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Older dog and new puppy not getting along

2084 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  miniaturehorse
I have 2 dogs Deliah (who is 10) and Oliver (who is 4). They have been together since Oliver was 8 weeks old and we've never had problems with them. The only 'aggression' I've seen with the two although I wouldn't class it as aggression is when Deliah gives Oliver a growl when he tries to play with her, shes getting quite old now and rarely wants to play fight like he does. All she has to do is give a small growl and he will back off straight away. When she is in a playful mood they play fight just like any other dog and have fun.

I felt sorry for Oliver since he loves to play with other dogs and Deliah isn't up for playing very often that I decided to get him a play mate. I found a 4 month old female puppy whos owner couldn't keep her anymore. I was a little worried that Deliah wouldn't take to her as she's a little grouchy but the puppy is very calm and respectful around her and they are fine.

The problem which surprised me is with Oliver. He is obssessed with her and not in a good way. He won't let her out of his site and will follow her around everywhere. He constantly tries to mount and hump her. He isn't neutered so I'm planning on getting him done asap incase this is the problem. He has never shown behaviour like this in the past so never thought it necessary to neuter him obviously now im reconsidering.

I'm not really sure if it's an aggression or a dominance thing. They have been playing together but it's very rough play and he will still try and hump her hilst playing. The most concerning thing happened tonight though I bought them each a bone and I gave it in the right order (Deliah first puppy last). As soon as Oliver noticed she had it he attacked her. Thankfully neither where hurt but it was such a shock as he's never behaved like that before. I took the bones away from them to avoid it happening again. About half an hour ago she was sniffling about and found a piece of paper on the floor as soon as Oliver heard the paper rustling and saw her with it he lunged at her again and attacked her.

He has never shown resource aggression at any time before. Not with me or Deliah so this is completely unnexpected. Infact he's like a completely diferent dog. Puppy has only been here for a few days so I'm hoping it's just a settling in period and he will get use to her. When he attacks I don't think he intends to hurt her as both times there where no injuries and he never really bit her it was just alot of noise, if he wanted to cause damage he could have but it was definetely aggression and not playing.

Another thing I've noticed is when puppy comes up to me for attention he gets quite tense so I think he is resource guarding me aswel. I've been mindfull to not give the puppy anymore attention than he does. Usually he love to be pet and play with me but this obsession with this new pup means he's not interested in my attention.

I didn't go in blindly either before we agreed to take her all dogs met on neutral ground and took them on a walk together. Oliver greeted her like he does with other dogs on walks he was excited and gave her a sniff and they both got excited and where behaving playfully. It's when we bought her to the house this behaviour started.

They are both sleeping peacfully next to each other now so I know there is hope. Also he is humping her alot less than he was 2 days ago when she first arrived so maybe it is a case of letting things settle down. It's the attack that has got me worried though as I don't want it to get worse.
Has anyone had any experiences like this?
if so did it pass in time or is it an ongoing issue?
What would you recommend I do in the meantime to ensure that this behaviour doesn't continue/ get worse?
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Congrats on the new pup :) I'll leave it to someone else to comment on the aggression.

For your case, I would personally neuter him asap. Even if you think you start to see him settle down a bit now, once she goes into heat in a few months, and under the same roof, he will go crazy.
Thanks for the reply :) I get payed next week so will book him in then. She will also be getting spayed but I'm going to wait until after her first season.

They have settled down alot he is alot less obsessed with her now. When he plays he still tries to dominate and hump her interestingly though she in now doing the same to him humping included. I know it's not that uncommon for female dogs to hump but it's just the first time I've personally seen a female dog humping lol.
When they are doing this kind of play neither seems distressed and they seem to be having fun, the play never turns to aggression either. I've been speaking with my dog owning friends and we think that they are just trying to work out the heirachy between the two and it will calm down eventually.

We are still having problems with him being aggressive with resources so are feeding in seperate rooms for now as we don't want to take any chances. Hopefully once she has settled in properly and he has recovered from the chop I can start working on that behaviour issue.
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At age 4, is it too late to curb that behavior? I don't know, but worth a query to your Vet.
I'm not going in expecting neutering to be the magic solution to all the problems. I know at best that it will calm him down a little. I really wouldn't be surprised if it does nothing at all since I'm almost positive that the humping is just out of overexcitement and domination and not a sexual. Originally I was going to wait until he was 2 and finished growing to neuter him but since out older female was already spayed and he is quite well behaved we thought it was unnecessary. We want her to go through one (maybe 2) seasons before we spay her and obviously don't want any accidents so I think neutering Oliver is still the best thing.

This morning they've both been really good, puppy is wondering around the house and Oliver is with me and isn't interested so everyday is getting better. They also seem quite bonded now and are definitely having fun at play times even with the humping involved lol.
I would teach them a positive interrupter, to give them a break when play gets too exciting (before the humping). After some time they will self interrupt. An interrupter can be as simple as calling them to you to get a treat, then they can go back to play.

I have three dogs too, one being a pup, and interrupt the play frequently to be sure all are having fun and not getting overwhelmed.

For the resource guarding I would manage the situation. So no bones unless they are separated, regardless of the order given.

The neutering may not have any effect on the humping, but it takes away the risk of an oops litter when she goes into heat, like you said. :)

Congrats on the pup!
The humping has nothing to do with sex most likely. Many dogs hump when overstimulated, over excited or overwhelmed. Neutered and intact. My neutered boy does it, and when he does I remove him from the situation. Neuter him or don't, it's your choice. But it likely won't change the behavior. My intact boy almost never humps other dogs. I'd give them time to settle in. It took Vegas about a month to stop running away from Freyja when I brought her home. He spent the first week hiding upstairs. Put up some baby gates to separate them. Also, it sounds like you are following the pack theory/alpha train of thought. That is not how dogs work, it's been debunked. There are a lot of links in the training stickies sub forum you might want to have a look at. Here is one that may help, http://
I don't believe in that alpha pack leader stuff so don't worry. I personally believe that training like that is abusive and you only see results because the dog fears you. Dominating is the wrong word to use but it's such a common term I suppose a better way to describe it is power play seeing who is physically stonger not establishing a heirachy. So don't worry I won't be suffocating my dogs any time soon to establish whos boss :rolleyes:

The link didn't seem to work for me but I had a look at the resource guarding sticky and there is alot of good info on there. I thought we where making progress today when I found them playfully tearing up a birthday card together. Later on she found some crumbs in the corner and he went for her again this time drawing blood. It was only a small cut but it left me shaken up and a bit disheartened.

What worries me the most is the fact that he doesn't give any warning like growling, he just tenses and you literally have 1 second to grab him before he lunges at her. Also it's not as if he has something and she tries to take it he goes after her when she finds something. I've hoovered and swept all the floors and removed any toys but dogs have a talent of finding things so I'm a little on edge now.

I figured it might be a good idea to get them each crates. That way they can eat their food and have treats and be safe. Also I think it would be good for them all to have their own space.

I'm going to start researching some dog trainers tomorrow incase things don't sette. Any tips on finding a good behaviourist? I live in a rural area there isn't a big city any where near us really so dog trainers are in short supply and I don't really know anyone whos ever used one either. What worries me is that anyone can call themselves a trainer and could possibly make their behaviour worse. So any tips on what questions to ask and what to look out for would be appreaciated.
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Just an update and a not a good one unfortunately.
The fighting over resources is still going on I feed them in seperate rooms only problem is that he will attack her when she so much as shows interest in something even if across the room. She was sniffing the corner of the room this mornign and although there was nothing actually there he went for her again and grabbed her by the throat and she was crying. She now appears to fear him, when he approaches her with friendly intentions she growl at him which winds him up.

I did an emergency trip to the shop and bought a crate. Currently they are both being rotated, but I can't live like that forever. It's the pup I feel sorry for at her age she should have positive experiences. She is already a nervous pup very shy and apprehensive meeting new people but nothing serious but I fear being with Oliver will make her nervousness worse.

I phoned my sister in desperation and she volunteerd to take her for as long as I needed her too whilst I worked on Olivers problems. I'm driving her down tomorrow and I know that realistically she won't be coming back. I really started to bond with her and she's such a sweet dog so it really breaks my heart. I know alot of you will judge me saying that I 'gave up' but I'm doing it because I can't stand to see her get hurt.

I am so shocked that Oliver has shown behaviour like this as he's never shown signs of it before. I've been looking for a trainer for him and was quoted £300 for just a consultation :eek:she didn't say how much individual sessions would cost (it depended on the severity of the problem) but I imagine it will be more than that and I just can't afford it. I will never get another dog whilst owning him though as I don't feel like I can trust him. Although he's been fine with my older dog his whole life and seems fine now he will be crated from now on during feeding and only receive treats in there as I can obviously not predict his behaviour, and since he's started this behaviour I don't want him to redirect it to my older dog when the pup is gone.

I'm even wandering whether or not to get him a muzzle for his walks as I just can't trust him anymore. I know it's my issue but I had a friend over the other day and she was fussing him and all I could think was what if he bites her. I'm nervous when we pass other dogs even though he's being a good boy it's just in the back of my mind now. It's not that I think he's aggressive it's just cause I obviously can't predict how he's going to act in certain situations as the thought didn't even enter my mind that Oliver would atack a puppy.

I feel like I have failed him somehow. I thought I did everything right whilst raising him I introduced him to loads of people let him meet dogs on walks only when he was being calm, basically I tried to do everything by the book. I know that resource guarding is normal but this is extreme no warning growl or anything. I don't even know if it can be called resource guarding. It's not as if she tries to steal his food he tries to steal hers, and with the incident this morning with her not actually having anything at all I fear it's becoming a habit.
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I honestly would rehome the pup if they were my dogs as well. It's a serious issue and even with training it'd be real hard to ever trust him fully with her so I totally understand your point of view. No judgement here. I'm sorry it couldn't all work out :(
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