Monroe County Volunteer Humane Society
BEFORE YOU TAKE YOUR DOG HOME
Most rescues and some shelters evaluate our dogs for temperament
and interaction with other dogs on an ongoing basis. Most dogs
in shelters and rescues have been there anywhere from a few days
to several months. So even though when adopted they are going
to a home with love and care devoted to them alone, they might
have some difficulty understanding why they have "lost" another
home. We ask you to read the following information to help you
adapt to the adjustments you and your dog will make while
becoming a whole family unit.
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 do not know if he is housebroken or trained. He has had to
adjust to different situations so it is imperative that you be
patient with your new pet and let him know and understand your
THE FIRST DAY HOME
Keep your new dog on a leash. Show him where his water and food
dish are kept. Show him where he is to sleep. When he is
indoors be sure and keep him confined with you, taking him
outdoors at frequent intervals to relieve himself. Take him
to the same spot each time and praise him heartily when he goes.
Until he learns this new routine he will have to be watched
closely. If there is an accident in the house please do not
assume he is not housebroken. He must get accustomed to his
new home and his new routines. However, loudly say "NO!" and
take him outside immediately. You must catch the dog in the act
if the correction is to be effective. NEVER hit your dog if an
accident occurs. Praise, not punishment, is the key to a well
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 nor
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.
Also, please feel free to call one of the volunteers staffing
the shelter and we will try and work with you.
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.
Most cities' Parks and Recreation Departments offer dog
obedience training. A six to eight week class taking one
hour of your time one day a week, and a training lesson with
your dog 1/2 hour a day, will teach your dog the simple
obedience commands so necessary in having a well-behaved pet.
Just as we must teach our children manners, we must also teach
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 one of you.
Don't Shoot the Dog : The New Art of Teaching and Training,
Karen Pryor, ISBN: 0553253883, paperback $6.50.
How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend : A Training Manual for Dog
Owners, by New Skeet Monks, ISBN: 0316604917, 22.95 hard cover.
The Dog Who Loved Too Much : Tales, Treatments, and the
Psychology of Dogs, by Nicholas H. Dodman, $12.95 .
Pets described on this web site may not still be available when
you contact the shelter. All shelter pets must be
spayed/neutered before adoption.
Copyright Info: Nothing is copyrighted. Please use any
information on this web site freely - let's save some lives.
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