What to Consider Before Adopting a Rescue Dog

If you are thinking about rescuing a dog, here are a few important points to consider…

Think About Age and Temperament

Puppies are adopted quickly from rescue shelters since many people prefer the idea of raising their dogs from as young as possible. However, adult dogs deserve a second chance just as much as puppies. Older rescue dogs may have had more negative experiences in their past that resulted in unusual temperaments, but that doesn’t mean they are necessarily a lost cause. In fact, adult rescue dogs can be some of the most loving pets.

Listen to the Rescuer’s Evaluation of Your Dog

It is always best to meet any prospective rescue dog before committing to adoption. This is to make sure that you and the dog get along and feel comfortable together, even if it’s only a little at first. Talk to the rescue team or volunteers about how the dog behaves and what they know about the dog’s history. This will help you make a more informed decision about what you are capable of taking on.

Prepare for Your New Pet’s Wellbeing

Whichever dog you choose to adopt, you will need to prepare your home for their arrival. Apart from supplying a soft bed, plenty of toys, and nutritious food, you will also need to think about their future wellbeing. Considerations such as dog insurance are just as important as buying a harness or treats. Does the dog breed tend to experience particular health concerns? Does the rescue you’re interested in have any underlying medical conditions? The more you know, the better you can prepare.

Provide a Safe and Calm Environment

Set up a part of your home where your rescue dog can enjoy their privacy. This could be a quiet room or a crate that’s big enough to be humane and comfortable. Blankets, towels, toys, and water will all help your new dog to settle in quicker. Having somewhere they can retreat to is a great way to let them explore on their terms.

Plan Introductions to Other Pets

If you have other pets, you will need to be careful about how you introduce your rescue into the home. Some rescue dogs will never be able to live alongside other pets and the shelter should be able to advise on this. Keep existing pets separate from your new rescue dog and introduce them to each other gradually and with constant supervision.

Go at Their Pace

Your rescue may be able to handle some changes better than others. Progress won’t always be regular and there will be occasional backsliding. Don’t let this dishearten you. By going at your dog’s pace and letting them grow comfortable in their own time, you reassure them that you can be trusted. This will eventually sink in and they’ll start to feel at home.

Rescuing a dog rather than buying a puppy from a breeder is one of the most thoughtful and ethical ways to adopt a pet. While some breeders do operate within legal and ethical rules, it is very kind to give a dog a second chance at living a happy and safe life through rescue adoption. As long as you are prepared for the hard work, you will be rewarded with loyalty and love.

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