How to introduce your Labrador Retriever to other dogs

When looking to introduce your Labrador Retriever to other dogs, there are two separate situations that may apply. The first situation, is that you are looking to properly socialize your Labrador with other dogs. In the second situation, you are introducing your Labrador Retriever to other dogs in your household. Both of these situations require similar steps, and will ensure that your Labrador Retriever is easily able to interact with other dogs, both in the home and outside.


Labrador Retrievers have a very agreeable temperament, and will easily be able to interact with the other animals in your home with the right conditioning. Despite their temperament, it is also important to remember that all dogs have an instinctual dominance hierarchy, and will sometimes react based on their desire to be dominant. Labrador Retrievers, however, are one of the easiest breeds to introduce to other dogs in your home, especially if your Labrador is still a puppy.

A good way to begin is to first introduce your Labrador Retriever to one room of your house, without the other dog(s) in the room. Be sure that your Labrador sees the other dogs when entering your house, however, quickly take them to a secluded room, go inside with them, and shut the door. At this point, it’s likely that your dog will be curious, sniffing around and investigating the different smells of your home. Give them a lot of encouragement, and do not leave the room. Once your dog is comfortable, open the door, and go interact with your other dog(s). It’s strongly recommended to only introduce your new dog to one other dog at a time, since this will allow you much greater control over the situation.

Your new dog (or puppy) will likely look out the door to see where you have gone, and see you interacting with the “strange” dog. Once your new dog sees you, immediately go back and interact with them. This will help to enforce the fact that all of you are a “family”, and there will be a much lower chance of aggressive behavior.

Do not leave your new dog alone with your other pets for about a month, even if they seem to be getting along. Once you are gone, your other animals may have a battle for dominance, especially if it’s still early in your new dog’s life with you.


If you are looking to socialize your Labrador with other “outside” dogs, such as on daily walks, the same principles can be applied. Approach the other dog slowly (and with consent of their owner!) and be observant of any aggressive behavior. If there is any growling, raising of fur, or ears laid back, immediately turn around and walk in the opposite direction, before again trying to approach the other dog. Reward your dog with treats if they do not display aggression towards the “new” dog, as this will greatly help in forming positive interactive behavior.

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  1. Chantelle Marshall says:

    Hi there i have a 3 year old english bred black lab and was wondering what other dogs would be suiteble to get? We want to basically know what other dogs would fit with labradors? Yours sincerely Chantelle