Fulltime RV Life with Dogs

How to Integrate a New Rescue Dog into Your Existing Pack?

☑️ Routine and Consistent Walks Altogether.

Dogs are pack animals and benefit from doing activities together. On initial meetings with your other dogs, have them walk in front and then your new rescue follow behind them then swap them. Eventually, start walking them side by side. They’ll learn which side is their ‘side’. For example, Duke walks on our left side & Chloe walks on our right side. Blue paces off Duke, so he usually walks on the left as well. This happens every time we go for a walk.

☑️ Treats and Vocal Commands.

Rescues need direction and it’s likely many haven’t had any. Just like Blue. He’s estimated to be at least 5 years old and until about 3 weeks ago, he never learned to ‘sit’ on command. We use treats and repetitive commands to train them. Sometimes it may take longer than a week or two. In Blue’s case, we’ve been working on ‘sit’ since we rescued him back in February of this year. Keep at it, they will learn.

☑️ Feed them all at the same time. (But separate them into their own space in case there’s food aggression)

Dogs are creatures of habit and while they can’t actually tell time, they usually know the schedule of events for the day. Like clockwork, they know when it’s time to eat, potty, snack, and sleep. They also know when it’s time for Meredith to come home. They remind me what time it is throughout the day so often I don’t even need to wear a watch. Lol.

☑️ Pinch collars.

Many people will argue these aren’t ‘humane’. But you’ll never catch our dogs jumping up on someone unexpectedly. They won’t pull our arms out of our sockets (although we’re still working with Blue on this) and these collars help us give correction when they need direction. It’s one thing to have smaller dogs jump up on your leg, but without pinch collars and corrections, big dogs can knock us and others over. Remember, you are ALPHA.

☑️ Praise.

When training them (which dogs like Duke are ‘working dogs’ and love to train) it’s imperative to give them constant praise when they react or respond to a command correctly. This helps show them it’s more bonding than training.

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