If you have decided to adopt a dog from a shelter or are thinking about doing so, it will be essential to be clear about some things that can happen. And an adopted dog can be very disconcerted when arriving at a new home best family pets.
It will also be essential to understand how he will react at home, on the street and even with other people, also understanding what we should do about it. Always with patience and a lot of love.
Keep reading this complete AnimalWised guide to learn all the tips for training an adopted dog and discover how nice it is to have a rescued best friend. One of the best experiences you can have in life.
The behavior of adopted dogs
While some dogs sell for exorbitant amounts, others spend years in a cage waiting for the same opportunity . Whether breed or not, it is currently possible to find dogs of all types in shelters or kennels: small or large, puppies, adults or seniors. It is proposing and searching.
Although all of them deserve the same opportunity, adult dogs are not usually so easily adopted, for this reason, if you want at your side an already educated dog with a stable character, an adult or elderly dog is a good option. The center’s volunteers will help you choose the best candidate.
The attitude of an adopted dog
Even going through the same experiences, not all dogs will react in the same way: when faced with abuse, some dogs become shy and scared, but others may become aggressive and distrustful. It will depend on each specific case .
However, what they do have in common is that abandoned dogs usually take some time to completely trust their new family, so patience and affection cannot be missing in your daily life.
Before arrival home
Prior to its arrival, we must ensure that the dog is comfortable when it arrives at its new home. To do this, we will prepare everything you need in advance:
- The first thing of all will be its bed, since when spending time in a cage it will appreciate a comfortable place to rest. You can buy it or make it yourself by following the simple step by step in our article on how to make a dog bed . It is better that it be somewhat large than too small.
- The second thing will be to place a drinker with plenty of fresh water in a specific place.
- We will also need specific food for their age ( junior, adult or senior ) and if you want to make their arrival more enjoyable, some pâté or canned food, they love it!
- Treats or prizes will be essential to work with training and positive reinforcement , the tastier they are, the better.
- Some toy or teether will also be essential since some dogs may suffer from anxiety and will have the need to nibble.
- A collar or harness, a leash and bags to collect excrement will be essential when taking your new friend for a walk. Remember that shelters often have financial difficulties so take everything with you when adopting the dog, so they can use the collar they have for a new tenant.
- It may also happen that your friend arrives excessively dirty. Have a shampoo, pipette, and bath brush ready if necessary. You can also take him to a dog groomer and watch how they do it if you don’t have experience.
We recommend reviewing the safety of your entire home, making sure you don’t leave anything within reach of your new friend that could harm them (crystal glasses, plants that are toxic to dogs, or direct access to the trash). Anything that you think should not bite, remove it.
When we adopt him, we must try to find out everything about him, such as what his past is, if he is afraid of the vet or if he relates well to other dogs. It is very helpful to know all these points. If you don’t have information, don’t worry, little by little you will get to know him. Finally, we recommend that you prepare large doses of love, affection and patience.
The first days of an adopted dog
When we adopt the dog, on the way home, it will be advisable to give it a long walk until you notice that it barely pees and that it is a little tired. This way, he will be more relaxed at home and if he tries to urinate he will only make a few drops.
The moment we arrive home with the dog we must untie him and let him sniff the entire house , without limits. It is important that you get to know his new home, all the rooms and get used to the smells in it to feel comfortable.
It may happen that he tries to mark his territory by urinating a little in some corners . It is normal for him to do it, especially if you have had other dogs before, don’t get overwhelmed, he will soon stop doing it. Remember that it is not at all advisable to scold a newly adopted dog, choose to distract it so that it stops doing so.
The first few days can be somewhat stressful for both of you. To alleviate hyperactivity , urination at home or other situations, it is highly recommended to walk him at least 4 times a day, adding a total of 90 minutes between all outings. Don’t exercise him excessively, just allow him to sniff as much as he wants, a form of relaxation for dogs.
Never force him to interact with people, dogs or perform obedience in certain places. Nothing that can overwhelm you. Try to guide him towards your goals using verbal communication, hand movements and the use of treats. It is also interesting that you learn more about canine language , so that you can know at all times if the dog is tense, uncomfortable or relaxed.
The importance of routine and norms
Dogs are routine animals and appreciate organization . Set specific walking and eating times so that your animal can position itself and predict what is going to happen at all times. Although this may not seem relevant to you, the truth is that it is one of the most effective ways to accustom the dog to a new home.
It will be basic and fundamental to establish rules of coexistence between the entire family unit. We cannot prohibit something and then allow it, that could confuse the animal a lot. Of course, try to be as tolerant as possible at first, remember that he may be disoriented and scared or that his previous owners were chaotic or did not establish rules of coexistence.
Games and fun
In addition to staying at home and going for walks, your dog needs to enjoy life. He will have spent time in a shelter, without stimulation and entertainment, something that can impair his ability to learn and cause behavioral problems.
You must prepare to do activities with him, whether going to the mountains, the beach or playing ball. Intelligence games or interactive toys can help you a lot when it comes to stimulating your child. Making him happy will be essential to enjoy a healthy and affectionate dog . Spend time with your new pet.
Basic training orders
It will also be essential to practice the basic commands : stay, come, sit and lie down (among others). It will be essential to ensure his safety if in the future we decide to leave him off the leash. It will also be very useful in your daily life at home or to improve your communication. Try to be patient, constant and adapt the sessions to their learning pace.
You can spend about 10 minutes a day practicing commands. Typically, 10 to 30 repetitions will be enough for your dog to learn to carry out a basic command. Do not abuse time, remember that you must offer him the maximum possible well-being.
Of course, don’t think about letting your dog go if he still doesn’t listen to you . You could inadvertently put him at risk. You can practice the commands at home or in a fenced pipi-can.
What should walks be like for an adopted dog?
Especially during the first days we should not be at all demanding with our dog during walks. We must allow him to sniff his surroundings (that helps him orient himself and relax), and let him walk around a little where he wants so that he can feel comfortable.
If he pulls hard on the strap, do not pull it too, as this may cause damage to his neck or intraocular pressure. Better get an anti-pull harness or teach your dog to walk alongside you , effective and safe ways to improve the quality of the walk.
When your dog is more accustomed to walking and can effectively hold his urine, you should determine a specific walking routine. Discover in Experto Animal what you should avoid during the walk or how long each of them should last.