Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Pooches: Do You Let Your Pets Pick?

Miss M and Mr. B enjoy baths together
We always joke about Mr. B  being Miss M's pet dog.
Though actually...it's really true.
Since Miss M is quite the diva, we didn't want to deal with more dog drama when we added a second dog. Plus, we have a smaller space where separation can be more difficult.
So we let her choose.
Much like the Bachelorette, Miss M met many dogs. Some tried many ways to impress her. Some tried many ways to impress us. For the most part she wasn't interested. The dog she was probably most interested in was an overweight beagle named Butters.
When we met Mr. B she thought he would suffice.
Looking back, we never put this type of consideration into our family pets. We just brought pets home and expected them to deal. We even thought it was funny when our cats became big and puffy because they were scared of the new dog. And they all seemed to get along.
Maybe it was because we had an actual house with a backyard where our pets could have their own space and they really didn't need to interact much. Or maybe because we had so much space I really didn't interact with our pets as much so I never noticed if they didn't get along.
I'm always curious...how did you integrate your pets? Did you let them choose? Or did you just make them deal? How are some ways you handle pets not getting along?

Also:
How we integrated a second dog
How Miss M controls her pet dog
Becoming twins

22 comments:

Leila said...

Quizz chose Charlie the cat. He was fairly spastic as a puppy, but loved cats. He's always thought they were awesome. All the other cats at the rescue hissed and ran. Charlie looked at Quizz with utter disdain and it was love. It took a few months for them to settle in, but they each had their own space. Now we are in negotiations to add another cat. Quizz will be thrilled, Charlie - not so much. :)

Kinsley said...

Ours just had to deal. I already had three dogs when my fiance and I moved in together and then he brought one in. PLUS we foster, so we have had four dogs at the very least and a huge back yard. Now we are down to two (we lost the other two to old age). We have one that is 14 and our pittie is only 3, so we decided that she will choose our next one because she can be dog selective. She LOVES all the puppies we foster, and think she will eventually choose one of those. I do think it is really important for them to have a good vibe before choosing an additional pet. Especially when space is an issue:)

Sam said...

You know, it is so funny at our house. Sam and Monty don't interact. Monty panics when Sam is gone, but that is the extent of their relationship.

Sam

Megan Rajski said...

Oh my goodness. BUTTERS. You just took me back eons. and made my day.

therufusway said...

As far as fosters go, we did quick meet-and-greets at the shelters before taking new dogs home. Our main goal was that they would just be OK with each other - we weren't expecting them to be bffs, and that's ok.

Now that we are slowly searching for our second forever dog, it is so very important to me that Rufus likes him/her. He definitely has a type, so we are keeping that in mind.

I think it's so important to me that they be friends simply because Rufus is my best friend. If he's not happy in his own home, my heart would be broken.

ohmelvin.com said...

I will be refreshing these comments all day and taking notes! In the search for the next dog, it had to be a dog that Melvin could tolerate. A dog that didn't cause him immediate stress on how to deal with or interact with. My deepest hope is that they will be buddies but I will settle for living peacefully. Similar to The Rufus Way, I want Melvin to remain happy during this transition with Jake and into the next chapter! I'm so envious of those who just bring a new dog in and make it work. I have created a 2nd full time job trying to make it go 'smoothly' that sometimes I forget to sit back and enjoy!

thegirlandherdog.com said...

I'm in love with that pic of them in the tub!

kathrynannew said...

We just started fostering (picked up our first foster last night!) and we chose a dog that we thought our dog would get along with. We introduced them and there was a little growling, but so far, so good. Our pittie is a little dog-selective but we know the type of dog she likes, and we just need her to be able to tolerate the foster.

adventuresofadogmom said...

We had Boomer first and he's a real laid back guy so we didn't even think about considering him when we adopted Dottie. At first he was a little freaked out when she tried to cuddle with him but now they get along just fine. They are quite the pair!

Barbara said...

I wish.

If I'd have had my oldest dog Trixie pick, she'd have no other dogs ever. She's supposed to be a greyhound/lab.

I found Minnie on the street near death. Sweetest dog in the universe. Tries so hard to get Trixie to like her. Trixie still tolerates her, but no more. She's supposed to be a rottie/boxer.

Then Jeep came along. Lady down the street didn't spay, oops puppies! Jeep is a chihuahua/doxie.

Minnie and Jeep play, but Jeep is so small, I kind of wish Minnie has a bigger pal to romp with, and Jeep has a smaller one. To do that, I'd have to have five dogs, which would make Trixie go insane.

Had these pups not fallen in my lap, Trixie probably would have remained an only. But they deal with each other (Jeep is a pistol!) and for the most part, have found their way to live together.

Kate said...

Always. The first criteria we have when we bring a new dog home (either permanently or as a foster) is that they get along well with the dog(s) we already have. They don't necessarily have to be BFFs right away, but they do have to at least reasonably like each other. We just don't feel like we have the time or knowledge to cope with dogs who don't get along well. We always try to be fairly flexible about things like age, sex, appearance, etc. because the dog's personality always trumps everything else. It also doesn't seem very fair to bring a dog that's going to create stress for everyone in the house.

Rebelwerewolf said...

We wanted to let Badger pick our second dog, but it didn't quite work out like we'd planned. Mushroom was undergoing heartworm treatment when we started our foster-to-adopt period, so we weren't able to let them play together. By the time she was cleared for exercise, we had already fallen in love - oops!

The Badgershrooms get along, but, like siblings, they also annoy each other, play too hard, and don't know when to give up. Generally we'll crate and rotate if only one person is home. When both of us are home, we'll practice appropriate play and calm behavior with both dogs.

BeBe said...

I have always done the picking, but I have never had a problem with them not getting along. They all fell "best buddies" as soon as they met. Maybe it's the way I pick em'?

Tanaya said...

So far my cat has had to deal with it. We just had the one cat to start off with. Then we inherited a family member's cat. It was tense at first but they grew to love each other with very little nudging from us. We've always lived in a small space so they were probably just forced to interact.

When we brought home our Pittie the only consideration we took was to make sure she wouldn't eat our cats. The first cat is still unhappy. The second cat took a few months but she and our pittie became snuggle buddies. Our first cat has always been the misfit middle child. Pouting and jealous but it really is only in her own head. If she'd just get over it they could be besties.

We had to put down our second cat recently due to age related problems and over the same time period we introduced a human baby to the mix. It's all working out well for us.

If we were to ever introduce another animal we're sure it would be another dog and I think we would want to make sure our dogs will become buddies right off the bat. There would just not be enough space or time to force the situation. Our cat however, sadly, would probably hate us forever and never come out from under the bed.

My Two Pitties said...

I love the idea that Mr B is Miss M's pet dog. It's true for me also that we didn't seem to care how our pets got along when I was a kid. My cat spent months on the furniture to stay away from our puppy.

I knew I had my work cut out for me finding the right dog for Kaya. Living in a studio apartment, getting along was a must. Luckily, Norman was the first dog we met and it was love at first let's play. They cuddled in the car all the way home and that was that:)

I had some challenges with foster cats being afraid of the dogs, but the best I could do was give the cat the bathroom and the dogs knew to completely ignore the cat when he was ready to come out. I got my cats so young that they bonded with the dogs right away.

I definitely put more and more thought into each pet as they come along. But I would have loved to keep Shaka and she just showed up one day so who knows!

jet said...

Bender was introduced to Barbie, he tried to hump her, she told him off, he listened... we figured they would be great together. The cats chose us, and they don't seem to get along with each other very well, but they don't mind the dogs.

Luv My Rosie said...

How could Miss M not like Mr B? Everyone LOVES Mr. B.

Luv My Rosie said...

How could Miss M not like Mr B? Everyone LOVES Mr. B.

Kitty+Coco said...

Truth be told, we brought Coco home expecting Kitty to learn to love her. Kitty ignored her for the first bit, but then warmed up slowly. Now they cannot live without one another, even when Coco gets on her nerves and gets a "pipe down" yell from big sister Kitty. We are lucky they love each other because they are complete opposites. Next time around we will do a more careful integration to make things easier on the resident pups.

Emily said...

We picked Braylon online, met her, brought her and Hades for a walk in the park with the volunteer coordinator and when they hit it off she said to us, "You won't find a better match." And there it was! Thank goodness the little mama WE picked loved our boy just as much and vice versa.

A Wonderful Dogs Life said...

Well I was the only dog and living the royal life until one day Mom brought home this tiny, scabby, patchy little pup. Since she was just a baby I tolerated her and showed her the ropes. Then along came the other one and we had all met before once or twice. When she came to stay we went off our property to a walking trail to get reacquainted and then came home.

Emma

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