Did you know that 40% of dog owners get their dogs from shelters or rescue groups? Adopting a rescue dog is a more affordable and ethical option than buying from a breeder in most situations. You’ll give a dog a second chance at life!
Settling a dog after you adopt it isn’t always easy. While some dogs are ready to join the family right away, others need time to adapt.
We’re here to talk about what to do after your dog adoption to help your new friend get more comfortable. Read on to learn more.
1. Take It Slow
When you adopt a dog, you might be excited to hit the ground running right away. You want to go outside and play, give your dog as many new things as possible, and show the new dog off to all of your friends and family members.
Despite your good intentions, this might not be what’s best for the dog. While some dogs adapt well to new environments, others need time to adjust.
If your dog seems skittish on its first day in your new home, give it some time to rest and relax before you start training or socializing it.
Bonus tip: it’s also a good idea to go slow when you introduce your new dog to any other animals in the home. Not all pets react well to a furry new roommate.
Some people recommend introducing your pets in a neutral area (like outdoors at a park) while others recommend that you allow them to smell each other through a door for a day or so first. All pets are different, so use your best judgment.
2. Offer Comforting Toys and Treats
While you shouldn’t overwhelm your dog with overstimulating things right away, there’s nothing wrong with providing comforting toys and treats. This might help the dog understand that it’s in a safe and loving new environment.
Let the dog come with you to the pet supply store (once it’s been settled for a day or so as long as it’s not aggressive) to pick out a toy. This won’t be the only toy that your dog owns, but it could turn into a comfort item.
Test out different treats with your new dog to see what it likes. You could even pick up a special treat, like a puppuccino, on your way back from picking out a toy. Remember: this is a “once in a while” treat.
3. Provide a Designated Space for the Dog
Many people think that kennels or blocked-off dog rooms are cruel, but this isn’t true. These spaces give your dog territory. The dog knows that it can go to that space when it’s feeling scared, tired, or overwhelmed.
Put a blanket and a toy (preferably the one that your dog chose) in its designated space. Make sure that you don’t use this space as a “time out” area unless it’s absolutely necessary. You don’t want the dog to associate its room with punishment.
Make Your Rescue Dog Feel Right at Home
Making a rescue dog feel comfortable in a new space isn’t always easy. Try these tips to help your rescue dog feel comfortable in its new environment. Soon it will feel like a part of the family.
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