Rescue dog arriving soon- tips and help please(15 Posts)
We reserved a 10 year old terrier-type mongrel yesterday and are having a home visit later in the week, which should be fine (secure garden, plenty of space etc).
His background is that his owner passed away earlier in the year and he was waiting in kennels for six months being constantly overlooked because of his age and some behaviour issues. So, we're delighted that we can offer him a retirement home.
His behaviour issues are about being possessive over toys, food and space. We're meeting with a behavourist to speak about it but the Centre said it's not a problem as long as you give him his own space and there are no children or other pets at home, which there are not.
Our background is that I had a terrier for 10 years from a pup and DH has never had a dog but is completely in love with this little guy.
We're really excited about getting him home but after some advice on what we should and shouldn't be doing for the first few days and weeks. There are some good websites which talk about training over months but I mean what should we be doing in the few hours and days after he arrives here?
I'd love to hear your positive and negative experiences and tips and advice, please.
Also, Christmas is an issue. We usually go to my mothers for a couple of days but I don't want to put the dog in kennels so soon after he's arrived with us, the poor little guy will be so confused. Do you think it'd be okay to take him on a train and then stay at my mum's for a couple of nights? Obviously, we'll have to see how he travels but, let's assume he is a good traveler, do you think this would be okay? It'd be better than kennels of course because we'd be there with him but after your opinions on this.
Thanks so much for any advice and help!
Bless him, he's had a lot to deal with hasn't he.
I'd start from the beginning being really consistent with him over food and toys (plus giving him his own space with a crate, even if you don't shut the door as its a very clear space). You might want to go the route of absolutely no food outside his meal time (obv depends if he's toy motivated enough to be a recall reward) and making him sit/wait/release for his meals so its very clear that you are handing it over.
Re Christmas - it'll just depend on him I guess. Mine quite like going to visit others if we are with them - they have a travel crate to sleep in so it keeps things normal at night
Yup I would take with is there anywhere at your mums where he can get away from people ?
Oh thanks so much for your replies, they are so helpful.
CMOT He's had so much to deal with, I'm so impatient to get him here and get some stability. That's good tips regarding waiting for food etc. When you say travel crate, how realistic is that for a 2 hour train journey do you think? Sorry, I know you don't know the dog, probably impossible to say.
Chair Thanks for that. Oh yes, he can escape out of the room if he needs to get away from everyone for a bit
Our crate folds flat and isn't that heavy - and is huge as my two lurchers fit in. It has a shoulder strap, so not a prob on the train if theres two of you.
If there will be lots of people at your mums, consider whether they will respect your behaviour wishes and leave him alone when he wants.
Do you have a harness for him? I'd keep him on a harness and lead (non extending) for a few weeks until you know how he feels about other dogs/children/bikes/squirrels, and you can work on recall in the house and garden
Provided there are no animals at your mums I wouldn't worry about a crate ,unless you plan to have one at home . Take him for a short train journey in a few weeks when he has built up some confidence in you and see how he travels . I am making an assumption that he had an elderly owner in which case you may find that he loves visiting your mum ,lots of dogs love elderly people . I have a friend who got an elderly bedlingtonx from the Cinammon trust ,she found that he was very 'old' when he arrived but after a couple of months he was like a different dog as he became fitter . Congratulations to you all, terriers are by far the best type of dog !
CMOT I'll get a harness once everything is confirmed. Actually cannot wait to hit Pets at Home. There will only be me, DH and DM at my mums so no issues about respecting him and his space. The Centre have said he's okay with other animals and children as long as he's not eating or in bed which is when he gets possessive.
Floral I was going to try him on the train in a few weeks time to see how he is. All the Centre staff said he's quite chilled and loves going in the car etc. so I'm hoping he'll be okay on the train. I'm not sure we would use a crate at home, just a basket, so I might just have him on my lap on the train. My mum's not that old- only just turned 60 so it made me laugh when you called her elderly
Just wanted to say that you are wonderful for giving him a home. Good luck!
Ah thanks Dieu. The staff at the Centre were delighted yesterday as he's not had much interest. When we said we'd love to take him, they told us that they'd all been on the radio to each other saying what a big deal this was for him and how much they were all praying we'd say yes. Tears all round and the dog went a bit loopy as well
We just got our rescue dog a month ago and she is my first dog (husband had dogs as a kid but I always had cats)
Ours has different issues (very nervous, bless her!) but i think my advice is lots of patience as he settles in, and what has helped us has been the support/advice from the rescue people over the weeks ours has been settling with us.
It is true to say that she is already a different dog to the one who arrived, which has been lovely to see.
I agree, lots of patience. Lots of fuss and fun. I'd make sure that he has a bed in a corner or a crate that he knows is his safe, quiet corner. Don't make a fuss over feeding, if he sits, teach him to sit for a second or two before you feed him, giving him a command when he can have it. Don't expect miracles at first, just hold his collar for a second, say "wait" and then "ok, get it" and let him go. Say "good boy" then leave him in peace to eat. Re toys, just have a few around. Don't play tug of war type games, just let him play and settle. I've had three rescue dogs. The main key with all of them was exercise. Lots of fresh air, exercise and exploring leads to a relaxed, happy dog.
Good luck. And well done on picking an older dog that many have overlooked. I bet you'll love each other in no time.
All such brilliant comments, thank you.
We had the home visit this morning and I think all went well. The guy said that he couldn't really give us any feedback as that's their policy but we'd researched vets, costs, walking services and though about how often and where we'd walk etc. so seemed to tick a lot of the boxes.
I'll be back to update once I know more but I'm hopeful.
Then I'll need to hit Pets at Home for supplies, lots and lots of supplies
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