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- Why Do Dogs Get Jealous Of a New Puppy
Why Do Dogs Get Jealous Of a New Puppy
After deep consideration, your family decides to bring home a new puppy. When you walk through the door and begin to acclimate her to her new home, your eight-year-old Golden Retriever begins to act strangely. She knows there is a new dog in town, and she doesn’t like it. This puppy has done nothing but lay on the floor in your home, but your dog doesn’t care. Her attitude displays jealousy, anger, and fear. Sometimes, dogs will feel jealous when a new puppy comes into a home, and as owners, it is best to adjust the puppy and your dog to their new environment properly.
The Root of the Behavior
When you bring a new puppy into a household, the environment will change. Puppies are adorable, gentle, and need attention and care. Those in a household will usually focus all of their attention on this new puppy. Therefore, if you have another dog already in the house, they may feel hurt. Your dog is used to being your companion, and if there are other dogs that are taking you away, they are going to act upset, jealous, and even angry. This new puppy is also on their territory, and they may feel like their life is in jeopardy. This behavior is perfectly normal. When jealousy occurs, it is important to deal with your dog’s emotions, properly. Introduce your dog and the new puppy on neutral grounds first. This will help maintain the idea that you are their pack leader and you are willing to play with both dogs. They can use this neutral territory to explore each other. Your dog will then know the puppy and will not feel as threatened when you bring them into your home for good. When you acclimate a puppy into your home, it is important to keep up with the same routine as normal. If you change the routine and give your new puppy all of the attention, your dog will be angry and jealous of this new puppy and they may feel like they are losing their territory. You are their leader and their owner. They look up to you for everything and if you are turning your back on your dog for a new puppy, they can get extremely offended. If you need to separate the puppy and dog at first during feeding times and sleeping times, that may be wise. This idea is completely new to your dog and if they don’t leave the house that much, it could feel like a much bigger change than you anticipate it to be. Your dog’s life has been focused on receiving and giving you attention. It is suggested to maintain that relationship.
Encouraging the Behavior
You should never encourage your dog to be jealous of a new puppy that is coming into your home. You want your dog to feel comfortable, loved, and safe when you acclimate a new dog into the family. If you notice your dog is acting strangely when they meet your new puppy, it may be wise to encourage them and show them they are protected, cared for, and secure. It is suggested that you spend more time with your dog during this process. Sometimes, you may need to let your dog feel upset for a bit before they trust this new dog. It is a huge adjustment for your dog when you bring another companion into the house so it is wise to continue giving your dog attention and love while you are adjusting a new puppy into the house. If your dog is receiving assurance that they are always safe and loved by you, it may be easier to trust another dog. This may also include keeping their routine and yours the same as it has been in the past. This can show your dog that this adjustment is not threatening to your relationship with them or to their daily routine.
Other Solutions and Considerations
Having a new puppy in your home is just one reason your dog may be jealous. If you are noticing your dog has a jealous tendency, it is suggested to make sure that they are not possessive of you. If you need to re-train your dog and teach your dog that you are their leader then that is suggested. Sometimes, attention from owners can be a treat for your dog. If you feel like this is the case, you may want to choose when you reward your dog with attention. This can help teach your dog that jealousy does not need to be a common occurrence, especially if it is used in a way that is manipulative or possessive.
Dogs are our best friends and they love us tremendously. When we bring a new puppy into their lives as well as ours, it can feel threatening, scary, and new. We must reassure our dogs and our new puppy that infinite love and safety is available for everyone.
By a Golden Retriever lover Erika Seidel
Published: 02/14/2018, edited: 01/30/2020