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Rescue puppy from abroad and Socialising

(26 Posts)
TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 12:55:45

We have sadly had an unsuccessful rehoming of an adult dog from a U.K. rescue and had to return her for biting my daughters face . We worked with a behaviourist I brought in but she wasn't happy in a home with young children ,the situation escalated and ended up in a bite . Hasn't put us off a dog and children still very keen for a canine family member so we started considering a puppy, really not wanting to go down the route of buying a puppy I have found a little girl in a rescue . Not many rescues want us with young children ... problem she is abroad ! Local family found a stray pregnant dog have taken her in and keeping her , they have asked for rescue to rehome the puppies . Plus side rescue seems reputable and would have refused us with young children for any other pups or dog than these, due to age of children .Puppies have been born into a home with young children present and handling , the foster family seem really invested in them and assure that they are socialising and training the puppies and are having the best start they can give in a family home , they know no cruelty or living on the streets . They send pictures and the puppies appear to be happy and healthy , they are also of the opinion the mum has a wonderful temperament despite all she has been though and is settled in their home calm and patient with their children and a good but firm mum to her puppies .
Problem , 1) am I actually mad adopting from abroad after my first dog disaster ☹️.To me it seems no different from
Adopting a rescue puppy from a home in the uk but am I wrong as mum was stray ( though they believe a cast out previous family pet as she is a popular breed)
2) I can't have the little girl puppy I have chosen until she is 16 weeks as she can't fly , I am very mindful of the window of socialising that they can't replicate as obviously lots of things are going to be very different over here .

I'm more than happy to put an awful lot of work in and pre children I was an experienced dog owner who had a few over the years with "issues" . I'm just concerned over lots of horror stories about adopting from abroad but these appear to be more about dogs found on the street .

Advice please I am prepared to work
my arse off for this little girl but I can't risk my children again ? And any insight into missing the 8-16 week window for socialising.

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TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 12:57:33

And if anyone else has any experiences of adopting from abroad I would love to hear them 👍

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AgathaF Tue 11-Jun-19 13:12:53

Not personal experience, but I have looked after two separate dogs for people who adopted from abroad. One dog seems to have slotted in to family life fairly well. He has a lovely, gentle nature but is quite timid and the lack of socialising is obvious in his interations with people and other dogs. The other dog has not fitted into family life. He has to be kept away from the children as he growls as them if they go near. He isn't house trained and shows no signs of becoming fully trained although he has improved. He can't be walked outside of the home as he is so unreliable with other dogs and with strangers. Fortunately he now lives rurally and has a paddock to play in for exercise. He plays roughly though, and quite honestly isn't that nice to be around.

It's going to depend so much on his mother's nature, the socialising he experiences up to 16 weeks, and probably also your expectations too. Given that you have children, and also that you've already had one bad experience, I don't think this sounds like a good option.

Floralnomad Tue 11-Jun-19 13:14:28

What’s wrong with finding a rescue puppy in this country , there are plenty about if you look and are prepared to travel

TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 13:28:29

Thank you for your replies . I have asked about several puppies in U.K. rescues , a lot are bull breeds or collie x which rightly or wrongly my husband doesn't want . Then I mention the age of the children and cats and it's a no thank you . I'm very torn as I'm wondering what the difference is between a puppy bought up for a few weeks in the U.K. in a rescue kennel and one brought up aboard but in a family home with a mum who appears to be a lovely but disposable and dumped dog and the foster family are adamant they are doing everything right . I suppose the probably easy answer is we go off find a breeder and buy a puppy but it goes against what I feel comfortable with. Also most of the abroad dogs experiences appear to be dogs from the pounds which these little ones have never been near.

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Ylvamoon Tue 11-Jun-19 13:30:49

Please don't adopt this puppy. You know nothing about mum or the puppies circumstances. You don't have the option to see what type of environment it is really being raised. Add to this a long & strenuous journey to the UK... how will it get to you? Travelling how many hours on the road across Europe? Think about the impact this can have on a 8 week old puppy that just started a fear phase. Than there is the issue of vaccinations or luck of. Amy possible parasites/ illnesses it could bring to the UK dog population.
There are so many dogs here that are waiting for a new home, we really don't need any more.

Hoppinggreen Tue 11-Jun-19 13:32:39

I’m sorry but I wouldn’t
There are very good reasons why most rescues won’t rehome where there are young children and given that you have already experienced the dangers of rehoming (albeit with an adult dog) I would be extremely cautious in your case
Some overseas rescues (like UK rescues) are great but some aren’t and I know that some overseas rescues are puppy farm fronts
You may adopt a puppy from abroad and have a great experience but in your shoes I would keep trying with UK rescues, as you say this overseas one is willing to rehome THIS specific pup to you so a UK rescue may also have a pup they will rehome to you

longearedbat Tue 11-Jun-19 13:33:42

I may be going against the grain here, but it seems mad to me to adopt a puppy from abroad. If the puppies are so lovely, why can't they rehome where they are? And the poor mite, being flown around Europe (presumably). What are you going to do if it goes wrong? You can't return it. But I have to say, I don't agree with bringing dogs in from abroad for rehoming anyway, especially when thousands of uk dogs are being destroyed every year because there is no home for them. I think this is being done largely because uk rehoming is strict (for good reason), and a way has been found to circumvent these restrictions, so that familes/individuals that aren't generally considered suitable can have a dog. There has been a rise in diseases (in imported dogs) that we never had before in this country, which makes me wonder how good the health checking is.
Why can't you buy a puppy in this country? Surely it would be easier. A good breeder would give you support and if things didn't work out, would take the dog back. If you are willing to 'work your arse off', this seems a far easier option. To answer one of your questions, yes, I think it's a crazy idea, and I think it is actually rather cruel and traumatising to fly puppies around for new homes.

Wolfiefan Tue 11-Jun-19 13:35:55

How old are your kids? I wouldn’t consider any pup until they are at least school age.
I would never adopt a pup I hadn’t met. Certainly not one with such an uncertain start and after the socialisation window has closed. And then the worry about illnesses.

OverFedStanley Tue 11-Jun-19 13:41:32

Why on earth would you adopt a puppy that you have not seen in real life (especially as you have had a dog with issues before) No way would I take on a dog that I had not seen or had real life contact with.

I know this is not what you want to hear but do consider the issues that the British rescue centres are saying to you, children ages and cats. This can be a problem for some dogs , not all but some and you have no way of knowing if the dog from abroad can handle these situations.

There are a lot of rescues in the UK that will rehome to houses with children and a lot of non collie bull breeds. The advantage being you can see the dog , assess with your daughter, foster first before committing and see how the dog copes with your life style.

TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 13:43:45

Ylvmoon , they don't travel till 16 weeks hence the issue with the window of socialising . Also from my research they are fully vet checked , vaccinated and 2 blood tests before they are issued pet passports and travel docs . Rightly or wrongly on importing dogs from abroad the puppies have no chance of being adopted in their own country , of they want homes they have to travel they have no choice . They could by lying to me but the fact the family have taken this girl in and are thrilled to share pictures and details to where the puppies are going I don't think they are . I also get pictures of them living on a house playing on a garden and asleep on comfy beds , definitely not a dog pound. Having said all this in wary as this is a big unknown , I'm conscious of the must save her clouding my judgement as a previous poster said I have already had one failed rehoming I really don't want another .

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crosspelican Tue 11-Jun-19 13:46:26

Please don't adopt from abroad! There are so many scams (fake "rescues" set up to extract huge sums from well-meaning families here), and why on EARTH would you adopt a dog you haven't met (would she end up in a rescue here if she didn't work out? you'd hardly send her back). You are essentially buying a puppy by going this route, so why not buy the puppy from somewhere legitimate? Or hold out for a rescue who will work with your family and donate the difference to save the lives of other rescue dogs?

TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 13:51:03

Children are 3 and 8 , there are reasons why we want a dog probably a year before it would be easier and I am well aware of the hard work with small people and dogs . I have approached 4 breeders who have litters due or planned , not one has found age of children to be a problem nor cats . However 3 rescues did ( one accepted and has homechecked us on the off-chance as they had a homecheker locally but they have no young puppies suitable at the moment and they are few and far between) Which possibly brings me back to buying a puppy then .

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TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 13:53:17

Just to add the rescue abroad is long established and had really good positive reviews . They also offer a full U.K. lifetime backup so it's really not a front scam for puppy farming , sadly in that country dogs are just disposable items thrown out and the welfare standards appear to be appalling . sad

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TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 14:10:10

Sorry to add something else again , in the abroad rescues defence they also do not rehome to under 5's however as these puppies are born and being brought up in a home with a baby a toddler and one older child , and a mum with a proven great nature with children ( the dad is unknown but believed to be stray lab ☹️) they agree to a young family home for them . They appear to be very straight up and have given me an awful lot of advice and support already ,they have Uk foster families where many of their dogs are and kennels here too they just can't afford to fly all the dogs over here without a home to go to and I'm
Also well aware of the 1000's of U.K. dogs with no home It's a difficult one because on paper she appears to be a great choice but of course she is a long way away and indeed I can't go and meet her beforehand .
Thank you for your input though , it's always good to have balanced views not clouded by cute homeless puppy pictures .

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Maneandfeathers Tue 11-Jun-19 14:51:38

I would never adopt from abroad and don’t agree with the importing of dogs due to the disease risk to our native ones treat seems to be glossed over by rescues but anyway...

I think people underestimate the role of genetics in how dogs turn out, you have no idea what’s in these presumably so no idea of what it may need.

I had this predicament and went to a reputable breeder of a breed that I knew 100% inside and out and that would slot into our family. Yes she was expensive due to the time, health testing and raising of the puppies but she’s been worth every penny. She was exactly what the breeder said she would be and also has the same personality of her mum and grandparents which I was also able to view. Although I am not against rescuing (and have two other rescue dogs acquired pre DC) I don’t think I would be happy bringing a dog into a home with children without knowing what I was taking on.

Twooter Tue 11-Jun-19 14:57:54

What everyone else said. We are already seeing new diseases to this country due to imported animals. Don’t buy from abroad.

keely79 Tue 11-Jun-19 15:39:01

We adopted our boy from a local rescue that rescued dogs from abroad - BUT - he was already in foster care here so we could go and meet him and spend time with him and see how he interacted with our kids and with us.

He's brilliant - he was found as a puppy at the side of the road and rescued but the shelter had him for about 10 months before we adopted him - so he was just under a year old. They obviously did a good job socialising him though as he is respectful but friendly with dogs and other people. As it is a small rescue organisation, they really knew each of their dogs and were able to confirm that he was good with small children, being left alone for periods of time, etc. I could then check that with the foster family here as well.

I would suggest finding a rescue dog that is here already (whether originally from abroad or not) so that you can meet them and see what they are like. I think bringing over from abroad when you've never met them is risky.

limitedscreentime Tue 11-Jun-19 17:42:57

We adopted from abroad but the dog was born in shelter - it's a fantastic shelter and the Dogs are really well socialised, although they don't really have any contact with young children. The shelter were fantastic and very supportive and it's been great. My kids were 18m and 3.5yrs and the dog about 8 months when she arrived. Happy to pm you the shelter name, but I do think the success came from the dog having come from such a good place. She's not totally unscarred as obviously picked up a wariness off men from the other shelter dogs but never aggressive.

TheTillster Tue 11-Jun-19 18:59:22

limitedscreentime Thank you for a balanced view . I'm interested to know if it's the same place and have messaged you.

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Iltavilli Tue 11-Jun-19 19:47:26

Ours is from abroad, and was found living on the streets (although was in their shelter for 6 months before he was allowed to be rehomed). He is the softest and most submissive dog you could hope for, although larger than the medium size we were assured he was.

We didn’t meet him before rescue, but had videos of his interaction with other dogs and children. Most of our friends have young children - aged between one and seven - and all have spent time with him. He is wonderful with them, although supervised at all times. He’s also fabulous with other dogs, even when bitten he didn’t retaliate, just ran to me for hugs.

I wouldn’t rule it out, and ours was 18 months when we got him so his temperament an personality more evident. I would however ensure a full detailed information pack from the rescue and a back up system if things go wrong (ours had emergency foster in the UK if needed).

Fucksandflowers Tue 11-Jun-19 20:25:06

I have only read your opening post so far but I am actually flabbergasted to be honest.

If ever there was a case for a carefully thought out puppy from an experienced, excellent breeder this would be it!

Temperament is largely inherited so there is every chance your sweet rescue puppy could mature into a nervous vicious basketcase depending on the mum and dads temperament.

I am very against overseas rescue anyway for a number of reasons but another thing to consider is the ‘puppy’ won’t be a puppy in the cute fluffy 8 week sense.

Unless I am much mistaken the age range for rabies vaccination means it will be at least 16 weeks?

Fear period is 8 - 12 weeks, I wouldn’t trust an overseas rescue to socialise adequately.

Fucksandflowers Tue 11-Jun-19 20:57:45

And I have no read through the rest of the thread and couldn’t not comment on this:

sadly in that country dogs are just disposable items thrown out and the welfare standards appear to be appalling

Um, dogs are clearly seen as disposable items here too!

Are you aware that Battersea which acts as the pound for the whole of London kills over a thousand healthy dogs every year?
For no other reason than a lack of homes?
That is just London.
Over a thousand.
Every year.
Just let that sink in for a bit.

Add up all the rest of the healthy dogs in pounds all over the rest of the country and that is an eye watering amount of dogs losing their lives.
And you don’t think the UK is viewing dogs as disposable?!

In terms of welfare, yes I have heard it can be horrific.
Dogs left to starve to death, die of heatstroke etc but I would like to 1) remind you that horrific cruelty towards dogs is not at all uncommon in the UK.

The border collie breeder that put puppies in the freezer?
Haatchi the Anatolian shepherd? Finn the police dog?
The countless dogs seized by the RSPCA that have been left to starve to death?
The thousands of dogs beaten to death?
The racing greyhounds with ears cut off and dumped in bins?
I could go on and on...

And 2) that it is physically impossible to rescue every single foreign dog.
Your talking about hundreds of thousands of dogs here.
You are not helping the situation by rehoming these dogs.
You rehome one or two, there are hundreds of thousands more in need.

The only answer would be a far better neuter/spay programme, massive investment in education and punishment for abuse.

Import is not the answer.

longearedbat Wed 12-Jun-19 10:59:48

OP, I noticed you only responded positively to the poster who agreed with you...
You are worried about getting a bull breed cross or collie cross. As no one knows who the father of this puppy is, that might be exactly what you are getting.

TheTillster Wed 12-Jun-19 11:21:41

Longeared bat I responded to everyone who
Has commented or tried to . I was interested in both points of view however most were against. One poster has personal experience and because of this I thanked her for giving me a balance .
According to some the only way forward is to buy a puppy as if genetics play such a part as was suggested by a previous poster then no rescue puppy is going to be suitable ? If I take the offered puppy at face value the mum is known and seems of a good temperament, they live in a family home are taken out and about ( I had a photo of the them in a classroom yesterday as the foster mum does English classes and takes the puppies with her ) and have no health concerns . Probably better socialised and a better start than a U.K. kennel puppy but indeed I have no idea who the dad is and they have to travel . Then there is the moral issue of importing dogs .

It is an absolute minefield and I'm grateful for people's input. I obviously don't want to make the wrong choice for either ourselves or the poor puppy .

No decision has been made yet but I am having a long hard think about things and taking people's views both on here and friends into account . I will also add one of the school mums has an excellently bred GR who they had at 8 weeks old and did everything right .... it's a neurotic mess who costs them a fortune and they can't go on holiday as no one else can cope with her . Behaviourists don't just work with rescue dogs . There is no guarantee either way however I appreciate taking a well bred 8 week old puppy home does most likely cut the risk down.

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