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Thread: Advice needed - managing my two boys size difference

  1. #1

    Default Advice needed - managing my two boys size difference

    Hi all! I have had my 1.5yr Pomchi (Nacho) since he was 8 weeks old and decided to get a new addition as he LOVES other dogs and we have plenty of room. Obviously my main priority was making sure we got the right fit so that both Nacho and his new buddy would be as happy as possible, we met up with a few dogs who I felt might get a bit stressed by Nacho (he is very energetic and bouncy) so carried on talking to the rescue shelters etc...fast forward to three days ago...a gorgeous 1yr old amstaff was brought over to meet us (he had been abandoned and was temporarily being looked after by the owners friend). As we have an enclosed front yard I met them out there (leaving Nacho in the house to start) and straight away said I was concerned about the size difference with them both being so young and playful, anyway I went inside to grab Nacho and put him on his leash and when I go outside there is no sign of the guy who brought him over - just the dog and his bed! So that is how I now have Dyson - he is a typical staffy, all about the cuddles and kisses with that gorgeous smile and stubborn as a mule! The problem I am having is obviously the size difference between the two - they are both young and want to play which, at their age, is basically jumping on each other and Dyson especially gets carried away, just dives on him - I’m really concerned about him accidentally doing Nacho a serious injury. Has anyone been in this situation? How did you manage it and what advice would you give me? Is it just too much? Thanks for any help!


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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Southern NSW
    Posts
    3,898

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    I actually have to deal with this a lot as I have newfies and they love to play and I also get newfie puppies or other recue dogs in my house hold that are either too young to rough house with an adult newf or just too fragile.

    So I train "gentle".... Which is extremely tedious at first.... I just let dogs out together and as soon as it is too rough, I say "gentle" and if it does not happen (especially at first as they have no idea).. I just put them in about a 1-3 minute time out or at least away from the other dog, even if it means beside you on lead.... I say it is tedious, because at first you have to repeat this a lot. But they get it really quickly... I have five at home, one is quite elderly now, but still a bit of an idiot, so when she goes out with the pack and they run around it is fine. But if they get rough, I say "gentle" and because of all the previous training they slow it down. Some have even figured that if you go in a "drop" and just use your front paws and mouth, you are allowed to do anything LOL... It also helps as we use our dogs in social situations and demos with many other dogs. The word "gentle" is used a lot then.... But you have to be persistent initially and it does not happen overnight. You take away the dog that is the rough one, even if it is your little one... if they both are you might need a hand from a second person.... the one thing I must stress is that you do not speak to them, no words like "no" or telling them off is used... you just take them and either have them next to you in the quiet spot or away in another room... let them out and again say nothing and see what happens.... If it goes wild again, say "gentle", if it slows down allow them to stay together if not remove one...... repeat, repeat, repeat LOL
    Pets are forever

  3. #3

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    There was substantial size difference in my dogs. It has eased up as the pup grew but same as newfsie - I would say gentle, and if they didn't ease up i would walk between the two to add some space from each other to "shake it off" or take the rowdier one to time out.

    I even walked around with a broom for the first month while playing - NOT for hitting them! But to just nudge between them when I felt they were getting too excited/rowdy and potential for injury could happen (+ hurt feelings if one got TOO nippy).

    They play pretty sedately and lazily together now, so it worked out. But took LOTS of repitition to reinforce that they play calm ONLY.

    Sometimes they get the zoomies and one gets a little too intense. These days if she does not listen to my "oi, gentle" - I will put her on lead for a minute or so as time out. This generally only occurs in new locations where they're both just a bit too excited. They settle again.

  4. #4

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    Thanks both so much for the advice! Wow I thought Dyson was big - can only imagine trying to do this with a 1yr old newfie would be like!!

    Definitely have been on the ‘gentle’ (so much so he probably thinks it’s his new name haha!). I kept them totally separate the first day with baby gates and since then have been using a tether inside for the big one gradually letting it out - now there is only 1/4 of the lounge in the whole house he can’t get to on it (just to give the little one an escape) but I am super nervy taking it off him - as soon as it’s off he zooms straight to Nacho and dives on him regardless if I’ve worn him out with exercise or even if he’s asleep! Plus, being a typical bully, he puts his stubborn ‘I’m gonna pretend I didn’t hear that command’ head on... I will do as you both say and persevere with the gentles, if anything else that helped you guys springs to mind I’m all ears

    Thanks again!!


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  5. #5

    Default Advice needed - managing my two boys size difference

    So brave when he’s asleep haha!


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  6. #6

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    Awwwww. With time and repetition he should get it. Teenage brains can be a bit thick at times.

  7. #7

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    Well we made some progress today thanks to you both!

    Did as you advised and kept up with the gentles and it’s starting to click - he’s had lots of off tether time today and they had a couple of plays in the garden together! Had to step in a couple of times when he was getting worked up but mostly he’s backing off with the command (although, like yours, tries the sneaky paws and mouth - he doesn’t realise he’s too big to be sneaky haha!)

    There’s definitely still a lot of work to go helping them bond, as much as I’m making sure to give them equal attention there’s still some jealousy (pawing at my arm if I’m stroking the other and little things like that) but it’s such a relief to see this progress - the first couple of nights I was convinced they would have to be separated constantly!

    Thanks again for the help, please feel free to share any other gems of wisdom you’ve learned from experience

  8. #8

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    Don't feel bummed out if after a couple of months, they seem to go backwards. It is just ageing and testing each other's boundaries. Return to the basics of gentle and management until it becomes second nature.

    Me: thinking of when mr big and grown up teenage spaniel kept posturing at my older dog (who thankfully just ignored him so I had to interject a bit. He was just being an over excited hormonal teen and he's since stopped that stupid behaviour. But oh boy it was annoying!)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Southern NSW
    Posts
    3,898

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    Sounds like you getting it all sorted
    Pets are forever

  10. #10

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    Big little brother totally fed up with little big brother haha




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