Over 3.2 million people each year decide to adopt a rescue pet across the world. And there’s no denying that adopting a rescue dog can be a heartwarming experience. Nevertheless, adopting a rescue dog and buying a puppy from an early age can be two different experiences (although you get the same cute result). So take a look at these five important things you need to know before taking the plunge and adopting a rescue dog.
Your dog will be scared
The reason your new dog was in the rescue center in the first place is because they were rescued; it could have been abandoned by its owners, it could have been mistreated, or it could have been separated from it’s mother. These experiences are bound to affect a dog – as it would a human. Then, you are taking this dog from a relatively new place, on a different journey and with new people to take it home with you – it won’t be jumping up and down and licking your face straight away. You have to understand that your new dog will be scared until it realizes it is now safe with you.
Your dog will need training
Although you’re not training a new puppy, your new rescue dog will still need training. With its history, or previous owners, your adopted dog might have picked up habits that aren’t desirable to you. It is important to train your new dog on what you expect from it, what it can and what it can’t do. But remember: this will take time. Do not expect it to be instantaneous. And it’s not true what they say, you CAN teach an old dog new tricks. Eventually.
Your dog doesn’t know what you have done for them
One reason many people turn towards rescue dog adoption is because they think they are doing these dogs a favor. On the one hand, you are. But on the other hand, the dogs don’t know that you’ve saved them. So don’t expect it to show its gratitude or it’s thanks (in a dog way, of course). To them, you are just another person who is in their lives. They will grow to love you, and they will grow attached, but they will never quite realize what you did for them.
Your dog may not get on with your other pets
There are many people who adopt rescue dogs who already have other pets in their home. Your new rescue dog may not get on with them – and that is okay. For them, it could be a completely new experience. They may never have been around a cat before or budgie. Alternatively, they may never have been in close proximity with another dog before. It is down to the dog to grow accustomed to the other pets at their own rate – and you should never force them to get on. Some animals just simply won’t see eye to eye.
Your dog may have health problems
Because of it’s history, your new rescue dog may have health problems. As its owners, it is down to you to accept this, and help them through the whole process. When you adopt your dog, the rescue center should have checked them over, but if something does occur, it becomes your responsibility. Make sure you have pet insurance to cover vet bills, if and when they do occur.