Spend a Few Days with your New Dog
Things To Expect Your First Night With Your Rescue Dog
Try to bring your new dog home for a weekend. Or when you have a few days to devote all your time to them. They will need this. When you look at it from the dog’s view, they are likely to be confused and scared or a bit anxious. Your dog won’t know you although you just want to bond instantly with them. Remember this is all new for both of you.
Treat Them Like Family
Always treat your dog as a member of your family. They need to be with people not locked outside by themselves for hours because your busy or don’t have time. There are many reputable pet sitters and doggy daycare’s to choose from. Don’t opt for locking them outside on their own by themselves. Remember they are only in our lives a short time, and to them, we are their forever. I am not saying humanize your dog however I am saying make them feel a part of your family.
Have Lots Of Patience
Don’t yell or get angry with your new dog. The dog does not know the rules. This will take some time. Allow your dog to take a time out, For instance, some may need that just to absorb everything. They will come around and relax after they know they are welcome in the home. Be stern but gentle when making your first corrections. They rely on you to show them and teach them in a loving and positive way. In my section on training, you will understand why yelling doesn’t work and only confuses a dog. You can use things such as distractions and focus on your techniques to help them better understand what you mean. Most importantly why. (Believe it or not, they do understand, but you HAVE to teach them.)
On your first night, you may notice the dog getting unsettled before bed. I suggest not feeding them right before bed, try to have a feeding schedule so you can monitor your dog’s food intake. You do not want to overfeed or underfeed your new dog so you may want to keep a food diary to bring to your vet. A few hours before bed should be good.
Make sure you let your dog outside before you go to bed. This will prevent any accidents in the house, because they may not know the rules yet. You may want to use a crate for the first few nights. That is up to you. My son did crate training with his dog and it worked great. We just all jumped in bed the first night and she slept by our feet and now eventually she had come to spoon us every night. She is an XL dog 140 lbs and only 16 months old. But we were prepared, we have a very large bed.
Offering a Comfortable Space
Whimpering or nightmares or barking at strange sounds will occur. Your dog is just getting used to things and maybe more alert the first few nights. They may make sounds in their sleep and need some comfort depending on their past history. Your new dog just had their whole world changed and it may be different than what they were used to. So you must be patient and understanding.
I remember when we first brought Jasmine home she whimpered and had bad dreams. I was up every few hours to comfort her and it was heartbreaking. Honestly, I felt like I did when I brought my firstborn home from the hospital. I was exhausted after a few days. However, all the hard work paid off in only months. Even though we will never know what she all went through in her past. I know it affected her and It’s very fulfilling knowing how much confidence and trust she has now for people and other dogs, Ultimately through all our hard work.
But if you are serious and prepared to take on a rescue I can not tell you how rewarding it is. Sometimes it’s not them your rescuing, it’s yourself. You just need to commit to giving them the best care you can. I have a good post you can read more on. The common problems with rescue dogs.
You can also try these out. I know it helped with my dog if there were firecrackers going off that night. Sometimes it just provides comfort to them.