Tips for Introducing Your Dog and New Puppy

Picture of a puppy and an older dog meeting and playing

4 Tips for Introducing Your Dog and New Puppy

What’s better than having a dog to come home to, snuggle with, and do your favorite hobbies with? Having two fur-babies to do these things with, of course! As a devoted pet parent, you may be thinking the holidays are the perfect time to add a second adorable pup to the family. But while you are looking forward to the excitement and laughter a new puppy is bound to bring to your home, you may also be a little worried that your best buddy is not going to be as enthusiastic about the idea. After all, it means they’ll have to start sharing you, their toys, and their turf with a sibling. So, to help set a positive tone from the get-go, Wagsworth has gathered four helpful tips for bringing home a puppy and introducing them to your dog.

Tip #1: Break the ice between your dog and new puppy in a neutral location.

If your fur-baby has been the undisputed king or queen of the castle for a while now, they might not be thrilled about having a new puppy waltz in and start taking over. So, it’s typically a good idea to have the two meet up for the first time at a location away from your home. But how do you get both of them there at the same time without an introduction first? One way to do this is to enlist the help of a family member or friend who can bring your new puppy to a park or other dog-friendly space, where you’ll be waiting with your older dog so your furry family members can meet and mingle. After they spend some time sniffing each other, playing, and generally feeling each other out, you can move the party to your home.

Tip #2: Keep your older dog’s prized possessions away from their younger sibling.

Your puppy will probably be excited to explore all the doggy delights in their new home, but if they start treating your older dog’s belongings as their own, there’s a strong possibility that some good old sibling rivalry will kick in. One way to try to prevent this is to move your dog’s toys, food bowl, dog bed, and any of their other favorite things to a place where the puppy isn’t allowed to go—such as a cozy corner of your bedroom or office—so your older dog can munch, take a snooze, and play unbothered by the new puppy. Just make sure you set the new pup up with toys, a food and water bowl, and a cozy bed all to themselves as well, so they feel just as special. And, of course, this shouldn’t be a forever thing. You just need to do it long enough for your dog to get comfortable with their new sibling being around.

Tip #3: Give your older pup a break from the mayhem occasionally.

Even if your dog is ecstatic to have a new little brother or sister, they very well could find their new sibling utterly exhausting at first. The super-spirited new puppy will probably view their older brother or sister as a 24/7 playmate, which may or may not be what your older dog has in mind for the relationship. So, depending on your older dog’s temperament and energy levels, they might need a break from this chaos from time to time. Pay attention to your pooch’s body language, and if it’s clear the puppy is becoming too much for them, it’s probably time to separate the two for a bit to keep your elder fur-baby from getting overwhelmed. This is another reason why having separate spaces at home for your furry family members in the beginning can come in handy.

Tip #4: Carve out some one-on-one time for both of your fur-babies.

Though your new puppy will almost definitely need more supervision and attention than their older sibling, try to spend one-on-one time with your older dog as well. Your first born will probably take notice of all the attention the new pup on the block is getting from family and friends, so make sure they don’t feel left out. You can do this by setting aside time to play with them individually, taking them on a solo walk or hike, or maybe even going on a dinner date at a local restaurant. Giving your older dog some individual attention will help assure them that they’re still uber important to you.

We can’t wait to meet your newest family member at Wagsworth!

It might take a minute for your older dog to warm up to their younger sibling, but your new puppy will be welcome at Wagsworth from the moment they arrive—and we’re confident they’ll feel right at home, whether they’re here for one of our training sessions, Daycamp, or an overnight stay.

While your new puppy will surely get a lot of guidance from their older sibling—and you—about how to act in various situations, sometimes little ones need extra direction when learning their manners. That’s where our S.T.A.R. Puppy classes come in. Our experienced training staff has impressive skills and endless patience when it comes to teaching your pup good behavior, basic cues, and social etiquette, and yes, helping with potty training. We will also provide you with tips to support your puppy’s training at home.

And, when you want to schedule some one-on-one time with your older dog, you can enroll your little one in our Daycamp or spoil them with a luxurious overnight stay—and simply add a training class to their daily schedule. We are certain your puppy will have as much fun running around our sprawling six-acre facility as they do zooming around your house.