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Categories: Pack Structure , Puppy Training

Q. Is it alright to let my old dog correct my new puppy for bad behavior by barking and growling at him?
I have a mellow, neutered male 12 year old mix breed med sized house dog and recently acquired a JRT puppy. Is it alright to let the old dog correct the pup with growls and barks when she pesters him or jumps up on him? He wants nothing to do with the puppy and usually walks away from her. He is tolerant of sharing his bed if she lies quietly beside him. The pup is doesn't always get the message, however, and continues to bug him until he gets up and goes to another spot.

A. I don’t allow my older dogs to be harassed by new puppies and I don't allow them to correct the pup either. I keep control of the situation until the new pup is integrated into our house properly, knows the rules and I am able to control the pup via my voice. This can be a while!

I'd read the article Ed wrote on The Groundwork to Becoming your Puppy's Pack Leader.

We use an exercise pen to get the puppy used to living with us and our other dogs. It keeps the pup and our belongings safe and allows our adult dogs to relax and get to the know the pup in a safe manner. I don't want my puppy to have a bad experience with my older dogs.

I'd recommend the video Your Puppy 8 weeks to 8 Months. You might also want to browse our streaming video section.

I hope this helps.
Cindy Rhodes

  Response:

Thank-you Cindy. My old dog will also be grateful for your advice. I will continue to use the ex-pen and keep the pup separated from the old guy. I'm curious, how old was Stella when she was under voice control in the house, or is she still not ready?

  Follow-Up Response:

Stella is still on a leash when she's out of the ex pen in the house with us (she's 9 months old). She's made good progress but I'd rather have the leash on her and not need it than the other way around. :)

Cindy Rhodes

Thanks:

OK! I intend to do the same. You guys are a great encouragement to me to do what I know is needed instead of doing what my friends (with disobedient dogs!) expect. It's tough looking like the meanie, but I want my dog to be a welcome visitor when she is grown up. Delayed gratification!
  
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