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Space Issues?


Guest Magzy68
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Guest Magzy68

Hello,

 

We just picked up our current greys' littermate! We've had our current dog (Kramer) for 2.5 years and just got his sister (Cosmo). So when they first met they didn't really pay attention to each other. We were at an event with other greyhounds around so I think all that was going on factored into not paying attention much. They sniffed each other quick and that was it. We hung around for a few hours and they walked fine together even shared the same blanket but didn't touch. However, now that we are in the car Kramer has been growling and barking at her for being too close to him. We've never heard him bark like that. He's never shared a car with another dog either. We know he can have space issues, but were a little surprised with this due to the amount of barking. He's never shown aggression towards other dogs before. They are both muzzled in the car. He even snapped at her so thankfully they were muzzled! We stopped the car and took them out and as soon as they were out of the car they were walking together with no issues. So we put up the SUV seat an Kramer has the back to himself and she is on the backseat. All is peaceful now (about 15 mins). Keeping our fingers crossed!

 

I'm wondering your thoughts about this? We've only had her in our possession for 4 hours and are driving home now. Is this Kramer telling us he does not want another dog? Am I worrying too soon? I know there will be an adjustment period, but looking for advice on what signs to look for so I know Kramer really isn't happy. He is obviously our first priority so we want to make sure he's happy. We also don't want our new girl to be scared to death. Is this normal dog behavior when bringing a new dog home? How long do we give it for them to adjust?

 

Looking for any advice! Just really hoping we didn't make a mistake. Cosmo seems very sweet and laid back so we don't want to mess with that either. And we definitely don't want to change Kramer's personality.

 

Thanks everyone!

Michelle

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Hi Michelle!

 

I am not surprised that Kramer reacted that way in the car since he hasn't shared a car with another dog before. Maybe he had space issues you weren't aware of before since there was no opportunity for it. Or maybe he was sleeping and she startled him. At playgroup, he was just running around with the other dogs, not laying down with them. When we are on long car rides with Breeze and Beka, Beka gets snarky sometimes if Breeze is changing position and steps on her, and as you know, they've been together for three years. I think you just need to give Kramer time to adjust and do the same back seat/back of the car arrangement until they get used to each other. He is such a happy boy, he will probably be just fine once he gets used to the idea.

 

See you in July! :)

 

Kathy

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Humans Kathy and Jim with our girls, Ivy (Carolina Spoon) and Cherry (Fly Cherry Pie)

Missing our beautiful angel Breeze (Dighton Breeze) and angel Beka (BM Beko) - you are forever in our hearts.

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Guest Magzy68

Aww thanks for the response Kathy! I really appreciate it. It's just he was really snappig and barking loudly at her when she wasn't stepping on him. So it made me nervous. I'm just so scared he won't be a happy boy anymore. But you're right, we have to give him time to adjust. I just hope he's happy with it! They've been coexisting fine otherwise.

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It's quite common when putting dogs in the car. Even dogs who have lived together for years will sometimes get testy in such close quarters.

Judy, mom to Darth Vader, Bandita, And Angel

Forever in our hearts, DeeYoGee, Dani, Emmy, Andy, Heart, Saint, Valentino, Arrow, Gee, Bebe, Jilly Bean, Bullitt, Pistol, Junior, Sammie, Joey, Gizmo, Do Bee

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I'd make sure that at home you have plenty of beds for them and encourage her to choose somewhere other than right with him. Hopefully the car snarkiness was just surprise and being just a bit disgruntled at sharing *his* car with an interloper because it is such a small space. I'd definitely keep them separated, or at minimum muzzled, when you aren't there to directly supervise for a while until you see how he deals with sharing the 'castle' with her.

 

That said, squabbles between even the best of friends can happen, and though they are related, they probably don't know each other so it's more like being tossed in with a new roommate at college: much adjustment in the beginning and the initial reaction may change when they get to know one another's likes, dislikes, and quirks.

 

I would take them on lots of nice walks together, so they are able to move in tandem and just get used to being near and yet not truly trying to occupy the same space and navigate the social dance actively with each other. If he snarks at her for a perceived transgression, try to intercede gently by helping her find somewhere else to be (as you did in the car). Help them be calm together by ensuring that they both have the space they need, and using muzzles when you aren't sure they are comfortable.

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Congratulations on your new addition!

 

Lots of great advice here already, and I only wanted to add my experience. When we adopted our 2nd grey (many moons ago), we didn't realize he had space aggression. They were totally fine in the car and they both LOVED car rides, so it was always a positive for them. But, he would not tolerate anyone, or anything, near him when he was lying down. He snapped at our girl a few times and she learned quickly to give him a wide berth. She actually began sleeping in bed with us and he didn't even want to be in the same room with us while sleeping - and when we were gone, they never had issues. We did separate them for a while and we tried muzzling him when we were gone, but had to stop that when he almost put his eye out trying to get it off one day. That was bad.

 

Anyway, we used a baby gate to separate for months and watched them when we were home. She stayed away from him and he began to tolerate her walking by him while he was lying down. He also began to tolerate us sitting next to him and petting him. We always called his name or clapped before touching him to make sure he was awake. We just had to be respectful of that, though he got a little better over time with us and our other grey.

 

Just give them time to adjust and watch them closely. We were really worried about him, and that he might hurt our girl, but he never did. They learned each other, and we learned, too. He was a tough dog, but I am glad we learned early - as it can be an issue with any dog, but certainly greys given how they were raised.

 

Good luck to you!

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Guest Magzy68

Thanks for all the wonderful advice everyone! Kramer is sill trying to figure things out and see if she's staying. He's actually been pretty good at home with her. He's snapped at her once (muzzled) and growled a few times if she's bumping into him or having too much energy around him. She responds very well when he snapped or growls . She respectfully backs off of him. She seems to be learning pretty quickly. I'm wondering if you have any suggested signs to look for so I know if Kramer's truly not happy or if he's actually accepted her. He allows her to sleep on a bed below him when he's on the couch. He's fine with being in the same room as her and they've been walking fine. He's not "ignoring" her but he's not playing with her or giving her attention really. Is that okay?

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Hey, Michelle! I sent you an email. Sounds like typical behavior and I would just give them time. Sisters can be pests - at least according to my brother! :) He will eventually learn how to share. As they say, time and patience. Patience and time.

 

Keep us posted and I need pictures, please!

 

Cindy

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Cindy with Miss Fancypants, Paris Bueller, Zeke, and Angus 
Dante (Dg's Boyd), Zoe (In a While), Brady (Devilish Effect), Goose (BG Shotgun), Maverick (BG ShoMe), Maggie (All Trades Jax), Sherman (LNB Herman Bad) and Indy (BYB whippet) forever in my heart
The flame that burns the brightest, burns the fastest and leaves the biggest shadow

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  • 2 weeks later...

He'll get over it. It's really nice you're so concerned about his happiness, but it's YOUR house and you get to decide!

 

Unless he poses a danger to her, which it certainly doesn't sound like, your boy is just going to have to learn to deal with it. And I bet you in six months you won't even remember why you were so concerned!

 

I have a 13 year old cat who was terrified of dogs when I got him at 11 years of age. You'd never know it was even the same cat. I just let him figure it out on his own, that THIS dog wasn't going to chase him or bark at him, and now he's actually been seen sleeping on the couch with the dog! If an old cat can adjust, I'm sure Kramer can do.

 

FYI, my mutt dog was named Cosmo Kramer and I called him Kramer. Then I got George, and now Buck (Buck Naked was George Costanza's "porn star" name in an episode of Seinfeld).


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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