New here

HI,
I have had my Basenji for 8 years, I got her as a pup from a pet store in the Mall…(ouch). After my wife passed I decided to get a house dog for me, her name is Precious. A year later my daughter wanted a Chihuahua so we got a female pup. The girls started out in a crate and have moved out of the crate and have full roam of the house. They have been out of the crate for about 5-6 years now, they have always slept in the bed since day one and get plenty of lap time.....Everything has been fine all these years but now I have a problem, I have a girlfriend and she has recently moved in and there are issues. The girls have always had my attention and not had to share any time, my girlfriend does not like the idea of the girls in the bed when we sleep or them getting comfy when we watch movies or TV........how do I go about changing the habits they have known their whole life????

I don't know…maybe you can tie some bacon to your girlfriend's neck until the dogs start to like her, and they realize that your girlfriend is another set of hands that can give them belly rubs. 😃

Welcome to our community! We are glad to have you here.
Post some photos of your dogs in Show Off Your Dog section.

Welcome…where in Georgia do you live? I'm in Savannah and there are others here from various towns/cities in Georgia.
Do you think your girlfriend is moving in the direction of "No dogs!"? It sounds to me like she maybe just doesn't like dogs. Am I understanding it right - she not only doesn't want them in the bed but she doesn't want them sitting with you on the sofa when you watch television or relax? I think you should try to work out a compromise with her. Do you have a guest room? Maybe the two dogs would be willing to sleep together on the guest bed but let them lounge with you on the sofa. My husband came from a "no housepets" family and that was one of the compromises that we made when we decided to get married - we would have housepets - specifically a dog - but DH got to decide if we had more than one at a time. (And I'd like to point out that we have two now. 😃 And we all fit comfortably on the sofa for relaxing in the evening.)

Good Luck,
Pat

Well, if the routine you had in place FOR 5-6 YEARS before the girlfriend entered the picture was a good fit for everyone in the home, humans and pets, I would think you could ask her to be flexible. I don't think that should be out of question. It might even be easier to have her adapt given that she's new to the situation than to change the habits of the dogs who are not new to the situation. They'd probably be really confused: new human, new ground rules. At least expect that everyone involved compromises. Team effort/meet in the middle sorta thing.
Maybe give her some time to fall in love with the furkids, too. 😉

@fuzzrock:

HI,
I have had my Basenji for 8 years, I got her as a pup from a pet store in the Mall…(ouch). After my wife passed I decided to get a house dog for me, her name is Precious. A year later my daughter wanted a Chihuahua so we got a female pup. The girls started out in a crate and have moved out of the crate and have full roam of the house. They have been out of the crate for about 5-6 years now, they have always slept in the bed since day one and get plenty of lap time.....Everything has been fine all these years but now I have a problem, I have a girlfriend and she has recently moved in and there are issues. The girls have always had my attention and not had to share any time, my girlfriend does not like the idea of the girls in the bed when we sleep or them getting comfy when we watch movies or TV........how do I go about changing the habits they have known their whole life????

Your girlfriend needs to become a part of the girls lives…. I think that is she becomes the "food" person this will go a long way that they will accept her...

Do I read this right that she is really not a "doggy" person? This as you already know will be a problem and if this is the case, any chance she will change her mind? In order for you to have a peaceful house and even attempt to change some behaviors, she needs to make some adjustments too.

How long has your girlfriend lived with you? When we got our dog, my husband had to do A LOT of convincing before I said yes, and even then it was VERY hesitant, as I did not like dogs much at all. I remember saying to him on the way to get her "there is no way I will EVER let her in our bed, or up on the furniture. This is YOUR dog, not mine." Well, about a month later she was sleeping in our bed, under the covers right by me, and she is always cuddled up to us on the couch. Plus I am way more protective of her, and she is probably more "mine" than his. I don't know what i would do without her now, she definitely wormed her way into my heart! So maybe your girlfriend will come around…that is a hard situation! Its funny, I am still not crazy about other dogs at all, Tosca is really the only one I like to pet, sit with, etc. Good Luck!

Two female dogs and one female human, might sound silly but the new girlfriend may be a bit jealous of the pups and want you all to herself. Hopefully you are not put in a position to have to choose "me or the dogs" and girlfriend will come to love them as you do. I am a 'love me, love my dogs' person but even I might make some small compromises for a special person. fortunately I don't have to, my DH is as crazy about our dogs as I am.
Good luck!
Anne in Tampa (originally from Ga)

I really hope your girlfriend starts to warm up to your dogs. It's not like she didn't know what she was in store for. It's unrealistic for her to think that you'd push away your pets that you've had for 7-8 years. If she's the type to give you "ultimatums" like this, maybe you both should reevaluate whether she should be living with you or not. This could be a "sign of things to come." I hate to sound cruel, but these are the vibes I'm getting.

Really good to hear from all of you….the girls like her just fine and she gets along with them but she believes that they have their "place" in the house and that she shouldn't have to change...we have had a few discussions about sleeping habits and sitting on the couch, I have tried to point out that this is all they have known but she feels that I am not doing enough to help with the transition. This seems harsh to me since I love them like I do and they have been good about the whole new person in the house. I am being open minded about it all but they have been mine this long and I don't see that this is as bad as she makes it except that she will not change what she believes......

This sounds like a fundamental difference in opinion about what place in your family and household your dogs have. She is coming into your home not the other way around and so it is harsh for her to say she should not have to change. The whole situation is a big change for everyone. All of you will have to make compromises to make this work and from the way I am reading this she is unwilling to do that. It is not just that she is unwilling to change but she sounds unwilling to give it a fair chance to work. She has closed her mind to the possibility that the dogs are part of the package and pretty special part at the package.

Welcome to the forum.
I might suggest having another serious converstion with the human friend. If she feels that you are not "doing enough to help with the transition" yet she is the one moving in, then I think you might have a problem that could grow into something bigger down the line with the fur friends ending on the short end. You and she have to accept each other as you are - good and bad points - and if she thinks the dogs are a "bad point" well …

I'd work on compromise. If you can get the dogs to sleep elsewhere – a lot of people {myself included} don't think dogs belong in human beds {sorry, I think it's gross...I shower before bed to keep the day's dirt and dust off my sheets; why would I let the dogs that run around on the ground in who-knows-what climb in my bed? I don't roll around in my back yard or down the street, why would I want that dirt in my bed? But I know, LOTS of people disagree, and when I was younger I would have disagreed with me also. Our cats sleep with our kids and their sheets are dirty -and our cats are strictly indoors and clean}

I digress --- IF you can get the dogs to sleep elsewhere at night, perhaps she could try getting comfortable with them snuggling up for a movie.
Dh doesn't think our B's should be on the furniture; I would let them on. So, we allow them ONLY on laps, not on the furniture itself. Initially he didn't want them on HIS lap either, but now it's more often his lap than mine that the dogs want to be on! He'll roll his eyes and and ask "Why MY lap?" as he scoops the dog up and lets it get comfy.

I can see where some may think her demands/requests are potentially a sign of things to come, HOWEVER if she is going to become a permanent part of the household, then compromise is key to any relationship, and compromise does not mean "I get what I want", but "we both get a little".
And if she is made to feel that the dogs are priority over her, the relationship will never work. So, what does the relationship with her mean to you? --I'm assuming she is important to you since you've let her move in. Only YOU can decide how much you are willing to work with her on the dog issue because only you know what she means to you and your life.

You probably should have hashed this all out before she moved in, but here you are. I think the two of you need to spend time discussing what compromises you can agree to, then work from there. But you really need to figure out what you want to do.

Welcome to the forum…Looking forward to hearing more and of course, seeing pictures of your pups!

I feel like such a bad person…..I have the girls so that they would be lap dogs, that is what I wanted and that is what they are...have been for their whole life....since I was alone after my wife died they are in the bed when I sleep that too is all they have know their whole life....I did tell my girlfriend this from the start and that they are a very big part of my life, they are like my children.....I was given an ultimatium...until they are out of the bed I(girlfriend) will not get back in the bed.....I tried closing the bedroom door and that was not a good thing, now there is carpet ripped up at the door in fact I got it to stop by leaving her in the bed and I slept on the couch where Precious could be close.....I had warned my girlfriend that shutting her out wouldn't work but did it anyway now I just hope the landlord doesn't see the torn up carpet.....maybe i'm wrong for being close to my dogs but this is how we are, and now I'm being asked why she was put first instead of my girlfriend...guess I was wrong for stopping any further house damage...
I don't know how to make the girls different from what I have wanted them to be, I have been trying to look at this both ways ..........

I think you two need to rethink the living together decision, the fact that you are now sleeping on the couch is ridiculous. I would reply to her, "Love Me, "Love My Dogs"!!!! That means they live here and I will not turn them away after they have given me unconditional love all these years. Sorry!!!!

I would think that if you were up front with your girlfriend about the dogs, she may have let you know before moving in that she had a problem. Let me just put this thought in your head. If she seemed ok with everything untill she fealt like she had some amount of power by actualy living there, how many other things in your relationship will be ok with her untill she feels she has the power to give you an ultimatum. Now be aware that this question I pose to you is from a person who makes it clear that ANY relationship with a person comes second to my dogs. That has always been the case since even before the two I have now. I have ended relationships based on the other person not being willing to try and get along with my dogs. Just some food for though. Good luck, I know how tough this kind of situation can be.

I was going to say something about how it's funny to ask this question to a bunch of dog-lovers (who else would participate in a forums all about their dogs). Of course we're going to defend the dogs and the routine you have established with them, because we likely have similar routines. But, this could have nothing to do with dogs and I think we'd say the same things. I can't believe she gave you an ultimatum. And that you feel so bad about this conflict. Let me rephrase that: that you've BEEN MADE to feel bad about the place your girls have in your life. You shouldn't. Stand by it and demand compromise. She might not be able to see why it is so important to you (i.e. she's not a dog person) but she should understand that it made and continues to make you happy to have that relationship with them. And likewise you should make an effort to pinpoint her problem with the situation and offer to make arrangements that would work for both of you. It needs to be completely 50/50. To be blunt, it sounds like she has you a little whipped and there isn't an equal distribution of power. How it is that she came to be in that position?
Can I ask how long this relationship has been going on??

Looks like we have reconsidered the living together…..we tried three months and she has her beliefs and that will not change, so now its just me and the girls again....
And your right they have given me uncondional love no matter what we have gone through and they will continue to as long as they are with me. This was an experience that they have never been faced with and for that matter for me too, I did find that not everyone is a Basenji person

@fuzzrock:

Looks like we have reconsidered the living together…..we tried three months and she has her beliefs and that will not change, so now its just me and the girls again....
And your right they have given me uncondional love no matter what we have gone through and they will continue to as long as they are with me. This was an experience that they have never been faced with and for that matter for me too, I did find that not everyone is a Basenji person

So sorry that it didn't work out… and sometimes we all think that everyone agrees with our way of loving our animals.. and sometimes people think "OK, I can make them change when I move in"... answer of course is, we can't change people, at least not "just like that"... and your doggy kids would not understand the immediate change from being bed dogs to being shut out...

I am sure it was a tough situation all the way around...

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