When getting a second dog goes right...

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JudyN
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When getting a second dog goes right...

Post by JudyN » Fri Aug 23, 2019 3:43 pm

Someone on another dog forum has a stabij/stabyhoun. About 3 years old, very sensitive, slightly reactive to children, prams, men carrying boxes, some other dogs, strangers, anything out of the ordinary... They recently adopted a beagle cross, and the difference in the stabij has been profound - he's happy, he plays with the new dog, he's calmer, not reacting to all his previous triggers, interacting with people at family gatherings where formerly he'd be hiding under a table...

Given that most dogs probably prefer being only dogs, what is going on psychologically here? Did the stabij always feel he was missing something? Is he picking up on the new dog's relaxed happy-go-lucky attitude? In his mind, is there safety in canine numbers?

Not that I'm thinking of trying this myself. I'd probably gain a dog and lose a husband :lol:
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

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Nettle
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Re: When getting a second dog goes right...

Post by Nettle » Sat Aug 24, 2019 1:59 am

Dogs' number one priority is to feel safe.

If I could see what was going on prior to the other dog arriving and then after, I might think differently because most people are rubbish at reading their dogs (spouses, children, bosses etc :wink: ) But going on what we've been told, it appears that the Staby didn't feel safe and was therefore reactive, and when the other dog came along, it was much more confident and so the Staby gained confidence because it thought the beagle would draw the fire and it (Staby) could see what was going on and become bolder when the beagle had proved it was safe.

But we must be cautious. It could also be that because there are now two dogs, the Staby isn't being pushed out of its comfort zone because the more tactile/sociable dog is getting more attention and so allowing the Staby to take its time.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

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JudyN
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Location: Dorset, UK
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Re: When getting a second dog goes right...

Post by JudyN » Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:45 am

That makes sense, Nettle. I guess it's like doing something you're anxious about - say travelling, or going to a party where you won't know many people - but being with a confident partner/friend who you know will steer you through it and deal with any problems.
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

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