Finding Furever Home’s Advice for settling a new rescue dog into your home. These tips were published in an article in the Staffordshire News originally (with permission to share):
1. Initially, restrict access to just certain areas of the house – a big open space after a kennel existence can be daunting and offer opportunities for things to go wrong.
2. Sofas, beds and furniture is for another day – for now we are establishing boundaries and a few basic rules and that means giving the dog its own comfy space – bed, crate, quilt – something on the floor and where it can be in peace and quiet and learn that it is your house and allow it to fit into your rules.
3. Keep children away from the dog for periods of time and do not let children smother the dog – it deserves time, space and respect from all family members especially the youngest ones.
4. Make walks quiet, calm and on the lead – don’t let your dog run off the lead until you have built a bond and trained and tested recall in an enclosed space.
5. Keep the same routine the rescue had as much as possible with times for meals and food etc. – gradually alter the times slowly to fit with your own routine
6. Keep meal times quiet, calm and allow the dog to eat in peace at its own pace with no hassle or hindrance. Stick to the food it had at rescue and do not be tempted to feed it too many rich treats. Any change in diet should be introduced slowly.
7. Be clear on the rules you intend to enforce – don’t “feel sorry for the rescue dog” and allow it all sorts of liberties that you will not allow it later. Be consistent.
8. Start to leave the dog home alone for short periods and gradually build up the time it is left alone.
9. Take your time. Do not ask too much of the dog. It does not know you, your expectations, your family or even why it has left the routine and security of kennels.
10. Don’t be afraid to ask the rescue for help and support if you need and don’t just ignore the perceived problem and then decide to give up.