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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19836
Experience:  Behaviorist /Trainer and Dog breeder 18+ years
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I have a 12 yr old chow, my son has just got a chow puppy

Customer Question

i have a 12 yr old chow, my son has just got a chow puppy about 6 months old. when the puppy comes to our house, they are fine together most of the time, but the older chow does growl at the puppy , it seems to me , the puppy just wants to play, the older dog wants to be left alone, i'm looking for any ideas, before this becomes a big problem, thank you, al
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.
My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.
For the most part, adult dogs do teach younger dogs puppy manners and one way they do this is to growl and even nip at a puppy. However, at 6 months of age, the puppy is not a puppy anymore. If they are both the same sex, I'd see about neutering the pup to reduce any possible dominance altercations. Younger stronger dogs often challenge an Older senior dog so they can be boss. However, if the pup just visits for short periods of time and doesn't stay there, dominance may never become an issue.
If the older dog is not drawing blood, I'd let them be for now. If the older dog does draw blood you will need to intervene. One way is to leash BOTH dogs. When you notice the younger dog getting out of hand around the older dog, give the younger dog a reprimand of a short tug and firm NO so the younger dog knows that the behavior is unacceptable. If you notice the older dog focusing too much on the younger dog, hair raised on the shoulder or other aggressive postures, give the same reprimand to the older dog. This will help the younger dog realize what behavior is acceptable in YOUR house.
In addition, keep hot dog slivers handy and when they are getting along or pointedly ignoring each other, reward them with a hot dog sliver as a reward, that way they learn what behavior you do want.
Learning dog body language would help as well so you can see if one is being dominant or aggressive or playful.
I hope this information is helpful to you. If you need more information or clarification, please reply and I'll get back to you as soon as possible. If you are satisfied, please take the opportunity to rate.