I’m about to have an aneurysm.
I currently have my parent’s house to myself. Its a large two-story house with a sizable backyard, perfect for dogs to run around and play in. My sister also left her two-year-old pekapom Mochi for me to babysit. I was initially excited for Mochi when I first got Loki – he finally has a friend to play with! But after their first encounter, I quickly realized that introducing a puppy to an adult dog is very, very stressful.
Puppy playfulness, or dog aggression?
Loki gets really annoying around other dogs, especially around adult dogs who aren’t as patient with puppy behavior. The moment Loki enters the house and sees Mochi, he will immediately:
– Run frantically around the house
– Jump ontop of Mochi
– Stick his face into Mochi’s face and try to nip his mouth
– Bark and yelp at Mochi if he doesn’t reciprocate playing
– Chase him around until Mochi is backed into a corner
Mochi immediately turns into defensive mode: tail down, body stiff, and ears pinned down. He is clearly not enjoying Loki’s “playfulness” and starts growling if Loki gets close. This doesn’t seem to detour Loki either; it actually starts to excite him more.
I’ve been searching forums to learn about puppy playing behavior, and people recommend allowing the older dog and puppy to dish it out. Unfortunately, even this method doesn’t work with Loki. The few times that I’ve tried letting Mochi bark/growl/nip at Loki, the two break out into a full-blown dog fight. Even though Loki is just a puppy, he is almost as physically large as Mochi. I still don’t get why Loki doesn’t understand Mochi’s body language. The more Mochi growls and nips at Loki, the more Loki lunges ontop of Mochi. Its freaking retarded.
The only time Loki and Mochi have successfully played along is in the backyard. Theres enough space for Mochi to make a quick getaway if needed. Indoors, the two run around until Mochi gets backed into a corner, and then things get ugly. There are too many things inside the house for the dogs to fight over – the toys, the bed, the food, the slippers, etc. It doesn’t help that Mochi is territorial over his space (the kitchen) and his things.
I’ve resorted to keeping Loki locked up in his play pen most of the day. The house is too big and its the only way I can monitor both dogs. He doesn’t like this much. Another method I’ve been trying is keeping Loki’s leash on indoors. This seems to slow him down and its much easier to catch him this way. To keep him close to my side, I’ve been wearing the end of his leash on my foot, or looping it through something heavy like a kitchen table leg.
For now, this will have to do. I’ll continue to keep the dogs separated indoors at all times. Hopefully, a few more positive encounters outdoors will bond the dogs closer together. It is a lot of work to train Loki to play nice =(
*10 minutes after I typed this, Loki nipped at Mochi and another dog fight ensued. Sigh.