What to consider when getting a rescue dog
What to consider when getting a rescue dog © Neil Marshall
 

Rescued dogs are usually more than six months old, are housetrained, and mainly past the 'chewing-everything' stage, they are normally happy to be placed in a loving home. Many have been uprooted from a loving family by some misfortune, and some have been abused or neglected and need lots of patience and care, to get past the trauma in their short lives.

Health

Rescue dogs may be neutered, and should be vaccinated and at least relatively healthy before purchase. A dog on medication for an ear infection or arthritis can easily go to a new home; a dog with heartworm or an active respiratory or intestinal infection should stay put until the disease is cured to avoid the stress of relocation while under treatment.

Behavioural 'baggage'

Most rescue dogs have had at least one home and sometimes many homes. They may come with behavioural 'baggage' and some problems due to the fact that they may have been rejected at least once and, in some cases, a number of times.

Some will have been in kennels or the rescue centre for some considerable time. This will have an effect on dogs, especially those that are normally used to family life and constant attention. The dog may have been put in a rescue centre because of behavioural problems, which could include toileting indoors, excessive barking, destructive tendencies etc.

The initial adjustment can be difficult as the dog may need to learn to trust again or even for the first time. Separation anxiety, fear of noises, and attempts to run away are common. But once past the first few months, when the dog learns to depend on the kindness of his new owners, then the bond is forged. This however can be an exceptionnally rewarding experience.

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Info Guide - Rescue a dog

Related Topics

Crossbreed DogsRescue Dogs

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