Adding a Dog to the Family
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When Isis was about 3 years old, we got Titus. We had no intention of getting another dog. Isis was perfectly fine being the only pittie princess in the house! It was just one of those things, his pitiful little face came across the screen of my computer… his owner was sending him to the pound (which for a pit is usually a death sentence)… and the rest is history. Since we adopted Titus, Isis has become a completely different dog – for the better, in many ways! In this post sponsored by Banfield Pet Hospital®, I'm going to show you how much they love each other!
When we first got Titus, Isis was a total snot. She wasn't mean to him, but she didn't want much to do with him. He was still a pup (about 8 months old), and all he wanted to do was play. She was lazy (still is!), and was not having it. We did a week-long trial to see if they'd be a good fit for each other, and by Day 2 we were convinced they were meant to be siblings! She got snippy with him at first, having to lay down the law and all on that first day, but it's been peaceful ever since.
Tips for Adding a Dog to the Family
Real quick, I just wanted to give a few tips on adding a new dog to the family. It's important that you don't force things, because sometimes dogs just aren't a good fit for each other – and that's okay.
Introduce them on neutral territory. We brought Isis to the park, and she met Titus there. This was neutral territory, so she didn't get all high and mighty. Though she did make sure he knew she was going to be the dominant one of the duo, she didn't do it in a mean way – and he was okay with it!
The house Titus was at before us had several dogs, and the owner said he was being mean to them. I don't know how true that is, but sometimes if you get a dog that is dominant or has a strong personality, they just need a change of scenery to change their behavior. From the get-go, Titus was fine with Isis being “the boss” and they have never had any problems.
If you have a big dog, it's great to get another big dog because they'll be similar in size. You don't have to get a 90 pound dog to match your 90 pound dog, but getting a 5 pound dog and introducing him or her to your 90 pound dog might not be the safest bet. Sometimes it works out, but when you're adopting and don't know much about the dog's past, it's better to be safe than sorry.
Make sure they're both healthy! A sick dog can get your dog sick, and an unhealthy dog can be in pain and very crabby. Those aren't the best circumstances to start a new friendship off with. I'll talk more about keeping your doggies healthy below.
Give them their own space. Not only do our dogs have separate kennels, we also started them off with separate food and water bowls. Titus' previous owner said he was food aggressive (we never saw this side of him, but again, Isis put him in his place quickly:) ), so we made sure we fed them one right after another instead of at the same time.
Last but not least, do a trial! I cannot stress this enough. While I know it's not always possible, doing a week-long trial (which would've been cut short had they not gotten along) can relieve a lot of stress. You don't feel like you “have” to keep the dog, and your dog will pick up on that vibe. Relax, man!
I love watching them play and grow together, and part of that includes making sure they stay healthy. We do this by making sure they get their annual heartworm test at Banfield Pet Hospital®, and their dose of ProHeart6® every 6 months. I remember having Isis, and seeing that she was a happy and healthy dog, but nothing compares to how happy she is now that she has “Brudder” by her side. They've both definitely found their “happy place” – together.
You can receive ONE FREE EXAM AND CONSULTATION at Banfield Pet Hospital®, just like I did! This offer is valid for new clients only, and expires 1/15/16. Additional restrictions may apply.
We have been using Banfield Pet Hospital® for about two years. When we moved to Arizona, we first visited a local vet that was well-known and supposed to be amazing. We took Isis in, and with her being scared of males (she's always been that way), she was a bit skittish. She didn't growl, or even bark – she basically cowered in the corner. He labeled her as “aggressive” and wanted us to put a muzzle on her! Um, no, doesn't work that way, buddy!
We looked for new vets and got a glowing recommendation for Banfield Pet Hospital®. We signed up for the Optimum Wellness Plan® because it saved us a lot of money on her vet care, and as soon as we got Titus, we brought him in as well. We put them both on the ProHeart6® because it was convenient – and with the plan we were on, it was also affordable. Heartworm disease is spread by infected mosquitoes, and is potentially fatal – that's not something we wanted to mess around with.
Isis used to be terrified to visit the vet, but she's gotten used to it – and Titus loves it! All of the vet techs love on them and treat them like the loveable pups they are, instead of some “dangerous” dogs just because of how they look. I mean, when I say “how they look” … really, how can you resist a face like this?
What's YOUR dog's happy place? Share in the comments!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Banfield Pet Hospital®.