Bringing a Dog into a Large Family

Friday, September 9, 2022 11:00:00 AM America/Los_Angeles

It’s not uncommon for multiple children, dogs, cats, and possibly even more to call the same space their home. But what’s the best way to bring a new dog into such a large family? Assuming that you’ve considered all the factors that will help you decide whether or not your home and your future fur baby are the right fit, here are a few tips that could go a long way in making sure your new doggo will have a smooth transition into your large family!  

Photo by CDC

Personal Essentials 

Every dog in the home should have their own essentials. This includes food and water bowls, bedding, pee pads, and toys. Beyond making sure that your fur babies aren’t fighting over things, having toys aplenty also provides healthy outlets for excess energy. Bored dogs, who would otherwise get along, could end up scuffling with each other if there aren’t alternatives for getting the mental stimulation they need. In addition, having separate pet potties is essential for new furry ones who will be going through potty training. Each dog should have their own wee wee pad like Bark Potty to prevent any confusion or territorial behavior.  

A Calm Environment

A change in environment can be a very stressful life event for anyone. Now, imagine moving into a home with multiple siblings–perhaps even of different species–who may or may not like the fact that you’re there! To help your dog adjust to their new fur-ever home, provide a separate safe space they can retreat to if they feel overwhelmed. Equip the area with comfy bedding and a favorite toy to create a calm haven away from family activity and other pets. 

Polite Behavior

While your eyes may be set on reaching training goals with your new pup ASAP, it’s also important to have training basics covered with the doggos already in your home. Making sure that the current canines are properly trained prevents territorial, aggressive, and needy behavior. For instance, if all dogs are able to sit for treats, it’s less likely that the newest fur ball will feel the need to be competitive or territorial.  

Other dogs aren’t the only ones who’ll need to be on their best behavior. Request that family members keep interaction in the first few days to a minimum to prevent feelings of overwhelm and anxiety. While a quick hello or cuddle is welcome, placing a dog in the middle of three screaming children and two hyper dogs while the TV is on full blast probably isn’t the best idea. 

Bringing home a new canine companion can be wonderful for not just us humans but our other pups as well. Some dogs thrive with a furry bff and benefit from having someone who “speaks their language”. With some preparation, two can be better than one!