Help with settling in a new dog please

(11 Posts)
bloodywhitecat Wed 30-Oct-19 15:28:45

Can I share my excitement?

I am very excited, we have had our names down with several rescues and have been offered a young spaniel we are still waiting to finalise plans about collecting him but now I am all nervous about doing the right thing for him. The last time I settled a new rescue I already had a dog in the house and this time it feels a but scarier as we have no resident dog this time and, unlike last time this time I have small child in the house too.

What do I need to bear in mind to help him settle? And do we change his name? I am not keen on the name he has but is it fair to change it?

OP’s posts: |
sleepismysuperpower1 Wed 30-Oct-19 15:50:16

how old is the dog? i think you should be fine to change its name, but i would probably pick something similar sounding.

In terms of getting it settled in, i found it helped to give it a quiet space where it can go to calm down, sleep etc. we used a crate (as we crate trained) but you could use a bed and some blankets. is he house trained?

all the best x

bloodywhitecat Wed 30-Oct-19 15:53:49

9 months old so a baby still really. Yes, fully house trained and not a chewer, a bed is a good idea, I have a crate in the garage that have used for bringing our chickens home in so we could use that as a quiet space/den if needs be.

OP’s posts: |
Starlight2004 Wed 30-Oct-19 15:56:26

How old is the dog? Does he have any known issues such as being very anxious, very hyper or fearful of anything in particular? How much do you know about his history?

In general when getting a rescue dog just make sure they have a safe quiet space to retreat to so they don't feel overwhelmed. Try to offer affection on their terms, ie when they come to you for it and make sure the children understand the dogs need for space. My husband slept down stairs in the living room with her bed near the first night we brought our rescue dog home as we did not want her to feel abandoned in a strange place.

I'm sure she will soon settle in to family life. Just take it day by day and done expect to much from her at first. Some dogs just slit right in as if they have always been there.. others take more time to adjust.

ScrambledEggForBrains Wed 30-Oct-19 15:56:52

Aww congratulations on your new fur baby.
We used a “pet remedy” plugin when we got our rescue dog in February, and we’re using it again on the run up to Bonfire night.
I would let him get used to who his new family members are for a few days, before letting other people come round to meet him. I don’t see any problem with changing his name to one you prefer, start as you mean to go on. Good luck football

missbattenburg Wed 30-Oct-19 16:01:45

Most dogs don't really know their name (there are exceptions were someone has done some great training with dogs on name recognition). What they tend to learn is...

the funny sound = good things for me

Which means changing names is easy, peasy as the dog doesn;t really have to unlearn their old name, they just need to add their new name to their list of things they know. Most dogs would just pick up their new name without any specific intervention, as time goes on.

However, if you wanted to help your dog to this and to speed up his linking his new name with good stuff then you can make sure to use it everytime he gets something nice.

e.g. want to give him a treat? Say his name and hand him the treat. Repeat and he will very quickly learn "Bobby" means something nice for him and is likely to come to you to see what it might be (or whatever his new name is).

In terms of settling, it's good advice above about not pushing your new dog too fast. Somewhere quiet and peaceful he can go to is a great suggestion. An open doored crate furnished as a den is likely to be perfect if you make sure he is in there by choice and is left in peace when he is. For the first few days I might try to be aware that even eye contact might be a bit much so try not to stare too much at your lovely new dog in his crate grin.

This might not be needed. He might be a social butterfuly who loves his new home and is playing fetch within an hour, but just in case.

What do you know about his past/temperament? Any clues there that might help you?

sleepismysuperpower1 Wed 30-Oct-19 16:03:09

i would put the crate you mentioned into a corner, put the bed inside of it with a blanket and leave that as it's safe place. you should be fine changing the name. also, talk to your dc before hand and explain that if the dog is in the crate/lying down then it needs to be left alone because its tired or scared

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bloodywhitecat Wed 30-Oct-19 16:24:47

I know he is 9 months old and being rehomed for reasons within the family outside of his control and that he has always been with small children, he knows the basics and he pulls on the lead but his recall is OK (I will use a long line at first before we trust his recall!).

OP’s posts: |
PrincessHoneysuckle Wed 30-Oct-19 16:27:30

Have you a pic op? I will admit I'm here for a spaniel pic grin

Jouska Wed 30-Oct-19 16:29:52

Most dogs don't really know their name really suprised at this commet but still does not matter if you change their name - they learn really quickly if you give a treat each time you say it.

GO slow - very slow even if the dog appears very confident.

Keep to certain areas of the house and garden do not let them have free roaming for a while.
Do put up a crate in a quiet area and fed them in the crate and encourage them into the crate by putting treats in there throughout the day. Just pop the treat in and let them find it.

I would not walk out and about for a bit just let things be chilled and relaxed.

Reward the magic circle around you if the dog is close to you drop a treat on the floor. This will encourage the dog to be happy to be near you which makes life easy when you get out and about. Do this a lot many many times a day.

missbattenburg Wed 30-Oct-19 17:03:49

Yeah perhaps bad wording on my part. What I meant is that I am not sure most pet dogs understand the concept of a name as being anything to do with identify. I think mostly they just learn to link it to something nice (or horrible in some cases).

In a multi dog household where a bit more training has gone on this concept may have been taken further to allow different dogs to respond to different cues. So some multi dog homes put work into teaching:

Fido Sit
Sadie Sit
Freddie Sit
Etc. So they don't just say 'sit' and all dogs sit.

In others I think the dogs probably pick up on eye contact as a way to differentiate cues.

It was meant to be my shorthand way of saying I don't think a dog is phased much by a change of name.

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