Rehoming a rescue dog can be a stressful process for everyone involved, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some of Ruthy Doolittle’s insights, tips, and tricks on making your pet’s arrival as seamless as possible. Do remember for your new friend, life is going to probably have changed so having patience throughout the whole process is key!
It Takes Time
One of the biggest factors with any rescue dog is time and plenty of it, let them set the pace.They have not grown up with our modern lives so don’t understand the home and all the things we have in them, so overwhelm from sounds and vibrations is very real, let them be the lead on what is okay and what is not.Look at doing exercises and activities that build their trust, slowly and positively.
Avoid any raised voices, old school techniques or domination. This will not generate a positive connection and is likely to trigger a fear response. Anytime your animal experiences a fear response, say from the postman, the washing machine, or hoover look at ways to help them unwind from that stress. Often when a dog has had too much (much like us) they explode, only in a dog that has had too much and us humans have missed it, is likely to be agitated and much closer to behaving in a fearful way and possibly even biting someone.Please note that not all dogs will go to this point, it is your duty of care to ensure your dog stays calm, happy and peaceful.
Fun and Games
Play is one of the most simple ways to tone down agitated behaviours. The right play of course make all the difference. Anything that can engage a dogs keen sense of smell is helpful.I know not all street dogs or rescues play, my own doesn’t. However where food is in the game, hide and seek, drop it and find it and sprinkles https://www.dog-games.co.uk/sprinkles-tm/ are some of the food orientated games that we do with our boy. Anything that engages dogs natural senses, especially engaging their smell, acts as a tonic to unwind them. Do not let the stress stack up in your dog so it becomes unmanageable.
If a dog won’t play then the next best thing is sleep. Long, deep, and restful sleep. The type where their feet are twitching. This is healing for their body as they process emotional stress, rest and repair. Be sure they have a quiet place of their own to sleep, where they are undisturbed. If the dog is asleep, leave it there until it wants to get up, much like us.No-one likes their sleep being disturbed and street dogs don’t get the best sleep especially those that came from Romania.
Phone a friend
We can all always learn something new. Dog Training College offers some fabulous online courses.Looking out for body language in our dogs, especially ex-street dogs can be vital in keeping them happy and avoiding an incident.Never tell your dog off for growling. It is a warning, take it seriously and back off. If the growling becomes frequent and makes interacting with the dog difficult then it is time to call in a professional dog Trainer and Animal Communicator.
Step by Step
Not every person likes every person, and it is the same with dogs, especially if they have come from a rescue and been mistreated.When a rescue dog takes an instant dislike to someone it is more likely that a person reminds them of someone who hurt them.Give it time, lots and lots of time. Make little progress every day or every other day.If your dog will take food from people it is unsure of, encourage that person to feed them and interact with them around food. Nothing else. Take all pressure right off and slow right down.
Can you imagine being tortured by a bearded person (sorry people with beards) being rescued and then move to a plushy new home where it has a person with a beard in it? Talk about scary! Put yourself in your animal’s shoes and let them build up. their own trust.Think about working with a Holistic Wellness Professional (like me) to chat to your dog, find out what she is fearful and what she feels she needs to overcome it and then put a natural care plan together for you to implement so that you know what is best for your animal, according to your animal. What other help is needed, and when to action it.
You’re not alone
If you or anyone you know is struggling with rescue dogs’ undesirable behaviors then do ask for help. Speak to a professional, you are not alone.Taking on a rescue dog can require support for you too, I offer a complimentary 30 min call for anyone thinking about working together to book a quick chat over the phone here where you can find out the different ways I work and I can answer some of your questions to.
If you have any other questions or need more information you can get in contact here.
From the heart, Ruthy xxx