Case Studies

Inter dog aggression

Owner: Sabrina and Jake
Dog: Dudley and Lola
Breed: Staffordshire Bull Terriers
Location: Yeovil
Description: Bringing a rescue dog into a home with an existing dog will always take some management but getting advice on how to manage this to ensure a good relationship between the 2 dogs can make the all the difference. I will let Sabrina explain the details in her testimonial.

My partner and I decided to adopt/rehome another dog, as a companion for our 4 year old staffy cross Dudley. We didn’t want a puppy as we felt an older dog deserved a loving family home just as much. Our hearts were always set on another Staffy, as in our eyes, you cannot fault the breed! They are so loyal, loving and Dudley is just amazing with our friend’s children.

We tried the local kennels and rescue homes with not much luck, due to working arrangements, future family plans and some dogs just didn’t get on with Dudley!

After a while of looking and hoping, we found Lola, an 18 month old Staffy on a social media rescue Staffordshire Bull Terrier rehoming page. Her previous owner travelled down from Birmingham with Lola and we spent a day working with the two dogs, introducing them on neutral ground.

It was certainly not easy from the start, Lola was very fiery and aggressive towards Dudley. There were times that we wondered whether we had made the right decision, both dogs seemed unhappy.

Luckily, we had worked with Paula and Dudley at our previous house, so we contacted Paula as a cry for help. Giving either dog up was definitely not an option.

The difference even after one home visit still surprises us. Paula taught us that we weren’t helping the situation by protecting Dudley and disciplining Lola; as Lola is indeed the more dominant dog. Dudley was suffering from a case of ‘only dog syndrome’ and making Lola feel extremely anxious and unwelcome. After making a few small changes including greeting, feeding and praising Lola first, we have noticed a massive difference in both dogs. They seem to live more in peace with each other and the aggressive, brashy behaviour has reduced to very rare occasions, normally over toys or other ‘high value items’ - something we are working on. We have changed Lola’s food from kibble to Natures Diet which Dudley has eaten since Paula’s first visit over a year ago; and introduced Platinum as their evening meal which we use as a training aid for them both. The difference in her coat and attitude is amazing and both dogs are much more eager to work for their food and basic obedience is improving.

We have had another session with Paula to focus on lead training as Lola pulls on a lead, meaning that I cannot walk her! The progress from this session is slow but we are continuing with the techniques we were taught and using them on our early morning walks before work.

Over the Christmas break we have enjoyed numerous dog walks where Lola has encouraged Dudley to explore more and even venture into muddy puddles (he is a dog who will stop dead in front of a puddle in protest!). After the worry and emotion of them not getting on, we are starting to see two dogs who complement each other and bring each other out of their shells.

We still have a long way to come; with lead training, sharing toys and teaching Lola self control and boundaries with us and other dogs, but we feel positive about the whole situation and look forward to watching the dogs grow together. We are so glad we gave Lola a chance, she’s got just as much love to give as Dudley (even though she’s more interested in chewing her teddy toy than belly rubs!).

Main Image: Dudley and Lola.jpg