THE ADULT DOG
There are many advantages to adopting an adult dog. You already know the size and the disposition of your pet, something not known of a puppy. However, you do not know your pet’s past. You may not know if they are housebroken or trained. It will take time for them to adjust to the new routine and a new home environment so it is imperative you be patient with your new pet and let them learn and understand your patterns.
THE FIRST DAY HOME
Some pets may develop soft stools or diarrhea when fed a new diet. This possibility of this can be minimized by slowing transitioning from the food they were fed at the shelter or feeding a bland diet for several days. There are commercial preparations of these, or a homemade diet can also be fed while gradually transitioning the pet to the intended food.
PERIOD OF ADJUSTMENT
The first couple of weeks you and your pet are “getting to know one another.” He doesn’t know why he has come to your home or what is expected of him. Please be patient with him and anticipate problems before they occur. Don’t leave tempting shoes, clothing, or children’s toys within reach of your dog. If he is left out in your backyard while you work, please understand the first few days will be rough on him. Try to leave the home with as little fanfare as possible. Tearful goodbyes do nothing but add to your dog’s anxiety.
THINGS TO WATCH FOR
When he’s first settling in, your dog may experience shyness, anxiety, restlessness, excitement, crying or barking. He may exhibit excessive water drinking, frequent urination, or diarrhea. His appetite may not be good. If any of these symptoms last more than a few days, call your veterinarian.
Your new dog must learn a whole set of new rules. Be patient and be consistent. If you want him off the furniture, don’t allow him to sit on the couch “sometimes.” Don’t allow him to do something one time and forbid it another.
The Fox Valley Humane Association can offer many resources and recommendations for you if you are in need of obedience training for your pet. Please give us a call at (920) 733-1717 ext. 100 to speak with a team member!
A NEW MEMBER OF YOUR FAMILY
Within a week or two, your dog will have settled into his new home and his new routine. Some will take a little longer. Very few are unable to adjust at all. In most cases the dog will be a well-adjusted member of the family within a month. And it will be well worth it. In fact, you will probably have trouble remembering when he wasn’t with you.