Thursday, September 11, 2008

Sibling Rivalry

One of the reasons I was excited about getting a new, young dog was because I wanted someone to play with Trooper. He is only two and playing with Quinn and Kodiak isn’t enough for him. My excitement was dampened as Timber fixated on Kodiak. Thankfully that fixation has dulled though he still really really likes Kodiak. :)

The one thing I did not really expect was a negative reaction on Trooper’s part. He did SO good with our foster dog Bullet. Though she was a female so maybe that is part of the difference.

Last night as I brushed my teeth I thought I heard growling. Kodiak was in the living room. Quinnie was curled on her bed and Timber was right next to me. I knew Trooper was under the bed so I couldn’t understand why he would be growling. No one was near him or bothering him.

But you know why I think he was growling? Because Timber was next to me…his mommy. I got down on my hands and knees and sure enough - Trooper was growling at Timber. :( With no provocation. I disciplined him (telling him No and putting my hand over his muzzle) each time he started growling and after awhile he relaxed a bit. Timber had followed me over to the bed and crouched down with me - his head toward Trooper. Of course Trooper didn’t like that but I ignored Timber and just pet Trooper.

I am hoping that over time Trooper will get over his jealousy and realize that he can share with Timber the same way he shares with Kodiak and Quinn. He is no threatened by them and there’s no reason to be threatened by Timber. I asked hubby if he was still giving attention to Trooper and he said yes.

Tonight is more mommy and Trooper time at agility. It’s so fun and healthy for us both.

Anyone have any advice for handling sibling rivalry? Hubby says that they are playing together - I just don’t see it apparently because they do it while I’m at work. Or is it because Trooper is being protective of me (he really is “my” baby…he loves papa but I’m his alpha for sure).

Tug of War

At least they will play together. We just have to make sure to supervise until we know they are the best of friends. =)

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