Friday, June 13, 2014

Food is a volatile issue between dogs, especially dogs that are strangers to each other. You may have two dogs that are getting along fine, but when a dish of food or even a hand-delivered treat comes along they may go after each other.
  No Free-feeding during the Introduction Period.
If you have been “free-feeding” your current dog—leaving a dish of dry dog food out at all times—you may have to change that routine at least for a while. The new dog may not be used to having unlimited access to food and may be greedy about the “free” food and want to eat all of it. Your resident dog may be possessive of his food dish and not want the new dog to go near it. It’s easier all the way around to just remove the provocation for now.
  Keep the Dogs’ Food Bowls Separate.
When you serve the dogs their meals, put their dishes down at a distance from each other. Stay with the dogs while they eat so that neither dog tries to go to the other’s dish. It only takes a few minutes for most dogs to eat, so you staying there as a silent monitor is the best insurance against “food fights.”

A dog is not usually possessive about his water bowl, but if you see your dog acting in any way possessive of his water dish (standing by it and guarding it in a defensive stance, growling when the other dog comes near it), find another spot to put down a second water dish so that the new dog has an alternative.
 Copyright © Tracie Hotchner – Originally appeared in The Dog Bible: Everything Your Dog Wants You to Know by Tracie Hotchner

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