Multiple Dog Households
Many dogs who live together in the same home are subject to having to do things as a group. They all go to the dog park, pile in the car to visit friends, go camping, go for a walk, play games like fetch or hide and seek yet dogs are similar to us in that they don’t all enjoy the same things but are forced in a way, to do things together. It’s like we lump DOGS into, ‘This is what dogs do’ without considering their own individual personalities.
Some dogs love the dog park, some love to go for rides in the car, stay home, go for long off leash hikes, ride in a basket on the front of a bike, stick their heads out the window, play fetch, play chase, cuddle while others loathe these very things, so why do we think we need to do all the same things with all our dogs?
Old dogs, young dogs, athletic dogs, couch potatoes, cuddlers, aloof on the bed in the corner, comfortable in the crate when company comes; are all different ways dogs enjoy life and if we are to really live in harmony with our dogs we need to be more considerate of who they are and what their preferences are not what we think they should be doing.
Dogs asked to do things that they aren’t really comfortable with begin to show signs of stress which over time could manifest into having issues with their health, relationships, willingness to work or play and we wonder what’s happened. Why is he getting grumpy, why did he growl, why doesn’t he want to go to the dog park when all the other dogs are in the car waiting?
You can see some other differences in how dogs play or what games they like to play. Some love to fetch, some love to chase, some only like to play with one dog and not the other and some won’t play with any dogs but the ones they live with. If one dogs loves the dog park and the other stands around your legs or is acting out, leave that dog home and figure out what makes that dog happy and do that with her.
If you have a multiple dog household, please remember that they are individuals each with their own personalities and needs. It makes it more challenging for you to find the time to meet all of your dogs needs yet in the long run, the dogs will be happier which means less stress and or manifestations of undesired behaviors causing disruptions for the entire home and family.