If your peaceful house has a single dog, this harmony can easily descend into chaos with the introduction of a second dog. It is important to get things right from the start when a new dog is introduced. Beneath are a few steps to smooth the introduction and help ensure that both dogs learn their place and get on like the best of friends.
To avoid territorial issues and introduce the dogs in an area that is not familiar to either dog. It is often a good idea to allow them to sniff and meet at either side of a fence.
After the dogs initially meet, put on collars and fit leads and take them for a walk together. Try to keep them apart and if you see signs of them staring at one another correct them or distract them.
Do not introduce your new dog to another dog in doorway or at a gate, or in confined spaces. Also try to keep the number of people present to a minimum. After they have had an initial sniff, separate them for a small amount of time to avoid tension building up.
When the dogs are meeting one another initially, do not wait for something bad to happen before splitting them apart. Keep the initial meetings brief and short.
Encourage your new dog to familiarise itself with your house without the other dog(s) being present in the same room(s).
Do not leave newly introduced dogs alone together in your house. If you do need to leave them for a short period, always ensure they are kept in separate rooms or in their cages.
If, despite your best efforts, you just cannot trust your dogs to act civilised, or they just don’t seem to settle together, keep them separated and contact a professional trainer or dog behaviourist.