Old dogs and new
When you want to add a new dog to your existing pet family, how do you go about it? DOGS are super- social animals who love a dog lover living in Subang Jaya, Selangor, busybody but she is a bit aggressive with moving house, she had to rehome the dog. being with their human family as well as who has twice added adult dogs to her existfood.” “We took Deborah in because we had the their own kind. This is why many people ing canine family. When introducing Kelly to Russell, the space. We went through the sniffing again, adopt two puppies at a time. However, as “We adopted our Tracey and Comet from family promoted the sniffing again, but this and with Russell being the big boy, he was dogs live short lives compared to ours, PAWS in the mid- 90s,” Wai Yee explains. time with a gate between the two dogs. on the leash the first few times they met chances are that one pet passes away before “They were the first dogs that we ever had, “Kelly was really curious,” Wai Yee rememwithout a separating gate. The leash is useful the other. and we’d read that dogs like their own combers. “Russell was also interested but a bit because if you see things aren’t going well,
Sometimes, especially with old dogs, the pany, so we picked them as a pair as they standoffish. After a couple of sniff sessions, you can pull your pet away before they fight, best thing to do is to keep the elderly one came from the same litter.” we let them meet. It went OK but a couple of without being bitten.” single. This is when the old pet has reached Tracey and Comet lived with Wai Yee and times Russell pushed her down in a ‘ I’m the It took a few weeks of supervised meetings a stage where living with a puppy would be her family as pets who also had duties as boss around here’ way.” but Wai Yee very quickly saw the girls bonda torture, and when adding an extra senior guard dogs. They lived long and happy lives As the dogs weren’t palling up instantly, ing. dog would feel like an invasion. but when Tracey passed away in 2007, the the family decided to take the slow route. “Deborah and Kelly are complete BFFs,”
But when your surviving pet is in good family was worried that Comet would be “We supervised contact for two or three Wai Yee smiles. “Russell tolerates the girls health, and relatively young, you may want lonely. months, and kept them apart for the rest of and they play the odd game but in his heart to consider bringing in a new companion companion, “Russell was three monthsmont old. He was at the time,” Wai Yee explains. “We were conRussell is the cool guy who prefers humans.” which isn’t easy. I went to see Kwok Wai Yee, PAWS, and they thought he e was a puppy mill cerned that if we moved too quickly, they Although Russell and the girls are not reject because he had a slig ghtly misshapen would fight. A bite or growl is OK but once bosom buds, they are out all day in the garjaw and a bad cough. We l oved him at first dogs become enemies, it’s a problem, so we den, all three sharing the same space. sight but PAWS kept him for a few thought we’d better just be a bit careful.” “They all have their own special favourite weeks till he wa s better. Then we Eventually, Kelly accepted that Russell places but they mingle freely and they get got to take him m home.” would be the boss dog, and the two were along,” Wai Yee says. “There’s the occasional Wai Yee a and her parents happy to share the garden and play the odd fight, a bite, but it’s over in a minute and had done somes reading, so game of tug of war with a toy rope. then they’re pals again. It’s like they’re sibthey’d com me up with a plan “But you know, Russell doesn’t really like lings, so like human people they sometimes they thou ught should work Kelly,” Wai Yee shares. “They’re together but quarrel but it’s not serious.” with dog culture.c In a word: it’s more like having lines of tolerance. I Looking at their faces – a grinning Russell, Bum- sniff fing! think Russell is more a people person now a frisking Deborah and a giggling Kelly – it’s “Russell was a tiny pup still, so than a dog person. He just loves selfies! Point good to know that creating extended adult mum picked him m up, held him in a camera – and he looks and smiles!” dog families is within the purview of us all. front of Comet a and said, ‘ Sniff!’” The third dog joined the family a bit unexSo, if you have a pet who’s recently lost a Wai Yee giggl les. “It went really pectedly. Wai Yee’s aunt in Ipoh had picked beloved partner, do consider going to your well. Come t accepted the up Deborah, a pregnant stray, from the nearest rescue centre and help give an abanpuppy ve ery easily and streets two years ago but as the aunt was doned dog a loving new home. Russell l loved the big dog, followin ng him like a tai kor, an oldero brother.”
To be t totally safe the family kept t contact to short play dates for a week, and when it was clear Comet a and Russell were truly pals, they allow wed the two to ive together.
When Comet pas ssed away two years ago, Kelly wa s added to the family to keep Russe ll company. “We got Kelly throu ugh our vet who’d learned she needed a home,” Wai Yee
shares. “Kelly is sw weet and a real
russe ll is the leaderr of the pack i n Wai yee’s home . — KWOK WAI y EE