If you’re reading this article, you’re probably wondering about getting another dog. And how long it will take for them to bond with your current dog.
Some dogs only become best friends after a month or so. Others instantly click like soulmates.
Find out how dogs get along and some signs of dogs becoming a bonded pair.
Will Two Dogs Eventually Get Along?
This depends on two factors: nature and nurture.
Dogs can get along with each other if they were born to be friendly or if they are trained to get along with other furry friends.
It takes a perfect mix of the two for your pups to become best friends.
The “Nature” Aspect of Dogs Getting Along
Some dogs are genetically geared to be fun, friendly, and playful.
So two dogs who just met each other will get along right away if their breeds are naturally amicable.
Of course, almost all dogs are friendly. But there are certain breeds with more naturally sociable personalities than others.
These include the following:
- Bearded Collie
- Border Collie
- Boston Terrier
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Irish Setter
- Labrador Retriever
- Petit Basset Griffon Vandeen
- Pembroke Welsh Corgi
- Shih Tzu
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Meanwhile, some dog breeds are also naturally more aggressive than others. Training can help reverse this behavior, but it will be challenging for you and your trainer.
These dog breeds usually don’t easily get along with fellow dogs:
- Akita Inu
- Alaskan Malamute
- American Bulldog
- Bull Terrier
- Cane Corso
- Chow Chow
- Doberman Pinscher
- Dogo Argentino
- German Shepherd
- Great Dane
- Pit Bulls
- Saint Bernard
- Siberian Husky
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Wolf Hybrid.
Another factor that might hinder your dog’s ability to be companions with other dogs is their anxiety or fear.
Some dog breeds are more susceptible to these behaviors. These include:
- Miniature Schnauzers
- Shetland Sheepdogs
- Wheaten Terriers.
The “Nurture” Aspect of Dogs Getting Along
Just because your dog is naturally aggressive like their ancestors doesn’t mean you can’t fix the behavior.
Dogs are intelligent creatures who learn through socialization and positive reinforcement.
Dogs will quickly become best friends if you have trained them to become gentle toward people and other animals from a young age.
There are two ways dogs learn to become sociable: through classical and operant conditioning.
Classical conditioning happens when your furry friend involuntarily associates two stimuli with each other.
Meanwhile, operant conditioning occurs when you offer a dog a certain behavior before rewarding them.
You can teach your dogs to get along with others through operant conditioning. Dog training is easy as this formula:
A + B = C or Antecedent + Behavior = Consequence.
For example, if you keep your two dogs together in a space and they remain well-behaved, you reward them. Do this regularly, and your dogs will voluntarily stay well-behaved when they are together.
It’s a significant first step to teaching your dogs to get along. Once they are comfortable together, they will start playing and hanging out.
Continue giving them treats to reinforce or cause the behavior to continue.
When Will Two Dogs Get Along?
Puppies usually take a shorter time to get along with other puppies. They do not have much experience and familiarity with their environment yet.
Puppies are small fur balls that quickly accept changes in their life. They are also too playful to be anxious or aggressive most of the time.
However, it can take up to a month to settle in and accept a new pack member for older dogs. It’s a significant adjustment they have to make, so make sure to assist them in these changes.
Give your dogs adequate time to adjust to one another before deciding whether you need to help them along.
Remember that nothing is impossible when teaching your dog simple behaviors. Be prepared for this new commitment of helping your two dogs get along so they will genuinely enjoy each other’s company.
Allow your dogs to sniff each other, go on walks together, share food and toys, and receive equal attention. If one is off-leash, the other should be too.
Signs Your Dogs are Eventually Getting Along
Once you’re done with the adjustment period, you will notice these signs that your dogs are finally getting along well with each other:
One sign that your dog likes to play with another dog is through the play bow. This is when their front end is down and their back end is in the air.
Dogs initiate play when doing this. Watch as they continuously slap their front legs down on the ground and bow to the other dog.
Sometimes, it’s hard to tell if they’re playing or fighting. If your dogs are making exaggerated and bouncy movements, everything is good, and they are having fun.
Dogs also like making loud growling noises when they’re playing. Don’t be scared of this.
They also like “falling” down and showing their tummy to let the other dog chase them. They should take turns chasing each other.
Sleeping Next to Each Other
Dogs who are vulnerable next to each other trust each other. If you notice them sleeping beside each other with no signs of threatening behavior, they are getting along well with each other.
It’s even better when your dogs’ bodies touch each other when sleeping. It’s an obvious sign of their affection and comfortability toward one another.
Calming Each Other Down
If one dog is scared of the vet, the other comforts them and offers moral support. Veterinarians agree that codependency between animals in the vet hospital is real.
They have seen many instances of dogs and other animals relying on each other for comfort when they are anxious.
Such interdependence is a vital sign of an intense bond between pets.
If you find that your dogs are always doing everything together, this indicates they are bonding well, and may even become inseparable.
When dogs show signs of sadness or disinterest when the other dog is away, this can indicate that they love having each other around and are forming a strong bond.
How to Get Dogs to Bond With Each other?
Here are some easy steps to get your dog to bond with each other.
Choose the Right Dog
If you haven’t gotten a new dog yet, adopt one with similar qualities as your first dog.
Suppose your dog is shyer. Look for one who is just the right amount of friendliness.
Getting an overly energetic dog can intimidate your fearful dog. It will also make the new dog bored with the first one.
Some shelters conduct temperament testing to evaluate their dogs. Choose one that has been around other dogs before so you won’t have difficulty training.
Here’s a list of the easiest dog breeds to own.
Positive reinforcement training works for almost anything.
If you want your dog to start being friendly with other dogs, rewarding them with treats and praises will help.
Allow your dogs to sniff each other and greet each other as they usually would. Then use verbal affirmation to reinforce the behavior.
Let them play as you command them to “sit” and “stay.” Again, give them rewards for every good behavior.
Let them interact again by taking walks together, eating together, and letting them sniff each other.
Keep repeating the cycle until they don’t need to be rewarded with praises for getting along well.
How Can You Tell If Dogs Don’t Like Each Other?
When introducing dogs to each other it may not always go smoothly. Look out for some of these signs that indicate your dogs do not like each other.
This non-play occurs when one dog tries to play with the other, but the other dog ignores them. Move your dogs away from each other when you notice this and try again another time.
Sometimes, growling is a playful noise. But when paired with a rigid posture, it’s a sign that your dog is feeling threatened.
The pitch can also give you information about the meaning behind your dog’s growl.
A low growl means your dog doesn’t like the other dog. Carefully move them away from each other right away to avoid a fight breaking out.
Staring is another red flag when dogs interact. Long, hard stares can mean that a fight is waiting to happen.
It’s like two adult men having a staring contest before punching each other!
If their eyes are locked in on one another, keep them away from each other. It may only take seconds before the violence occurs.
What Do You Do When Two Dogs Don’t Get Along?
If all the training and rewards aren’t working, here’s how you can handle two dogs that don’t get along.
Treat Them Equally
Dogs might be conflicting because of the “scarce resources” you have. Make sure you’re feeding them equitably and giving them equal attention.
Both dogs should also be in comfortable environments with access to fresh water.
Separate Them Permanently
This tip is for dogs who continuously attack each other even after repeated behavioral training sessions. Your pet’s safety should be your priority at this point.
Find a suitable space for each dog where they don’t see or hear each other. Make sure they both have a safe comfortable place to retreat to when they need it.
If your house is too small, you may need to consider finding a more suitable home for them.
How Do I Know if My Dogs Like Each Other?
Dogs who like each other the first time they meet should instantly drop into a “play bow.” This is a sign that they want to play with each other.
See if they are taking turns when playing tag, wagging their tail, and play-biting.
Some dogs also show exaggerated growling or barking when they like each other. It could be scary, but a high pitch shows that they are just having fun.
Learn all the other ways to tell if your dogs like each other.
How to Tell if Dogs are Bonded to Each Other?
A bonded pair of dogs develop solid relationships with each other because of their proximity, shared trauma, or family bond.
They are bonded with each other if they are always together. Whether they are sleeping, walking, or eating, your dogs should be happier when beside each other.
Some signs that they enjoy each other’s company include sharing food, comforting one another, and grooming each other.
Find out other telltale signs of a bonded pair of dogs.
How Do I Introduce My Dog to Another Dog?
So you want your dog to meet a new furry friend.
The first step to achieving this is by checking if they are calm and relaxed. Stay silent, so your dog also feels relaxed with the new dog.
Reward your dog as they interact well with the other dog. But make sure to keep your distance, especially if your dog is barking.
Find out more on how to introduce your dog to another dog.
Teach Your Dogs to be Best Friends
As always, when it comes to dogs, everything is teachable! You can train your dog to get along well with another dog even if their breed is “naturally aggressive” or “naturally anxious.”
One way to make this adjustment period easier is by choosing a new dog that is compatible with your dog’s personality. If your dog is shy and reserved, select a friendly companion who is not so energetic.
Ever wondered how dogs show their affection? Here are some signs your dog is showing you their love.