted over time to the point that it didn’t make her confused or anxious her. The pulling did not phase her but helped her understand what to expect.  Of course we don’t let our baby pull on our dog but he does try to grab at her a lot. I can trust to know she wont bite him if he gets a pull on her fur.

Pets Safe Space and Dog Free Zones

Like humans dogs need to have their alone time and a space to have it.  Our dog uses her air kennel as her place she goes to when she is overwhelmed and needs some alone time. Having dog free zones are just as important as have a space for your dog. We have a play yard we set up when we want a dog free space and use pack and plays for safe places for baby to play away from the dog.

Play Time and Training

Your pet goes from having all the attention on them, to having to split the time, or even getting hardly anytime on them once the baby comes. Our dog is still a hyperactive puppy who needs to have time and attention to run around. My husband and I trade time out with the baby and the puppy, making sure they get time with both of us. When we are with our dog we try challenging her to help get energy out by working on training such as leave it command, stay and come command. Having playtime as a whole family is important, by showing both the dog and baby to be gentle with each other.

Making sure your dog feels at home and comfortable will make running your home easier. Our pets are family to us, preparing them for the new arrival is just as important as preparing ourselves

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