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Grumpy Girl

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Purplejellyfish, Jul 3, 2009.


  1. Purplejellyfish

    Purplejellyfish PetForums Member

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    I have been having some problems with my two older labradors adjusting to our new puppy alfie. Both of the labradors are good natured and well mannered dogs. Jake who is twelve is and always has been very submissive to other dogs but always up for a game after initial introductions. Maisie, his half sister who is 11 is the more dominant of the two but has always played nicely with other dogs with the occasional growl if games have gone to far. Up until this point, I have never had any serious behavioural issues with either of the dogs.

    My problem is, both of them seem to loath Alfie, our new stafford puppy. Jake avoids him like the plague and refuses point blank to go anywhere near him. Maisie more worryingly snarls at him when he gets to close to her and on two occasions has attacked him. That said, she has not hurt him and on both occasions she could have done if she meant too. Alfie is very good in that he does not plague the older dogs at all. He is obviously interested in them, and would love a game, but he seems to understand that they don't like him. He has never retaliated to Maisie, he just runs away.

    We have not forced any contact with the dogs and allow the labradors plenty of space from the puppy. We have also made sure they have had plenty of fuss and treats so as not to feel left out.

    I am concerned that Maisies attitude could cause Alfie to fear other dogs, and being a Stafford, that would not be a good thing! He is only 8 weeks old so is unable to go to puppy classes yet or socialise with other more friendly dogs. If anyone can offer any advice I really would be most gratefull.
     
  2. goodvic2

    goodvic2 PetForums VIP

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    Hi. Your dogs are very old and the pup is probably way too high energy. As you have found the new dog/pup will learn what it can and what it can't do. Unless he ignores the other dogs warning signals and gets attacked, I do not think you have anything to fear.

    I understand about people's concern about their pup being young and un-vaccinated, but it far more problematic to have an un-socialised dog than the small risk of a pup catching a disease. According to the experts 6-12 weeks is the optimum socialisation period. This is the time when a pup needs to see EVERYTHING and EVERYONE, after the 12 weeks it is still possible to socialise the dog, but this is the optimum period.

    If you are concerned, then get him out and about with other pup and dogs, even if you have to carry him.

    You can't change how your dogs feel about the pups, you just need to ensure that the pup is heeding the warning signals.

    Good luck x
     
  3. Purplejellyfish

    Purplejellyfish PetForums Member

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    Thanks for your quick reply. I do understand how important socialising is for young puppies, I remember carrying the labradors around when they were pups, I developed very strong arms lol! I do take Alfie out regularly but I am unwilling to expose him to dogs that I don't know for sure have been vaccinated. Unfortunately none of my friends/family have dogs so I am a bit stuck in that regard.

    Fortunately Alfie is respectful of Maisie and Jake, I think he has learnt his lesson. I hope over time they will adjust to him, may be that will happen when we can start taking them out together. I guess it's a matter of time and patience.

    Many thanks
     
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