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: Christie Roening, for TAP
Dogs have basic needs, just like humans. Appropriate socialization and training is important to your pup’s vitality and for your shelter dog!
Some rescue pet parents assume their new, furry friend is already trained. They might also assume, as the old saying goes, “can’t teach an old dog new tricks”, so it isn’t necessary to train. This just is not true. You might have a shelter dog that is perfectly trained to sit, avoid jumping, or let you know when it’s time to go outside. However, this pup still needs socialization with other dogs and people, to reinforce positive, past behavior. Conversely, you might have a shelter dog that was abused or neglected and displays aggressive behaviors such as snapping, growling, or barking at strangers or lunging at dogs. Training is so important to correct these instances not only for your safety but also for other people and dog’s safety. If you have adopted a dog that has abuse issues, you may have to take extra steps to encourage a stable adjustment period. And…hats off to you for giving a troubled dog a home!
Introducing your new rescue pup to your home is an exciting endeavor! Although, it’s important to remember that your dog is probably anxious and won’t understand this is a new home. After all, they have been transferred from home, to shelter, possibly foster families, back to shelters, etc. They will most likely show one or more of the following behaviors:
As troublesome as these behaviors can be, there is hope! Unless your dog is so aggressive that he consistently and purposely harms other animals or humans, (if that’s the case, talk to a professional trainer and your vet ASAP), there are various methods you can use to provide an enjoyable training experience with your shelter pup. Read on to find out more!
Do not set high expectations for your new rescue dog. Although your new shelter pup may be trained, he or she may not behave the way you assume they might and will need time to adjust.
Remember that your furry companion’s new life is another experience for them so they will need ample time to adjust. Patience, consistency, and love will be generously rewarded for both of you!