As part of canine life there will many opportunities (some invited, some uninvited) for your dog to meet other dogs when they are out and about or even at home. Introducing your pet to new friends in the right way will prevent any problems such as aggression, and territorial behaviours associated with making new introductions.

Neutral meeting point

When introducing two dogs for the first time it is always a good idea for the meeting to occur in a neutral area. Bringing a family or friend’s dog into your pet’s backyard may arouse anti-social, territorial behaviours. We suggest the local dog park as a good place for a first encounter.

On the lead

Until both dogs are at ease with one another, keep them both on leads and under continued supervision. Once they have become familiar with each other, generally over several meetings, the leads can be removed. This approach may seem a little cautious to some, but this is only in the best interest of your dog or puppy.

Accidents are often ‘for life’

‘Accidents’ that occur at a young age are likely to scar your puppy’s memory for life, causing lifelong behavioural problems. As veterinarians we see the unfortunate side of problem canine encounters, with often very friendly dogs being involved. This does not mean you should avoid opportunities to socialise your dogs with others but knowing something about the temperament of another dog can be useful. Having canine pals to play with is just one of many things most dogs look forward to, and the relationships they have are an important part of being a happy, well rounded dog with a great attitude!

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